What causes high female testosterone levels?
It’s not common to have elevated female testosterone, but for those who do struggle with things like polycystic ovary syndrome, congenital adrenal hyperplasia, thyroid problems or insulin resistance, it can come up. Testosterone is a hormone normally associated with men, but sometimes, due to certain medical conditions, women can have too much of it. High testosterone levels can cause a range of issues, from hair loss and acne to fertility problems and mood swings. If you're going through this, know that you're not alone. It's okay to feel frustrated, confused, or overwhelmed, but remember that there are treatment options to help manage your symptoms.
High testosterone levels can be confusing and frustrating. Let's figure out why it's happening and how to fix it. Genetics, aging, and medication can play a role, so detection of potential problems is vital. That's where hair tissue mineral analysis (HTMA) comes in – a non-invasive and effective way to further analyze and fix imbalances.
What is female testosterone and How it is Made in the Body
As we learn more about the key hormones in our bodies, it's important to understand the role of testosterone. While it's necessary for many important bodily functions, too much testosterone can lead to some unpleasant symptoms. Excessive hair growth and weight gain are just a couple of the potential side effects.
Testosterone is a crucial steroid hormone that our body produces through a fascinating process. It all starts with a hormone called GnRH, produced by our hypothalamus in the brain, followed by other hormones like follicle-stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone. They work together with cholesterol from our liver, allowing the HPA axis to make testosterone. It's pretty amazing, isn't it? It's quite amazing how our body works to produce this hormone!
Testosterone is essential for building muscle and increasing bone density, but it also plays a crucial role in regulating emotions, endorphins, memory, and stress response. Interestingly, it's even linked to vitamin D absorption and libido levels. However, too much testosterone (usually from high HRT dosages) can cause polycythemia, increasing blood viscosity.
Causes of Elevated Female Testosterone
If you're experiencing high testosterone levels as a woman, it can feel overwhelming and uncertain. Usually, women have less testosterone than men which can make an imbalance feel unsettling. The good news is there are many potential causes, from genetics to lifestyle choices.
Blood Sugar Imbalances
It's normal for the body to produce insulin to regulate blood sugar levels. But when levels are too high, factors such as mineral imbalances, heavy metals, refined sugar, and stress could be the cause. Elevated insulin levels can lead to high testosterone and hinder the body's ability to produce SHBG, resulting in discomforting symptoms. At Upgraded Formulas, we carry out tests to detect imbalances and identify root causes for better hormonal health and well-being.
Hormonal Birth Control With A High Androgen index
It's worth noting that certain birth control options contain progestins, which are synthetic forms of progesterone. While they are meant to replace progesterone, they may actually lead to androgenic side effects like hair loss and acne. Desogestrel is an example of a progestin with a high androgen index.Others include levonorgestrel (many birth control pills that contain this, the Norplant implant, Mirena hormonal IUD, and the morning-after pill), norgestrel, gestodene, desogestrel, norelgestromin, norethindrone, and etonogestrel (many pills that contain this, Nuvaring, Nexplanon implant).
Progestins with a low androgen index include drospirenone (which is spironolactone), norgestimate, dienogest, cyproterone, and bio identical progesterone. To get a better understanding of your hormone status, consider an HTMA and evaluate your copper and zinc levels, as well as the Zn:Cu ratio. Make an informed decision about your birth control - speak with a healthcare provider to find the best option for you.
Struggling with low testosterone can be frustrating and disheartening. You may not be aware that hypothyroidism could be a contributing factor to your struggle. If your thyroid malfunctions, it can make regulating testosterone levels difficult due to a decrease in SHBG. But you don't need to worry! Our team can help you detect any thyroid issues through a an HTMA by looking at ratios like Ca:K on an HTMA, evaluating individual mineral levels such as zinc, selenium, potassium, and calcium, and assessing your liver health by looking at things like cobalt levels, sulfur, and heavy metal status.
Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia (CAH)
I understand that CAH can cause problems by producing excess androgens and cortisol due to adrenal gland issues. Let's get a plan to tackle this together.. When one is struggling with CAH, it’s usually due to a lack of an enzyme that helps with the regulation and secretion of these hormones. By identifying harmful environmental pollutants, heavy metals, stress, dysregulated nervous systems, and inadequate diets, we can work together to develop a plan that addresses your specific needs. We can see adrenal health through an HTMA by looking to the Na:K ratio, Na:Mg ratio, and specifically to the sodium and potassium levels individually.
Struggling with high testosterone? We can help you get to the root cause so you can start feeling better. Order an HTMA with us today and book a consult with one of our trusted nutritionists. You deserve to feel your best! Click here to get started.
Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis Practitioner
Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner
Integrative Health Coach