The answer is yes you can, but with caveats. As men age the master hormone Testosterone decreases. Now the caveat here is your starting point. Its universally accepted that testosterone drops as you age but there is no universally accepted starting point there is a range. So if you start at the lower range through your adult life it’s going to be that much harder when you hit your 50’s.
Disclaimer: Make sure you work closely with your health care provider and be tested regularly to ensure you make the best choices for your particular situation. The opinions expressed in this blog worked for me, they may not work for you.
The bottom line is, as a man you need testosterone to build muscle mass. The older you get the less you produce naturally so you will need to supplement to obtain similar results to when you were younger. The problem here is increased testosterone levels the older you get increases your risk of heart disease. So the next caveat, you can gain muscle mass in your 50’s but not at the same rate you did in earlier periods of your life.
While there isn’t much science on sustaining high level of testosterone for decades, we know that younger individuals have better health outcomes as their bodies haven’t been subjected to poor dietary choices for as long. That’s a logical conclusion, again there aren’t a lot of studies here supporting this but if your testosterone level was 850 at 21, its harder and riskier for you to maintain that 850 testosterones at 31,41,51,61.
What you should be doing is having a blood work up on your endocrine system once you hit 40 years old. They should be testing for a lot of things, (thyroid, adrenal, vitamin D) and your testosterone levels. When you get the test results you should be comparing your number to averages for people in your age group. There are numerous sources online that will give you a range, generally men from 19-49 have a range of 249-836, over 50 193-749.
We have to be careful here because there are people OVER the high end of the range. There are always outliers and the younger you are the more likely you could be over and sustain it, but as you age, if you remain in that higher range your risk of heart disease magnifies. So where we want to be is 85% of the high end range over 50, at or around 650. At that % (this can fluxuate) you should be able to gain muscle mass in your 50’s.
You aren’t going to pack on 20 pounds of muscle in 6 months, but 5 or more in a year? Yes, its possible. Now this is based on my experience and having talked to my doctor and having blood work done regularly. None of this should be taken lightly and you should be working with your doctor regularly (every 3-6 months) to determine if you are healthy and if you need to adjust your testosterone levels.
I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to work with your doctor on your specific needs as you age. You should be increasing your interactions with your doctor’s office and specifically your blood work even if it means you have to pay out of pocket. This isn’t something you can just figure out on your own. Work with a medical professional, heed their advice but keep close tabs on your testosterone levels.
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