Libido problems are often attributed to low testosterone, but recent research by investigators in Australia suggests that in some cases at least, low sexual desire and activity may actually cause a decrease in testosterone — and not just the other way around as previously thought. Read on to learn more about how this may affect you or the man in your life, and what you can do to maintain healthy levels of both testosterone and sexual activity.

About Testosterone

Testosterone is a steroid hormone that naturally occurs in both men and women, but in higher levels in men. In men, it’s responsible for the development of male reproductive tissues and organs. It’s also responsible for sexual desire, and if levels are abnormally low, a man may experience a decline in libido. Testosterone levels naturally decrease as a man ages, but the side effects of this aren’t unavoidable. In fact, supplementation and lifestyle changes can restore testosterone levels and boost sexual desire.

Relationship Between Sexual Activity and Testosterone

In the study, presented at the annual meeting of the Endocrine Society, researchers followed a group of men over the age of 70 for two years. They asked them questions about their sexual activity and functioning, as well as measured their levels of serum testosterone and other chemicals and hormones in the body. What they found may surprise some: The levels of testosterone and the other chemicals measured didn’t predict a decline in erectile function, sexual desire or sexual activity. However, they found that a slight decrease in testosterone was associated with decreased sexual activity and desire. However, it was not associated with erectile dysfunction.

Impact on Sexual Activity

So what does that all mean? The researchers suspect that a reduction in the amount of sexual desire and activity may actually cause a drop in testosterone, and not the other way around, as was previously believed. So, maintaining an active sex life may actually help maintain your testosterone levels, as well as provide a wide array of other physical and emotional health benefits.

Sexual Activity and Aging

Many older men enjoy active, healthy sex lives well into their senior years. While the physical effects of aging can change the nature of sexual activity, there’s no reason it can’t be maintained. If you have concerns, ask your doctor, who can advise you about how to make sex more enjoyable even as your body ages.

If you have concerns about your testosterone levels or your sexual desire and functioning, consult a physician for a thorough evaluation today. Visit Dr. Lawrence Newman, urologist in Las Vegas, for an expert opinion and a treatment plan to restore your sexual health.