Hormonal balance is very important; when the hormones are properly balanced, the body works as expected. But when they are out of balance, the body begins experiencing problems. Estrogen, commonly termed as the female hormone and testosterone considered as the male hormone are crucial in the reproductive system. Men can experience elevated levels of estrogen. But does a man produce estrogen? Yes, a man’s body produces estrogen but in low levels. It’s produced mainly by adrenal glands as well as the testicles. Estrogen hormone is important in a man; it plays a critical role in bone density, lipid metabolism, sexual maturation, and growth. However, it becomes a problem when the levels rise causing a number of problems in a male like:
- Water retention
- Cholesterol problems
- Cardiovascular issues
- Low libido
- Erectile dysfunction
- Prostate problems
- Breast cancer
When estrogen levels are elevated in a man, testosterone levels will decrease in most cases. If a man experiences the above symptoms, it’s advisable to seek medical attention. The medical care provider may put a man on Letrozole for men.
What is Letrozole and Its Uses?
It is an aromatase inhibitor and it’s available in the form of a tablet. It is also known as Femara and it’s an anti-estrogen. It’s a prescription drug and comes in 2.5 mg strength. The medication works by inactivating an aromatase. What is an aromatase? It is an enzyme located in the adrenal glands, testicles, adipose tissue and the brain). Aromatase enzyme is involved in the conversion of testosterone into estrogen. The drug blocks the actions of the aromatase enzyme, thus the conversion is prevented and estrogen levels drop. It’s prescribed to deal with a number of medical conditions outlined above, let’s go through some uses of the drug in males:
- To treat infertility – high estrogen levels may be linked to rapid weight gain which may eventually lead to obesity. Obesity stimulates estrogen production which in turn leads to weight gain. Obesity can lead to infertility due to low testosterone levels and low sperm count. The aromatase enzyme is prevalent in fat and converts androgens like testosterone into estrogen. If the drug is taken in low doses, aromatase enzyme is inhibited as the drug binds to the enzyme, estrogen levels decrease, testosterone levels are normalized and sperm count is increased.
- To treat gynecomastia – it is a condition in which males have enlarged breasts, it mainly affects men who are bodybuilders during anabolic steroid use, although a man may experience it in other instances, for example during hormonal therapy to treat prostate cancer. The dosage of Letrozole is determined by the amount of anabolic steroid one is using. However, it also depends on the response of the first dose and the side effects; to detect the presence of the negative effects, blood tests are carried out. The aromatase inhibitor works very fast to reverse the side effects of steroids use, thus it can be used in emergency situations.
When estrogen levels are reduced as the actions of the enzyme are blocked, the symptoms of high estrogen outlined at the begging of the article improve. The good thing with the drug is that it is not a suicidal AI, meaning its wanted effects aren’t permanent; it does not disable the aromatase enzyme permanently. However, it’s more powerful at reducing estrogen levels when compared to Arimidex or Aromasin. The drug shouldn’t be abused, without the supervision of a doctor.
As earlier mentioned at the start of the article, males require estrogen hormone, although in minimal amounts. Since AI is very effective at reducing estrogen levels, one must be cautious not to abuse the drug. Below are the negative side effects of the medication in men:
- Joint and bone pain
- Persistent fatigue
- Decrease in good cholesterol
- An increase in bad cholesterol
- Night sweats or unusual sweating
- Trouble sleeping
Take the dosage of the medication as prescribed, do not take more or less of it so that estrogen levels remain within the normal range and minimize some of the undesired effects. One shouldn’t stop using the medicine abruptly, but the administration should be stopped slowly or by reduction of the dose. This is because the effect of the drug is not permanent, estrogen rebound will occur; Letrozole only binds on aromatase enzyme for a limited time before the AI unbind as a result of natural metabolism or via competition with other substances. If you stop taking this medication abruptly, the inhibited aromatase enzyme will be free again and start aromatizing male hormones into estrogen but at a rapid rate.
Natural Aromatase Inhibitors for Men
Some men may not tolerate the side effects of the drug. Since the effects of the drug aren’t permanent, you may also try using some natural aromatase inhibitors such as:
- Zinc – it’s a proven a powerful natural estrogen blocker that inhibits the aromatase enzyme. The mineral not only decreases estrogen levels, but it also increases testosterone, hence boosting sperm count.
- Celery – it triggers the production of androsterone which stimulates an increase of testosterone hormone. Additionally, it contains a flavonoid known as apigenin that is believed to have a strong aromatase inhibiting effect. Celery can be taken in the form of juice or with fruits like apples or take it as you desire.
- Resveratrol – it’s a chemical compound produced by plants when attacked by bacteria or fungi. Large concentrations are found in grapes but in the skin. Red wine contains resveratrol and one can drink it but in moderation. Other sources are peanut, berries, cocoa, and blueberries.
- White mushrooms – they boost testosterone hormone thus sperm count is also increased. They can also be beneficial to women with breast cancer due to their effects of estrogen reduction.
- Cruciferous vegetables – eat cruciferous vegetables daily to increase testosterone and lower estrogen naturally. They are rich in phytochemicals that block estrogen in the body. These vegetables contain DIM (diindolylmethane) which promotes estrogen metabolism, and then it’s eliminated through the liver. Rich sources are broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and kales.
- Seeds – some seeds like sesame and pomegranate seeds have a high quantity of polyphenols, which reduce estrogen in the bloodstream.
Don’t wait for estrogen levels to get high and start looking for solutions, but make it a habit of eating natural aromatase enzyme blockers and taking part in physical activity as well.
Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only and must not be considered as medical advice. YouDrugstore does not endorse or approve the opinions or views expressed by any contributing author in our community articles. Always consult your doctor for medical advice.