Yes, Men Have Hormonal Cycles Too!

Yes, Men Have Hormonal Cycles Too!

Article by: B.J. Lehecka, DPT, PhD

Contribution by: Some data suggest males average a 17% cyclic increase in testosterone every 20-22 days. Those cyclic periods ranged from 8-30 days and 9-28% of average testosterone levels in study participants. Evidence also suggests peak testosterone levels in males may be more likely on weekends or in 28-day full-moon intervals (among males trying to conceive with a female partner).  Although there is other evidence that male testosterone levels do not change in relation to a partner’s ovulation.

Testosterone concentration in males is higher in the fall, peaks in December, and is lowest in the late winter and spring, with a difference of about 35% between the high and low points.

Daily testosterone secretion appears to peak during sleep. 5-7 In men 30-40 years old, testosterone levels were 20-25% higher at 8:00 AM compared to 4:00 PM (the difference declined to 10% at 70 years old). Multiple studies support the notion that sleep loss suppresses testosterone secretion. Poorer sleep quality is associated with lower testosterone concentrations, and sleep loss may have a more prominent effect on testosterone levels in older individuals (who generally demonstrate lower levels than younger men). Testosterone also appears to fluctuate in response to ejaculation abstinence. Fluctuations were minimal 2-5 days following ejaculation but exhibited a clear peak (without significant further fluctuation) on the 7th day of abstinence, reaching 145.7% of the first day of abstinence’s baseline level on average. 


What This Means for Addiction Recovery

Additional thoughts from Heather:

So many men trying to quit porn or masturbation just can’t seem to get past that 7-day point or that 30-day or their addiction seems to come and go in seasons. Recognizing and accepting your body’s natural cycles, however, can play a pivotal role in addiction recovery.

Somedays will inevitably be harder than other, as you’ve likely noticed. Knowing what your body is going through though can be a powerful tool. Rather than allowing heightened urges as a breaking point, it’s important to accept them as “passing hormones” that will do just that–pass.

It’s normal, it’s natural, and it’s something you can and will get through.


Sources:

1. Doering CH, Kraemer HC, Brodie HK, Hamburg DA. A cycle of plasma testosterone in the human male. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1975;40(3):492-500. 

2. Hirschenhauser K, Frigerio D, Grammer K, Magnusson MS. Monthly patterns of testosterone and behavior in prospective fathers. Horm Behav. 2002;42(2):172-181. 

3. Ström JO, Ingberg E, Slezak JK, Theodorsson A, Theodorsson E. Male Testosterone Does Not Adapt to the Partner’s Menstrual Cycle. J Sex Med. 2018;15(8):1103-1110. 

4. Stanton SJ, Mullette-Gillman OA, Huettel SA. Seasonal variation of salivary testosterone in men, normally cycling women, and women using hormonal contraceptives. Physiol Behav. 2011;104(5):804-808. 

5. Brambilla DJ, Matsumoto AM, Araujo AB, McKinlay JB. The effect of diurnal variation on clinical measurement of serum testosterone and other sex hormone levels in men. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2009;94(3):907-913. 

6. Luboshitzky R, Herer P, Levi M, Shen-Orr Z, Lavie P. Relationship between rapid eye movement sleep and testosterone secretion in normal men. J Androl. 1999;20(6):731-737. 

7. Lord C, Sekerovic Z, Carrier J. Sleep regulation and sex hormones exposure in men and women across adulthood. Pathol Biol (Paris). 2014;62(5):302-310. 

8. Jiang M, Xin J, Zou Q, Shen JW. A research on the relationship between ejaculation and serum testosterone level in men. J Zhejiang Univ Sci. 2003;4(2):236-240. 


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