Testosterone for women plays a very different role
The importance of testosterone for women isn’t discussed nearly enough. Testosterone is known as the male sex hormone, but actually plays quite a large role in women’s overall health, our sex lives in particular. Testosterone enhances our libidos and improves our response to sexual stimulation.
Luckily, it’s possible to support healthy levels of this essential hormone by engaging in activities like yoga and meditation.
Besides being excellent for maintaining healthy testosterone levels (without overdoing it) these practices can help you invigorate yourself and clear your thoughts. If you’re willing to open your mind to what yoga can do for you, read on.
Testosterone is responsible for the development of reproductive tissues in men, such as the testes and the prostate gland. It’s the hormone that provides men with a more muscular frame and additional body hair. In women, healthy levels of testosterone improve the body by building muscle, increasing motivation levels, ensuring bone strength, and reducing anxiety and depression.
However, for testosterone to remain at optimal levels, there’s one thing you need to manage – stress. Stress triggers the production of cortisol, and cortisol is detrimental to maintaining healthy testosterone levels in both men and women.
When you’re stressed, your body produces cortisol to help you cope. The body needs cortisol to direct certain processes such as elevating blood glucose levels and enhancing cell repair. Cortisol is catabolic in nature. It causes muscle mass to break down. This is where meditation and yoga come in.
A Deeper Understanding of Meditation and Yoga
Meditation and yoga have a close symbiotic relationship. Meditation is the art of being still and going inward. Meditation means training the mind to get into a state of consciousness and focus, and it helps one obtain calmness. It benefits the mind and body, improves creativity, and fosters a stronger performance in various situations.
Yoga is an ascetic and spiritual discipline that originated in India. It includes meditation, breath control, and physical postures that promote health and relaxation. A seated position is especially conducive to meditation.
Benefits of Yoga And Meditation
Yoga helps build muscle mass. The asana practice requires the execution of muscle-building postures. Yoga enables one to achieve a stronger sense of balance. It decreases joint pains and improves flexibility. A regular yoga practice helps reduce back pain and improves blood circulation. It lowers blood pressure and lessens hot flashes due to hormonal imbalance. It also improves the quality of your sleep.
The breathing exercises that are performed during yoga help to calm the central nervous system and provide the practitioner with a calmer sense of self.
Healthy Testosterone Levels
Meditation and Yoga help you manage stress and offer the perfect solution for how to lower cortisol levels. You can’t completely avoid the daily stressors as they are everywhere. But you can manage stress in order to minimize cortisol and enjoy healthy T-levels.
Cortisol and testosterone need another substance for synthesis – cholesterol. If there’s too much cortisol in your bloodstream, the body will prioritize using the cholesterol for cortisol synthesis instead of using it for testosterone stability. If you’re not overly stressed, cholesterol can help create testosterone.
Cortisol also suppresses the production of testosterone in the Leydig cells located in the male testes. There is an area of the brain called the hypothalamus which is responsible for signaling the body to create testosterone. This part of the brain is affected by cortisol during stressful times, but when you are able to manage stress, you can suppress cortisol levels and allow your body to keep on producing testosterone at optimal rates.
Meditation relaxes the mind and body and promotes restful sleep. Good sleep provokes the production of growth hormones which will help if you’re aiming to build muscle. It also enables your cells to repair more rapidly. This offers you more vitality and increased motivation. Yoga is a practice that promotes self-love. It encourages you to strive for something better. It also serves as a foundation for developing self-discipline.
Types of meditation
There are various ways to practice meditation. There are meditation practices for just about everything from finding enlightenment, enhancing our well-being, forgiveness, and for altering our consciousness. If you’re new to the practice of meditation, you might consider starting with either mantra or mindfulness meditation.
This meditation practice enables you to be more aware of your experiences in every moment. It requires your concentration to be anchored to something like your breathing, a visual element, sound, or a sensation.
When doing this meditation, you need be fully aware of your actions and the sensations derived from those actions. For example, you can focus on your breathing. You will be focusing on how the air gets into your lungs and how freeing it is to breathe it out. The ultimate goal of this practice is the development of mental clarity.
In mantra meditation, you’ll chant a “mantra” – a certain phrase or a sound in order to focus and keep distractions at bay. To perform mantra meditation:
- Find a comfortable quiet place to practice.
- Sit in a relaxed position with your legs crossed and your hips elevated.
- Chant your mantra. It can be as simple as “om” or a longer phrase such as, “Every day, I get better.”
- You can continue chanting or silently chant.
- The determined length of practice is decided by you.
This one is similar to the mantra meditation albeit more structured. It requires a 7-step process where you’re guided by an instructor with the goal of achieving a specific outcome, such as enlightenment, forgiveness, or a state of altered consciousness.
Here are some tips if you’re just beginning your meditation practice.
- Meditate immediately before or after a yoga practice.
- Sit in a chair or cross-legged on the floor. Maintain good posture.
- Switch the position of your legs if you get uncomfortable, but aim for stillness.
- Close your eyes and focus on the rhythm of your breath. Or, gaze at an object like a spot on the wall or the flame of a candle.
- Be patient with the process of meditation. Gradually increase the duration of your meditation sessions.
- The goal isn’t to achieve a blank mind but to resist the temptation of reacting to your thoughts.
Practice can be in a class or alone at home or anywhere you can focus and concentrate. You’ll soon feel the health benefits. This is a wonderful way to maintain testosterone for women, and the myriad of benefits will improve your life overall.