The benefit of exercise is the most well documented anti-aging activity and treatment to reverse aging available.
When you come to my office, I don’t just weigh you, but I do a full body composition with the InBody machine before treatment begins for a baseline measurement of fat, muscle and body water. After 4-6 months of treatment with T pellets I measure changes in total body weight, fat mass, % body fat, and increase in muscle mass. Even for patients who don’t exercise there is usually a conversion of body fat into skeletal muscle in the first few months even if there is now loss of total weight, however sedentary patients may not have as large an increase in muscle mass until they start working out with weights and doing aerobic exercise daily. Patients who do follow my directions to work out, generally have a larger fat-burn, which uses up calories faster calories, while they build even more muscle.
The benefit of exercise is the most well documented anti-aging activity and treatment to reverse aging available and getting my patients to exercise daily is the hardest compliance issue I confront when managing my patients. “Just do it” is Nike’s catch phrase and I agree…after people just do it, they feel younger and healthier after 2 weeks and they don’t want to stop! I advise my patients who spend their days using their brains instead of their bodies to improve their mentation by working out for 30-60 minutes every morning. Exercise has been proven to greatly improve the quality of an individual’s’ mental work output.
Why does Dr Maupin concentrate on growing of Muscle Mass for her anti-aging patients?
Muscle mass is very important in our practice because it is an important way to bring patients back to healthy, normal weight, and reverse their true age. Patients who already have great muscle mass before they start testosterone pellets have the best “fat loss” response. If you think of all the muscles in your body as furnaces that burn calories in your diet as fuel, making heat and energy out of the calories that are eaten. The bigger the furnace the more energy it makes and the more fuel it requires. Muscles make heat, burn calories and create energy. They burn over 80% of our total calories.
What factors cause muscle mass to decrease? Very low muscle mass is called Sarcopenia and Frailty.
- Lack of exercise
- Poor diet that excludes red meat fish eggs and milk products, or just contains too few calories
- Lack of testosterone, or just low levels of testosterone
- Over-exercise—using the same muscles to exhaustion every day makes muscles smaller and they burn fewer
- Inflammation breaks down muscles
- Low thyroid hormone causes muscles to decrease the numbers of calories they use, which decreases the effective heat production
- Low growth hormone causes muscles to literally go to sleep, and they become weak, smaller and burn fewer calories
You can see that many factors in our modern environment can prevent our muscles from burning calories, building muscle and maintaining muscle mass to help us move about throughout our lives.
Your muscles DO MORE than just make you strong, they decrease your “health age”, but how? Healthy Active Muscle Tissue Benefits you by
- Decreasing inflammation
- Slowing aging by increasing the length of your telomeres on your chromosomes
- Decreasing Insulin Resistance
- Increasing bone mass
- Increasing metabolic rate and weight loss
- Increasing neurotransmitters to make you think better and maintain your brain, and improving your mood
- Weight loss—your muscles are the largest organ of your body that burns calories. The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn!
The first step in making your muscle mass grow is receiving testosterone replacement after aging begins, after age 45.
Testosterone increases muscle mass that would normally shrink as the years of abnormally low T accumulate. T works to build muscle by directing blood to the muscles to deliver oxygen and decrease lactic acid produced in the muscle that causes pain after exercise. Testosterone thickens your skin, your bones and your connective tissue to make exercise possible and more productive. T tightens your skin and strengthens the attachment of muscle to bone throughout your body causing the pull necessary to make stronger bones. T is also anabolic, which means it directs tissues to “grow” and become stronger and bigger.
How does muscle tissue work?
Your muscles are a dynamic tissue. Your muscle mass decreases every time you exercise and then rebuilds the following day. When you are young this process is balanced. Muscle mass decreases equally to the increase in muscle mass built the next day. When you are young and have excellent testosterone levels, the more exercise and weight-training you do the more muscle you make and the less you lose. When you exercise with weights and adequate T, you can make more muscle than you break down, so you can increase the size and strength of your muscles.
Weight trainers always recommend that their clients alternate their work-out with weights in a certain area of your body (upper body one day and lower body the next) every other day so you can build the most muscle mass. If you work out the same part of your body daily, then the first day you will lose muscle, and the second day you will lose more muscle and not have enough “rest” to build your muscle back. If your exercise program includes daily workouts of the same part of the body, you will notice your muscles getting smaller not bigger! For example, marathon runners generally run daily and only rest one day a week. This causes their legs to lose muscle mass, and their legs become less defined and thinner than the rest of their body. Because they do not rest their legs every other day, they will never get bigger and stronger calves and quadriceps.
Why does muscle mass on the InBody machine often decrease 4 months after my first T pellet insertion?
Another interesting fact about measuring the growth or loss of muscle on the body composition machine is that when we compare muscle mass from before the first T pellet insertion to before the second insertion 4 months later, we find that sometimes in people who have too much fat, even in men and women who work out regularly, their muscle mass seems to decrease in the first 4 months. This usually stops after the second T pellet insertion. The reason for this weird In Body measurement is that when we age and stop working out regularly or we gain weight with a minimal amount of testosterone we store fat within the muscle fibers. Our muscle in this condition looks like a rib eye steak and has marbling of fat in it.
When you get testosterone pellets at my office the metabolism in your muscles turns on, exercise increases your fat loss, which also decreases the fat stored inside the muscle tissue making your muscles seem to shrink. Your muscles are really just becoming more compact, and stronger by losing the fat padding inside the muscle, between muscle fibers. Testosterone makes your muscles more compact without fat striated in it and it looks more like a filet mignon. That is the composition we are shooting for because lack of fat in the muscle means the muscle is stronger, more defined, and can burn more calories, making the owner of these muscle lose overall body fat more efficiently.
The overall take away message is that the more muscle you can get naturally through an excellent high protein diet, combined with replacing testosterone with T pellets, and alternating exercise with rest when exercising and weightlifting, the more muscle you will have, which will burn optimal calories, making you leaner and healthier, and able to think better, while reversing the aging process and making it possible for you to be active the rest of your life.
This Health cast was written and presented by Dr. Kathy Maupin, M.D., Bio-identical Hormone Replacement Expert and Author. www.BioBalanceHealth.com (314) 993-0963