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Testosterone Boost May Help Prevent Diabetes in Men

Update Date: Jan 28, 2013 10:58 AM EST

A new study that is currently being conducted by researchers in Australia seeks to discover whether testosterone could help men prevent their chances of developing type-2 diabetes. The trial is the first of its kind in the world.

The researchers are currently in the midst of soliciting participants, according to a statement. None would have diabetes, but their weight, waist circumference and glucose levels would mean that they are pre-diabetic and thus at risk for the condition. All the participants will be between 50 and 74 years of age. Of the 1,500 participants hailing from four different states in Australia, including New South Wales, Southern Australia, Western Australia and Victoria, half will be administered a testosterone supplement, while the other half will be given a placebo. All will be asked to participant in a Weight Watchers weight loss program, attending meetings in person or online.

Older adults are more likely to be diagnosed with diabetes. Researchers are exploring the link between testosterone and diabetes because, as the Herald Sun reports, research has indicated for years that men lose testosterone as they age, by 1 to 2 percent, sometimes as early as their thirties.

"We know that testosterone is involved in motivation and drive so it may be that the testosterone helps by improving motivation and drive to comply with the weight loss program. It may be that it works by increasing lean body mass and decreasing fat mass. Or it may have more specific effects on the way muscles use sugar," University of Adelaide professor and study author Gary Wittert said to ABC's Radio Australia.

According to the American Diabetes Association, 25.8 million children and adults have diabetes. The World Health Organization reports that 347 million people in the world have the condition. The disease is on the rise as well, due in part to changes in diet and increased tobacco consumption.

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