It may be hard to believe but science says that men’s hormones can be effected on a monthly basis by the lunar (or moon) cycle. Especially with the full moon, men suffer from disrupted sleep and increased stress. The hormones affected are the sex hormone, testosterone, and the stress hormone, cortisol, both of which flow regularly through a man’s bloodstream.
Lunar Cycle Affects Testosterone and Blood Chemistry in Men
The scientists involved in this fascinating study are from research centers in Tunisia and Qatar. In addition to the moon affecting testosterone and cortisol, the scientists also suspect that solar radiation, which is reflected off of a full moon down to Earth, could be causing changes in brain activity and blood chemistry. Who would have thought that the moon had such an effect on our lives and health!
A co-author of the study, Ismail Dergaa, stated: “Our study confirms for the first time that the lunar cycle affects the hormonal and haematological profile of humans.”
Scientists used blood samples to analyze their data. These samples were taken from the twenty male subjects on full and new moons in the morning and evening. During the full moon, levels of melatonin and testosterone were lower when compared to samples taken during the new moon. Melatonin is the hormone that our bodies naturally produce that signals our body to relax and fall asleep.
Interestingly, levels of cortisol were elevated during the full moon. Cortisol is sometimes called the “body’s built-in alarm system,” because it is what causes us to experience the “fight or flight” response during a stressful situation.
For the study, everything was completed within a sleep laboratory and participants were monitored through the night after going to bed following a strict schedule of dinner and free time. They were allowed to sleep for 8 hours, after which a 30-minute rest was allowed before their fasting blood samples were taken.
Scientists have several theories as to why the lunar cycle affects men’s hormones. These theories include:
- The gravitational force of the moon exerting itself on the water mass of human cells, similar to how it does this with the earth’s surface, being composed of similar proportions of water
- the lunar tidal force could be affecting biochemical processes via changes in electromagnetic radiation causing the release of neuro-hormones or increased neural activity
- the solar radiation reflected by the full moon could be modifying brain activity and biochemical activity
Of course, these are just theories at the moment. It is just very interesting to note that a man’s hormones, testosterone, and cortisol, are significantly affected by the moon. This may explain some odd behavior around the full moon!
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