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  1. #21
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    • starting strength seminar april 2021
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    Goes back to Rip's point that these numbers bounce around and are not the most reliable without many repeat measurements.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Santana View Post
    Goes back to Rip's point that these numbers bounce around and are not the most reliable without many repeat measurements.
    Truer words can't be spoken.

    In my case, I've had to build a comprehensive spreadsheet tracking all of my blood work values over the years, tracking not just averages but standard deviations for each. That's been huge for keeping my doc focused.

    In my case for LDL, I was averaging 129 for the years that we were using a french press, with a standard deviation of 17 (tris were 130 20). She had been on me to get those numbers down (based on family history). Looking back with the benefit of hindsight, my values prior to our french press years averaged in the 90's for LDLs and 110's for Tri's. Right about the same time that I stumbled across the studies about filtered vs unfiltered coffee, I had a test return LDL and Tri values of 149 and 205 respectively and she was writing a script. The LDL value is outside the standard deviation, but not too much, while the value for the Tri's was 3.7x the standard deviation, which is far enough outside on its own to warrant a second look instead of action. Luckily she listens to discussion (and her eyes glaze over when I break out the spreadsheet). She was skeptical, but several tests later and without intervention, just switching the coffee making style, and I'm now on the low side of those values, pulling my averages down to where she's happy.

    Sure there were likely other things going on for that one moment that the Tri's value was overly high. But throughout that time, the coffee-making method been the only variable that has changed in my diet and activity. Sure, it's a n=1 and there are many other possible explanations, but it's another data point to add to Robert's linked study and the multitudes of others that have come out since that one was published. I wasn't aware of it being a possible contributor, my doc certainly wasn't, and most folks I run across that enjoy their unfiltered coffee aren't either.

  3. #23
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    Did you get stronger during this time too?

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Anders View Post
    Truer words can't be spoken.

    In my case, I've had to build a comprehensive spreadsheet tracking all of my blood work values over the years, tracking not just averages but standard deviations for each. That's been huge for keeping my doc focused.

    In my case for LDL, I was averaging 129 for the years that we were using a french press, with a standard deviation of 17 (tris were 130 20). She had been on me to get those numbers down (based on family history). Looking back with the benefit of hindsight, my values prior to our french press years averaged in the 90's for LDLs and 110's for Tri's. Right about the same time that I stumbled across the studies about filtered vs unfiltered coffee, I had a test return LDL and Tri values of 149 and 205 respectively and she was writing a script. The LDL value is outside the standard deviation, but not too much, while the value for the Tri's was 3.7x the standard deviation, which is far enough outside on its own to warrant a second look instead of action. Luckily she listens to discussion (and her eyes glaze over when I break out the spreadsheet). She was skeptical, but several tests later and without intervention, just switching the coffee making style, and I'm now on the low side of those values, pulling my averages down to where she's happy.

    Sure there were likely other things going on for that one moment that the Tri's value was overly high. But throughout that time, the coffee-making method been the only variable that has changed in my diet and activity. Sure, it's a n=1 and there are many other possible explanations, but it's another data point to add to Robert's linked study and the multitudes of others that have come out since that one was published. I wasn't aware of it being a possible contributor, my doc certainly wasn't, and most folks I run across that enjoy their unfiltered coffee aren't either.
    Is the idea that coffee has an impact on our numbers because we drink it before we go for the blood draw in the morning? I wouldn't think that filtered vs. unfiltered coffee would have that much impact on one's total diet, but maybe if it's the only thing you've had right before the test?

    The coffee I had before my blood draw was pour-over coffee made with a paper filter.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Santana View Post
    Did you get stronger during this time too?
    Hard to say. The majority of this was going down starting about a year ago, right as all of the gyms were locked down. So it was 8-9 months of flopping around body weight exercises as those values returned to and fell below my normal. The last test was right after we finally got the garage gym put together. Next test is next week.

  6. #26
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    Let's keep an eye on it moving forward and see what happens in the next year or so.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by tompaynter View Post
    Is the idea that coffee has an impact on our numbers because we drink it before we go for the blood draw in the morning? I wouldn't think that filtered vs. unfiltered coffee would have that much impact on one's total diet, but maybe if it's the only thing you've had right before the test?

    The coffee I had before my blood draw was pour-over coffee made with a paper filter.
    Based on what's out there, it appears to be a more of a lifestyle (so it is a total diet thing) than a specific cuppa that morning. And since your pour-over is filtered, its influence should be even less. Now, instead of drinking a cup or three before sitting for my blood draw, I now wait until I get back in the car.

    re: the lifestyle thing, there's a meta analysis published last year looking at over 500,000 Norwegians tracked over 20 years that points to this. I wouldn't use this as a definitive answer since there could be so many other influences not listed, but it prompted me to start my n=1 experiment, which is ongoing.

  8. #28
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    Ok got more lab results from a second test:
    total testosterone 596 (250-1100 reference range)
    free 70.8 pg/mL (35-155)
    SHBG 67nmol/L (10-50)

    So other than my SHBG being high, this indicates that my total and free test are in the middle of the range, rather than toward the low end of the range as they were 7-9 years ago.

    Again, I am in this because 1) I don't have the level of energy, wellbeing, mental clarity, drive, or libido I would like, and 2) Rip and Jay made it sound like most men who want to feel their best should be on T by my age (50), even if they aren't clinically hypogonadal. Do these results suggest I am just fine and I should forget about it? Does the high SHGB mean anything, given that my free T is apparently fine?

    Note that I did try injected testosterone for 6 months or so (along with HCG and anastrozole, as prescribed by a men's clinic) in 2019. I didn't comply with the regimen all that well and did not get follow-up lab work. I didn't notice a huge effect from it. I think I did feel a little more randy and a little more willing to go out and do things. I don't feel like I gave it a fair shot since I didn't get the follow-up testing. Also, I didn't do anything special to handle coming off of it, just stopped. That doesn't seem to have tanked my natural levels but I wonder if it had some other effect. I did gain about 15 lbs of mostly belly fat last year, but that's easily attributable to diet and lack of activity during quarantine and due to an injury.

    I can't know how it feels to be in someone else's skin so it is hard for me to know if how I feel is as good as I can expect to feel, or if there is a whole world of increased wellbeing and energy out there for me, as Rip and Jay made it sound. I don't feel the way I imagine a guy whose testosterone is 200+ points higher than it used to be would feel. But it's hard to know. Thoughts? Thanks.

  9. #29
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    starting strength coach development program
    I am neither 50 nor do I take testosterone but most guys I know in your position report good things. Up to you if you want to try it again. High SHBG may mean that your free used to be even higher, which it probably was given that you used to be younger too. There is a bell curve with these numbers so 'normal' may not be normal for you.

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