Nobody Asked Me But: Probing the Ageless Male syndrome

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There comes a time in the life of a man when he gets this sudden desire to trade in the family SUV for a sleek, brightly polished sports car. This happens about the same time as he starts to accessorize his usual outfit with leather driving gloves, a flat tweed racing cap and possibly a scarf.

He may decide to grow some facial hair and let his regular “doo” grow out over his ears. Alternately, if he had previously sported a beard or moustache, he may suddenly switch to the clean-shaven look.

In case you haven’t figured it out yet, the phenomenon he is experiencing here comes as a result of andropause, the male equivalent of menopause. Often referred to as “middle-age crisis,” this is the male’s futile last-ditch effort to grasp onto his youthful virility before inevitably slipping away into the fraternity of geezerhood where he is destined to dress in white loafers, a white vinyl belt and pull his pants up over his belly button.

There are, however, a class of pharmaceutical supplements that are designed to squeeze a few more flexes out of the diminishing male body. They promise to inject a charge of machismo into the flagging male self-image while giving his manhood a necessary narcissistic makeover.

Falling under the umbrella of testosterone boosters, these supplements virtually guarantee that if any beach bully will be kicking sand in the face of a 99-pound weakling, you will be the one doing the kicking. They will infuse your aura with a “don’t go messin’ with this here dude” attitude.

Although there are dozens of brands of these supplements on the market, just the names of a handful will give you an idea of where the sales pitch is aimed. Viril-X, Extenze, Steel Libido, 100% Male, Ageless Male, Force Factor, Prime Male Testosterone Booster, and Ultra Men’s Hard Max show that these supplement suppliers are not afraid to deal a boost below the belt.

Let’s take Ageless Male for example. As advertised in television commercials, as well as radio, magazine and internet ad spots, this product hooks the unsuspecting target male with the image of an attractive, muscular, bare-chested man (with just the slightest amount of greying temples), paddling his kayak through some churning rapids. The accompanying text or voiceover challenges the prospective buyer to “be the man you want to be.” One look in the full-length mirror will show you just how far you have to go to reach that goal. And a pill sounds so much easier than real exercise.

So how much does it cost to slow down or even reverse the aging process? Prices vary, but at $50 a pop for a bottle of 60 tabs of Ageless Male (or just under $400 for 12 bottles), you should be able to send yourself back to the Jurassic Age for the same amount you pay for your annual gym membership.

The manufacturer claims that Ageless Male has proven to increase arousal and physical energy as well as support testosterone levels. Considering that the only support you’ve been receiving lately has been from the support hose or your compression stockings, how can you lose by investing your nest egg in Ageless Male?

You might wonder what exactly goes into a tab of Ageless Male. Apparently it is made up of all “natural ingredients,” which include Testofen, a patented form of fenugreek extract that enters the bloodstream and binds with a special protein in your blood. Wait a minute. Isn’t fenugreek that seed you used to soak so it would make sprouts that you could add to your salad along with alfalfa and mung bean sprouts? Had you only known about its sexual enhancement qualities, you would have skipped the alfalfa and mung beans altogether!

Anyway, continuing on with the chemical process, the Testofen frees up the idle testosterone attached to these special proteins, which then increases the total testosterone levels in the body. After all, who wants a bunch of idle testosterone hanging out doing nothing when there’s a job to get done?

Another natural ingredient found in some of these testosterone boosters is stinging nettle. That’s right, the same greens that taste like spinach if steamed and make your mouth feel like the inside of a wasp nest if eaten raw, release testosterone into your blood by suppressing the sex hormone-binding globulin which would normally catch the good stuff and render it useless. More testosterone equals more virility!

Ageless Male claims to be the #1 best-selling brand of testosterone booster with over five million bottles sold worldwide. The manufacturers boast that, for the last 10 years, their team of experts have been “redefining how men age.” Just one click of the “Add to Cart” button on your computer and you are assured of fast, discreet shipping to your place of residence. One has to wonder, however, why it is necessary for the shipping to be discreet. Does the bottle of testosterone booster, or 12 if you’re buying in volume, come wrapped in plain, brown paper so nobody but you and the good folks at Ageless Male know that your new, virile look is receiving a helping hand by way of the wonders of modern chemistry? After all, that sports car in your driveway is a dead giveaway.

Nobody asked me, but I suppose there can’t be any harm if someone wants to try to slow the aging process by chowing down a handful of booster supplements. For me, however, my middle age crisis came and went what seems like eons ago. I never did get that shiny, sleek sports car; I simply replaced one rusty, old Toyota pickup with another rusty, old Toyota pickup. 

And especially since I’m well past the age of the group of men that Ageless Male is targeting, I don’t think I’ll be punching the “Add to Cart” button any time soon. No, if you want to know where I am, you can find me foraging out in the fenugreek and nettle fields.

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