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Brave Men: Testosterone Reduces Fear

  • Date Submitted: 11/02/2010 10:53 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 54 
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Brave men: Testosterone reduces fear
Men are mostly associated with power, dominance and courage in opposition to women’s warm, caring and less aggressive nature. Studies verify, that the hormone testosterone, which is thought to be partly responsible for males behaviour in many animals and humans, has fear-reducing effects. A study from 2005 dealing with unconscious fear and another from 2006 examining the effects of the hormone on fear startle prove the anxyolitic effects of testosterone. These results may revolutionise the medical treatment of people suffering from anxiety disorders, such as phobias or panic disorder, as testosterone does not seem to have the side effects of anxiolyitics used nowadays.

      The literature of the world – from children’s bedtime stories to novels for adult audience – is full of the portrayal of the brave man, the hero who is ambitious and not afraid of going to battle or discovering the unknown. An extreme example for this is Saint-Exupéry’s Little Prince who, during his travels visits seven planets, meeting the most different people. As the writer makes observations about human nature through the Prince’s eyes, he introduces to us – among many others - The King, who „controls” the stars, The Businessman, who „owns” them and The Conceived Man, who yearns for admiration. These three also picture another side of men’s nature: aspiring after status.
      These characteristics not only seem natural, but are also proven from the biological and evolutional point of view. While women were responsible to nurture and raise children, thus needed to have a kind, trustful nature, men protected the family and later the community. This kind of behaviour in men is partly affected by testosterone, a hormone that many link to aggression, because of earlier, famous experiments – with rodents. This prejudice is still deeply engraved in people’s minds, as a recent study proves (1). When the subjects took placebo thought to be T, they...

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