Testosterone plays a role in mediating energetic trade-offs between growth, maintenance, and reproduction. Investments in a high testosterone phenotype trade-off against other functions, particularly survival-enhancing immune function and cellular repair; thus only individuals in good condition can maintain both a high testosterone phenotype and somatic maintenance. While these effects are observed in experimental manipulations, they are difficult to demonstrate in free-living animals, particularly in humans. We hypothesize that individuals with higher testosterone will have higher energetic expenditures than those with lower testosterone.
American Journal of Human Biology, vol. 35, n. 11, November 2023