We all need nourishment to survive and thrive in this world. And the best source of daily nourishment is found in the food we eat.
While many foods provide ample nutrition to fuel our everyday activities, there exist certain foods that silently undermine our energy, zest, and vitality.
The worst part is that we often overlook these food items. From refined sugars to greasy burgers, it’s easy to tempt oneself to wrongfully gorge on these tasty delights.
Whether good or bad, what we eat is directly connected to our body’s functioning. While our body consists of over 50 hormones, there’s nothing that functions quite like testosterone.
This male sex hormone helps facilitate several key mechanisms, from promoting lean muscle mass to aiding the growth of facial hair.
That said, many food items lie in wait within our kitchens, ready to compromise this hormonal equilibrium.
Ready to know what these harmful food items are? Let’s take a closer look at these testosterone-reducing foods and unravel their impact on our vitality.
What is Low Testosterone?
Low testosterone, also known as hypogonadism or low T, can have numerous implications on all facets of your health, from the physical to the mental.
Testosterone is a crucial hormone found in both males and females. That said, the amount of testosterone found in men is much higher than in women.
Low testosterone is categorized as having a testosterone count lower than the normal threshold. For males, this is marked at less than 300 ng/dL
Furthermore, there may also be manifestations of low testosterone. These symptoms can vary from person to person, so it’s important to talk with a doctor to ensure that you’re on top of the problem.
Signs and Symptoms of Low Testosterone
A healthy amount of free testosterone and total testosterone circulating the body means a lot of bodily processes are working optimally.
This includes regulating the sex drive, improving sperm and red blood cell production, and strengthening bone mass—among other things.
That said, if there’s a lack of testosterone in the body, you may be faced with low testosterone symptoms, ranging from mild to severe.
Here are some potential issues related to low testosterone:
- Reduced sex drive
- Hair loss
- Testicle shrinkage
- Hot flashes
- Erectile dysfunction
- Low sperm count
- Increased body fat
- Difficulty concentrating
If you’re facing any of these symptoms, reevaluate your diet and speak with a medical professional for advice on treating abnormal testosterone levels.
Top 7 Testosterone-Reducing Foods
Wondering what food kills testosterone levels?
Here are some foods you should avoid if you want to maintain optimal testosterone levels.
1. Soy-Based Products
Soy has long been hailed as a healthy alternative to dairy and other foods, but its high content of phytoestrogens can indirectly inhibit testosterone production.
Foods like tempeh, soy milk, tofu, and edamame—frequently considered nutritious options due to their high fiber and protein content—contain compounds that mimic estrogen in the body. This is not necessarily harmful, but an excessive amount of soy may cause thyroid dysfunction.
Reduced thyroid function can lower free testosterone levels in the body. So if you’re at risk of developing hypogonadism, watch your soy intake.
2. Processed Foods
We all indulge in processed and fried foods from time to time. That said, the convenience of these unhealthy, processed foods comes at a hidden cost.
Laden with trans fats, artificial additives, and sugars, these canned goods not only harm our overall health, but they also interfere with testosterone production.
They do this by increasing the risk of inflammation, insulin resistance, and obesity due to their high amounts of fat and sugar. These can all decrease testosterone levels.
While an occasional glass of wine isn’t too detrimental, excessive alcohol consumption can wreak havoc on otherwise healthy testosterone levels. And the rest of your health at large.
Alcohol affects the production of Leydig cells, which is directly responsible for producing and secreting reproductive hormones like testosterone in the body. Furthermore, alcohol also affects hormone production in the hypothalamus.
These two factors can lead to reduced testosterone levels in the blood.
4. Vegetable Oils
Cottonseed oil, canola oil, and soybean oil are often considered kitchen staples. But be warned: eating too much food soaked in these oils isn’t doing your body any favors.
Vegetable oils are high in polyunsaturated fatty acids or PUFA fats. These compounds have been proven to decrease testosterone levels.
If you drink a glass of milk a day, consider switching it up. Milk and milk by-products coming from pregnant cows contain elevated levels of estrogen and progesterone.
These hormones can suppress the levels of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) released in men, leading to lower testosterone levels.
6. Licorice Root
Common in beverages and desserts, licorice root may seem like your everyday food item. However, it’s actually quite bad for testosterone levels.
According to one study, 25 men experienced a 26% drop in testosterone levels after consuming 7 grams of licorice root daily. Studies have shown that women have also experienced a similar fate.
Love sweets and pastries? We do too, but they’re not exactly good for you.
Bread is one particular item that can reduce testosterone levels. This is because of two main reasons.
Firstly, too much bread leads to weight gain, which is correlated to lowered testosterone levels.
Two, it’s high in trans fats, and consuming too much trans fat is not ideal for testosterone production.
Boost Testosterone Levels with Atlanta, Georgia’s Most Reputable Male Health Specialists
What you eat plays a crucial role in your hormonal equilibrium.
If you eat testosterone-killing foods, you could inadvertently lower testosterone hormone levels and cause your health to plummet.
The best way to restore your testosterone is not just by eating testosterone-boosting foods, but rather to seek proper medical help.
The medical professionals at Priority Men’s Medical Center in Atlanta have a friendly roster of friendly, in-house doctors that specialize in male health.
Contact us today for a free consultation.