Are you experiencing symptoms of low T? Testosterone levels everywhere are plummeting. Many men are concerned about their testosterone levels as a surge of low T diagnoses sweeps the nation. In fact, studies show that the average man’s testosterone is nearly 25% lower than it was 30 years ago.
While many believe that decreased testosterone occurs only in older men, age is only one factor associated with your risk of low T. There are a variety of things you can do and also avoid that can affect your testosterone levels.
What Can Cause Testosterone Levels To Drop?
As testosterone continues dropping, there are a few factors you should consider:
There have been hundreds of studies showing particular foods have detrimental effects on your testosterone. These include soy, nuts, fish, spearmint tea, red reishi mushrooms, flaxseed, refined carbohydrates, and hormones in meat. To properly combat these effects, it’s important that you eat these foods in moderation.
Along with foods that affect your testosterone levels, there are also beverages to avoid. Two of the most commonly known drinks are beer and water with high estrogen levels. Even moderate alcohol consumption has been found to decrease testosterone levels up to 6.8%.
- Lack of Sleep
Sleep deprivation is a very common problem in American society. For middle-aged and older men (and even younger men), lack of sleep is proven to decrease morning testosterone levels.
- Less Sex
Research studies show that men who have more sex or even stare at attractive women have increased testosterone levels. Thinking about and having sex is important to male health.
Regular exercise naturally boosts your testosterone levels but do too much of it and it can have adverse effects. Researchers at the University of North Carolina suggest that high-intensity exercises are linked to a lower sex drive and lower testosterone levels.
Chronic stress raises cortisol levels making it hard for your hormones to pass through central pathways. This suppresses reproductive hormone secretion, including testosterone.
Does Alcohol Lower Testosterone?
Alcohol consumption, especially excessively, can threaten your testosterone levels. Over the long-term and with chronic use, alcohol can impact your endocrine system which is in charge of testosterone production. Here are a few ways alcohol affects your body:
- When your body is metabolizing the ethanol in alcohol, it lowers the amount of the NAD+ coenzyme that is vital in the testosterone production process.
- Drinking releases certain endorphins, which is why drinking can feel pleasant and relaxing. However, those endorphins can also cause problems in testosterone synthesis.
- Long-term drinkers and alcoholics can cause damage to tissues of the body, which can reduce the amount of testosterone in the testes.
- Long-term, chronic consumption of alcohol can also increase estrogen, which is a female sex hormone that decreases testosterone levels when present.
- Excessive drinking can interfere with your sleep which causes problems with the production and levels of testosterone in your body.
Another factor is the type of alcohol you are consuming. As noted above, beer can decrease hormone levels. Even moderate beer consumption has been found to reduce testosterone levels up to 6.8%.
Can Stress Decrease Testosterone?
Stress can majorly affect your health including testosterone levels. Unfortunately, the lower your testosterone, the more likely your stress levels will rise again. This puts your body into a destructive cycle. However, managing your stress levels can help improve your low T symptoms including sex drive, moodiness, and ability to sleep.
Does Lack of Sleep Lower Testosterone?
Research studies show that lack of sleep can dramatically lower your testosterone. These low levels affect more than just your libido. It’s also linked to lower energy levels, poor concentration, fatigue, decreased strength and increased stress levels.
Can Drinking From Plastic Bottles Really Lower Testosterone?
Yes, many plastic containers, including plastic bottles, can develop Bisphenol-A, a synthetic chemical found in overheated plastic containers. A recent study showed that 89% of men attending fertility clinics had BPA in their system. The bottom line is, you should avoid drinking from plastic bottles and use glass or stainless steel whenever possible to avoid lowering your testosterone levels.
To learn more about your risk of developing low T, make an appointment with our testosterone specialist, Dr. Ross VanAntwerp.