Although you might think you are on a certain path to build muscle and revolutionise your body, if your testosterone levels are relatively low, this will be an uphill battle. Check out 9 habits killing your testosterone levels.
Testosterone is a hormone that belongs to the class of androgens, which are commonly referred to as “male hormones.” It is primarily produced in the testes in males and in smaller amounts in the ovaries and adrenal glands in females. Testosterone plays a crucial role in both men and women, although it is typically present at higher levels in males.
Here are some key aspects of testosterone and its importance:
- Sexual Development and Reproduction: Testosterone plays a vital role in the development and maintenance of male reproductive tissues, including the testes, prostate, and seminal vesicles. It stimulates the production of sperm and promotes the development of secondary sexual characteristics such as facial and body hair growth, deepening of the voice, and muscle mass development. In females, testosterone contributes to the regulation of the menstrual cycle and helps maintain bone density.
- Muscle Growth and Strength: Testosterone is an anabolic hormone, meaning it promotes the growth and development of muscle tissue. It stimulates protein synthesis, which is essential for muscle repair and growth. Higher testosterone levels generally correlate with increased muscle mass, strength, and athletic performance.
- Bone Health: Testosterone is involved in maintaining bone density and promoting bone strength. It helps regulate bone turnover by stimulating bone formation and inhibiting bone resorption. Adequate testosterone levels are crucial for optimal bone health and reducing the risk of osteoporosis and fractures.
- Mood and Cognitive Function: Testosterone has been linked to mood regulation and cognitive function. Low levels of testosterone may contribute to symptoms of fatigue, irritability, reduced motivation, and cognitive decline. Adequate testosterone levels are important for overall well-being, mental clarity, and cognitive performance.
- Libido and Sexual Function: Testosterone plays a significant role in sexual desire (libido) and sexual function in both men and women. It contributes to the regulation of sexual arousal, erectile function, and orgasmic response.
- Metabolism and Body Composition: Testosterone influences metabolism and body composition. It helps regulate fat distribution and promotes the development and maintenance of lean muscle mass. Adequate testosterone levels are associated with a healthier body composition and a reduced risk of obesity.
- Cardiovascular Health: Testosterone has a beneficial impact on cardiovascular health. It contributes to the dilation of blood vessels, regulates blood pressure, and improves lipid profile by reducing LDL cholesterol (commonly known as “bad” cholesterol) and increasing HDL cholesterol (known as “good” cholesterol).
It’s important to note that testosterone levels naturally decline with age, and imbalances or deficiencies in testosterone can lead to various health issues. If you suspect you have low testosterone or are experiencing symptoms related to hormonal imbalances, it is advisable to consult with a healthcare professional for proper evaluation and guidance.
However, regardless of your age, modern daily life is also affecting your testosterone levels. That is what Max Posternak decided to talk about recently in one of his videos.
Max Posternak is the founder of Gravity Transformation, a website focused on giving tips and training guidance for people looking to improve their fitness and lose weight. His YouTube channel has over 5.5 million subscribers.
9 Habits Killing Your Testosterone Levels
So what are the 9 habits of the modern day that are killing your testosterone levels? According to Posternak, they are:
1. Worry more about eating too much food
With readily available junk food on many aisles in the supermarket, men tend to have a high body fat percentage. This reduces testosterone because the extra fat cells produce an enzyme called aromatase which converts testosterone into estrogen.
The ideal male hormonal health for most men is between 10-15 body fat percentage, but it can range from 8-19 per cent.
Plastic happens to be a major source of exposure to synthetic hormones and xenoestrogens which can have serious consequences for testosterone levels and overall health.
Try to diminish the amount of plastic you use to store food as well. The best would be to use alternatives such as wood containers, metal, glass or ceramic.
3. Poor or weak posture
A study compared testosterone levels in people who performed high-power poses (more open, and take up more space) for 2 minutes with individuals who held low-power poses (taking less space and having arms crossed).
The study found that implementing a high-power pose increased testosterone by 20 per cent while reducing levels of the stress hormone cortisol by 25%.
4. Too much protein while neglecting other macronutrients
Although the majority of people don’t consume enough protein, many gym goers go overboard with protein because it is an important macronutrient for building muscle. Sadly, if they neglect other macronutrients (fats and carbs) their testosterone level will suffer.
5. Poor sleep quality
A study found that men who slept only four hours had testosterone levels ranging from 200 to 300 nanograms per decilitre. Meanwhile, the men who slept for 8 hours, had their testosterone levels at around 500 to 700 nanograms per decilitre.
A small amount of stress is good for the body, but chronic stress is terrible for health and testosterone levels. The excess of the stress hormone cortisol can have negative on the body including muscle breakdown, fat gain, lower testosterone levels and a weakened immune system.
7. Trans fat
Trans fat is a type of unsaturated fat that is a common issue – it is found in many processed foods such as margarine, cake, doughnuts and frozen pizza.
Studies say that diets high in trans fats lower testosterone and sperm quality in humans.
In order to maintain healthy levels of testosterone, you don’t need to abstain from alcohol, but excessive ingestion of alcohol will be detrimental to your testosterone levels.
Alcoholics tend to have much higher estrogen levels and much lower testosterone levels when compared to their non-alcoholic counterparts.
9. Not drinking enough water
Drinking water is essential for a performance perspective. Not drinking enough can lower your testosterone levels while increasing cortisol.
For a full explanation of each of the arguments presented above, watch Posternak’s video below.
Low testosterone levels can have several negative effects on a person’s physical and emotional health. Here are some of the reasons why low testosterone levels can be bad:
- Reduced muscle mass and strength: Testosterone is critical for building and maintaining muscle mass and strength. Low levels of testosterone can lead to a loss of muscle mass and weakness.
- Decreased bone density: Testosterone plays a key role in maintaining bone density. Low levels of testosterone can lead to decreased bone density and an increased risk of fractures.
- Erectile dysfunction: Testosterone is important for maintaining sexual function in men. Low levels of testosterone can lead to erectile dysfunction and reduced libido.
- Mood changes: Testosterone can affect mood and emotional well-being. Low levels of testosterone can lead to depression, irritability, and fatigue.
- Increased risk of cardiovascular disease: Testosterone plays a role in maintaining cardiovascular health. Low levels of testosterone have been linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
If you are experiencing symptoms of low testosterone, such as fatigue, reduced muscle mass, decreased libido, and mood changes, it is important to talk to your healthcare provider to determine the underlying cause and explore treatment options.