4 Habits that are Messing up your Testosterone LevelsLuke Coutinho
Testosterone is a hormone, particularly a sex hormone required in men and women, in different quantities. Now, if you are a woman who is reading this, this article is still relevant for you. Many women think that they need less testosterone, but it is not us who should decide that. Our body decides how much testosterone should be present in us, and as long as it is within limits, it is actually good for us. Simultaneously, excess testosterone in women can be a problem, too, as it could lead to hormonal issues, and issues like facial hair, acne, and baldness.
What does testosterone play a role in?
- Producing red blood cells:
RBCs are vital for energy, immunity, and so much more. Having a healthy count of RBCs is beyond haemoglobin, and eating iron-rich foods.
2. For a healthy libido:
Most people will blame age and relationships, if their sex drive is dipping, without even checking their testosterone levels. When we blame it on age, it stops us from making lifestyle changes. Yes, age and the quality of your relationship play a role, but only a part of it. The primary hormone that drives your libido is important too. So have this in check first, before considering exotic aphrodisiacs.
3. Improving sperm count in men:
Many men out there suffer from low sperm count, and if so, you may want to first check your testosterone levels and fix them.
4. Muscle tone and building:
Testosterone is also required for muscle tone, building, formation, and growth in men. Chugging protein shakes, no matter their source is not going to give you big muscles, if you do not have an adequate amount of this hormone in your body. The protein you consume is practically useless, if your levels are low. And, this is when protein can become harmful, and burden your kidneys because it is not getting broken down the right way.
In women’s case, many fear that if they workout and consume protein, they would end up with a masculine physique. Well, that is not possible unless you inject yourself with additional testosterone and steroids. Your testosterone levels are controlled by your body’s intelligence, and are maintained within safe limits, just like your pH levels. All of us have a built-in pH regulator within our body, adjusting levels when they go too high or too low, so drowning yourself in alkaline water is useless unless you are highly acidic at a medical level.
Coming back to the hormone, men and women struggling with belly fat need to check their testosterone (T) levels. Low levels can lead to a rise in fat percentage, and dip in muscle mass. You may have a muscular chest and arms, but if you still have a pot belly, you must check your T- levels.
5. Bone health:
Adequate levels of T help in fat distribution, muscle tone, bone mass, and bone density, for both men and women. There is a reason why in some cases of male cancers (prostate or testicular), when the patient is put on drugs that decrease their testosterone levels, we notice a parallel onset of bone-related issues like osteoporosis. Our bone health is way beyond calcium supplements. One must also look at their hormonal health. We need the right amount of Testosterone to prevent, arrest, or slow down osteoporosis.
Habits the mess up testosterone levels:
- Sleep deprivation
This is one of the easiest ways to mess up your T levels: sleep-deprivation and erratic sleep timings. This causes testosterone levels to fall. That is exactly why athletes and pro-athlete’s regimes revolve around an EAT-SLEEP-TRAIN routine. The more they train, the more they need to sleep and rest to recover.
Waking up at 3 am to practice for a marathon is great, but sleeping late is why one can suffer from so many injuries, pile on more fat around their bellies than there should be, and not look like a runner, even though they run marathon after marathon. This speaks volumes about improper nutrition, training, low vitamin D3 and, low testosterone.
2. Being sedentary
The more sedentary you are, the lower your testosterone levels fall. At the same time, overtraining with less recovery can also lower testosterone levels. Some of the best exercises to boost your levels include, compound movements like squats, lunges, weighted chest press, pull-ups, and chin-ups. All of these are testosterone boosters. And, you do not have to go to a gym to do these exercises. You can do them at home, with your body weight. Too easy for you? Add variations like jump squats. Any explosive movement is great!
3. Poor diet and nutrition
If you are following fad diets that require you to go low carb or no carb, your testosterone levels can go right down. And, even if you are following such diets, like a keto diet, please do it the right way. A ketogenic diet does not mean eating one cheese cube after another and all the fat in the world. Your protein and fat intake have to be well calculated by a professional. For your testosterone levels to be at its optimum level, you need good quality fat, protein, and carbohydrates.
Yes, carbs too. It is a myth that going off carbs will lead to weight loss. You need carbs if it suits you, and for that, you need to find out whether your body is carb deficient or not. If you are carb deficient, get your carbs in. If you are not, you can go low on it. This is why a one-size-fits-all approach does not work with nutrition.
Furthermore, your nutrition must be well-balanced that you get adequate vitamins and minerals. For optimum testosterone levels, we need adequate DHEA, vitamin D3, and zinc. So, if your diet lacks the basic vitamins and minerals to make testosterone, your T levels will be low.
4. Poor emotional health
A little bit of stress will not cause a problem, but if you are chronically stressed, and are constantly dabbling in negative emotions, your testosterone levels will fall. How? With stress comes higher cortisol, and adrenaline levels. As these hormones rise, levels of other hormones fall, especially testosterone. Not just T levels, but your insulin also raises, estrogen increases, thyroxine drops, and progesterone falls. These are your hormones working together, but in disharmony.
These are the basics we must be aware of for adequate testosterone levels. If you are training, but not seeing results; if you are getting results, but your pot belly remains; if you have a low sex drive, then these are signs that you need to check your testosterone levels, and also habits that are messing it up.
From a pimple to cancer, our You Care Wellness Program helps you find a way
Talk to our integrative team of experts today
Amazing luke sir, always love your knowledge on fitness, lifestyle and nutrition, you are great thankyou 💪💞
Thanks Vishal, keep winning 🙂
This Article explains it all! The world is running after fad diets and protein supplements. No one is aware to fix the basics first! You are so right in saying that runner body should look like a runner body but I know runners especially lifestyle runners are compromising on sleep like anything because of getting up early and still remaining with pot bellies. Thanks for your enlightenment
Most welcome, Shillaza. Keep winning 🙂