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3 Types Of Foods That Lower Testosterone & Alternatives That Won’t

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So following on from the other articles in this series, we are going to be looking at more of the foods that lower testosterone.

We will also be looking at similar foods you can substitute them for, which won’t lower T or potentially increase testosterone production.

Why Look At What You Eat At All?

Magnifying Glass

As we’ve covered in prior articles and plenty of other articles on this site, your diet is one of the biggest things effects your wider health & hormones.

This includes testosterone production, there are lots of foods that lower testosterone.

Sadly there has also been a lot of confusion and misinformation distributed in regard to diet over the past couple of decades.

This has led to a lot of the foods promoted as being healthy when this isn’t necessarily true.

It has also led to foods that lower testosterone being consumed in greater volume when this can negatively impact health.

So your diet is likely one of the biggest causes of having lower testosterone.

As we all have to eat, your diet is one of the easiest to areas to address low T levels.

Are you looking to optimize your testosterone production? Then you should Join the OPTIMIZED T NATION & become a member of my free mailing list. Discover how you can naturally optimize T, for improved physical, sexual, mental & emotional health. JOIN FREE HERE

So in this article, we’re going to look at the foods that lower testosterone and similar alternatives that won’t lower T.

The Types Of Food To Avoid

lentils

In this specific article, we are going to cover grains, foods high in Omega 6 and seeds.

I’ve included the entire list of what we’ve been covering and are going to cover across this series for your information.

If you want to find out what the alternatives that won’t lower testosterone, check out the rest of this series of articles.

  • Pulses / Beans/ Legumes
  • Vegetable Oils
  • Nuts
  • Mint
  • Foods High In Sugar
  • Highly Processed Foods
  • Grains
  • Foods High In Omega 6
  • Seeds
  • Non Organic Foods
  • Genetically Modified/ GM Foods
  • Low Fat/ Diet Food

Grains & Refined Grains

Breads

By grains/ refined grains I’m referring to rice, wheat, oats etc. and the products made from them like pastas, breads and noodles.

The issue with grains is they contain gluten which can increase prolactin levels and reduce testosterone levels.

They tend to be high in fiber and a diet that is high fiber can lower testosterone.

rains can extract minerals from the body, many of which are responsible for testosterone production.

Then finally refined carbohydrates such as pasta and breads, present a further issue in regard to testosterone production.

This is due to them being quickly digested by the body, this leads to a quick release of sugar and as a result insulin being released.

Insulin actually inhibits the testosterone of production and if your insulin is consistently spiked this leads to inulin resistance & inflammation.

This means even lowered testosterone production & potentially a multitude of more health issues.

Alternatives

sweet potatoe

Most people will eat grains as a source of carbohydrates and we all need carbs in our diet.

In fact, a lack of carbs will actually lead to lowered testosterone production.

The two main issues with grain intake (and carbs as a whole) is that most people tend to consume too much.

In reality your diet should be around 30% – 40% carbs (most peoples is far higher than this).

The second issue is what we alluded to above and that is consumption of refined grains.

Which as I’ve advised leads to insulin spikes due to the high amounts of sugar and this inhibits hormone release.

So ideally you want to reduce your carb intake as a whole and secondly reduce intake of grains & particularly refined grains.

So as alternatives, I suggest vegetable sources of carbs like:

  • Potato
  • Sweet potato
  • Squash (butternut etc.)
  • Parsnips

If you are going to eat grains, I’d advise keep intake down to the bare minimum & opt for whole wheat.

Foods High In Omega 6

Crisps

Foods high in omega 6 are usually highly processed fatty foods like:

  • Crisps
  • Ready made soups
  • Pork scratchings
  • Chips
  • Cakes
  • Pies
  • Doughnuts

Now I assume you already know these foods are poor for you health and already take this in to account.

What I’m talking about is foods that are healthy, or at least considered healthy but are high in Omega 6.

These are mainly seeds, nuts and oils and a few others such as:

  • Tofu
  • Flaxseeds
  • Sunflower Seeds
  • Hempseed
  • Hempseed Oil
  • Grapeseed Oil
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Pistachios
  • Peanuts

The reason foods high in Omega 6 are ones that lower testosterone is, that high amounts of omega 6 in relation to omega 3 causes inflammation.

When the body is inflamed it doesn’t operate properly; and this includes reducing testosterone production.

Now you need Omega 6 as it is a key source of energy but, you need the anti-inflammatory products of omega 3 to counter inflammation.

So the body needs a healthy ratio of Omega 6 to omega 3, which is as close to even as possible & sadly most, have way too much Omega 6 in their diet.

Alternatives

coconut-oil

So the main things I’m going to focus on is alternatives for cooking oils, seeds, and nuts.

I’m leaving Soy as there is no real alternative except meat, I assume if you eat soy, you do so because you’re vegetarian/ vegan.

The main thing I would suggest when it comes to soy is to still avoid all together!

Alternatives To Seeds

If you want to include seeds in your diet, I advise to opt for Organic pumpkin seeds.

They have a better ratio of Omega 3 to Omega 6, than most seeds.

They are also a nutritional powerhouse as far as testosterone production is concerned.

Are you looking to optimize your testosterone production? Then you should Join the OPTIMIZED T NATION & become a member of my free mailing list. Discover how you can naturally optimize T, for improved physical, sexual, mental & emotional health. JOIN FREE HERE

They are high in zinc, magnesium, saturated and monounsaturated fats, all of which increase testosterone production.

Even then, unless you already have a very good omega 3 – omega 6 ratio, I’d suggest keeping the intake of pumpkin seeds minimal.

Alternatives To Vegetable/ Seed Oils

Olive Oil

Seed/ vegetable oils are unhealthy & foods that lower testosterone production for a couple of different reasons.

Yes, they are very high in omega 6 which is inflammatory & lowers T as a result.

The major issue, is how seed & vegetable oils are produced. Seeds & vegetables are heated to extremely high temperatures.

This leads to the unsaturated fatty acids oxidizing, leading to by-products that are damaging to human & animal health!

This is then processed with petroleum-based solvents and a number of chemicals are added to deodorize & improve the colour.

This process also produces trans fats & leads to a number of other inflammatory issues.

So this is why seed & vegetable oils are foods that lower testosterone, are poor for health as a whole & just not to be avoided by everybody!

Alternatives To Walnuts & Peanuts

The two nuts I’d suggest are Brazil nuts & Tiger nuts. Both have been shown to increase testosterone production.

Brazil nuts are a great source of Selenium which is great for healthy thyroid functioning & as a result increased testosterone production.

We’re not quite sure why Tiger Nuts increase T yet but in rat studies, it’s shown to almost double testosterone production!

Final Thoughts

I hope you have found this article on foods that lower testosterone and alternatives that won’t useful.

I’ll be putting together articles advising what I believe to be the best brands of some of these alternatives and where to purchase, so keep an eye out for them.

If you have any queries in regard to this article, just drop me a comment below and I’ll get back to you!

Please feel free to share this article with anyone you think may find it useful.

You can follow me on my social media sites as well, where I cover more of the foods that lower testosterone & what else you need to avoid for higher T.

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10 thoughts on “3 Types Of Foods That Lower Testosterone & Alternatives That Won’t”

  1. Im all about healthy eating and I really like how you explain the different foods that can be great for your health and others that will hurt you body. My dad as a saying whatever taste good means that is not good for you, and the food that taste not so good is good for you. It’s so true, but what I have learned is that you can make foods that taste weird into a whole new taste. Thank you for this post

    1. Nate Stone says:

      Hi Claudia,

      I’m glad you found it useful, yes unfortunately things like highly processed foods or even just foods with lots of salt or sugar being always available have very much skewed our taste buds and what we like to eat. I’m not saying that these foods and the other foods that lower testosterone need to be cut out altogether, as some of the healthier ones do have other benefits; but just cut down in them a bit as having low testosterone levels can be a very serious health risk.

  2. Justin Dew says:

    This is some great information that I did not know about. I noticed that there are actually quite a few healthy foods included that will lower levels. I think its good though that there alternatives mentioned. When you get right down to it, nutrition is the number one factor on the list for general health as well as weight loss. I enjoy going to the gym but its the eating that I’m sub par with and have to work on. When something like this is added to it, it’s a little harder, but it’s doable for anyone that has an issue with this.

    1. Nate Stone says:

      Hi Justin,

      I’m glad you found it useful, yes a number of the foods that lower testosterone are still healthy in other ways. What I suggest is not cutting these foods out altogether but just lowering your consumption, as having low T levels can lead to a number of health complications and like you say, your diet is the easiest place to start when it comes to changing and maintaining health!

  3. Jukka says:

    Great tips Nate! One thing I would like to point out that it seems that a diet that optimizes testosterone levels isn’t necessarily the optimal diet for longevity. For example there is some pretty convincing studies on the beneficial health effects of whole meal grains and especially oats. As there is with eating nuts, seeds and other vegetable fat sources. They are likely associated with the increased intake of fiber which has been pretty much proven to have many beneficial health effects, especially on colon cancer prevention, lowering cholesterol levels and improving insulin resistance. I’m sure you are aware that high fiber diets can actually lower testosterone levels!

    We also have to remember that there has to be a large portion of individual variation, we simply react differently to different kinds of foods depending on our genetic make up. I have also thought about the possibility that high testosterone levels might not actually be good for longevity. Think about it, testosterone is all about youthful strength, determination, agression and of course sex drive. In biological sense you don’t necessarily need those things after you have “passed on your seed” so to speak. It’s possible that steroid hormones actually just burn our light a bit brighter and thus faster.

    I was obsessed before with how my diet affects different variables of my health but these day I tend to eat what I like. I think the reduced cortisol levels of not stressing out about what I eat has been more beneficial for both longevity and testosterone levels than any food could be :D. Today is pizza and beer day btw!

    1. Nate Stone says:

      Hey Jukka,

      Yeah I’d agree you don’t want to be eating purely to optimize T levels. Part the issue is that we tend to over indulge in a lot of nuts, vegetable fats and grains. I agree whole grains are needed for a healthy diet, a large part of the issue is that as a whole recommended carb intakes are just way too high and our diets shouldn’t be primarily carbs, especially highly refined carbs (a lot of pastas, pastry, breads etc.)

      For someone like yourself who I know has a good diet, you can afford to have your “cheat days” etc. I’m trying to educate those who aren’t aware of how nutrition works etc. that the foods they solely live in are causing issues for their testosterone levels and wider health; but yes you’re right moderation is the key as people say.

      With regards to having high T in older age, the issue is that most peoples testosterone levels are so low that as they age they are developing illnesses that they wouldn’t if there testosterone levels were slightly healthier. Again I imagine most people following your tips will be at the healthier end of the scale so may not suffer from the problems.

  4. Daniel says:

    Hello Nate, I must say that this article is very helpful and informative. I am usually a healthy eating man but I did not know that all that food can possibly lower the testosterone. Do you think that it is better to use testosterone powders or focus more on nutrition? I want to improve the levels of testosterone.

    1. Nate Stone says:

      Hi Daniel, 

      Your nutrition is the best place to start in terms of increasing your testosterone production. Check out this article on Foods That Boost Testosterone Production

  5. Kendra says:

    I truly had not idea that so many “healthy” seeds would actually decrease testosterone. My husband is always worried about his testosterone levels as he works out a lot, so I’m going to be happy to bookmark your page and recommend it to him. Thanks!

    1. Nate Stone says:

      Hey Kendra,

      Yeah sadly a lot of these seeds are high in Omega 6 which causes inflammation and lowers testosterone production. While they do have a nutrition profile which has some healthy aspects, when it comes to testosterone production, I recommend avoiding the seeds that I’ve listed. If you’re husband is monitoring his testosterone levels and his diet is a part of that, I’d recommend he checks out this article on Foods That Boost Testosterone Production

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