Testosterone can be a touchy subject for some (*cough* insecure *cough*) men.
Testosterone production largely separates men from women biologically, helping them to exercise, build extra muscle, and look more rugged than their dainty female counterparts.
A lot of fellas would hence want to pump themselves full of as much testosterone as possible, maximizing their “manliness” with the excessive testosterone levels.
However, vegan men are generally more open-minded than this, thank the lord.
Still, you may be wondering what the deal is with vegan testosterone. Do vegan men have more testosterone than meat-eaters? Or do they have less? Let’s dive in to find out.
What is Testosterone?
Testosterone is the main male sex hormone which is produced by a man’s testicles.
Testosterone has many functions inside a man’s body, but it mainly regulates muscle mass, fat distribution, fertility, and the production of red blood cells. (1)
So if you want to make babies or you want to look more traditionally masculine, testosterone plays a key role.
What about testosterone levels? Do you know its side effects when it is low? Does it naturally decrease too? Let's find out below.
Testosterone levels which are too low can leave you with health and fertility problems despite an otherwise healthy lifestyle.
Testosterone levels naturally drop in men as they age, but some vegan men worry that a plant based diet will make the levels drop sooner.
Why do Testosterone Levels Drop in Men?
1. Physical injury to the testicles
Getting “kicked in the balls” or sustaining another similar injury to the testicles can cause a drop in testosterone production if the injury is serious enough.
This is because testosterone is produced by the testicles, and damaging them could hence slow down testosterone production.
Testosterone naturally drops as males get older, although it drops at quite a low rate. After the age of 30, men’s testosterone amounts drop by around 1% every year. (2)
This is a normal part of the aging process, although some fellas may take supplements to circumvent this.
Some medications have been found to wreak havoc on men’s testosterone production, causing it to drop after usage.
People taking medications should carefully check the list of possible side effects beforehand, which may include interference with the normal male libido.
4. Poor diet
Vegan males often worry about their unconventional diet affecting their testosterone, but research suggests that hormone-filled meat is one of the worst foods for lowering testosterone.
Other foods which are bad for this include beer, refined carbohydrates, and non-organic foods. (3)
Do Vegans Have Higher Testosterone?
You can maintain your T levels while eating a vegan diet — same as with vegetarians and meat eaters. In fact, research has found vegan males to have 13% more testosterone than meat eaters. (4)
Generally speaking, as long as you eat lots of organic vegetables and ensure that you’re nourished, vegan testosterone levels can be sustained with plant-based diets.
"The nutritional content and health effects of vegan diets can both boost and lower testosterone levels. However, as long as you eat a balanced diet that includes adequate amounts of carbohydrates, protein, and zinc, eating a vegan diet should not lower your testosterone levels."
- Matthew Lee, Health & Lifestyle Writer
You can also watch this video by Ryan Lum which shows his testosterone levels based on a test he recently made. He's a vegan for 8 years.
Vegans Foods That Contain Testosterone
- 1Chia seeds : Chia seeds are filled with healthy fats and omega-3, helping to stimulate the production of testosterone.
Chia seeds are among the most effective vegan testosterone boosters you can eat, helping to raise vegan testosterone levels significantly.
- 2Avocado : Loved by millennials all over the world, the trusty old avocado is filled with monounsaturated fat, helping to raise your testosterone levels. This plant based testosterone is said to outweigh supplementation and acts as a brilliant natural vegan testosterone booster for vegan males worrying about their manhood.
- 3Coconut : Just when you thought that coconut oil couldn’t do anything else for your health, it turns out that coconut oil is among the great vegan testosterone foods as well. According to an article published by Olivier Health Tips, coconut is filled with healthy natural fat, nutrients, antioxidants, and enzymes, all of which contribute toward healthy male sexuality.
- 4Broccoli : Broccoli, in addition to many other tasty cruciferous vegetables that you find in plant-based diets, helps to raise your vegan testosterone levels by getting rid of excess estrogen in your body, hence clearing the way for more testosterone. Estrogen is essentially the female sex hormone equivalent of testosterone.
- 5Garlic : One study performed on rats found that garlic supplementation increased testosterone and had further health benefits too.
This has helped to make garlic one of the most popular vegan testosterone boosters available on a plant-based diet.
- 6Nuts : Numerous studies have shown that magnesium levels are closely linked to testosterone levels in males, meaning that magnesium-rich nuts are a great vegan testosterone booster.
Cashews, peanuts, brazil nuts and almonds are particularly celebrated for their ability to increase it too.
- 7Bananas : Bananas are known to contain an enzyme named bromelain, which is essential for a man's healthy sexual libido. Bananas are also loaded with B vitamins such as riboflavin which have been linked to healthy testosterone production in males.
So in addition to being a natural aphrodisiac, bananas can help boost vegan testosterone as well.
- 8Pumpkin seeds : Pumpkins seeds are naturally high in antioxidants and additional nutrients which help to regulate healthy testosterone levels in males, making them a brilliant addition to a plant-based diet for guys.
1. Does meat lower testosterone?
Meat can lower testosterone, but it depends on the type you’re eating. Low-quality meats filled with hormones can cause low testosterone in males, although healthier cuts of red meat can boost it. Generally speaking, however, plant eaters have higher testosterone levels than meat-eaters.
2. What foods kill testosterone?
Foods that kill testosterone include grains (bread, pasta, rice, etc.) cheese, yogurt, alcohol, chocolate, and hormone-filled meats. They do this by boosting the activity of an enzyme named aromatase which turns testosterone into estrogen. (5)
3. Does soy lower testosterone?
Soy does not lower testosterone, despite a common myth that it does. Soy is an essential component of a plant-based diet which has many health benefits, and there is no substantial evidence to show that it lowers testosterone.
4. What happens when a man’s testosterone is low?
When a man’s testosterone is low, there are many potential effects. Decreased sex drive and erectile dysfunction are common, as well as hair loss and a reduction in bone mass. Some males also experience weight gain, sleeping troubles, and mood swings.
So, do plant-eating fellas have more testosterone due to their plant-based diet?
The answer depends on your diet, fitness, genes, and environment, but the likely answer is yes – plant eaters tend to have higher amounts of testosterone in their bodies.
Nonetheless, those following plant-based diets should ensure that they are getting all the foods and nutrients they need in order to support healthy testosterone production – eating nothing but saturated fats-ridden vegan junk food is not likely to help your testosterone.
If you’re looking to up your testosterone but you’re not into the idea of supplementation, maybe plant-based diets are something you should try.
Not only are you saving the planet and the animals, but you’re also keeping your balls nice and topped up too… to be frank.
1. Harrison Wein, Ph.D., Understanding How Testosterone Affects Men, retrieved from https://www.nih.gov/news-events/nih-research-matters/understanding-how-testosterone-affects-men
2. Jacob Rajfer, MD, Decreased Testosterone in the Aging Male, retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1502317/
3. Dr. William Rawls, 6 Surprising Factors That Cause Low Testosterone In Men, retrieved from https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-14076/6-surprising-factors-that-cause-low-testosterone-in-men.html
4. Michael Greger M.D. FACLM, Vegan Men: More Testosterone But Less Cancer, retrieved from https://nutritionfacts.org/2013/02/12/less-cancer-in-vegan-men-despite-more-testosterone/
5. Rachael Link, MS, RD, 8 Foods That Lower Testosterone Levels, https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/foods-that-lower-testosterone
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