TRT and Diet — Diet and Exercise May Help With Mild Symptoms of Low Testosterone
If you suffer from clinical hypogonadism (the medical term for low testosterone), you’re likely going to need supplemental testosterone through testosterone replacement therapy (TRT). Diet and exercise, while important for your overall health, aren’t going to be enough to elevate your levels into a “normal” or “optimum” range.
That said, there are a lot of people, both men and women, who tend to hover right around the line between normal and low.
If you’re one of those people, you may experience one or many of the symptoms of Low T when levels dip, and yet feel mostly fine at others — it can be frustrating to feel normal and then find yourself suffering from symptoms.
For those individuals that may have very low testosterone and may not be good candidates for TRT, diet and exercise changes could be helpful to keep their testosterone levels above the line where unpleasant symptoms begin.
How TRT and Diet Support Each Other
If you’re looking to bolster your testosterone levels, or if you’re hoping to support your TRT with a diet that helps fortify and stabilize your testosterone levels, there are some suggestions we can offer.
The main additions to your TRT diet plan that benefit testosterone (and other hormones) are foods high in vitamins C and D, foods high in zinc, and foods that reduce the cortisol level in your blood.
Cortisol is known as the “stress hormone.” People under stress experience a drop in testosterone as their cortisol levels rise, and we’ve seen that in studies of elite athletes.
Some other studies show that vitamin D deficiencies often occur in conjunction with low testosterone levels, and, if you’re suffering from a zinc deficiency, you can run into a variety of hormone issues (testosterone and estrogen levels can both be affected).
With these thoughts in mind, we have 5 ideas for improving your diet (whether you’re on TRT or not) to help boost and stabilize testosterone production.
1. Eat Healthy Fats
Unsaturated fats are good for the body — they assist in the regulation of hormone production. To naturally boost testosterone levels, eat foods rich in essential fatty acids, including:
- Whole milk (fortified with vitamin D)
- Eggs (with the yolk)
These foods also include numerous other vitamins and minerals that are essential to keeping your body’s complicated machinery running properly.
2. Monitor Your Zinc and Other Mineral Intake
Zinc plays a critical role in testosterone production (and the production of other hormones as well), and it also decreases the conversion of testosterone into the female hormone estradiol (estrogen).
We recommend including foods rich in zinc in your daily diet. Suggestions include nuts, oysters, liver, beef, poultry, and cottage cheese.
Eating almonds also increases magnesium, which some studies have linked to healthy testosterone levels.
3. Eat More Cruciferous Vegetables
Cruciferous vegetables include radishes, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbages, and cauliflower. These vegetables are rich in vitamin C and fiber. Vitamin C is known to aid in the production of testosterone as well.
Be sure you cook the vegetables properly so that the nutrients aren’t destroyed in the process.
4. Cut Back on Sugar
Sugar is one food you want to cut back on, not add more.
It’s well known that sugar intake can negatively affect your general health, and it contributes to diabetes — mounting evidence supports a strong link between low testosterone and diabetes.
In addition, the medical community is finding out that sugar affects hormone levels directly.
Then, we add in the obesity factor. Sugar directly contributes to obesity, which elevates the production of estrogen, leading to hormone imbalance.
Even if you’re not on TRT, a diet low in sugar is a good idea.
5. Monitor Alcohol Use
While a moderate amount of alcohol probably won’t cause your testosterone levels to plummet, it’s important to keep consumption under control.
Also note, however, that the ingredients found in beer do have some effects that can reduce testosterone levels.
On top of that, if a man drinks more than 2-3 beers per day, he’s going to have to consider all that sugar he’s putting into his body — see the discussion of sugar in number 4 above.
On a related note, while street drugs obviously have tremendous detrimental health effects and should be avoided at all costs, many prescription drugs can also affect your hormone levels — opiate medications are known to lower testosterone levels.
Even if you’re utilizing TRT and on a diet that includes many of these foods, consult your doctor to be sure your medications aren’t contributing to low testosterone.
Improving General Health in Addition to TRT and Diet
Your general health is the most important factor in maintaining a healthy hormone balance and combating the symptoms of Low T.
Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) and diet are your first 2 lines of defense against the symptoms of Low T — the other is proper exercise.
To learn more about exercises you can do to further boost your testosterone levels, click the button below — TRT, diet, and exercise are the best ways to keep your hormone levels healthy.