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Testosterone Killers & How to Avoid Them

You can be doing everything perfectly. Exercising regularly, sleeping eight hours per night, and eating all the foods recommended to you. But if you are consuming these testosterone killers your results will never be as good as they could be!

It is important to point out that unless you are consuming these testosterone killing foods/drinks on a regular basis, they are unlikely to cause long term damage.

But reducing your intake of them, particularly if you regularly consume more than one, will help to support healthy testosterone levels in the long term.

The Dangers of Low Testosterone

Chronically low testosterone levels become increasingly likely as we age. Once men hit 30, they can expect to lose around 1% of their testosterone levels every year [1].

This is partly caused by the ageing process, but it is mostly due to lifestyle changes. As we age we are less likely to exercise as regularly, our sleep quality can drop, and stress can increase.

Not only can these factors affect testosterone, but they can affect overall health. Gaining weight, losing sleep, and becoming increasingly stressed can affect your heart health, increase your risk of certain cancers, and may also lead to mental health problems.

Luckily, there are a number of ways in which you can prevent low testosterone. Eating better and exercising can help lead to weight loss. If you have read our article on the link between weight loss and testosterone, you will know just how important this can be.

The biggest issue is the vicious cycle that low testosterone and poor health can cause. Men who are overweight and at risk of heart disease are more likely to have low testosterone, and vice versa [2].

A 2008 study on men aged 50-91 found that men with the lowest quartile (bottom 25%) for testosterone were by far the most likely to die within a 20 year period [3].

Five Common Testosterone Killers in Your Diet

Here are five common testosterone killers that can be found in most people’s diets. As we stated at the beginning of the article, none of these foods or drinks is a danger when consumed in moderation. But if you consume one or two of them regularly, you may want to consider cutting down.

testosterone killers

Testosterone Killers #1 Soy

Here’s the thing, the reports that eating soy will immediately cause your testosterone to plummet are alarmist and exaggerations. Soy is an incredibly healthy food, and when consumed in moderation its benefits far outweigh any downsides.

Problems occur when it makes up the majority of your diet. Something that is quite common for vegans or people in some Asian countries.

Soy contains phytoestrogens which mimic the behaviour of the female sex hormone; estrogen. This can disrupt the testosterone: estrogen ratio in our bodies [4].

If you are leading an active lifestyle, eat testosterone-boosting foods, sleep well, and have moderate-to-low body fat, then your soy intake probably won’t be an issue.

However, if you are already overweight and stressed, then your estrogen levels may well be high enough as it is. In this case, consuming a high-soy diet can affect your testosterone levels.

Testosterone Killers #2 Alcohol

Alcohol is often blamed for many of society’s ills, and it also gets blamed for health and weight management issues. The term beer belly is not scientifically accurate, yet is used all the same.

As with soy, when consumed in moderation, alcohol may even have some health benefits. But chronic drinking, binge drinking, or alcoholism can cause testosterone levels to drop significantly.

Drinking large amounts of beer regularly can lead to reduced testosterone and a lowered sperm count [5]. As with soy, this is more of an issue if other areas of your life are already causing low testosterone levels.

Alcohol can increase estrogen production, cause sleep problems, increase cortisol levels, and lead to increased body fat. All of which can harm testosterone production in men.

Testosterone Killers #3 Junk Food

There are a number of reasons why junk food can be considered a testosterone killer. The first is the fact that they use cheap, low-quality meat (read more below). But junk food is also a source of trans fats, which are a well-known cause of low testosterone and low sperm counts [6].

Studies have also found that a large percentage of junk food contains traces of phthalates, chemicals found in plastics that can affect hormonal health in both men and women [7].

But the biggest issue is that junk food is very calorie-dense, meaning that eating too much of it is likely to result in weight gain. As we know, gaining weight can lead to lower testosterone production in men.

Testosterone Killers #4 Cheap Meat

We’re not about to tell you to stop eating meat and become a vegan. However, we are going to tell you that cheap low-quality meat could be killing your testosterone levels!

Animals that are destined to be cheap meat sources tend to be fed a lot of soy, they may also be more likely to be exposed to pesticides and low-quality preservatives.

All of which can lower testosterone levels in men. Not to mention that low-quality meat is often very high in trans fats and calories, making it even more likely to lead to weight gain. Most cheap junk food is made with cheap meat, which is why both junk food and cheap meat make an appearance in this list.

Where possible, try to eat higher-quality or organic meat. Aim for cutting down on your intake of highly-processed meat.

Testosterone Killers #5 Mint & Liquorice

As we have ruined carnivorous diets, we may as well be fair and turn our attention to the plant-based community!

Mint leaves and liquorice have both been found to lower testosterone levels when consumed in high quantities. A 2003 study found that consuming liquorice led to a 26% drop in testosterone in men after just one week [8].

Keep this in mind if you like drinking herbal teas regularly. Having a mint or liquorice tea once or twice per week is fine, but if you have them every day you may start to see a drop in testosterone.

Final Thoughts

The important takeaway from this article is the importance of variety and moderation in your diet. Absolutely none of the foods or drinks mentioned in this article will kill your testosterone when consumed sensibly.

It is only when you consume them regularly and in high quantities that they become a problem. Sadly, we tend to eat the same foods again and again, particularly if we are stressed, tired, or fatigued.

The image of the stressed man reaching for a bottle of whiskey is pretty familiar, but it is now more common for a stressed man to reach for their Uber Eats app, or for the pack of cheap burgers they have at the back of their freezer.

Add more fruit and veg into your diet, diversify your protein sources, learn to drink for enjoyment rather than obliteration, and spend that little bit more for organic meat where possible. Your testosterone levels will thank you.










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