Saturated fat has gotten a bad reputation when it comes to testosterone in men. Many generations considered high-fat foods like whole eggs, steak, and full-fat dairy completely healthy, and in some cultures, they still are.
The truth is that saturated fat doesn’t affect hormone production at all. Saturated fats cause cholesterol to be converted into sex hormones like estrogen and progesterone, lowering your levels of free testosterone.
So what does this mean for you? If you want healthy balanced hormones and high testosterone, it means cutting down on saturated fats and balancing your diet with more healthy grains and fresh fruit and vegetables.
Polyunsaturated fats such as omega-3 and omega-6 may help with boosting testosterone but not enough research has been done yet on their effects, so don’t go overboard just yet.
Eating more vegetables can also boost low testosterone because dark leafy greens are rich sources of minerals like magnesium, potassium, and zinc.
The best way to get your testosterone levels up is to maintain a healthy diet, exercise more, and sleep better!
Other factors can affect the levels of this hormone in men besides just food like alcohol consumption and medications, so be aware of these things when you explore different ways on how saturated fat affects testosterone in men.
Eating enough protein will also help with boosting low male hormones because it helps keep muscle mass lean, which increases energy expenditure.
Saturated fats – what are they?
Saturated fats are a kind of fat that is solid at room temperature. This type of fat comes from animal sources and food products like butter, lard, beef tallow, palm oil, cheese, full-fat dairy products (milk, cream), and coconut oils.
Heart disease – what actually causes it?
Sugar has been shown to be one of the main causes of heart disease, and one of the top testosterone killing foods. Symptoms in the body include inflammation, stress, and oxidative damage.
If you are eating the right amount of protein and avoiding sugar-laden foods, then your hormones should be balanced and optimal!
Obesity is simply a result of too many carbohydrates in the diet and not enough good fats like Omega-supplemented fish oils, avocado, olives, or olive oil for healthy cells.
What are the effects?
A high intake of saturated fats can have many harmful effects on your health, including increasing your risk for heart disease because it increases LDL cholesterol levels, increasing plaque buildup in the walls of arteries over time.
In addition to this, high amounts will also increase bad cholesterol levels in relation to good ones – causing higher blood pressure and atherosclerosis, leading to an increased risk for stroke or coronary artery disease with prolonged exposure.
It’s also been found that consuming high levels of saturated fat can cause liver disease, pancreatitis, and obesity.
What are the benefits?
The benefits of eating higher amounts of saturated fats in your diet come from its ability to increase testosterone production by increasing luteinizing hormone (LH).
This is due to a study published in 2019, which showed that men who ate more than 20% of their daily calories as fat had increased LH hormones compared to those on a low-fat diet. The study itself was conducted over 12 weeks, with participants being given either 25%, 30%, or 40% dietary fat intake for three weeks at a time before switching diets for another three weeks.
Although findings did indicate that the increase in LH was only significant at 30% and 40%, it is important to note that there were no differences between fat intakes when it came to testosterone.
However, this could be due to a higher intake of calories from dietary fats, leading to the high-fat diet not feeling as satiated, so eating more overall food during their study.
What are the risks?
The risks associated with consuming too many saturated fats come mainly from its ability to promote cholesterol levels in your blood, leading to coronary heart disease or stroke.
Those who consumed 25% of their daily caloric intake as fat had lower LDL (bad) cholesterol than those who consumed less than 20%. This seems counterintuitive but may have to do with the higher fiber intake found in those on a high-fat diet.
The greater your LDL cholesterol, the more likely you are to have atherosclerosis and heart disease (two of the leading causes of death in America).
What should you eat?
To optimize testosterone levels, you must follow an eating plan rich in monounsaturated fats like avocado or nuts while limiting saturated fat sources from animal products such as red meat, whole milk, dairy foods, butter, lard, and cheese.
The following are some good options for increasing protein without consuming too much dietary fat:
- Protein powders are often bulked up with soy, so be mindful when choosing one
- Tofu can also provide plenty of protein
- Omega-enriched eggs are a good source of high-quality animal foods
- Algae, such as spirulina or chlorella, can also provide vegan proteins and micronutrients.
What’s the best thing to do if you already have heart disease?
If you’re at risk for cardiovascular problems, increasing your intake of monounsaturated fats is the number one way to promote healthy cholesterol levels. Monounsaturated fat has been shown in studies to be cardioprotective by lowering LDL cholesterol while raising HDL.
Avocado may be beneficial for preventing stroke because it increases HDL (good) cholesterol without affecting overall blood lipids like total cholesterol and triglycerides.