Intermittent Fasting & Testosterone: What’s The Effect
What Is Testosterone? | What Happens When Testosterone is Low? | Effects Of Intermittent Fasting | How to Fast for Better Testosterone Levels
Although intermittent fasting is considered a great dietary approach for weight loss, it is also believed to improve endurance in athletes. Intermittent fasting has an indirect influence on testosterone levels in your body, and when combined with the proper nutrition and training, it can give noticeable results.
Fasting improves your health biomarkers which in turn increases your testosterone. So, how do you follow a fasting routine to attain better testosterone levels? What are the benefits of improved testosterone levels? Let us discuss them all in detail.
What Is Testosterone?
Testosterone is a hormone that is majorly responsible for sexual development in men but is also found in small quantities in women. In men, the testicles are responsible for producing this hormone. The hormone is also called the male sex hormone or androgen because of its role in the production of sperms.
Testosterone production in males increases considerably once a male hits puberty. This hormone helps develop muscle mass, bone structure, facial and body hair, and change in voice. It also plays a role in the regulation of mood and libido.
Testosterone is synthesized from cholesterol, and its levels are controlled by the pituitary gland located in the brain. Just like men, testosterone is also required in women and helps in regulating ovarian functions, sexual behavior, and bone strength. It is essential to balance estrogen and testosterone in a female body for the ovaries to function correctly.
What Happens When Testosterone is Low?
The levels of testosterone in men decrease with age. However, in current times, the levels of testosterone have gone down drastically in even younger men. The low levels of testosterone in young men can lead to:
- Loss of muscle mass
- Lack of physical development during puberty
- Low libido and impotence with low sperm count
- Loss of body hair
- Irritability, anxiety, and depression
- Weight gain
Hence, maintaining the levels of testosterone is crucial in your body. Using hormone therapy to increase the levels of testosterone is not always a good option because it can lead to an increase in a lot of other problems. Hence, one of the natural ways to regulate testosterone production is by intermittent fasting. It is a simple method that has been proven to help in the regulation of testosterone hormone in both men and women.
Effects of Intermittent Fasting On The Testosterone Levels
How does intermittent fasting increase testosterone? Intermittent fasting in itself does not boost testosterone levels in your body, nor can it be considered a miraculous cure for low testosterone.
However, intermittent fasting has an indirect role in the stabilization of testosterone in your body. Here is how intermittent fasting boosts testosterone levels:
1. Reducing Body Fat
Having excess body fat means the testosterone levels in your body are naturally low. Various studies on overweight and obese people have shown that testosterone levels increase considerably after they lose weight. Also, in aging men, weight management helps to maintain circulating testosterone, and obesity-related hormone changes are reversible.
Intermittent fasting is a great way to burn fat. Our body needs energy to function, which is provided to it through the food we eat. However, intermittent fasting increases the duration of burning calories, which allows your body to metabolize fat. Hence, we can say intermittent fasting and testosterone levels are interrelated as they play a role in your body’s fat metabolism effect.
2. Regulates Insulin Sensitivity
Insulin sensitivity influences testosterone levels in your body. Better insulin sensitivity means better testosterone levels, and fasting helps in the improvement of insulin levels.
Also, insulin sensitivity is vital for losing weight and improving testosterone production. Intermittent fasting testosterone levels in people with better insulin sensitivity are usually high. It is also important to note that insulin is one hormone linked with most body hormones, and stable insulin is essential for a healthy body.
To know more about the influence of intermittent fasting on insulin sensitivity and other factors of diabetes, read – Intermittent Fasting And Diabetes: Benefits And Risks.
3. Increases the Luteinizing Hormone (LH)
Luteinizing hormone is secreted by the anterior pituitary glands and acts as a precursor for testosterone synthesis in men. Studies have shown that the levels of LH increase in people who follow intermittent fasting.
So, if the LH increases, there will be an automatic increase in the testosterone in your body. Hence, this is one of the positive intermittent fasting effects on testosterone levels.
4. Increases The Growth Hormone (GH)
Another hormone that shows an increase during fasting is the growth hormone. This stimulates testosterone secretion directly, and hence the spike in the GH can be beneficial.
Research shows that even one day of fasting can increase GH levels to a considerable level in your body. So, when there is high GH by intermittent fasting, testosterone levels also increase considerably.
5. Increases Production of Adiponectin
Adiponectin is a protein hormone produced in the adipose tissues, brain, and muscles of our body. It helps in the regulation of glucose levels and the breakdown of fatty acids. Intermittent fasting enhances the production of adiponectin.
Studies have shown that adiponectin reverses insulin resistance and hence improves testosterone levels. Adiponectin enhances insulin sensitivity which stimulates testosterone production.
How to Fast for Better Testosterone Levels
When it comes to intermittent fasting there are various types to choose from. If you are new to fasting, you can start with a simple 12-hour overnight fasting. Start this routine for a few days a week and gradually improve your strategy.
To know how to follow 12-hour intermittent fasting, its benefits, and all its essential guidelines, read 12 Hour Intermittent Fasting: A Guide On 12 Hour Fast.
Following an intermittent fasting routine regularly, choosing healthy nutritious food, and regular exercise can optimize your testosterone levels. With many health benefits, this fasting routine can increase your testosterone levels, endurance, and muscle mass.
So, though intermittent fasting does not directly help increase the body’s testosterone levels, it has an indirect correlation. One of the significant reasons for intermittent fasting testosterone level boost is by helping burn fat and improving the synthesis of luteinizing hormone.
Intermittent fasting is a great way to increase testosterone in men because it also helps regulate the body’s other functions and encourages an overall healthier lifestyle.