Here’s the paradox.
Belly fat increases when testosterone levels are low, and then basically defends it’s by increasing your estragon production, which then counteracts testosterone. It’s obvious; belly fat is no easy foe to eradicate
An expanding waistline is a problem that many men face as they age and it is often difficult to combat.
Sure, you can follow conventional weight loss approaches, such as counting calories and making sure you get enough exercise.
But, this often doesn’t seem like enough. One reason is the connection between belly fat and testosterone.
As men age, their testosterone levels naturally decrease, often resulting in low testosterone. That outcome can lead to low energy and increased belly fat.
So, what are the implications for you? And, more importantly, how do you decrease belly fat? Why does losing that extra 15 – 20lbs of belly fat even matter? And How does it affect my testosterone levels?
Have a Check-Up With Your Doctor For Proper Testosterone Levels
If you’re wondering, there is a way to know for sure what your testosterone levels are. Your doctor can give you a simple blood test. It’s the only way to know how much of the stuff is floating around inside, and if your problem really is Low-T.
If your doctor confirms that you are low on testosterone then while you are there just have a chat and explain to him that you are going to make some lifestyle changes and does he foresee any problems with you hitting the gym and changing your diet?
So Why Is Belly Fat A Worry
If you’re carrying a few extra pounds, you’re not alone. But this is one case where following the crowd isn’t a good idea. Carrying extra weight — especially belly fat — can be risky. 1
The trouble with belly fat is that it’s not limited to the extra layer of padding located just below the skin (subcutaneous fat). It also includes visceral fat (2) — which lies deep inside your abdomen, surrounding your internal organs.
Regardless of your overall weight, having a large amount of belly fat increases your risk of:
- Cardiovascular disease
- Insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes
- Colorectal cancer
- Sleep apnea
- Premature death from any cause
- High blood pressure
Your weight is largely determined by how you balance the calories you eat with the energy you burn. If you eat too much and exercise too little, you’re likely to pack on excess pounds — including belly fat.
As men get older we tend to lose muscle — especially if you’re not physically active.
The loss of muscle mass decreases the rate at which your body uses calories, which can make it more challenging to maintain a healthy weight.
According to the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, men in their 50s need about 200 fewer calories daily than they do in their 30s due to this muscle loss.
Genes also contribute to your chances of being overweight or obese, as well as play a role in where you store fat.
What about the connection between belly fat and testosterone?
Which comes first the “chicken or egg?”
That’s the debate about belly fat and low testosterone.
Various studies have been done and suggest that low testosterone causes excess belly fat while others claim that excess belly fat contributes to lower levels of testosterone.
While there is no definitive or clear answer, the one thing that is clear is that there is obviously a link between the two.
One thing men should know and really understand is that testosterone affects your body in numerous ways, making an imbalance that is damaging to your long-term health and well-being.
An article in the popular magazine “Men’s Health” corroborates the belief that belly fat and testosterone are linked. “A study of 1,822 men by the New England Research Institute confirmed that a man’s waist circumference is the single strongest predictor of low testosterone levels.” (6)
Testosterone is normally the male hormone that we generally associate with large, strong, rippling muscles; the study’s conclusions have good and solid reasoning behind them.
Testosterone helps build muscle mass, and therefore, low levels of testosterone actually cause you to lose muscle mass.
When you lose muscle mass, it comes easier for fat to take its place, giving your body a rounder appearance and looks softer to the eye.(7)
With the correct levels of testosterone, this can help reduce the loss of muscle mass in the first place. Aging doesn’t have to equal large amounts of muscle loss or fat gain if testosterone levels are kept in check.
Even though low testosterone is often a side effect of ageing, it can happen at any point in a man’s life, and it is still something that should not be ignored.
Look at Your Diet and Change It
What foods increase testosterone?
If you are like me time is a big issue, there are not enough hours in the day to get everything done. Family life and work is a major balancing act.
So expecting men to spend time in the kitchen preparing their own meals simply to increase testosterone levels is a bit of a tall order, even if you had an interest in cooking.
So, to keep things really easy I thought why not put a list together based on snacks and drinks, things that you eat on the go, at work or in your lunch box. At the end of this, I have put a small list together of products that you should try eating more off or cook with.
Nuts in general, are very high in fats. Not all nuts are pro-testosterone.
The kinds of fats that have been linked to increased T production are saturated fatty-acids (SFAs) and monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs). Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) on the other hand tend to lower testosterone levels.
Most nuts are – unfortunately – loaded with PUFAs.
Not macadamia nuts though. 100 grams contain ~75 grams of dietary fat, out of which 60 grams are MUFAs, 13 grams are SFAs, and less than 2 grams are PUFAs.
They do not have as good fat ratios for testosterone production as the macadamia’s do (100 grams of brazil nuts has 15g SFA, 25g MUFAs, and 19g PUFAs), but their true testosterone boosting potential is not in the fat ratio
It’s in the really high selenium content. 100 grams of Brazil nuts contains 1917 mcgs of selenium, which is 2739% of the RDA%!
Selenium – mostly due to its glutathione stimulating effects – is directly linked to increased testosterone production, and just a handful of Brazil nuts a day is easily enough to cover your selenium needs, naturally. Try and buy your Brazil nuts unshelled, most of the selenium is in the skin. (8,9)
Firstly, they’re anti-inflammatory and full of antioxidants, such as resveratrol, which has been linked to increased testosterone and lowered estrogen levels.
Secondly, 100 grams of raisins contain ~3 mg’s of boron, which is a not too popular mineral that has increased testosterone levels quite significantly. (10)
So, rather than just having a sandwich in your lunchbox start adding your snack mix of raisins, macadamia nuts, and brazil nuts.
It’s all about common sense.
We all know that eating too much junk and processed food is the road to a shorter life, but it does need a mind change to achieve any success in losing the fat.(11)
If you want to change your diet it’s not difficult, but it does take a bit of effort.
Thre has been so much research on this that you could be reading the research for the next 10 years.
You Need To Make Healthy Choices
Its all about making small changes to start with, the saying “Rome Wasn’t Built In a Day” springs to mind.
So, the first step for reducing belly fat is to simply make healthy decisions. This includes some of the following ideas:
- Get enough sleep
- Don’t smoke
- Establish routines
- Don’t rely on weight loss pills and fad diets
- Decrease intake of sugar and processed foods
- Cut back on the soda (or cut it out entirely)
- Lower your calorie intake
For that matter, there are many small changes that you can make that help with health and weight loss. (11)
Beyond this the greatest small step you can today is:
Limit, If Not Eliminate, Sugar from Your Diet
Sugar is one of our greatest threats to our health today.
Consuming to much sugar in your diet has a detrimental effect on your whole body.
When it comes to testosterone levels, sugar increases your insulin levels, which in turn leads to low testosterone.
A sweet snack is alright every once and a while, but if you’re looking to boost your testosterone levels, you should seriously consider cutting sugar out all together!
You know that being over overweight especially around the middle is damaging your health.
The question is are you prepared to make some very simple changes to your diet and introduce some regular exercise into your working day?
It’s not that difficult to make those small changes that we have a great impact on how you look and feel as well as potentially adding a few years to life expectancy.