Key Takeaways

8 Foods Detrimental to Testosterone Production: 

  • Soy Products: Contain phytoestrogens, mimicking estrogen and potentially lowering testosterone.
  • Dairy: Synthetic hormones in modern dairy may affect testosterone levels.
  • Certain Nuts: Walnuts and almonds can increase SHBG, affecting testosterone availability.
  • Trans Fats: Found in processed foods, may decrease testosterone and increase health risks.
  • Alcohol: Heavy consumption can significantly reduce testosterone production.
  • Baked Goods: May contribute to lower testosterone, higher body fat, and reduced muscle mass.
  • Licorice: Just 7 grams a week can significantly lower testosterone levels.
  • Vegetable Oils: Some, like soybean and canola, are linked to reduced testosterone. 

There are many reasons why men experience a slow-down in testosterone production. For most men, the simple process of aging will lead to a decrease in testosterone. This is completely normal, and few people notice anything wrong in their lives. For others, low testosterone can be due to other health issues. What many people do not understand is that there are some foods that kill testosterone. 

We all know that health and wellness begin with diet and exercise. Any trainer or any doctor will tell you that if you experience any kind of health issue, look at your diet and your exercise habits. In the case of low testosterone, it makes sense to understand the foods that kill testosterone. Even as you look at dietary ways of building testosterone, you should be equally aware of foods that kill testosterone. 

It may come as a surprise to some that there are foods that kill testosterone, but like anything else, some foods contain compounds that have undesirable effects. This guide will introduce you to the importance of testosterone. What kinds of foods kill testosterone? And what these foods do in our bodies impede the production of testosterone. 


What is testosterone?

Testosterone is a hormone primarily produced in the sex organs. It is made more abundantly in people who are biologically male, but those who are biologically female also produce testosterone. Testosterone is an androgen. It is a hormone that stimulates the development of male characteristics like larger muscles, hair growth, and the production of sperm cells. Most of the testosterone is produced in the gonads, or sex organs, but the adrenal glands also produce a hormone called dehydroepiandrosterone which is converted into testosterone and estrogen. 


How does the body create testosterone?

We tend to think testosterone is made only in the gonads, but testosterone production depends on a complex set of processes that take place across the entire body. Testosterone production depends on a complex balance between the following organ systems. 



The hypothalamus is the part of the brain that controls balance, or homeostasis, in the body. Homeostasis includes the endocrine system which produces hormones. To produce testosterone, the hypothalamus can either trigger or cause the release of hormones. For testosterone, the hypothalamus releases biochemical compounds that signal other parts of the body to begin making testosterone. These compounds are called gonadotropin-releasing hormones.  


Pituitary Gland

The pituitary gland is a small organ, about the size of a pea, situated at the base of the brain. It is responsible for controlling most of the other parts of the endocrine system, including things like the adrenal system.  

After gonadotropins are released by the hypothalamus, these compounds signal the pituitary gland to begin producing two more important hormones. These are the follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH).  LH is especially important for the production of testosterone in the testes. Once testosterone levels have reached normal, the pituitary gland will stop producing LH. The system works like a feedback loop



Both FSH and LH trigger separate but connected processes once they reach the testes. FSH will signal the production of sperm. LH will signal the production of testosterone. LH stimulates a specific type of cells called Leydig cells, and these cells convert cholesterol into testosterone. As you probably know, cholesterol comes from dietary sources. Without sufficient cholesterol in the body, it is not possible to produce healthy levels of testosterone. 

A small amount of testosterone is produced by the adrenal glands, only about 5%. The other 95% of testosterone in men comes from the testes. In women, the majority of their low level of testosterone comes from the ovaries, though again some is produced in the adrenal glands.


8 Foods That Kill Testosterone?

Since testosterone production depends on a delicate and complex biochemical balance, things like diet can have positive or adverse effects on testosterone production. Certain foods can actually interfere with the body’s ability to produce testosterone. Foods that kill testosterone include: 

  • Soy
  • Foods made from soy can have an adverse effect on testosterone production. Soy contains a protein called phytoestrogens, and these plant-based compounds that mimic estrogen, the female hormone, in the body. One study showed that men who regularly drank 20 grams of soy protein isolate per day over a two-week period had significantly lower testosterone levels than men who consumed no soy products.  

  • Dairy
  • Modern dairy products have been shown to inhibit testosterone production due to the presence of synthetic and natural hormones used in modern dairy production. These compounds can remain in things like simple milk products and can affect testosterone levels. In addition to hormones used in dairy production, animal feed may contain soy products which also inhibit testosterone.  

  • Nuts
  • Certain types of nuts may have an adverse effect on testosterone. Nuts can contain a hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) that gets carried to testosterone and other hormones in the body. If you raise levels of SHBG too high, it will bind with testosterone and render it unusable by the body. Walnuts and almonds have the highest concentrations of SHGB. 

    Women should be careful with these kinds of nuts. One study demonstrated that the presence of too much SHGB from nuts can lead to elevated testosterone levels that are associated with polycystic ovary syndrome. 

  • Trans Fat
  • There are small amounts of trans fats that are naturally found in meat and dairy products. But processed foods tend to contain unhealthy amounts of trans fats. The trans fats in processed foods are often called partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs). These are so dangerous that the Food and Drug Administration banned them in 2018. 

    However, trans fats can still be found in unhealthy amounts in some foods, particularly fried foods. In addition to increasing your risk of diabetes and heart disease, trans fats may also decrease testosterone levels in men. 

  • Alcohol
  • Excessive alcohol use should be avoided for a host of reasons. But alcohol can also lower your testosterone levels. Researchers found that men who are considered heavy drinkers (15 or more drinks per week) have abnormally low testosterone levels. Alcohol can inhibit specific enzymes that help in the formation of testosterone.  

  • Baked Goods
  • A recent study found that things like bread, pastries, and other baked goods appear to be linked to decreased testosterone levels in men. Researchers found this issue was made worse by not eating enough leafy greens and eating too much fast food. This same study also showed that men who eat more of these baked goods tended to have lower muscle mass and increased body fat. 

  • Licorice
  • Licorice root is used as an herb and is found in candy, beverages, and even tobacco products to sweeten tobacco. You can also find licorice root tea. While the effects of licorice root are not fully understood, one study showed that just 7 grams of licorice root in a week can reduce testosterone levels by more than 25 percent. Another study on animals found that licorice root can actually cause testosterone production to completely shut down. 

  • Vegetable Oils
  • Certain vegetable oils have been linked to hypogonadism, which is the failure of the testes to produce testosterone. Researchers discovered that these oils contain fats that significantly reduce testosterone levels.  

    Vegetable oils that fall into this category include:  

    • canola
    • corn
    • olive
    • peanut
    • safflower
    • soybean
    • sunflower 

    All of these oils contain monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats which have also been linked to low testosterone. 


    How Does Low Testosterone Affect Your Health?

    Low testosterone can have serious effects on your health. Some of the health effects of low testosterone include decreased libido. Testosterone is the male sex hormone. It produces many things in men, and one of those things is the sex drive. Decreased testosterone can lead to a loss of sex drive. Low testosterone can lead to reduced desire for sex, fewer erections that happen spontaneously, and infertility. Without sufficient levels of testosterone, the male body will begin to undergo physical changes. Since testosterone is generally referred to as the "male" hormone, these changes will most often affect the body in ways that are traditionally masculine. Changes that can come about as a result of low testosterone include: 


    Emotional Changes

    Most of the effects of low testosterone are physical, but low testosterone can also lead to emotional disturbances. Low testosterone can cause depression. It can lead to memory problems and difficulty concentrating. Testosterone is linked to the regulation of emotions. As a result, having too little testosterone can interrupt emotions and how you process emotions. 


    Best Supplement to Increase Testosterone Levels

    Prime-XD Service Integration is your best solution for improved virility, energy, and stamina while increasing muscle building with a single once-daily formula. 

    The NF Sports PrimeXD is the best example of a testosterone booster available. We combine the most essential natural testosterone boosters to make a powerful supplement that can help you build lean muscle mass, increase your energy levels, increase heart health, and even increase sexual potency. 

    NF Sports PrimeXD contains key testosterone-boosting ingredients including Testofen®, Ksm-66 Ashwagandha, Tribulus Terrestris. Horny goat weed, and Nutty Maca. This combination is the best solution for improved virility, energy, and stamina/increased muscle building with a single once-daily formula. 



    Maintaining proper and normal testosterone levels is a matter of good health. Without healthy testosterone levels, we can suffer from a variety of health issues including muscle and bone loss, lack of energy, and a loss of the sex drive. Testosterone is more than just the hormone that makes us look a certain way. 

    As with almost anything else, the foods we eat can have far-reaching effects on testosterone production and testosterone levels. Some foods will naturally boost testosterone levels. Other foods will interfere with the body’s ability to produce testosterone and sustain healthy testosterone levels. Diet and exercise can have as much of an impact on testosterone as they do on every other feature of our health. 

    You can help maintain healthy testosterone levels by following the information contained in this guide. If you are experiencing low testosterone, it might be a good idea to look at the foods you eat to see if these things are interfering with testosterone production. If you still experience low testosterone, you can try a healthy and effective testosterone booster like the NF Sports Sports PrimeXD which contains all the most powerful and effective testosterone boosting ingredients available. 


    Health and Safety Notice for Our Readers 

    At NF Sports, we're dedicated to supporting your fitness journey with high-quality, natural supplements made in an FDA-registered facility. Our content and product recommendations are for informational purposes only and are not intended as medical advice. 

    Consult Your Doctor: Before starting any new supplement regimen, especially if you have health concerns or conditions, consult with a healthcare professional to ensure it's safe and right for you. 

    FDA Disclaimer: Our products are designed to support your wellness journey but have not been evaluated by the FDA to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.


    Testosterone FAQS 

    What is testosterone? 

    Testosterone is a hormone primarily produced in the sex organs. It is made more abundantly in people who are biologically male, but those who are biologically female also produce testosterone. Testosterone is an androgen. It is a hormone that stimulates the development of male characteristics like larger muscles, hair growth, and the production of sperm cells. Most of the testosterone is produced in the gonads, or sex organs, but the adrenal glands also produce a hormone called dehydroepiandrosterone which is converted into testosterone and estrogen.


    How does the body create testosterone? 

    Testosterone production requires a complex set of biochemical triggers that begin in the hypothalamus of the brain, extend to the pituitary gland which controls that endocrine system, and finally results in the production of testosterone primarily in the testes. This complex system depends on other hormones such as the follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH).


    What are foods that kill testosterone? 

    Foods that can kill testosterone include soy, dairy, nuts, trans fats, alcohol, baked goods, vegetable oils, and licorice. 


    How does low testosterone affect your health? 

    Low testosterone levels can cause a serious decrease in libido. Low testosterone can also cause bone loss and a loss of muscle mass. Low testosterone may cause weight gain, which can contribute to other serious health problems. Finally, low testosterone may also lead to emotional difficulties including depression.


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