by Dr Len Lopez
If you are over 40 years of age there is a good chance that more of your testosterone is converting into estrogen then you would like. Yes, both men and women make testosterone. The good Lord didn’t just make testosterone for men. It’s the hormone needed for both men and women to add lean muscle, keep your energy up, weight down, motivate you to get out of bed and of course give your libido a lift.
The problem that happens for a lot of men and women is that too much of their testosterone is converting into estrogen. This not only causes loss of energy, weight gain, fatigue and difficulty adding lean muscle to your body, but it also leads to what is called ‘estrogen dominance,’ which make you more susceptible to a whole host of other problems including cancer.
For men the obvious sign of too much estrogen aside from the obvious listed above is added fatty tissue around the chest…the basic men-boobs. More adipose (fatty) tissue in your chest and waist, as opposed to packing it on in your back side.
There is a big push by drug manufacturers for men to have their testosterone checked to see if that’s what is causing your erectile dysfunction, loss of stamina and libido. Unfortunately they are more interested in prescribing synthetic testosterone drugs, instead of the old fashion, inexpensive testosterone that doesn’t have a patent on it. Nor are they interested in helping you figure out why your body isn’t producing enough testosterone. Not only that – but when you take these synthetic testosterone drugs as replacements, your body will produce less on its own – so when you stop taking the drug you feel terrible and compelled to get another prescription.
FYI…Low levels of testosterone is associated with depression. Also testosterone is lowered by the use of ‘statin’ drugs, which are prescribed to lower cholesterol….can you see the vicious cycle of one drug creating another problem somewhere else, which is why trying to address the cause should be the name of the game.
For women too much estrogen is associated with PMS, fibroids, mood swings, difficulty falling asleep, menopausal symptoms and of course lack of libido and energy.
Everyone converts testosterone into estrogen. The good Lord designed it for men to retain most of their testosterone and only about a tenth of it to be converted into estrogen. For women it is just the opposite, most of their testosterone is converted into estrogen, but they should have an adequate amount of testosterone running through their body to help them get out of bed each day, feel energized, strong and maintain their desires.
What speeds up the conversion process for both men and women is the activation of an enzyme called aromatase. Too much of this enzyme and you convert more of your testosterone into estrogen for both men and women. Now the good Lord didn’t make a bad enzyme…aromatase has its function, but too much of one thing may not be good for you!
Snacks or meals that are loaded with carbohydrates, especially carbohydrates from refined, processed white flour and sugar cause the biggest surge in aromatase. Therefore, one of the last things you want to be eating are high carbohydrate meals, especially at night. This will trigger the greatest conversion of your testosterone into estrogen for both men and women
If that’s you, look at your diet. Do you eat too many high carbohydrate meals or snacks? Do you have a sweet tooth at the end of the day? If so, make some changes to your diet. Cut out all the late night snacks and treats.
A simple test anyone can do at home to check their zinc status is a zinc ‘taste-test’ It quickly and inexpensively determines if you’re low on zinc, which is an excellent clue in helping determine if you are converting your testosterone or not making enough of it.
One key function of zinc besides the need for a strong immune and reproductive system is the importance of keeping that aromatase enzyme at bay. A few herbs such as: saw palmetto, pygeum, pumpkin seeds and nettles are loaded with zinc and help keep your aromatase levels in their normal range.
These herbs are highly recommended for both men and women who are 40+ years old or have more than 20 pounds of excess body weight to lose. Both of these groups of people need testosterone and can’t afford to be losing any of it because they don’t have adequate levels of zinc.
Boost Your Testosterone
Intense exercise and sleep are the two best ways to increase your testosterone levels. With regards to sleep, make sure you are getting enough, if you are having trouble sleeping or staying asleep, get the attention and help you need to fix that problem.
With regards to exercise, the more intense the workout the more testosterone you release. Walking releases some testosterone, while jogging produces more, and running producing even more. This is again why weight training is the best way to get your testosterone levels up…it’s can be short quick and intense! You don’t have to train long, but you do have to push yourself in order to pump out more testosterone and growth hormones. Try the 5-Minute Workout, which is a quick and intense workout to help produce as much testosterone and growth hormones in the shortest amount of time, by simply performing body weight exercises.
Remember it’s not necessarily how much testosterone you make — is’t how much do you keep! Don’t let your diet or lack of zinc (less soy products and hormone-filled products) be the reason why your testosterone levels are down!