The foods that actually lower your testosterone

-Dec 13, Hannah Hargrave , Health -

Our diet goes a long way towards determining if we’re fit and healthy. We may monitor calories for our waistlines or pack in the protein to build more muscle. But food also effects our hormones, which can impact our overall health too. Lumity looks at the ingredients you should avoid if you’re worried about low testosterone.

The hormone testosterone plays an important role in men and women’s health, so it’s imperative its levels stay regulated. While there are a number of factors which impact those levels, what many people don’t realise is that what you eat plays a major part in it. In fact, there are several types of food which actually lower testosterone and should be avoided if you’re concerned your testosterone isn’t where it should be.

Related: The most important vitamins and minerals for men to take every day and why

What is testosterone?

Testosterone is a hormone which is found in both men and women, however men have significantly more than women and would explain why low levels in males is more commonly an issue.

For women testosterone is needed for a healthy libido and fertility too. In addition it’s important for energy levels, bone strength and building of lean muscle.

For men it is the primary sex hormone and helps regulate sex drive, fat distribution, muscle mass, bone strength and the production of sperm as well.

Symptoms of low testosterone in men

  • enlarged breasts
  • low sex drive
  • increased body fat
  • decreased muscle mass
  • erectile dysfunction
  • low semen volume
  • hair loss
  • fatigue
  • mood swings

Symptoms of low testosterone in women

  • mood swings
  • fatigue
  • anxiety 
  • depressed mood
  • muscle weakness
  • lack of libido

Related: Help balance your hormones using exercise

Foods which lower testosterone


The likes of edamame, soy milk, tofu and miso can cause a drop in testosterone levels. Consuming these foods once in a while won’t make too much of a difference but if any of the above regularly feature in your diet and you are worried about your testosterone levels then you may want to reevaluate your food choices. 


Cows milk in particular contains hormones which can affect testosterone levels. This means too much milk, yoghurt and cheese could lead to an imbalance.


Men especially should lower their alcohol intake if they’re concerned about their testosterone levels. Heavy drinking on a regular basis can have a major impact on testosterone. Alcohol has been found to increase cortisol – the stress hormone – which has been linked to the decrease of testosterone too. 

Plus it can make you pile on the pounds which isn’t good for your health either.

Licorice root

Even if you don’t like the licorice candy, licorice root may factor into your diet in ways you don’t even realise. This testosterone lowering ingredient can be found in sweets, drinks, breath fresheners, herbal teas and cough mixtures too, so read the labels before you dive in.

Vegetable oils

Polyunsaturated fatty acids are found in vegetables oils including soybean, corn and canola. While it’s recognised as a healthy source of dietary fat it’s also been linked to reduced testosterone.

Processed foods

If you’re looking out for your health in general then it’s a good idea to back away from processed foods, and if low testosterone is an issue, even more reason to do so. The trans fats contained in so many frozen or pre-packaged foods have bee shown to reduce testosterone levels and even hinder reproductive performance. 

For more ways to improve your diet for better health take a look at Lumity’s anti-inflammatory food pyramid and also learn how Lumity’s Day and Nighttime Supplements – which are now available for men too – could be the ultimate addition to your health and beauty regime.

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