The Free Testosterone Uncaged program has been cancelled. Enjoy the draft.
You’re a prisoner in Testosterone county and you’ll be breaking out of prison – specifically escaping binding globulins and estrogen. The prison you’re in doesn’t come with a map. That’s why the Free Testosterone Manual was created.
You can live a free man, get out of your prison, and enjoy the world and everything it has to offer – you can do whatever you want. After all freedom is a choice. Do you want to live and be free or be stuck in prison?
Free Testosterone Uncaged
I – Free Testosterone Intro
- The greatness of free testosterone
- 40 scientifically proven upsides of free testosterone
II – Jailbreaking Testosterone Naturally
- 28 principles to increase free testosterone naturally
- Free testosterone diet and nutrition plan
- Free testosterone supplements plan
- Free testosterone training plan
IV – Prison Guard – Estrogen Handbook
- Diet, nutrition, plants, and supplements
- Endocrine disruptors, chemicals, and estrogen mimics
- Estrogen wipe protocol
V – Enlightenment – Free Testosterone Misc
- Health factors that affect free testosterone big time
- The boron confliction
I – Free Testosterone Intro
The Greatness of Free Testosterone
Free testosterone is testosterone that roams the bloodstream unbound to any binding globulin. Most of the upsides that come from testosterone actually come from the small fraction of testosterone that is free and unbound. Its said that about 1-2% of your testosterone is free and unbound.
Its not just testosterone that has a free fraction, all androgens have a free fraction as well. These free fractions are controlled by SHBG and albumin.
The relative binding affinity of various sex steroids for SHBG is DHT > testosterone> androstenediol > estradiol > estrone. DHEA is weakly bound to SHBG as well, but DHEA-S is not. Androstenedione is not bound to SHBG either, and is instead bound solely to albumin.
Free testosterone, bioavailable testosterone, and free androgen index are the free fractions of androgens.
40 Scientifically Proven Upsides of Free Testosterone
Free testosterone is in the works of…
- Expression of force and power (study)
- Increases dominant behavior (study)
- Increases athletic performance like squats and sprints (study)
- Increases physical performance (study)
- Increases bone mineral density (study)
- Increases IGF (study)
- Increases mood (study)
- Fuels competitiveness (study)
- Greater bone mineral density, lean body mass, and total fat mass (study)
- Increases processing speed performance (study)
- Increases adaptation to medium-intensive exercise (study)
- Increases pulmonary function (study)
- Increases regional cerebral blood flow (study)
- Increases cortical bone size (study)
- Prevents mortality in older men referred for coronary angiography (study)
- Favorable cardiovascular risk profile (study)
- Reduces coronary artery calcification (study)
- Reduces risk of amnestic mild cognitive impairment (study)
- Reduces all-cause and cardiovascular mortality (study)
- Reduces cardiovascular disease mortality (study)
- Reduces risk of disease reclassification (study)
- Reduces osteoporosis-related fractures (study)
- Lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease (study)
- Protective effect on bone tissue (study)
- Prevents heart failure mortality (study)
- Prevents frailty (study)
- Prevents mobility limitation (study)
- Prevents diastolic dysfunction (study)
- Prevents varicose veins (study)
- Prevents loss of muscle mass (study)
- Prevents loss of appendicular muscle mass (study)
- Prevents depressive symptoms (study)
- Lowers risk of depression (study)
- Prevents symptoms of prostatism (study)
- Prevents poorer muscle strength in aging men (study)
- Prevents central obesity (study)
- Prevents diabetes (study)
- Prevents erectile dysfunction (study)
- Faster visual processing and more flanker interference (study)
- Better cognitive function (study)
II – Jailbreaking Testosterone Naturally
28 Principles to Increase Free Testosterone Naturally
- Increase testosterone
- Increase DHEA
- Lower estrogen
- Stay lean
- Don’t stay on a calorie deficit for a long time
- Carbs to protein ratio of 2:1
- Eat plenty of saturated and monounsaturated fats but stay away from polyunsaturated fats
- Saturated to monounsaturated fats ratio of 2:1l
- Limit these foods
- Eat more of these foods
- Eat a good amount of fructose
- Short intense resistance workouts that hit a lot of big muscles
- VO2 max endurance training
- Zinc to copper ratio
- Compete physically and win – study
- Keep stress on the down low – study study
- Improve insulin sensitivity – study
- Drop the booze, maybe not the tobacco though – study
- Stay away from these heavy metals – mercury, chromium, wolfram, caemeum
- Free androgen index positive – wolfram
- Get your head straight (depression) – study
- Ratio of glycated albumin to glycated hemoglobin – study
- A higher androstenediol reduces testosterone binding to SHBG by having more SHBG bind to androstenediol – study
- Endocrine disruptors – di-n-butyl phthalate (DBP) and di-2-ethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP) – study
- Stay away from Antifungal drugs (Ketoconazol) – study study
- Stay away from antiepileptic drugs – study
- Stay away from renin-angiotensin blocking drugs, blood pressure drugs, and fluid balance drugs – study study
- Don’t go vegan, it increases SHBG – study
The first thing to do when increasing free testosterone is to increase testosterone. More testosterone means there’s a bigger fraction that can be free.
When you increase total testosterone you’ll have a bigger pizza with bigger slices and one of those slices is the free fraction of testosterone.
The way you increase your total testosterone is with the basics that ain’t sexy but damn do they work – sleep good and deep, eat great, stay lean, train without overtraining and stay physical, and control the stress in your life.
Simple stuff but not easy stuff.
DHEA is is the most abundant circulating steroid hormone in humans, produced in the adrenal glands, the gonads, and the brain, where it functions predominantly as a metabolic intermediate in the biosynthesis of the androgen and estrogen sex steroids.
Well increasing DHEA, which is a direct precursor of testosterone, will increase free testosterone and bioavailable testosterone as well.
This study says – DHEA correlated well with bioavailable testosterone and free testosterone.
DHEA plays a big role in the regulation of bioavailable testosterone and free testosterone.
DHEA decreases the binding of testosterone to albumin and therefore increases the delivery of free testosterone to tissue receptors.
“DHEA and testosterone to HSA and (ii) the testosterone displacement of its HSA binding cavity by DHEA was studied by biochromatography.”
“The displacement equilibrium was always negative demonstrating that DHEA well displaced testosterone of its HSA binding cavity.”
“For old men with a deficit of testosterone, magnesium supplementation during treatment with DHEA can increased the free testosterone concentration and its biological effect.” – study.
The mechanism behind this is DHEA increases free testosterone and bioavailable testosterone by the competition between testosterone and DHEA binding on the same HSA cavity.
This next experiment was done on 8 middle-aged men and 8 young men. Each men received 50mg of DHEA and placebos. Oral DHEA increased circulating DHEA-S and free testosterone levels well above baseline in the middle-aged men.
“Acute oral DHEA supplementation can elevate free testosterone levels in middle-aged men and prevent it from declining during HIIT.”
Estrogen is a nasty hormone and has no place in a man’s body in high quantities.
Its no surprise that when estrogen is administered in hormonal therapy SHBG goes up and free testosterone goes down.
In this experiment they looked at the effects of oral and transdermal estrogen replacement therapy on SHBG and free testosterone.
“Serum SHBG levels increased significantly with oral CEE after first year of treatment (P<0.05) and remained at this level for the next year.”
“Serum free testosterone levels did not change significantly in either group at the end of the first or second years although there was a significant difference between the groups after 2 years.”
This study found out that free estrogen increases when free testosterone decreases in men.
“Hormone users had higher serum concentrations of E(2) and SHBG (182.0 +/- 58. 5 vs. 82.9 +/- 41.1 nmol/L, mean +/- SD, and lower concentrations of free T (3.7 +/- 2.2 vs. 7.9 +/- 4.1 pmol/L, mean +/- SD, P: < 0.001); total T did not differ.” – experiment.
Here’s the simple formula – body fat >15% = high aromatase activity = higher estrogen = more SHBG to tie to the estrogens = higher SHBG = lower free testosterone and free androgen index.
When you look at the science its no surprise that free testosterone negatively correlates with body fat. Obese men always have a lot lower testosterone levels than fit and healthy men (study).
“BMI and waist circumference were both significantly negatively correlated with testosterone levels in men, with the association being stronger for waist circumference.” – study.
As this study concludes – total and free testosterone are strongly negatively correlated with obesity.
Being lean is the most synergistic way to increase androgens and decrease estrogens. Its the holy grail of being an anabolic and androgenic man. No fat man will ever have optimal androgens and estrogens. Humans weren’t designed to be fat. The only use body fat has is in times of starvation it can save your life. Being fat takes a hit on every aspect of life, living, and being human. Its a way of going against human nature; the nature of the human body isn’t to be fat.
- Body fat breaks down DHT to a less potent form
- Body fat increases aromatase activity
- A high body fat % is linked to low testosterone
- Being fat increases cortisol and leptin
- Being lean increases human growth hormone production
- Being lean increases insulin sensitivity
- Being lean improves your health and longevity
Body Fat Breaks down DHT to a Less Potent Form
The enzymes located in the fat mass tissue neutralize DHT, breaking it down into a less potent byproduct, 5alpha-androstane 3alpha,17beta-diol (study).
This study says – enzymes in fat tissue not only convert testosterone into estradiol, but also transform the androgen DHT into inactive compounds. Overweight men more often have a shortage of androgen hormones than thin men do.
“Canadian researchers at Laval University have shown that enzymes in fat reserves deactivate DHT – and that they do this even more so, the bigger the fat layers. The more fat that men carry, the more DHT changes as a result into 5-alpha-androstane 3-alpha,17-beta-diol and 5-alpha-androstane 3-beta,17-beta-diol. Anti-estrogens are not able to hinder this conversion.”
“The researchers examined pieces of subcutaneous fat and abdominal fat from fat and thin men. They discovered that especially in subcutaneous fat there is a high level of conversion of DHT into 5-alpha-androstane-3-alpha,17-beta-diol. The enzymes that activated DHT were more active in mature fat cells [mature adipocytes] than in fat cells that had not yet reached maturity [pre adipocytes].”
Body Fat Increases Aromatase Activity
Here’s the simple formula – body fat >15% = high aromatase activity = higher estrogen = more SHBG to tie to the estrogens = higher SHBG = lower free testosterone and lower free DHT.
This study concluded that the regional distribution of fat may influence the metabolism of androgens in adipose tissue, with upper body fat tending to form a lower ratio of estrogens to 5 alpha-reduced androgens than lower body fat.
This study found that aromatase inhibitors give women more muscle mass.
This study found that aromatase inhibiting supplementation at a daily dosage of 300 mg and 600 mg for eight weeks did not completely inhibit aromatase activity, yet significantly increased FT, dihydrotestosterone, and T/E.
This study gave elderly men with low testosterone an aromatase inhibitor daily for 12 weeks and results were, total testosterone significantly increased (doubled in some), and free testosterone significantly increased as well. Estrogen decreased significantly and and LH levels increased.
A High Body Fat % Is Linked to Low Testosterone
This Japanese-American male cohort study concludes that lower baseline total testosterone independently predicts an increase in intra-abdominal fat area.
This study says – oral testosterone undecanoate treatment of type 2 diabetic men with androgen deficiency improves glucose homeostasis and body composition (decrease in visceral obesity), and improves symptoms of androgen deficiency (including erectile dysfunction).
Being Fat Increases Cortisol and Leptin
This study says – cortisol conversion to inactive metabolites may be a factor increasing central signals to secretion and may add to the increased secretion of cortisol induced by centrally acting factors. Perinatal factors have been found to be involved in the pathogenesis of obesity and its complications.
This study says – at baseline, leptin levels did not correlate with body mass index, but during substitution, the correlation was considerably improved. Hypogonadal men exhibit elevated leptin levels that are normalized by substitution with testosterone. The only determinant of leptin levels was the androgen/estrogen ratio, indicating a major influence of sex steroids on leptin production.
This study says – administration of testosterone to young men suppressed serum leptin from the pretreatment level. The study concluded that testosterone has a suppressive effect on leptin production, as reflected by circulating levels of this hormone.
Being Lean Increases Human Growth Hormone Production
This study says – growth hormone secretion is decreased in obese subjects. Obesity is associated with decreased somatotrope secretory function resulting in apparent adult growth hormone deficiency.
“BMI correlated with the peak evoked growth hormone response, and the percentage of subjects exhibiting an abnormal evoked GH response, less than 9 ng/ml, increased from 5% for those with a BMI less than 25 (normal), to 13% for those with a BMI of 25-26.9 (mildly overweight), to 33% for those with a BMI of 27-29.9 (moderately overweight), and to 64% for those with a BMI of 30 or more (obese).”
The study concluded – BMI is a major determinant of evoked adult GH response to provocative testing.
This study concludes – BMI affects the GH response to clonidine in children with short stature and should be considered when interpreting the results to the stimulation test.
This study found out that in obese subjects given a hypocaloric diet, GH accelerates body fat loss, exerts anabolic effects and improves GH secretion.
Being Lean Increases Insulin Sensitivity
As you know insulin increases 5 alpha reductase and lowers SHBG, therefore more free T, DHT, and free DHT.
This study studied 70 healthy weight-stable men with body mass index (BMI) from 20.7-94 and restudied 17 of them during diet-induced weight loss.
Fasting serum insulin levels in the weight-stable men showed a positive linear correlation with BMI, increasing 1 microU/mL per unit increase in BMI. SHBG levels in the weight-stable men showed a negative linear correlation with BMI, decreasing 0.2 nmol/L per unit increase in BMI.
The study concludes – insulin has been shown in vitro to decrease the synthesis of SHBG. Insulin controls SHBG synthesis in vivo.
This study says – dietary weight loss, with or without exercise, significantly improved insulin resistance. Older women derived as much benefit as did the younger postmenopausal women.
Being Lean Improves Your Health and Longevity
This study looked at 19 subjects who successfully lost 5% of their bodyweight.
“At this point, the researchers noted that the functioning of the participants’ insulin-secreting beta cells had improved, as had insulin sensitivity in fat, liver, and skeletal muscle tissue – lowering their risk for diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Total body fat had decreased, and fat in the liver was reduced also.”
This study says – weight loss is the most effective way to promote liver fat removal. Weight loss is also associated with reduced liver fat, nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) remission, and also reduction of fibrosis.
This next study lists some of the health benefits of weight loss…
- Cholesterol – decrease triglycerides by an average of 40 mg/dl
- Hypertension – a high body fat % accounts for about 25-30% of cases of hypertension
- Diabetes – a 5-10% weight-loss can decrease this marker by half a point on average
- Insulin resistance – modest weight-loss was found to significantly decrease insulin levels
- Sleep apnea – a 5-10% weight-loss may improve sleep apnea
- Inflammation – fat cells and especially abdominal fat cells produce a large number of substances that result in inflammation in blood vessels
Don’t Stay on a Calorie Deficit for a Long Time
A calorie deficit is efficient for losing body fat. Its not just efficient, its the only way to lose body fat. You eat less than your body uses, then your body has to use fat mass as energy. Simplicity at its finest.
Well a calorie deficit comes with a few huge downsides – decreased androgen production, increased cortisol, suppressed thyroid, and increased SHBG.
A long term calorie deficit skyrockets SHBG, which binds to more of your testosterone and androgens and therefore leaves a smaller fraction of free testosterone and free androgens index.
Now don’t get me wrong; if you’re fat you need to be on a calorie deficit and shred down to a low body fat %. Your androgens, cortisol, thyroid, and SHBG will take a hit while you’re at it, however once you do get to a low body fat %, all will be made up for – your androgens will bounce right up and higher than they were before, your cortisol will go down to it’s place, your thyroid will start running smoother, and your SHBG will get in check.
Now let’s see some scientific evidence on calorie deficits, androgens, and SHBG:
An experiment here looked at the long term effects of a calorie deficit on SHBG in men.
- The experiment says – a calorie deficit consistently reduces circulating sex hormones in animals.
- Total testosterone and free androgen index were significantly lower and SHBG was higher in the calorie deficit group when compared to the Western diet group and the endurance runners group.
- Note this though – Estrogen and estrogen:SHBG ratio were both significantly lower in the calorie deficit group and endurance runners group when compared to the Western diet group.
- DHEA-S was not different between the 3 groups. DHEA-S is correlated with free testosterone and in theory, based on this experiment, a calorie deficit might not take a huge hit on free testosterone. It will take a big hit on free androgens index though.
- Another thing to note down – In this experiment the men in the calorie deficit group were eating a variety of vegetables, fruits, nuts, low-fat dairy products, egg whites, wheat and soy proteins, fish and meat (24% calories from protein, 27% from fat, 48% from complex carbohydrates and 1% from alcohol).
Carbs to Protein Ratio of 2:1
Carbs are good stuff. Men on paleo diets are missing out on lower SHBG, lower cortisol, higher free testosterone, and higher free testosterone:cortisol ratio.
Fad diets come and go and that’s why they’re bullshit. I don’t believe in diets. I believe in diet principles. The diet and nutrition plan in this program is not a diet, its diet principles for maximum free testosterone. This whole program isn’t a set in stone, step by step, 1 to 3 and A to Z spoon-fed success. This program does have an A-Z plan for you, however most of the content in this program are principles and not set in stone rules.
This principle isn’t set in stone, its a good standard to go for. A carbs to protein ratio of 2.5:1 will work as well and so will a ratio of 3:1. Then for the ideal ratio, well that depends on you and your goals.
0.8g of protein x lbs is a good formula to use. Athletes need more protein to better recover from training and build more muscle. Men not doing much training or hard physical work can go less and athletes can go a little more. Going too high in protein comes with a trade-off where you’re losing essential fats and carbs. Then going too low in protein takes a hit on your SHBG, increasing it (study).
In this well-known experiment there are 2 groups of men that do resistance training. One group is eating a low-carb diet though (30% of total calories) and the other group is eating a high-carb diet (60% of total calories).
The results were – free T to cortisol ratio decreased some in the low-carb group, but where it gets interesting is free T to cortisol ratio decreased a lot in the low-carb group while at rest (not training / off days).
- Free T to cortisol ratio decreased by 43% in the low-carb group.
- Throughout the training sessions resting free testosterone decreased by ~3.6 pg/ml in the high-carb group and by ~7.9 pg/ml in the low-carb group.
A workout lasts half an hour to 2 hours then you have 22-23.5 hours left in the day. Well during those 22-23.5 hours your free T to cortisol is way out of whack (low free T and high cortisol; catabolic state) on a low-carb diet. At least according to this experiment, and this is a well-done solid experience.
Eat Plenty of Saturated and Monounsaturated Fats but Stay Away from Polyunsaturated Fats
Fats, just like carbs, are essential for androgen production and that includes free testosterone as well. However not all fats are good for androgens; not all fats are created equal. Saturated and monounsaturated fats are good, saturated fats are great, and polyunsaturated fats are shit.
Polyunsaturated fats hit all androgens hard, they increase estrogen sometimes either directly or indirectly via a reduction in androgens, they cause inflammation which is directly linked to low testosterone (study), and they increase oxide stress (study). When I say polyunsaturated fats are shit I say it for a good reason as you can see. Nothing good comes from polyunsaturated fats and Ray Peat can confirm this.
Now let’s see some data on fat consumption, SHBG, and free testosterone.
In this experiment men consuming 100g of fat or more a day had a good decrease in SHBG levels. Then when the men decreased fat consumption to about 20g a day they had a good increase in SHBG levels. That increase in SHBG caused a significant decrease in free testosterone levels and free testosterone concentrations.
Then this experiment looked at the effects of a low fat high fiber diet on SHBG. The results were – total and free testosterone levels significantly decreased.
Now this experiment goes in line with fats being essential for androgen production, however this experiment ain’t solid at all. Its a flawed and shitty experiment without much value.
- A high fiber intake is known to increase SHBG and therefore the experiment’s intention of seeing the effect of a low fat diet on SHBG is screwed.
- The diet in the experiment had a higher polyunsaturated/saturated fat ratio, which is again well-known to decrease androgens. The researchers conducting this experiment are dumbfucks but at least the experiment shows that low fat, of any kind, isn’t good for the androgens.
Another experiment looked at the effects of a low fat high fiber diet on SHBG, but this one looked at estrogen as well. Results were – on the high fat and low fiber diet plasma concentrations of total and SHBG-bound testosterone were 13% and 15% higher.
Now something to note is – daily urinary excretion of testosterone was 13% higher in the high fat and low fiber diet and urinary excretion of estradiol and estrone and their 2-hydroxy metabolites were 12-28% lower.
This shows that moderation matters and completely excluding any compound from your diet ain’t a smart thing to do, unless you know for sure that compound is shit (polyunsaturated fats). In this case excluding fiber from the diet fucked up hormone excretion (pissing out hormones). A low fiber diet made men piss out more testosterone and less estrogens.
This last experiment found out that when the ratio of polyunsaturated to saturated fatty acids increases testosterone, free testosterone, and 4-androstenedione all significantly decrease.
“In men a decrease in dietary fat content and an increase in the degree of unsaturation of fatty acids reduces the serum concentrations of androstenedione, testosterone and free testosterone.”
Saturated to Monounsaturated Fats Ratio of 2:1
Not all fats are created equal, not even the two greatest ones – saturated and monounsaturated fats. While they’re both great for androgen production and are both correlated positively with testosterone, the ratio of saturated to monounsaturated fats has an impact on SHBG and free testosterone.
An image from this experiment so you can see the correlation between fats and androgens:
As you see a good overall fat intake increases testosterone, a fat intake of mainly saturated and monounsaturated fats increases it even more, a fat intake of mainly polyunsaturated fats lowers testosterone a lot, a high protein intake lowers testosterone, and a high protein to carbs ratio lowers testosterone a lot as well.
Now monounsaturated fats are found to increase SHBG while saturated fats are found to decrease SHBG in multiple studies.
This experiment done on 315 men looked at the effects of oleic acid and linoleic acid on SHBG production.
The experiment found out a couple things:
- SHBG was significantly higher in men using olive oil for cooking compared to men using sunflower oil.
- Monounsaturated fats were independently associated with SHBG and impacted SHBG by 20.4%.
- Oleoyl-CoA increases SHBG production.
- SHBG levels correlated positively with serum phospholipid monounsaturated fats.
- SHBG levels correlated negatively with phospholipid saturated fatty acids.
- There was no correlation between SHBG and polyunsaturated fats.
- SHBG levels significantly correlated with the ratio of oleic to stearic fatty acid.
For maximum free testosterone levels go for a saturated to monounsaturated fats ratio of about 2:1 or to make it even simpler, eat more saturated fats than monounsaturated fats.
High sat:mon ratio – Butter, cheese, dairy, and coconut oil have a high saturated to monounsaturated fats ratio, coconut oil being ~95% saturated fat.
High mon:sat ratio – On the other hand olive oil, avocados, some vegetable oils, and nuts and seeds in general have a high monounsaturated to saturated fats ratio, macadamia nuts being ~75% monounsaturated fats.
1:1 ratio – Then in the middle eggs, red meat, animal products, and bacon have a ratio of about 1:1.
Limit These Foodse
What you eat and how much of it you eat has a big impact on free testosterone as well as other hormones. All the way from micronutrients to macronutrients. Diet plays a big role in nationalities and making people the way people are and there’s no doubt that your diet will impact your free testosterone levels.
Now these are the foods to limit for a maximum free testosterone level:
- Nuts in general – all nuts are high in monounsaturated fats and a good amount are high in manganese as well
- Seeds in general – high in monounsaturated fats and manganese
- Vegetable oils, nut oils, and seed oils in general – most of these oils are high in monounsaturated fats
- Olives and olive oil – 100g of olives packs 1.4g saturated fat, 1g polyunsaturated fat, and 8g monounsaturated fat
- Avocados and avocado oil – 100g of avocados packs 2g saturated fat, 1.8g polyunsaturated fat, and 10g monounsaturated fat
- Soybeans – 100g of soybeans packs 21g saturated fat, no polyunsaturated fat, and 73.7g monounsaturated fat
- Oat bran – 4.9mg (246% DV) of manganese in 100g and high in chromium
- Rice bran – 14.2mg (711% DV) of manganese in 100g
- Wheat bran – 11.5mg (575% DV) of manganese in 100g
- Mussels – 6.8mg (340% DV) of manganese in 100g and high in chromium
- Tea in general – 37.2mg (1862% DV) of manganese in one ounce
- Cloves – 30mg (1502% DV) of manganese in 100g
- Saffron – 28.4mg (1420% DV) of manganese in 100g
- Cardamom – 28mg (1400% DV) of manganese in 100g
- Ginger – 26.5mg (1325% DV) of manganese in 100g
- Lemon grass – 5.2mg (261% DV) of manganese in 100g
- Broccoli – high in chromium
- Barley – high in chromium
- Turkey ham – high in chromium
- Grape juice – high in chromium
- Brazil nuts – high in chromium
- Lentils – high in molybdenum
- Peas in general – high in molybdenum
- Beans in general – high in molybdenum
- Anything high in monounsaturated fats
- Anything high in manganese
- Anything high in molybdenum
- Anything high in chromium
The reason behind this is these foods are high in macronutrients/micronutrients that are well researched and found to either raise SHBG, lower free testosterone, or both.
- Monounsaturated fats
In this experiment researchers looked at the effects of olive oil on SHBG and found some interesting stuff.
- SHBG levels were significantly higher in men using olive oil for cooking
- SHBG levels correlated positively with monounsaturated fats
- SHBG levels correlated negatively with saturated fats
- The SHBG difference between men using olive oil and men using other oils that aren’t that high in monounsaturated fats was 20.4%
The experiment above is solid evidence that monounsaturated fats increase SHBG while saturated fats decrease SHBG.
Manganese, Molybdenum, and Chromium
These 3 micronutrients all correlate positively with SHBG and negatively with free testosterone and some correlate negatively with free androgen index.
“Men with free testosterone deficiency had higher W and Cr levels and lower Fe.” – experiment.
- lead (Pb)
- cadmium (Cd)
- mercury (Hg)
- arsenic (As)
- tungsten (W)
- magnesium (Mg)
- iron (Fe)
- calcium (Ca)
- copper (Cu)
- zinc (Zn)
- selenium (Se)
- chromium (Cr)
- manganese (Mn)
- molybdenum (Mo)
I’m not telling you to completely remove these macronutrients/micronutrients since they’re essential nutrients and that would be stupid. I’m telling you to limit them and not go crazy with them and for some men that eat these foods on the daily, limiting them will increase free testosterone and lower SHBG.
Eat More of These Foods
Now just like there are foods and compounds that negatively affect free testosterone there are foods and compounds that positively affect free testosterone.
Eat more of these foods for a maximum free testosterone level:
- Coconut, coconut oil, and coconut milk – 100g of coconut oil packs 87g saturated fat, 1.8g polyunsaturated fat, and 6g monounsaturated fat
- Cream – high in saturated fat
- Butter – high in saturated fat
- Cheese – high in saturated fat and calcium
- Dairy in general – high in saturated fat and high in calcium as well
- Palm kernel – 100g of palm kernel oil packs 82g saturated fat, 1.6g polyunsaturated fat, and 11g monounsaturated fat
- Cocoa butter – high in saturated fat
- Sardines – high in calcium
- Beef – high in zinc
- Lamb – high in zinc
- Oysters – high in zinc
- Cocoa – high in zinc
- Spinach – high in magnesium
- Dark chocolate – high in magnesium
- Buckwheat – high in magnesium
- Chard – high in magnesium
- Chicken liver – high in iron
- Red meat – high in iron
- Beef spleen – 100g of beef spleen packs 44.6mg of iron (248% DV)
- Pork liver – high in iron
- Peaches – high in fructose
- Bananas – high in fructose
- Pomegranates – high in fructose
- Prunes – high in fructose
- Dates – high in fructose
- Figs – high in fructose
- Raisins – high in fructose
- Honey – high in fructose
- Anything high in saturated fat
- Anything high in magnesium
- Anything high in calcium
- Anything high in iron
- Anything high in zinc
- Anything high in fructose
The reason behind this is these foods are high in macronutrients/micronutrients that are well researched and found to either lower SHBG, increase free testosterone, or both.
- Saturated fats
Saturated Fats and Fructose
As you saw in the experiment earlier about the different types of fats and how they impact SHBG – saturated fats decrease SHBG and monounsaturated fats increase SHBG.
Magnesium, Calcium, Iron, and Zinc
These 4 micronutrients all correlate positively with free testosterone, some correlate positively with free androgen index and some negatively with SHBG.
“Our research indicates a positive relationship between the concentrations of magnesium, iron and zinc and endocrine system.”
“Positive correlations between free androgen index and calcium and negative correlations between SHBG and calcium and SHBG and zinc.” – experiment.
That picture from the experiment earlier:
Eat a Good Amount of Fructose
Fructose, mainly found in fruits and sweet foods, has a real bad reputation and you’d think it lowers testosterone and other androgens. Well fructose ain’t all that bad, it may even be good.
Fructose lowers cortisol and stress and lowers SHBG as well, two indirect ways that increase free testosterone – a lower cortisol improves the free T:cortisol ratio and a lower SHBG leaves a bigger fraction of untied testosterone and androgens.
Binging on candy every day is when it gets dirty and things get fucked up. However 2-4 fruits a day or so lowers SHBG a good amount and doesn’t have any health downsides.
This is one experiment that shows fructose and glucose lowers SHBG.
“In transgenic mice and HepG2 hepatoblastoma cells that monosaccharides (glucose and fructose) reduce human SHBG production by hepatocytes.”
Then this other experiment concluded pretty much the same thing.
“Monosaccharides (glucose or fructose) effectively decrease SHBG expression by inducing lipogenesis which reduces hepatic HNF-4alpha levels, a transcription factor that play a critical role in controlling the SHBG promoter.”
Short Intense Resistance Workouts That Hit a Lot of Big Muscles
Its no damn mystery that working out and training is good – good for your health, androgens, and overall well-being. Well the way you workout and train matters. You can fuck up your androgens and overall endocrine system with training or you can enhance it.
High rep low weight isolation work, long steady-pace endurance cardio, or powerlifting every single day are all ways you can fuck up your androgens and overall endocrine system.
Overtraining is real and it whacks the cortisol:free T ratio big time, creating a catabolic state. Free testosterone levels are lower the morning after a workout and working out everyday adds up and lowers your basal free testosterone levels.
Now when you workout in a way that clicks with androgens and the endocrine system you can increase your free testosterone by a good amount and working out increases free testosterone indirectly as well.
A way to workout that clicks with androgens and the endocrine system:
- Short (30-60 mins)
- Intense enough to break a good sweat but not go through a nazi concentration camp
- Hit a lot of muscles
In this experiment 10 healthy untrained men did 45 mins of bicycle ergometer at 50% vo2 max.
The experiment noted these things down:
- Total testosterone increased significantly
- Free testosterone increased significantly as well
- LH, FSH, and prolactin had no significant changes
This next experiment done on rats found out that moderate intensity exercise increases free testosterone significantly and low intensity and moderate intensity exercise increases androstenedione as well.
VO2 Max Endurance Training
Endurance training in general ain’t too great for overall androgens and the endocrine system, however moderate endurance training and short endurance training is pretty good for testosterone, free testosterone, DHT, and the endocrine system.
It ain’t exactly ideal but staying physically active in any way is great for health, androgens, and the endocrine system. On the other hand sprinting, HIIT, and high vo2 max training is great for free testosterone as well as DHT.
In this experiment here they had 10 trained men do some 70% vo2 max training and then they measured free testosterone levels along with some other hormones. What the experiment found out is that total testosterone increased by 32%, free testosterone increased by 39.6%, cortisol by 38%, norepinephrine by 365.2%, and epinephrine by 225.8%.
“The free testosterone increase with moderately, prolonged endurance exercise was not associated with the change in the binding affinity of SHBG.”
As you can see norepinephrine and epinephrine increased a lot and an increase like that too often ain’t good. However 1-2 times a week it won’t do much and that’s why I say do vo2 max training 1-2 times a week and short moderate intensity cardio a few times a week. Doing too much vo2 max training or endurance training can put you in a overtrained catabolic state.
Zinc to Copper Ratio
The zinc levels and the copper levels in your body affects your testosterone. A higher zinc to copper ratio increases testosterone, reduces oxidative stress, improves inflammatory status, and maintains immune function.
Simply manipulating this ratio by supplementing with zinc, eating more red meat and oysters, limiting foods high in copper, or doing all that, can increase testosterone levels a good amount and therefore increase free testosterone levels via indirect ways.
This experiment looked at the influence of these two micronutrients – zinc and copper in 88 Korean men and the results were – men with normal testosterone levels had significantly higher zinc levels compared to men with low testosterone levels. Significant negative correlations were seen between testosterone and copper level and testosterone and the copper to zinc ratio.
“Micronutrients including copper (Cu) and zinc (Zn) influence testosterone synthesis.”
“Decreased serum testosterone is significantly associated with a high level of Cu and elevated Cu/Zn ratio in hair tissue.”
A higher zinc to copper ratio doesn’t just increase testosterone, it has more upsides as well:
- Reduces oxidative stress (study).
- Improve inflammatory status (study).
- Maintains immune function (study).
- A higher copper to zinc ratio correlates with impairments in bone density, correlates negatively with physical performance and overall health, decreased triglycerides, and increased reliance on ADL assistance (study).
- Individuals with anxiety have a higher copper level and a lower zinc level and therefore a lower zinc to copper ratio (study).
- The zinc to copper ratio is significantly lower in breast cancer patients and breast cancer is sometimes caused by high estrogen levels (study).
Free Testosterone Supplements Plan
- Vitamin D
- Zinc in moderate doses
- Tongkat Ali
- Vitamin K
- Nigella sativa
Boron is a metalloid chemical element with symbol B and atomic number 5. This mineral is produced entirely by cosmic ray spallation and supernovae and not by stellar nucleosynthesis, it is a low-abundance element in the Solar system and in the Earth’s crust.
This rare mineral has some real interesting effects on hormones and especially free testosterone.
This study found out that supplementing with boron (10mg daily) decreased sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG), increased free testosterone, decreased estrogen (female hormone), and elevated DHT. What else can you ask for? Boron decreased SHBG and estrogen, it increased free testosterone and elevated DHT.
- Free testosterone increased by 28%
- Free estrogen decreased by 39%
- DHT increased by 10%
In this next experiment 2 months of taking 6mg of boron a day increased free testosterone by 29.5%. The experiment found out that boron increased vitamin D levels and enhanced the action of vitamin D as well.
Get some boron here.
Magnesium is a well known mineral mostly found in dark leafy greens, nuts and seeds, fish, and buckwheat. Its a great mineral that increases free testosterone.
This study concluded that supplementation with magnesium increases free and total testosterone levels in sedentary men and in athletes. The increases are higher in those who exercise than in sedentary individuals.
This study found that magnesium inhibits SHBG, therefore making more testosterone bioavailable.
This next study found out that in older men, higher serum magnesium levels correlate with higher testosterone levels and other anabolic hormones.
Get yourself some magnesium oil, rub it on your legs an hour before sleep, and sleep like a lion.
You can get vitamin D from the sun, food, or from a supplementation. The last one is the easiest since most people aren’t out in the sun at least 2 hours a day, without a shirt. If you are the exception then skip this, your vitamin D levels are good.
A study here done is in men taking 3,332 IU of vitamin D for one year, after bringing up serum levels past an average of 50nmol/L increased testosterone from 10.7±3.9 nmol/l to 13.4±4.7 nmol/l. Bioactive and free testosterone also increased. The study suggests that vitamin D supplementation might increase testosterone levels.
This study found that a month of vitamin D supplementation at 1332 IU was able to increase insulin secretion by 34.3% in type 2 diabetic patients. This increased secretion was significantly correlated with serum vitamin D levels.
Then this study found that in subjects with Vitamin D deficiency and impaired fasting glucose, 10,000 IU daily for 4 weeks was associated with an increase in insulin sensitivity.
This next study found that men with sufficient D levels (> or =30 microg/l) had significantly higher levels of testosterone and free androgen index and significantly lower levels of SHBG when compared to D insufficient (20-29.9 microg/l) and D-deficient (<20 microg/l) men.
A study here found that vitamin D is positively associated with sperm motility and increases intracellular calcium in human spermatozoa.
And this study concluded that vitamin D is necessary for reproductive functions of the male rat.
Vitamin D is one of the greatest vitamins for testosterone and other androgens. I use this vitamin D supplement and it lasts me years. Its a highly concentrated tincture, just one drop gives you 2,000 IUs of vitamin D.
Zinc in Moderate Doses
Zinc in moderate doses makes estrogens bind to SHBG and therefore leaves more testosterone unbound and free.
“Zinc ions reduce the ability of estradiol and 2-methoxyestradiol to compete with [3H]DHT for binding to human SHBG.” – study.
Then this study found that there was a significantly higher level of estrogen receptor in zinc-deficient rats and a significantly lower level of androgen binding sites in rats fed the zinc-deficient diet. There were no differences in hepatic androgen and estrogen receptor levels between freely fed and pair-fed controls.
“Serum total testosterone levels in zinc group were higher than in selenium group after exercise. Serum-free testosterone levels in the zinc group were higher than the other groups.” – experiment.
“T and DHT rose significantly after oral administration of zinc, as did the sperm count.” – experiment.
A zinc deficiency is no joke, get some zinc here.
Good old calcium grows your bones strong and dense. Highest quantities found in milk, cheese, and other dairy products.
Not only does calcium grow your bones strong (study) and increase testosterone synthesis (study), calcium increases free testosterone as well and is positively correlated with testosterone and free testosterone levels.
In this experiment there were 2 groups that did resistance training. One group received a calcium supplement and the other a placebo. The group that received the calcium supplement had 18% higher free testosterone levels, specifically after the workout.
“Very low levels (0.03 mM) of calcium may be essential for normal testosterone binding to testosterone-binding globulin since 1.0 mM EGTA raised FT by 75%.” – experiment.
An interesting experiment here looked at the changes in total and free testosterone levels in male chronic hemodialysis patients with secondary hyperparathyroidism in response to cinacalcet treatment.
Those are some fancy words, let me break them down to plain English.
Hemodialysis – a process that uses a man-made membrane (dialyzer) to: remove wastes, such as urea, from the blood. Restore the proper balance of electrolytes in the blood. Eliminate extra fluid from the body.
Hyperparathyroidism – an abnormally high concentration of parathyroid hormone in the blood, resulting in weakening of the bones through loss of calcium.
Cinacalcet – it can lower the amount of calcium in the blood.
Now, the experiment found out that cinacalcet decreases serum total and free testosterone. Basically low calcium in the bloodstream decreases serum total and free testosterone.
“Serum total testosterone concentration also decreased from 4.95ng/ml (4.23 – 5.67 ng/ml) to 4.45 ng/ml (3.85 – 5.06ng/ml) and to 4.39 ng/ml (3.75 – 5.03ng/ml), respectively.”
“Serum free testosterone concentration decreased from 6.95 pg/ml (5.54 – 8.36pg/ml) to 5.98 pg/ml (5.00-6.94 pg/ml).”
From these couple pieces of evidence it becomes clear that calcium is essential for a good free testosterone and unless you’re eating a good amount of dairy then you’re going to want to get a quality calcium supplement.
Tongkat Ali aka longjack and Eurycoma longifolia is a flowering plant in the family Simaroubaceae, native to Indonesia, Malaysia, and, to a lesser extent, Thailand, Vietnam, and Laos.
The plant is a great anti-stressor improving the cortisol to free testosterone ratio as well as increasing testosterone by huge amounts. The huge testosterone increase in the experiments was achieved in infertile men though.
An experiment noted these physiological and hormonal improvements from Tongkat Ali:
- Tension (−11%)
- Anger (−12%)
- Confusion (−15%)
- Cortisol (-16%)
- Testosterone (+37%)
“This “ancient” remedy may be an effective approach to shielding the body from the detrimental effects of “modern” chronic stress, which may include general day-to-day stress, as well as the stress of dieting, sleep deprivation, and exercise training.”
In another experiment 13 physically active men and 12 physically active women (57-72 years old) were supplementing with 400mg of a Tongkat Ali extract daily for 5 weeks. The results came in as – significant increases in total and free testosterone and muscular force.
In this experiment a 46% increase in testosterone was seen in hypogonadal men.
“While before treatment only 10.5% of the patients did not show any complaint according to the AMS scale and 35.5% had normal testosterone levels, after the completed treatment 71.7% and 90.8% of the patients showed normal values.”
However a study found out that Tongkat Ali didn’t do jackshit in male athletes.
From this we can conclude that Tongkat Ali probably doesn’t do anything in men with already normal-high testosterone levels, but in men with low testosterone levels and in stressed out men this plant looks real effective on paper.
Men with low testosterone and stressed out men could try some Tongkat Ali and see if it holds what the research says.
Carnitine is an amino acid derivative and nutrient involved in lipid (fat) metabolism in mammals and other eukaryotes. In animals, the biosynthesis of carnitine occurs primarily in the liver and kidneys from the amino acids lysine (via trimethyllysine) and methionine.
Other than increasing androgen receptor uptake (study), carnitine is essential for keeping free testosterone in check.
This study found a positive correlation between serum carnitine and free testosterone levels.
“Mean free testosterone levels in hemodialysis patients were significantly lower than those in healthy controls.”
“Univariate analysis revealed that carnitine (p=0.023), pentosidine (inversely, p=0.027), blood glucose (inversely, p=0.032), creatinine (p=0.026) levels, and statin use (inversely, p=0.034) were correlated with free testosterone values.”
“Decreased carnitine levels were independently associated with low free testosterone values.”
Get some quality carnitine here.
Every vitamin and mineral out there is essential for a well functioning system. Some vitamins and minerals are directly correlated with free testosterone though, and vitamin K is one of those vitamins.
This study here found out that undercarboxylated osteocalcin is positively correlated with free testosterone.
Osteocalcin – a noncollagenous protein found in bone and dentin. Its synthesis is vitamin K dependent.
“Undercarboxylated osteocalcin (ucOC) is important for male fertility and testosterone production by testes.”
“Osteocalcin knockout male mice have poor fertility and show decreased serum testosterone and increased luteinizing hormone.”
“Undercarboxylated osteocalcin and undercarboxylated osteocalcin/total osteocalcin ratio were associated positively with free testosterone and negatively with LH.”
“Undercarboxylated osteocalcin and undercarboxylated osteocalcin/total osteocalcin ratio were significantly associated with free testosterone even after adjusting for LH and FSH.”
Pick up a vitamin K supplement here.
Iron is easily overlooked when it comes to androgens. I overlooked it myself until Mika showed me an interesting experiment on micronutrients and androgens. Turns out iron is positively correlated with both total and free testosterone, making this mineral one badass mineral.
In this experiment…
- Men with a testosterone deficiency had lower levels of iron and magnesium
- Men with a free testosterone deficiency had lower levels of iron
- There was a positive correlation between testosterone and iron and magnesium
- There was a positive correlation between free testosterone and iron
“Our research indicates a positive relationship between the concentrations of magnesium, iron and zinc and endocrine system in aging men.”
Get some iron here.
Nigella Sativa an annual flowering plant in the family Ranunculaceae, native to south and southwest Asia.
This plant is not too well known and it doesn’t increase free testosterone, but what it does do is prevent the decreasing of free testosterone.
In this experiment the plant resulted in very significant reduction of body weight, waist circumference, and systolic blood pressure.
“The reduction of serum free testosterone in the treatment group was smaller than the control group, that means Nigella sativa could inhibit the decreasing of serum free testosterone.”
In this rat study Nigella Sativa improved fertility potential, plasma gonadotropins and testosterone.
“Supplementation of Nigella sativa in diet improves spermatogenesis and antioxidant status after a short exposure of the mouse testis to heat.” – study.
Try this plant here.
Free Testosterone Training Plan
Training to optimize free testosterone ain’t all that different from training to optimize testosterone or DHT. The good thing about training is its all a synergy. A great training program increases testosterone, free testosterone, DHT, growth hormone, IGF, and all androgens.
There are a few modifications you can make in your training plan to fully be geared for maximum free testosterone production though. Low intensity physical activity is great for DHT. Think farming, mowing the lawn, golfing, and agricultural work. However its not great for free testosterone. From all the studies I seen low intensity physical activity increases DHT but doesn’t increase free testosterone at all, in some studies it even decreases free testosterone by a nonsignificant amount.
Then the frequency of training, how many days a week you train, affects free testosterone big time as well. The morning after your training day free testosterone levels are somewhat below baseline. Maybe because the androgen receptors utilize the free testosterone but that’s just a theory, the mechanism is not known. For maximum free testosterone levels training every other day is ideal.
Bottom line is training on a good program increases ALL androgens synergistically, there are a few tweaks you can make to favor free testosterone levels though.
The training plan in the Free Testosterone Manual won’t have training for the legs and abs since the legs and abs have less androgen receptors than the upper body (study) (study). With limited training to not reach a catabolic state the legs and abs aren’t worth it and the biggest bang for the buck here in terms of free testosterone levels is upper body training every other day or 3 days a week.
Free Testosterone Manual training principles:
- Train every other day or 3 days a week
- Take 1-2 weeks off training frequently (every 1-2 months)
- Don’t do much low intensity work
- Vo2 max sprints once a week
- Eat a carb:protein ratio of 2:1
- Stop at one rep before failure, don’t ever go till failure
- The ideal workout length is anywhere between 30-90 minutes depending on many factors
- In between sets rest time – 1-1.5 min on light exercises, 2-4 min on heavy exercises (bench press, muscle ups, …)
- Or = alternative if you can’t do the first exercise (for example – muscle ups or explosive pull ups = muscle ups are the first choice, explosive pull ups are the second choice/alternative)
- Calisthenics (bodyweight) training and weight training both work, ideally do both
- You can add some bicep curls, tricep extensions, lateral shoulder raises, or other isolation exercises at the end of your workouts if you have a good amount of time left, keep these at 2-3 sets
- (sets x reps)
Day 1 – Pull day
Muscle ups or explosive pull ups 4 sets of as many as you can do
Weighted chin ups/pull ups 4 sets of as many as you can do
Regular pull ups/parallel pull ups/close grip pull ups 2-4 sets of as many as you can do (depending on how much time you have left)
Day 2 – Push day
Muscle ups or explosive dips 4 sets of as many as you can do
Weighted dips 4 sets of as many as you can do
Clapping push ups or explosive push ups 2-4 sets of as many as you can do (depending on how much time you have left)
Day 3 – Pull and push day
Muscle ups or explosive pull ups 3 sets of as many as you can do
Korean dips 3 sets of as many as you can do
Handstand push ups or shoulder push ups 3 sets of as many as you can do
One day a week
Short sprints 100% vo2 max <30 minutes
<10 seconds of all out sprinting in one direction and then <10 seconds of all out sprinting in the other direction, a few minutes of rest, rinse and repeat and keep it under 30 minutes
Day 1 – Pull day
Weighted chin ups/pull ups 3 sets of as many as you can do
Bent over rows 4×5
Day 2 – Push day
Weighted dips 3 sets of as many as you can do
Bench press/incline bench press 4×5
Clapping push ups or explosive push ups 4 sets of as many as you can do
Day 3 – Pull and push day
Muscle ups or explosive pull ups 3 sets of as many as you can do
Bench press/incline bench press 4×5
Military press 4×5
One day a week
Short sprints 100% vo2 max <30 minutes
<10 seconds of all out sprinting in one direction and then <10 seconds of all out sprinting in the other direction, a few minutes of rest, rinse and repeat and keep it under 30 minutes
IV – Prison Guard – Estrogen Manual
Diet, Nutrition, Plants, and Supplements
Diet has one of the biggest impacts on your estrogen levels. Eating a diet full of estrogenic foods and compounds can make you a feminine man and on the other hand, eating a diet packed with anti-estrogenic foods can keep your estrogen down low and indirectly increase androgens.
The foods and compounds that’ll be listed here are scientifically proven to lower estrogen levels through different mechanisms such as removing estrogens from the body faster or inhibiting aromatase, the enzyme behind the androgens to estrogens conversion.
Phytoestrogens are the main cause behind foods that increase estrogen levels. The more phytoestrogens in a food the bigger the estrogen increase. After all phytoestrogens are simply estrogens occurring naturally in food (study).
However some phytoestrogens can be used to your advantage, specifically weak phytoestrogens. The mechanism behind phytoestrogens is they bind to the estrogen receptor and exert their effects. Well when phytoestrogens bind to the estrogen receptors they displace the endogenous estrogens in the body. Eating foods with weak phytoestrogens such as black beans will displace the more potent endogenous estrogens from binding to the estrogen receptors and therefore exert weaker estrogen effects.
Then a lot of flavanones directly inhibit aromatase and lead to a smaller production of estrogens (study). Calcium d glucarate detoxifies the body and excretes any endocrine disruptor, estrogen mimic, and chemical (study). IC3 converts strong estrogens into less potent forms, increases the clearance of estrogens, and aids the liver in the metabolism of estrogens (study). Grape seeds and grape skin both strongly inhibit aromatase activity (study). Zinc downregulates the activity of the estrogen receptors (study). Boron via an unknown mechanism lowers free estrogen levels significantly (study). Betaine and choline methylate estrogen (study).
Now factoring all that in and looking at the whole context we have a finished product. Adopt some of the diet principles you’ll learn.
Estrogenic Foods to Stay Away From
- Yams (study)
- Soy and tofu (study)
- Alcohol (study)
- Grapefruits (study)
- Flaxseeds (study)
- Sesame seeds (study)
- Vegetable protein (study)
- Black beans sauce (study)
- Mung beans (study)
- Red beans (study)
- Lima beans (study)
- Kidney beans (study)
- Lentils (study)
- Miso (study)
Anti-Estrogenic Foods to Eat
- White mushrooms (study)
- Wheat bran (study)
- Bananas (study)
- Onions and garlic (study)
- Chicory root (study)
- Asparagus (study)
- Jícama (study)
- Leeks (study)
- Citrus fruits (study)
- Whey protein (study)
- Pomegranates (study)
- Grapes (study)
- Berries (study)
- Dark leafy greens and cruciferous vegetables (study)
- Sorghum (study)
- Red wine (study)
- Purple mangosteen (study)
- Coffee (study)
- Cocoa (study)
- Collards (study)
- Tomato leaves (study)
All these plants are from this one study.
- Dioon spinulosum
- Encephalartos ferox
- Viscum album
- Cycas rumphii
- Sago palm
- Alpinia purpurata
- Brassaiopsis glomerulata
- Euonymus alatus
- Isodon excisus
- Scutellaria barbata
- Camellia sinensis
- Tobacco leaves
- Nicotiana tabacum
- Red clover at low doses
- Blue agave
- Flavanones (study)
- Calcium d glucarate (study)
- Grape seed extract (study)
- Quercetin (study)
- Zinc (study)
- Boron (study)
- Tongkat Ali (study)
- Resveratrol (study)
Endocrine Disruptors, Chemicals, and Estrogen Mimics
Taking a breath of air increases your estrogen, unless you’re on a mountain or in a forest. The air is all polluted, especially in populated cities. There are all kinds of endocrine disruptors, chemicals, and estrogen mimics in the air. Anything from smelling a car freshener to the clothes you’re wearing has man-made chemicals and man-made chemicals increase your estrogen and probably lower androgens to some degree as well.
That’s how the world is nowadays and it is what it is, it can’t be changed. What can be changed is the exposure you’re getting to all these chemicals. Getting a stainless steel water bottle and drinking out of that, using wood/stainless steel alternative for most stuff, brushing your teeth with baking soda instead of fluoride filled toothpastes, skipping the deodorant, throwing away the air fresheners in the house, and overall reducing exposure to man-made chemicals is in your control.
Endocrine disruptors disrupt the endocrine system and the functions of the endocrine system mostly by increasing estrogens, cortisol, or lowering androgens. Man-made chemicals directly lower testosterone, DHT, and overall androgens most of the time. Estrogen mimics act the same way as endogenous estrogen in the body, leading to estrogen receptor activation and estrogenic effects. Pesticides act the same way as chemicals – directly lowering androgens and sometimes increasing estrogens.
Endocrine Disruptors and Their Effects
BPA – Increases estrogen and binds to the estrogen receptor.
Benzophenone – Increases estrogen and binds weakly to the estrogen receptors.
Bisphenol F – Increases estrogen and binds to the estrogen receptor.
Cadmium – Increases estrogen and activates the estrogen receptor through an interaction with the hormone-binding domain of the receptor.
Phytoestrogens – Act as endogenous estrogens and bind to the estrogen receptors with a preference for ERβ.
Lead – Negatively affects reproductive hormones.
Aluminum – Lowers testosterone, LH, and suppresses androgen receptors.
Mercury – Negatively affects thyroid and reproductive hormones.
Fluoride – Lowers testosterone levels.
Dioxin – Anti-estrogenic via binding with Ah receptor, which then inhibits estrogen receptor binding to estrogen response elements, thereby inhibiting estrogen action.
Atrazine – Depresses LH surge, testosterone metabolism, and inhibits ligand binding to androgen and estrogen receptors.
Phthalates – Phthalates in general inhibit binding to the estrogen receptor and some are anti-androgenic.
Perchlorate – Negatively affects thyroid hormones.
Arsenic – Selectively inhibits DNA transcription normally stimulated by the glucocorticoid-GR complex.
Perfluorinated chemicals – Negatively affects thyroid hormones.
Glycol ethers – Negative effects on semen quality.
Chloroform – Negatively affects reproductive hormones.
Furans – Anti-estrogenic via binding with Ah receptor, which then inhibits estrogen receptor binding to estrogen response elements, thereby inhibiting estrogen action.
Octachlorostyrene – Negatively affects thyroid hormones.
Pentachlorophenol – Reduces thyroid hormone possibly through a direct effect on the thyroid gland.
Molds and fungus – Estrogenic.
Pesticides – Pesticides can do everything – increase estrogen, block androgen and/or estrogen receptors, lower testosterone, lower free testosterone, and lower DHT.
- Widespread Pollutants with Endocrine-disrupting Effects
- Phytoestrogens: food or drug?
- Effects of aluminum exposure on serum sex hormones and androgen receptor expression in male rats.
- Does Fluoride Affect Serum Testosterone and Androgen Binding Protein with Age-Specificity?
- [The effects of ammonium perchlorate on thyroid function and testis in male rats].
- Thyroid effects of endocrine disrupting chemicals.
- Glycol ethers and semen quality: a cross‐sectional study among male workers in the Paris Municipality
- Antiandrogenic mechanisms of pesticides in human LNCaP prostate and H295R adrenocortical carcinoma cells.
The Chemical Cure
Knowing all that about endocrine disruptors, chemicals, and estrogen mimics, there are some measures you can take to reduce your exposure to all these nasty chemicals and its well within your control.
- Brush your teeth with baking soda instead of toothpastes filled with fluoride. Baking soda works just as well if not better and it even whitens your teeth.
- Don’t use air fresheners, car fresheners, or any other artificial aromas. Perfumes and colognes once in a while aren’t a problem.
- Don’t use hand creams, sunscreens, foot creams, hair gels, or any other creams and gels.
- Use natural alternatives to hygiene products (soap, shampoo, …). However keep in mind that a lot of natural hygiene products contain anti-androgenic compounds such as Rosemary or tea tree oil.
- Use natural soap as shaving cream instead of shaving creams filled with chemicals.
- Get yourself a stainless steel water bottle and use that as your water source when on the go. When you’re home drink out of non-plastic cups from a home water filter. You don’t have many other options as tap water contains all kinds of nasty chemicals and plastic bottled water is packed with the notorious estrogen increasing BPA. Glass bottled well filtered water works, but it tends to be pricy and hard to come across.
- Get yourself some non-plastic plates, spoons, forks, cups, and everything and anything that you eat with, on, or from. Get your women wooden kitchen utensils and don’t let her use plastic kitchen utensils.
- Buy fresh whole stock foods that aren’t packaged in plastic and drowned with additives and preservatives. Ideally you want to find a local farmer(s) that grows pesticide-free foods and setup a buying contract. Or if you happen to have a farm/land, grow your own food and animals.
- Fast food isn’t an option since it oftentimes has old food, loads of additives and preservatives, cheap vegetable oils high in polyunsaturated fats, and just all kinds of nasty chemicals.
- Watch your exposure to chemicals. Working in places such as a hospital or a coal mine can expose you to a lot of endocrine disrupting chemicals.
- Realize that wherever there’s man-made chemicals there’s estrogen and androgen suppression.
- Intermittent fast regularly for autophagy, which removes chemicals from your body.
Estrogen Wipe Protocol
- Lean down
- Cardio routine
- Potent anti-estrogenic foods
- Anti-estrogenic supplements
- Exposure to endocrine disruptors
Before you start doing anything you need to lean down first. Hell if you’re obese you can double or triple your free testosterone levels just by leaning down. On the other hand if you’re 12% body fat then going down to 10% won’t have a huge impact like that, though it will get you a pretty small increase.
When you’re fat you have more adipose tissue, when you have more adipose tissue you have more aromatization going on, and when you have more aromatization going on your estrogen increases. Simple as it gets – get lean and that’ll increase free testosterone while lowering estrogen.
Eat a lot of anti-estrogenic foods while cutting to lean down. That’ll help you lean down faster and it will of course lower estrogen itself. Use a ~15% calorie deficit when you cut. Any more than that will increase SHBG and any less than that won’t do shit.
Scientific evidence on body fat and estrogen:
- Adipose tissue, which is just a fancy word for fat, directly creates more aromatase enzymes and those nasty, unwanted, and problematic enzymes directly increase estrogen (study).
- Adipose tissue can contribute significantly to the circulating pool of estrogens (study).
- Leaning down significantly increases testosterone (study).
- Obese men have significantly lower testosterone levels and overall androgen levels (study).
- Obese men have about two times higher estrogen levels than non-obese men (study).
A simple cardio routine shreds estrogen quite well, unless you go overboard with the cardio. That puts you in a catabolic state of high cortisol and suppressed free testosterone, it raises inflammation, and messes up your thyroid; typical overtraining downsides. Making that clear – don’t go crazy with cardio, its not the main training, its just a part of the training.
Upsides of cardio:
- Cardio makes the body use more calories therefore burning more body fat
- Cardio increases metabolism
- Cardio keeps you physically active
- Cardio improves insulin sensitivity
- Cardio lowers estrogen
Cardio routine principles:
- Walk everyday 30-90+ minutes
- Then do some cardio a few times a week. This can be short jogs, stairs walking, stairs jogging, sports (basketball, soccer, baseball, boxing, football …), or HIIT.
- Do cardio 2-4 times a week, no matter what kind. However don’t go more than twice a week on HIIT. For example: day 1 – short jog, day 2 – stairs walking, day 3 – basketball.
- Short jogs 2-4 times a week
- Stairs walking or stairs jogging 2-4 times a week
- Sports such as basketball, soccer, or baseball 2-4 times a week
- Sports such as boxing, MMA, football, or parkour 2-3 times a week
- HIIT 1-2 times a week
- Sweat good, its one of the greatest upsides of cardio.
Scientific evidence on cardio and estrogen:
- Exercise increases the resting metabolic rate (study) (study) (study).
- Exercise lowers estrogen and progesterone levels (study).
- Aerobic exercise increases the metabolism of estrogens into less potent forms (study).
- Physical activity reduces risk of estrogen-dependent cancer in women (study).
- Sweating rids the body of endocrine disruptors, chemicals, and estrogen mimics, which decreases estrogen (study).
Potent Anti-Estrogenic Foods
Anti-estrogenic foods work by lowering estrogen through different mechanisms – increasing the breakdown of estrogens to less potent forms, increasing estrogen excretion, increasing DHT a lot which decreases estrogen through negative feedback system, or just simply potently inhibit aromatase enzymes.
Anti-estrogenic foods are great, they increase total testosterone, free testosterone, and sometimes DHT. In the world of chemicals and estrogen mimics we live in these foods that lower estrogen are essential. Estrogen has the strongest feedback loop, meaning when estrogen is high gonadotropic hormones decrease a lot and therefore there’s less testosterone production.
There are strong and potent anti-estrogenic foods and there are less potent ones. Focus on the most potent ones for simplicity and fast results. There’s limited evidence on the potency of anti-estrogenic foods, however there are a few studied foods that are real potent.
- White mushrooms
- Red grapes
The Potency of White Mushrooms
In an experiment that tested 7 vegetable extracts for aromatase inhibiting potency white mushrooms was the most potent one.
White mushrooms dose-dependently inhibit aromatase. At 50 μL of a white mushroom extract aromatase is inhibited by 50% (study).
White mushrooms suppress aromatase activity and estrogen biosynthesis and they’re used as a breast cancer chemopreventive agent (study).
The Potency of Red Grapes
The skin of red grapes has a compound, resveratrol, which inhibits aromatase. The seeds of red grapes have another compound, proanthocyanidin, which inhibits aromatase as well.
“Resveratrol inhibited the aromatase activity with an IC(50) value of 25 microM. Kinetic analysis indicated that both competitive and noncompetitive inhibition might be involved.”
“Pharmacological dosage of resveratrol inhibited aromatase at both the enzyme and mRNA levels.” – study.
Grape seed extract is an aromatase inhibitor and a suppressor of aromatase expression (study).
Resveratrol and grape seeds both potently inhibit aromatase activity, making red grapes a damn potent natural aromatase inhibitor and anti-estrogenic food.
Supplements won’t fix estrogen problems just like that and they’re overhyped. However some anti-estrogenic supplements will help fix estrogen problems. Supplements alone might not help much, but supplements along with leaning down, a cardio routine, eating potent anti-estrogenic foods, and limiting exposure to endocrine disruptors will help. Icing on the cake makes the cake taste better.
Scientifically proven anti-estrogenic supplements:
- Flavanones (study)
- Calcium d glucarate (study)
- Grape seed extract (study)
- Quercetin (study)
- Zinc (study)
- Boron (study)
- Tongkat Ali (study)
- Resveratrol (study)
Exposure to Endocrine Disruptors
Now not all men will need to go through this problem and find alternatives to endocrine disrupting products as well as cut out all exposure to endocrine disruptors.
A man that works in a hospital, say as a doctor, and is exposed to tons of toxins and chemicals just from his work. Then the man goes home and takes a hot shower using conventional shampoo and soap filled with estrogenic mimics, puts on some hair gel filled with estrogenic mimics, then puts on some deodorant filled with more endocrine disruptors. At the end of the day this man rubs some hand cream on his hands and lays down on the couch to watch TV next to an air-freshener. Now if that’s not bad enough, on top of all that this man eats out of plastic plates, with plastic forks, from foods packaged in plastic, and drinks out of plastic water bottles. I guarantee you this man has high estrogen problems and in his scenario cutting out all those endocrine disruptors and getting a strong anti-toxin mask at work will solve all those problems and get his estrogen in check.
On the flipside a man that works as a landscaper in a park and is breathing pretty clean air most of the time. Then the man uses baking soda to brush his teeth instead of fluoride filled toothpastes and he uses conventional shampoo and soap. This man doesn’t use any gel, deodorant, or hand creams, or anything like that, and doesn’t have any air-fresheners in his home or anything like that. This man, with diet in check, most likely has no estrogen problems. This man wouldn’t reap much upsides from switching from conventional shampoo and soap to natural alternatives.
As you can see your lifestyle and the scenario you’re in is what matters most and not all men will need to cut out every single thing filled with chemicals.
However, if you still can’t lower your estrogen with everything else in check then try cutting out most endocrine disrupting products and overall endocrine disruptors exposure. Maybe some men are more sensitive to endocrine disruptors and experience more damage from them.
V – Enlightenment – Free Testosterone Misc
Health Factors That Affect Free Testosterone Big Time
Every man wants three things in life – health, wealth, and relationships. These three things are the backbone of desire. Take one out and you’re left uncontent, unhappy, or unsatisfied.
Health is essential for life and its essential for normal free testosterone levels as well. Serious health problems can cause serious damage to your free testosterone.
Now any health problem probably takes a hit on your free testosterone levels and overall androgens, these are the 12 health problems associated with low free testosterone levels though:
- Chronic renal failure
- Prostate cancer
- Carotid body tumor
- Metabolic syndrome
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm
- Coronary artery atherosclerosis
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
HIV, aids, and STDs can easily be avoided by using a condom when you plant your flag. These kind of health problems take a big hit on your total and free testosterone levels.
This experiment here looked at the effects of antiretroviral therapy on free testosterone levels. The results were – free testosterone and fat-free mass levels increased after initiation of antiretroviral therapy.
In this experiment 182 HIV-infected men and 267 HIV-uninfected men were included and had their free testosterone levels tested over a period of 10 years. What the experiment found out is after adjustment the mean free testosterone levels were lower in the HIV-infected than HIV-uninfected men.
Chronic Renal Failure
This experiment‘s intention was to find out whether free testosterone plays a factor of survival in chronic renal failure. It does, but the experiment found out something else as well – total and free testosterone levels are lower in chronic renal failure patients than in healthy subjects.
A study found out that free testosterone levels are significantly lower in hemodialysis patients compared to healthy subjects.
Free testosterone levels in healthy subjects (left) vs hemodialysis patients (right):
The experiment here compared free testosterone, LH, and FSH in diabetics and non-diabetics men. Well no surprise diabetics men had lower free testosterone levels. However there were no significant differences in LH and FSH.
“Diabetic men have been claimed to have lower serum free testosterone (FT) concentrations than non-diabetic men.”
“Serum FT concentrations were significantly lower in type 2 diabetic patients (2.53±1.68 pg/ml) than in healthy men (4.29±2.43 pg/ml) (P<0.001).”
Prostate cancer is strongly linked to low free testosterone levels and there’s a lot of evidence out there to prove this.
- This first piece of evidence says high SHBG and low bioavailable testosterone levels are related to prostate cancer detection.
- This study says – the free testosterone to total testosterone ratio is a significant parameter for assessing the different clusters of prostate cancer.
- “The PSA to FT ratio is the growing rate parameter expressing different biology patterns and assessing different groups of prostate cancer patients.” – study.
- An experiment found out that prostate cancer is associated with low free testosterone.
Carotid Body Tumor
In the experiment here carotid artery intima-media thickness (CIMT) was measured in 176 men over the age of 40. The experiment found out that a free testosterone level of ≤10.0 pg/mL was significantly associated with CIMT. However there was no significant association between total testosterone and CIMT.
An experiment here done on Japanese men found out an interesting correlation between free testosterone and metabolic syndrome.
“The serum free testosterone (FT) level was significantly lower in the Mets (+) group than in the Mets (-) group (11.7 +/- 4.0 vs. 14.7 +/- 4.6 pg/mL, p<0.0001).”
“FT decreased significantly along with an increase in the number of Mets components. Likewise, the number of Mets components showed a significant difference among the eugonadal, borderline, and hypogonadal groups (2.2 +/- 1.4, 1.5 +/- 1.4, and 0.9 +/- 1.1, respectively).”
Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm
This experiment had a total of 3,620 men of ages 70-88 that were tested for abdominal aortic aneurysm and testosterone, free testosterone, SHBG, and LH.
262 men had abdominal aortic aneurysm and the men that had abdominal aortic aneurysm had lower serum total and free testosterone compared to the men that didn’t have it. Free testosterone was negatively associated with abdominal aortic aneurysm and LH was positively associated with it.
Another health condition strongly associated with low free testosterone levels and overall lower androgens is a varicocele.
There are multiple studies where after treating the varicocele testosterone, free testosterone, and androgens increase:
- Free testosterone levels increased from 12.97+/-4.16 to 13.59+/-3.93 pg/mL. Sperm concentration and motility increased significantly, from 4.05+/-4.35 to 7.90+/-8.19 million/mL (P=0.01) and from 30.64+/-21.87% to 41.00+/-22.00%, respectively.
- Serum testosterone concentration rose after embolization by 43%, from 12.07 +/- 6.07 nmol/l to 17.22 +/- 8.43 nmol/l. Serum free testosterone concentration rose by 72%, from 5.93 +/- 2.44 nmol/l to 10.21 +/- 7.69 nmol/l.
- Testosterone levels increased from 5.63 (1.40) to 8.37 (2.2) ng/mL. Free testosterone levels increased from 23.13 (3.19) to 32.83 (4.37) pg/mL.
Coronary Artery Atherosclerosis
An experiment was conducted with only one intent – to find out whether free testosterone levels differ in men with and without coronary artery disease. Well the experiment discovered that men with coronary artery disease had significantly lower levels of free testosterone than men without it.
A study says men with rheumatoid arthritis have lower bioavailable testosterone than healthy subjects.
In this experiment 25 male patients with rheumatoid arthritis had free testosterone levels checked and they had significantly lower free testosterone levels when compared to osteoarthritis patients.
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
In men with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis free testosterone levels are significantly lower than in healthy men. Total testosterone, estrogen, and DHEAS weren’t different between men with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and healthy men though (study).
The Boron Confliction
Boron doesn’t have too much evidence and is not so well-known. The evidence it does have shows some REAL great results. However there’s some conflicting data as well and there’s no solid conclusion.
Boron Increases Free Testosterone and Lowers Estrogen
In this experiment there were 8 healthy men that took 10mg of boron daily for a week.
The experiment noted a couple things down:
- Boron in plasma increased significantly following hours and weekly consumption.
- Six hours supplementation showed a significant decrease in SHBG, high sensitive CRP (hsCRP) and TNF-α level.
- After one week plasma free testosterone increased 28% and plasma estradiol decreased 39%.
- DHT, cortisol, and vitamin D were elevated.
- All three inflammatory biomarkers decreased.
Another experiment with the intention to find out how boron impacted serum vitamin D levels found out that boron increased free testosterone levels by 29.5%.
Boron Increases Estrogen
This experiment was done on 12 women between the ages of 48-82. The women took 3mg of boron a day.
The experiment noted a couple things down:
- Boron markedly reduced the urinary excretion of calcium and magnesium.
- Boron depressed the urinary excretion of phosphorus by the low-magnesium, but not by the adequate-magnesium.
- Boron markedly elevated the serum concentrations of estradiol and testosterone; the elevation seemed more marked when dietary magnesium was low.
This next experiment had 18 healthy men taking a boron supplement in doses of 10mg a day.
The results were – plasma estradiol concentrations increased significantly, from 51.9 +/- 21.4pmol/L to 73.9 +/- 22.2 pmol/L.
One theory is that the estrogen increase/decrease from boron supplementation depends on the amount of aromatization (conversion of testosterone to estrogen) going on in the body. The evidence on boron is conflicting but it concludes one thing – there’s an increase in testosterone. Now a man with a belly or a higher body fat %, or a man eating a lot of estrogenic foods or being exposed to a lot of estrogenic chemicals will have more aromatization going on and therefore convert more of that testosterone generated from boron into estrogen. Maybe take boron only when you’re lean. That’s just a theory though, try it out and see how you feel.