Anabolic steroid users know that preserving testosterone levels is pertinent to successful bodybuilding. However, there are many foods that can reduce testosterone levels, therefore hindering their muscle-building results.
The following is a list of food and drinks to avoid when using steroids and why they should be avoided.
There are many health claims regarding the use of green tea in prolonging life and promoting optimal health due to its high amounts of antioxidants. However, testosterone production is dependent upon oxidizing reactions. Researchers have begun studying the effects of green tea, especially its active polyphenol compounds, on testosterone production and existing testosterone levels. They seem to have revealed a downside to green tea consumption for individuals looking to build muscle.
Lab studies have shown green tea to inhibit various effects of testosterone by inhibiting its conversion to androgen. Green tea’s active constituent, EGCG, has been proven to affect aromatase, which is responsible for converting testosterone to estrogen. Further studies have shown that green tea consumption leads to lower estrogen and androgen levels, especially in Asian males.
Soy is a vegetable that is high in protein and several other bioactive components. Among these components are isoflavones and genistein, which have been shown to decrease testosterone levels. Although this can be useful for females, it is a poor protein choice for male athletes. Many protein powders and premade protein shakes contains soy in an attempt to attract female customers. However, because of the estrogenic supporting properties of the isoflavones, male bodybuilders should avoid excessive consumption of soy products. This does not mean you should stop eating soy products completely. One serving per day is fine. Any more than that, and testosterone levels can begin to drop.
This is not only limited to protein mixes, but also any other foods containing soy, such as soy sauce. Tofu, soy milk, soy nuts and soybeans should also be avoided.
Experienced bodybuilders know the importance of consuming healthy amounts of fats and calories. However, many steroid users who are overweight may think that severe calorie reduction will help give them an edge. Although calorie restriction has been proven to prolong the life of lab animals, this life- extending way of eating suppresses testes function, which reduces testosterone levels. Because muscles use a great amount of energy, the body does not need or want to support any more muscle mass than what is required for everyday use. It is designed to survive by preserving calories. Therefore, under-eating will cause the body to grasp onto any calories available, which can actually lead to weight gain.
Some overweight individuals may think that a short term fast will speed up weight loss. However, any form of fasting or restricted caloric intake, no matter how short, can also suppress testosterone levels.
A group of researchers determined that men who fasted for 3 ?days saw a 50 percent reduction in testosterone levels due to changes in pituitary gland signals. Healthy testosterone function comes from more than just the testes; the pituitary gland is also responsible.
Studies have shown that individuals who consume diets high in polyunsaturated fats have lower testosterone levels than those who consume monounsaturated fats. Researchers have determined that canola oil significantly decreases levels of testosterone in lab rats. Good fats such as coconut oil, peanut oil and olive oil should be used for cooking. Canola oil and vegetable oils should be avoided.
Large amounts of fiber
Whereas fiber is an important part of your diet, excessive amounts should be avoided when using anabolic steroids. Studies have proven that individuals who follow a low fat, high-fiber diet have significantly lower testosterone levels than individuals whose diets contain moderate amounts of fiber and high levels of fat. High-fiber cereals and fiber supplements should be avoided. Whole grain breads, fruits and vegetables should be eaten in moderation.
Food or teas containing spearmint
Several studies performed in the UK showed that individuals who drank 2 cups of spearmint tea per day had significantly lower testosterone levels than those who did not. Another study showed that spearmint teas or extracts severely lowers the amount of androgens in the body. Spearmint extract is present in many gums, candies and breath mints. Whereas these tiny amounts will not make a large difference in testosterone levels, it is a good idea to try to avoid them completely.
A study conducted in Tehran shows that men who consume licorice or licorice extract experience a severe dip in testosterone levels. The men who participated in the study consumed 1.3 grams of dried licorice in the form of a tea every day for 10 days. Because licorice is widely used to treat gastrointestinal disorders, it is a main ingredient in many products. When using any natural remedy for indigestion or nausea, be sure to check the label to make sure it does not contain licorice extract.
This means anything that contains white flour or refined white sugar, such as bread, crackers and cookies. When refined carbohydrates are broken down into sugars in the body, it raises estrogen levels, while simultaneously depleting testosterone levels.
Many alcoholic drinks contain sugar syrups that increase insulin levels. These increased insulin levels also increase estrogen and decrease testosterone.
– Always read ingredient labels when purchasing food, supplements, and even cold remedies. Many cough syrups contain licorice, which we have already discussed as being a testosterone killer. Many herbal teas contain ingredients such as spearmint and licorice, which reduce testosterone levels and dampen the effects of steroids.
– Keeping a close eye on your fat and calorie intake to make sure they do not fall too low is also pertinent for steroid users. When consuming fat and calories, make sure they come from high-quality sources such as nuts, avocado, salmon and lean meats. This ensures you are receiving all the nutrients you need and healthy amounts of good fats without having to worry about gaining weight.
– Simply paying attention to the little things you consume every day will ensure your doing all you can to boost your own testosterone levels and provide a solid nutritional foundation to experience optimal results from steroid use.