Guys, have things gone belly up in the bedroom?
Well, believe it or not, your belly really could be to blame for your sagging sex life.
Now I’m sure no one needs to tell you an extra jiggle around your middle isn’t going to win you any health awards. Being overweight can strain your heart and joints and put you at risk for diabetes.
But it turns out that extra padding could be making things a bust in the bedroom too. And it all comes down to one the most critical thing that makes a man… well… manly.
And that’s the hormone testosterone.
Although both women and men produce testosterone, men’s bodies produce far more of it. The vital hormone is responsible for the development of male-only features such as the prostate gland and testes. And it’s behind things that the scientists like to refer to as “secondary sex characteristics” such as body hair growth, a deep voice and higher muscle and body mass.
But there’s one other thing that testosterone (T) is critical for, and that’s a healthy sex life.
Low testosterone leads to a sagging sex life
Testosterone is necessary for a strong libido. When the hormone takes a dip, so can your interest in sex. And should the interest still be there your ability to perform in the bedroom may not be.
That’s where your belly comes in.
You see, today’s typical diet of high-carb processed foods (more on that later)—combined with a sedentary lifestyle—means even relatively healthy guys are putting on some extra weight and sporting a so-called “beer gut.”
And according to researchers at the University of Buffalo, that extra weight could be robbing many men of the testosterone they need for a healthy sex life.
Testosterone is directly involved in the process that produces an erection. In other words, even if you WANT to take a roll in the hay low T might make you unable too.
Studies have now repeatedly linked low levels of this critical hormone to obesity, even when guys are healthy otherwise. In fact, in one study on overweight, non-diabetic men’s testosterone levels were an incredible 50 percent lower in the chubby guys than the levels in a group of fit guys around the same age.
So if things have cooled down in the bedroom it might be time to do something about that “beer gut.”
Ditch the fat-producing diet and lift your libido
Our ancestors’ diets were naturally high in proteins and low in carbohydrates. Fresh red meats, wild-caught fish, protein-rich eggs, fresh fruits, veggies and nuts were on the regular menu.
And it’s no coincidence that as we stopped eating this way—and traded in those highly active hunting and fishing lifestyles for parking ourselves in office chairs, car seats and on couches all day—that our middles began to spread and our libidos began to sag.
A healthy protein-based diet supports healthy testosterone levels and a healthy sex life. So to get your love life back on track the first order of business is to change your eating style to a lower carb approach.
While you’re at it pick up a healthy active hobby that gets you moving again too. Be creative, the idea is to have FUN so it doesn’t feel like exercise.
Swimming, golfing, walking, biking or even country line dancing will all do the trick. Just be sure to commit to doing it four or five days a week for at least an hour at a time.
5 foods which support healthy testosterone levels
And while you’re making those healthy changes, think about adding more testosterone supporting foods to your menu as well. Following are five foods which could help you boost your T levels effortlessly.
Studies have found that the allicin in garlic could help boost testosterone activity. Experts say cortisol, the stress hormone, competes for the same spots in your muscle cells as testosterone. And since allicin naturally helps lower cortisol levels, it can leave those sites open so testosterone can lock in and get to work.
Aim for adding fresh garlic to your meals at least once or twice a week. To boost allicin levels crush your garlic and wait 10 minutes before mixing it in.
Tuna is loaded with vitamin D which Austrian researchers have found can boost testosterone by up to 90 percent. You see, sex hormone binding globuline, or SHBG, is the equivalent of a wet blanket when it comes to the bedroom. But vitamin D naturally slashes SHBG levels.
Just be sure you are choosing organic, wild-caught tuna. Other fatty cold water fish, such as mackerel, salmon, herring and sardines work too. Aim for three servings a week.
3. Almonds and walnuts:
Both almonds and walnuts are rich in the amino-acid GABA which helps regulate hormones including testosterone. Other GABA-rich foods to try are bananas, spinach, broccoli, citrus fruits, halibut and beef liver.
You can also take a supplement. The typical recommended dosage is 10 mg a day.
Cruciferous veggies, or members of the Brassica family of plants such as broccoli, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts, help combat estrogen overload.
Estrogen may be thought of as the “female hormone,” but guy’s bodies produce it too. Cruciferous vegetables can help by breaking the hormone down so you can excrete it. And this can lead to a better balance between your testosterone and estrogen levels.
Cabbage, kale, and mustard greens are also good cruciferous choices.
5. Animal meats:
Animal meats such as beef, lamb, pork, liver and oysters are all rich in the trace mineral zinc.
Zinc is a critical nutrient for male health. It not only supports your prostate, it also plays an important role in testosterone production and pituitary gland health.
In other words, it’s important for maintaining a healthy libido and sex life. Watermelon and pumpkin seeds are rich in zinc too.
Supplements can help support a healthy sex life
The final piece of the puzzle is to consider some libido-boosting and/or testosterone-supporting supplements. They can be taken individually or as part of a more comprehensive libido-supporting formula.
A few to consider are…
- Panax [Korean Red] ginseng 400 to 1800 mg (boosts blood flow & erection-friendly nitric oxide)
- Muira pauma 350 mg (traditional libido booster may counter low T effects),
- Tribulus terrestris up to 500 mg (rich in steroidal saponins – increased T levels in animal studies).
- horny goat weed (traditional libido enhancer and performance booster),
- Nettle 140 mg (blocks enzyme used to make estrogen, may promote more free T)
- maca root 1,500 to 3,000 mg,
- Fenugreek up to 500 mg (rich in steroidal saponins),
- Ashwaganda 300 to 500 mg (higher doses might be appropriate talk with your doc),
- Avena sativa 575 mg (promotes energy, vigor and stamina), and
- Shilajit 200 mg (legendary Himalayan aphrodisiac said to increase stamina and libido)
Be sure to talk to a doctor skilled in herbal or integrative medicine about what’s best for you before trying any new supplements.
She is an advocate of self-education and is passionate about the power of group knowledge sharing, like the kind found right here on HealthierTalk.com. Alice loves to share her views on holistic and natural healing as well as her, sometimes contentious, thoughts on the profit-driven inner workings of traditional medicine.
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