“Not again!”, I hear you cry - another cookie cutter blog about how to increase testosterone and the signs of low testosterone.
You have probably read countless articles on this topic, and more or less they are all the same and say the same things.
This blog aims to go a bit beyond the low testosterone and ‘what to eat’ articles as we feel they miss a few key points in the explanation…
Testosterone is more than just the male sex hormone. It regulates a host of bodily functions that go far beyond the superficial.
From a sheerly physical point of view, it plays a pivotal role in regulating :
Production of red blood cells.
As well as the obvious role in strength, muscle mass, sperm production and facial hair.
But it is NOT as simple as that.
We are extremely complex creatures with even more complex brains, nervous systems and endocrine systems.
We are constantly transmitting and receiving information to and from our environment.
We are gestalt organisms where the effects of testosterone upon the body manifests behaviourally AND physiologically.
This means that testosterone (and of course our hormonal systems at large) play an enormous role in how we interact with the physical world.
MEN’S HEALTH, TESTOSTERONE AND THE MODERN WORLD:
In this day-and-age, you may be seriously wondering whether it makes any difference to a man’s life if he has high or low testosterone as long as he is within the normal range right?
You may think, “well, my job is fairly sedentary. Why should I care?”.
This is a fair point, a lower level of physicality is required from us nowadays.
However, the benefits of having higher testosterone and low cortisol (the stress hormone) extend far beyond mere physicality.
It affects how we feel as men. It’s behavioural.
THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT:
There is a ripple, or butterfly effect when it comes to the behavioural effects of testosterone.
With higher (more optimal) testosterone it is likely you will become more confident.
This could be directly related to the physical benefits such as reduced body fat and increased sex drive or to the indirect benefits such as better sleep and more energy.
With more confidence, you are more motivated and the dopaminergic mind will take control (increased dopamine).
You will bet on yourself, you will take more shots and you won’t be disheartened by the losses or rejections.
As MJ said, the more opportunities you take, the more likely you are to learn and win over a given period of time (whatever winning is to you).
But it’s what he didn’t say that is even more interesting.
For each win, the animalistic part of your brain (the limbic system) registers this as a climb higher in what has been named the dominance hierarchy - a social structure that your subconscious is always aware of.
As you climb higher in this hierarchy your testosterone levels increase and your brain ‘rewards’ you with more dopamine.
And the cycle continues…
The upwards spiral.
SO WHY SHOULD I CARE?
Our homepage states some quite disturbing data on the state of testosterone in modern men. There has been an age-adjusted decrease in T levels of approximately 20% over the last 30 years .
Even more scary is the fact that from 1973 to 2011, sperm counts in western countries dropped 50%!
It is likely that things have gotten far worse since 2011.
This means our grandad likely had far higher T levels than us.
Now, consider our distant ancestors who worked, hunted and survived in harsher conditions than we can even imagine.,,
Men’s general health both mental and physical is not on a good trajectory.
67% of us in the UK are overweight or obese, 1 in 8 of us are diagnosed with a mental disorder and we by far make up the majority of suicides.
It is not far-fetched to make the connection to hormonal issues...
WHY IS THIS HAPPENING?
I’m not sure anyone has all the answers.
It’s a hugely complex problem with lots of variables that are all interdependent.
Our culture has fooled us into believing that the easy route, not doing exercise and ‘being content’ outweigh the fulfilment and delayed gratification only realised from consistent hard training, good diets and striving for something greater than yourself.
Processed foods are destroying our gut.
We are getting far less vitamin D due to a lack of sunlight exposure and being under fluorescent lighting all day.
We are overly dependent on pharmaceutical medication.
And the ubiquitous use of microplastics, contaminated water supplies, soy products and seed oils is disrupting our endocrine system on a daily basis.
As if it's not bad enough, the vital mineral content of vegetables, that your hormones directly rely upon, is estimated to have decreased by 80-90% in the last century due to over-agriculture! .
SO WHAT CAN YOU DO?
Train hard, eat right and sleep well. These are the fundamentals.
Fixing your gut will probably have the most profound effect on your hormones which is why nutrition is so key
First thing that can be done is to cut down on what is holding you back. Often, the benefits of removing something negative outweigh those of adding a positive habit!
- Switch out your vegetable/seed oils for extra virgin olive oil, butter or ghee.
- Chuck out refined sugars
- Stay far away from soy or any other fake meat for that matter.
- Avoid processed foods and refined carbs - they are easy to spot.
Next, check the quality of what your consuming (what u are is what you eat quote)
- Butter, cheese and red meats from 100% grass fed animals.
- Eggs and chicken bred on fresh pasture.
- Organic vegetables - no pesticides.
Bust the myths.
- Red meat is vital, it is not carcinogenic.
- Eggs are a super-food.
- Fats are really important.
- Breakfast is not the most important meal of the day - have real food for breakfast not cereal otherwise known as ‘sugar cardboard’.
It’s all good having a great bench press and huge biceps but if you can’t run a 5K, spar 3 rounds, jump and move what’s the point?
- Resistance training + running/sprinting
- Functional Training (Pat McNamara - Ready to defend)
- Combat training - there is no better cardiovascular workout!
- ‘On a whim’ physical challenges (for the mental aspect!)
One of the MOST important pillars of testosterone health is getting enough good quality sleep.
- Get more sun - especially right after waking up.
- Do some kind of physical activity most days -we are meant to be exhausted by the end of the day.
- Try supplementing KSM-66 ashwagandha, magnesium, L-Glycine and l-theanine to improve sleep quality.
Once these pillars are set in stone you can begin optimising your testosterone with supplementation.
Of course, we are biassed, but we think that our holistic product, Atlas Total Support™ is the best all round daly supplement to support your hormones and health as a man.
Atlas Testosterone Support™ contains ingredients with scientific backing to:
We’ve combined two powerful Ayurvedic herbs used and trusted for millenia.
✅ KSM-66® Ashwagandha - 1000 mg
✅ Shilajit Extract- 500 mg
And put them alongside the most vital vitamins & minerals for men’s health in their most bioavailable forms:
✅ Zinc - 25 mg
✅ Boron - 7.5 mg
✅ Vitamin D3 - 4000 IU
✅ Magnesium - 300 mg
✅Vitamin K2 - 150 mcg
If you are interested in the science of each ingredient, follow this link to find our fully referenced science page that has been edited by our medical advisor, Dr Max Jonas.
We hope that you found this blog useful! Feel free to add comments or get in touch with us directly - we love hearing from you and will get back ASAP!
Health Breeds Action. Action Trumps All.
Co-founder of Atavist Supplements
 EverydayHealth.com. (2018). Testosterone: The Male Hormone Impact on Men’s Health | Everyday Health. [online] Available at: https://www.everydayhealth.com/testosterone/mens-health/.
 Sanesco Health. (n.d.). Dopamine and Testosterone: Making the Connection in Male Libido. [online] Available at: https://sanescohealth.com/blog/male-libido-dopamine-testosterone/.
 Travison, T.G., Araujo, A.B., O’Donnell, A.B., Kupelian, V. and McKinlay, J.B., 2007. A population-level decline in serum testosterone levels in American men. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 92(1), pp.196-202.
 Workinger, J.L., Doyle, R. and Bortz, J., 2018. Challenges in the diagnosis of magnesium status. Nutrients, 10(9), p.1202.. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 92(1), pp.196-202.