Proteins are one of the three macronutrients, and it is a fact that they are of great importance for increasing muscle mass.
However, when it comes to bulking, testosterone levels are even more critical. You may wonder if excess or a lack of protein can lower or increase testosterone.
This article looks at what the latest studies say about whether the protein can lower or increase testosterone.
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Can many proteins lower testosterone?
The effect of proteins on testosterone depends on what type it is.
If you eat a lot of soy protein, your testosterone levels will drop.
The products rich in protein soy are also rich in phytoestrogens. These are plant-based substances that mimic the effects of estrogen in your body. Ultimately they can alter hormone levels and potentially lower testosterone.
Thirty-five young men found that drinking soy protein shakes for 54 days lowered their testosterone levels. (5)
Although other studies contradict this, and scientists need more studies to verify the effect of soy protein products on testosterone, everything indicates that it could be true.
On the other hand, other higher quality proteins, such as egg protein, would not affect testosterone levels.
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Can Protein Increase Testosterone Levels?
No changes were observed in a study that examined the effects of consuming a different amount of protein on testosterone levels in male athletes. (3)
This research looked at the effects of protein on strength, body composition, and endocrine changes during a 12-week resistance training program. I was the egg protein one of the primary sources.
The study concluded that high-quality proteins such as egg protein would not affect testosterone levels in men in the short term.
However, while eating more protein cannot lower or increase testosterone, it also does not bring additional benefits in increasing muscle mass.
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How much protein does a man need per day?
Unfortunately, many athletes use sports supplements following the philosophy of “more protein is better,” which causes many athletes to make uneducated decisions regarding their supplementation habits.
The amount of protein you need is a minimum of 1 gram per kilo of body weight (for a sedentary man) and up to a maximum of 2.0 grams for a man who practices sports regularly. (1,2,3)
Also, it is essential to know that the digestive system can absorb 10 grams of protein per hour. So it is necessary to distribute this amount during the day.
Does more protein equal more muscle?
A man should not go overboard with protein consumption. At the same time, it is almost a fact that eating high-quality protein will not affect your testosterone levels.
Several studies indicate that 100-140 grams of protein are a sufficient amount to increase the size of the muscles of a man of 70 kilos. (1,2)
An excess of proteins will not bring additional benefits in achieving muscle hypertrophy in men.
Contrary to what is often heard, they are not only proteins but also carbohydrates and fats, vital elements for muscle growth. Eating only protein is not the best way to gain bulk. (4)
Most proteins do not affect testosterone levels—the exception: is soy.
To ensure normal testosterone levels and increase muscle mass, it is more vital that you consume a sufficient amount of magnesium, zinc, and vitamin D than worrying about the amount of protein.
A man needs 100 – 140 grams of pure protein per day to increase muscle mass. Likely, an excess will not affect testosterone levels, but it will not bring additional benefits in increasing muscle mass.