Multiple hormones in the male body regulate functions like sexual health, metabolism, and more. A hormonal imbalance in the male body can wreak havoc on a man’s health.
When looking at sex hormones, in particular, testosterone is the primary term that comes to mind. Estrogen is also present in the male body, although it is the main sex hormone in women. A small amount of estrogen is needed for certain functions.
Some men experience estrogen dominance. This is a term that refers to excess estrogen produced in the body.
High estrogen levels in men can cause adverse effects. It disrupts the hormone balance in the body. It can also cause many health problems to develop.
We take a look at what estrogen dominance in men is. We also consider symptoms and potential actions men can take. These actions focus on helping to reduce the estrogen level in the male body.
Estrogen Dominance In Men
Estrogen dominance refers to excess estrogen circulating through the male body. This is not only a problem in the male population.
Women can also experience high levels of estrogen. Even though estrogen is important in women, high blood estrogen levels can cause unpleasant symptoms.
In women, estrogen helps initiate sexual development. Along with another female sex hormone known as progesterone, it also regulates a woman’s menstrual cycle and affects her entire reproductive system.
Among female patients, estrogen deficiency is also a problem. It is common among postmenopausal women, presenting pms symptoms such as hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and more.
In men, several functions are regulated by estrogen. Some of these functions include1:
- Regulation of the male libido
- Regulation of erectile function
- The process of spermatogenesis
When estrogen levels rise too much, estrogen dominance can occur. In this scenario, the estrogen in the male body causes adverse effects on their health.
There are a few concerns when looking at estrogen dominance in the male population. One of the major concerns would be related to fertility. Estrogen helps with spermatogenesis. It ensures sperm can effectively assist in the process of reproduction2.
Too much estrogen, however, can cause a decline in sperm levels. Sperm is no longer able to effectively fertilize an egg in the female body. This can adversely impact a man’s fertility.
Even though estrogen is responsible for regulating sexual health, a high level of the hormone can also lead to adverse effects in terms of sexual function in men.
Symptoms Of Excess Estrogen
There are some long-term effects that excess estrogen can have on the male body. For this reason, men need to be aware of the symptoms that may signal estrogen dominance. The sooner the issue is identified, the more successful a treatment program may be.
There are three primary symptoms that men need to look out for3. These symptoms may suggest that there is a hormone imbalance in the man’s body.
One of the most important symptoms that we need to mention here is issues with fertility. Estrogen is important to ensure a man is able to reproduce. This, however, only accounts for a small amount of estrogen.
As estrogen levels rise, a man does face a risk of fertility problems. It has been found that high estrogen may lead to a decrease in sperm production. For reproduction to be possible, a high volume of sperm is generally needed. This helps to increase the chances of successful conception during sexual intercourse.
Thus, when a man finds that he is not able to conceive, estrogen is one of the factors that should be tested.
Estrogen helps with the stimulation of a man’s libido, but too much of this hormone can be bad. It has been found that men with estrogen dominance are also more likely to experience problems in the bedroom.
Erectile dysfunction is relatively common among men who have too much estrogen in their bodies. The man may also experience poor libido.
The low sex drive can further contribute to erectile problems. This can make it hard for the man to perform normally during sex. It can also cause further implications in his efforts to conceive.
Another common sign that a man has too much estrogen is an enlargement of his breasts. This is a condition that is generally referred to as gynecomastia. When estrogen levels rise in the male body, it can stimulate the production of breast tissue. In such a case, the man finds that his breasts are growing bigger.
How To Get Rid Of Excess Estrogen?
When signs of estrogen dominance develop, men should take action. When the man fails to recognize the symptoms and address the issue, some complications can develop.
A few options have been presented to help in reducing the amount of estrogen in the male body. It is always a good idea to discuss the options with a doctor. The doctor will also be able to determine why the man may be experiencing an increase in estrogen. A treatment plan can then be developed to help lower estrogen in the patient’s body.
There are also a few methods that men can use initially to assist in limiting estrogen production in their bodies. These methods are great for also improving general health and bringing other hormones into balance too.
1) Eat Clean
A lot of men do not realize this, but what they eat can directly impact their hormone balance. A diet that is filled with unhealthy foods can ultimately lead to higher estrogen production. On the other hand, adopt a clean eating diet, and estrogen levels may decline.
A clean eating diet means consuming foods that are free of toxic chemicals and preservatives. It also means ensuring no empty calories are consumed. Instead, the man should prioritize, including foods that are rich in important nutrients in their diet.
Many foods are helpful for men with high estrogen levels. These are all foods that can be easily integrated into a “clean” or whole food diet.
A few examples of food that men should consider eating more of include:
- Cruciferous vegetables include Brussels sprouts, kale, turnips, rutabagas, broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower. They have chemicals that help to block the conversion process of testosterone to estrogen. The phytochemicals in these vegetables also act as antioxidants in the human body.
- Seeds: Certain seeds also contain polyphenols that help to reduce the amount of estrogen that circulates in the bloodstream. Sesame and flax seeds are both good options. It has been found that flax seeds have the highest concentration of these polyphenols.
- Whole Grains: Whole grains are also great. They also contain phytoestrogen nutrients, as well as polyphenols. The polyphenols possess anti-estrogen properties. Examples of whole grains include wheat, oats, rye, rice, barley, millet, and corn.
- Pomegranates: Men should also consider adding more pomegranates to their diet. This fruit contains potent antioxidants. There are also certain chemicals in a pomegranate that has been found to help block estrogen conversion. This may assist in reducing the amount of estrogen in the man’s body. If the patient does not like pomegranate as a fruit, they can also try a juice made from pomegranates.
- Green Tea: As one of the healthiest drinks on the planet, green tea is known for possessing many beneficial compounds. The antioxidants found in green tea is the most widely discussed benefit associated with the drink. This particular tea also contains polyphenols. These are the compounds that have been found to block estrogen. It leads to a lowering of estrogen levels in the blood. Those who do not like the taste of green tea should consider adding some ginseng, ginger, lemon, and mint to the beverage.
2) Use Non-Toxic Products
There are chemicals found in some products we use daily that may increase estrogen levels in the male body. Some of these chemicals act as estrogens in the body. Others rather disrupt the hormonal balance in men. In turn, this may lead to low testosterone and high estrogen levels.
Men should take a closer look at the products they use in their homes. Eliminating products with these toxic ingredients can be helpful.
Some of the chemicals that men should look out for include4:
- Polybrominated diphenyl ethers
- Perfluorinated chemicals
By eliminating these chemicals from the house, there is a reduced risk of further increasing estrogen levels. Women can also benefit from the removal of these chemicals. They can also act as estrogens in the female body, causing a higher breast cancer risk.
3) Ditch Plastic
Plastic is one of the most widely used materials in our homes. We buy plastic bags at the shop to carry our groceries. Open up the fridge, and there may be plastic containers with last night’s leftovers. Unfortunately, a lot of people do not realize that the plastic may be harmful to their health.
There is a chemical found in some plastic products that can have an estrogen-like effect in the body. This chemical is often simply called BPA. It is otherwise known as Bisphenol A. BPA is not only limited to plastic products, however. It has been found in dental sealants and even some canned foods too.
BPA exposure might be harmful to a man’s body. It could disrupt the normal hormonal balance. This causes an imbalance in hormones – with estrogen on that list of hormones.
In fact, BPA exposure has even been linked to problems when a child is exposed to an excessive amount during early puberty. Other adverse health effects can also become present among individuals who are constantly exposed to BPA.
Many manufacturers of plastic products have recognized the concerns that people have regarding BPA. This has led to some companies producing BPA free plastic products. If a person does prefer the use of plastics, they should aim to buy products that specifically states it is BPA free. This helps to reduce the exposure to the chemical.
4) Relieve Stress
Stress is both good and bad. Acute stress events help to put the body into a “fight or flight” mode. The body releases chemicals and hormones to help a person cope with the situation. These hormones essentially cause an improvement in focus and concentration. It also ensures the body can cope with the current stress it is under.
The moment stress becomes chronic, and it is a bad thing. There is a consistent release of cortisol and adrenaline in the body. The chemicals may have short-term benefits, but there are long-term adverse effects that need to be taken into account.
With this in mind, men with high estrogen should take a look at their stress levels. If there is a consistent problem with chronic stress, then the cortisol might be interfering with their hormone balance.
Finding ways to help relieve stress can assist in reducing the effects of cortisol on sex hormones. This may include participation in yoga classes, as this activity has been shown to effectively reduce stress. Men should also ensure they get enough sleep. Stress on the body may be far greater when a man is suffering from sleep deficiency.
Deep breathing techniques and meditation are also strategies that can be used. These strategies help the man get in touch with their inner selves. It has also been shown to reduce levels of stress perceived by the body.
5) Filter Water
Another factor that needs to be addressed here is the fact that there are often harsh toxins and chemicals in tap water. Keeping the body hydrated is critical to ensure the well-being of all systems and cells. The problem is, drinking tap water may expose a person to toxins that disrupt their hormones.
To counter this effect, drinking filter water is the ideal solution. Filtered water ensures that those harmful toxins are removed from the water, providing a cleaner hydration source.
6) Lose Weight
Obesity is a growing concern among the global population – including men. A high body mass leads to many health problems. Men have a higher risk of diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis, and other conditions when they are obese. Additionally, it has also been found that obesity may disrupt hormones in the body. This can sometimes lead to excess estrogen.
The solution would be for the man to lose weight. Overweight men with high estrogen need to implement appropriate diet and exercise plans to help address the excess weight they have.
Excessive estrogen levels in the male body can pose a serious health risk. Various symptoms may develop with high estrogen. These symptoms can also develop when progesterone and estradiol levels increase. Men should ensure they recognize the symptoms and take action. There are several options for reducing estrogen in the male body. This reduces the risks that can come from an estrogen imbalance.