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Although high carbohydrate low fat diets have been all the rage for the past decade or so, it may be particularly hard on testosterone levels. It appears high carb low fat diets are not the best way to optimize testosterone production.

For example, one study examined 30 healthy male volunteers who were switched from their customary diet which supplied 40% of energy as fat was replaced for 6 weeks with a diet containing significantly less fat (25% of energy).

The study found a statistically significant drop in serum testosterone levels (from 22.7 +/- 1.1 nmol/l to 19.3 +/- 1.2 nmol/l), free testosterone and other androgens (Hamalainen, E., et al, 1984). This study also found that a higher ratio of saturated fat to poly unsaturated fat was positively correlated with higher testosterone levels.

For example, one study that had two groups eating approximately the same ratios and amounts of carbohydrates and fats, found a "mixed" diet that included animal products resulted in higher testosterone levels than a lacto-ovo vegetarian diet (Raben, A. et al, 1992). Several other studies appear to confirm the effects of dietary fats on testosterone levels, as well as other dietary variables (Dorgan, J.F., et al, 1996; Volek, J.S., et al, 1997; Tegelman, R., et al., 1992; Habito, R.C., 2001).

However, there is a ceiling of how much fat should be eaten to achieve optimal testosterone levels. Studies suggest that 30% of calories from fat appears to be as much fat as is needed, as diets higher than 30%-40% showed no extra advantage. The lesson here is for optimal hormonal production of anabolic hormones in athletes, adequate fat is essential.

Knowing that information, we will set up the fat requirement of our anabolic diet with fat comprising 30% of total calories. Continuing with our 200lb friend eating 4,095 kcals per day. 30% of 4,095 = 1229 (1228.5 to be exact) calories per day from fat, or 136.5 grams of fat per day (1228.5 divided by 9, the number of calories in a gram of fat).

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