Estrogen is considered a female hormone that belongs to a set of molecules known as steroid hormones. It is produced in the ovaries of women and little amounts are made in the testes, adrenal and pituitary glands of males. Men usually have low levels of estrogen and a number of undesirable symptoms can result when levels of estrogen are too high. Measures should be taken to lower estrogen this’s too high.
Symptoms of High Estrogen in Men
1. Gynecomastia/Male breast growth
The growth of male breasts is called gynecomastia. When estrogen is present in high levels in men, the cells in breasts change their behavior. They begin to grow and this leads to the breasts becoming larger and more firm instead of the distinct pectoral fat deposits most men have. This condition can occur in around half of boys in puberty, but if it continues into adulthood, there may be an underlying reason.
2. Low sex drive
Men who have high levels of estrogen may have a problem known as erectile dysfunction. This means he is unable to maintain an erection. Any man who is experiencing sexual problems should talk to his doctor about a possible hormone imbalance.
A man’s fertility is determined by the number of sperm he has, the movement of the sperm and whether they can survive long enough to reach and fertilize an egg. Men who are exposed to high levels of estrogen have a higher rate of infertility than men who are not. This is because estrogen lowers the sperm’s mobility.
4. Stroke risk
Because excess estrogen may cause blood clots, if a man has too much estrogen in his system, he may be at a higher risk of having a stroke.
5. Heart attack
The bodies of older men produce less testosterone. This causes a hormonal imbalance with estrogen becoming more dominant. An imbalance like this is often overlooked as a possible cause of cardio disease.
6. Prostate problems
High levels of estrogen in men can cause differing results. Some studies show that excess estrogen may cause prostate cancer, but once the cancer occurs, the estrogen may have some anticancer effects.
7. Weight gain
High estrogen levels in men can cause weight gain and that weight gain may cause higher levels of estrogen. It is a cycle that is not easily broken.
How to Lower Estrogen in Men
1. Limit alcohol
Alcohol causes the body to make more estrogen. The kidneys remove excessive estrogen from the body and alcohol also interferes with that process.
2. Avoid xenoestrogens
Xenoestrogens are man-made endocrine disruptors that copy the actions of estrogen in a body. Often found in household items, they could be the cause for the growing problem of excess estrogen in men. Meat and dairy products that are raised using growth hormones, pesticides or herbicide that are eaten on food, some types of plastic products and some health and beauty products are common sources.
3. Avoid excessive soy
Soy contains isoflavones and these raise estrogen levels in the body while lowering testosterone. Foods like soy milk, tofu and any product with soy should be avoided to help lower the levels of estrogen in men.
4. Maintain a healthy weight
Estrogen is produced by fat cells, so one of the most common causes of estrogen dominance in men is obesity, which makes maintaining a healthy weight essential.
Exercise lowers the amount of fatty tissue in the body and this slows the metabolization of testosterone into estrogen. Men who have high estrogen levels can benefit from regular exercise to lower these levels.
6. Take zinc supplement
Zinc can slow the change of testosterone into estrogen so taking a zinc supplement can help lower the level of estrogen in a man’s body. Other antioxidants will also help slow the conversion of testosterone.
7. Eat more nuts
Another way to lower estrogen levels is to consume nuts. The fat in nuts, such as brazil nuts, almonds, cashews, walnuts, and sunflower seeds, help raise the level of testosterone in the body.
8. Have more broccoli
Broccoli contains one of the strongest anti-estrogen supplements, DIM, so eating broccoli more often will help to lower the level of estrogen in the body. It helps the body process estrogen so the kidneys do not have to do all the work.
9. Consider hormone replacement therapy
Hormone replacement therapy is also an option. This can come in a variety of medications like gelatin capsule pills, topical creams and gels, pellets and skin patches. The pellet type is inserted under the skin by a doctor. To get the highest amount of hormone, choose the pellet or capsule options.