Does Alcohol Lower Testosterone?

Excessive drinking and alcohol consumption affects almost every element of your health. Your hormone health is no different. Testosterone is the predominant sex hormone in males, and it also plays a role in female reproduction. Heavy alcohol intake is associated with low testosterone levels. Too much alcohol may lower testosterone levels and negatively influence your reproductive health.

How Does Alcohol Impact Testosterone Levels?

Increased alcohol use and chronic alcohol abuse are linked to lower testosterone levels. Research backs up this fact.

The following are some particular ways that alcohol impacts testosterone levels:

  • Alcohol harms the testicular Leydig cells, which generate and release testosterone.
  • Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) is a coenzyme that is involved in both alcohol metabolism and testosterone production. When alcohol is taken, NAD+ must aid in alcohol metabolism rather than testosterone synthesis.
  • Drinking alcohol causes the release of endorphins. While endorphins are enjoyable and calming, they may also interfere with testosterone production.
  • Alcohol has been shown to raise cortisol, a stress hormone known to reduce testosterone production.
  • Alcohol may enhance the conversion of testosterone to estrogen.
  • Too much alcohol disturbs your sleep pattern, further reducing your body’s capacity to create testosterone.

Excessive alcohol intake may impair testosterone production, but does moderate alcohol consumption have the same effect? In general, having one to two beers on occasion should not significantly influence testosterone levels. Moderate alcohol drinking may be beneficial to one’s health. On the other hand, drinking more is likely to have negative consequences, including reduced testosterone levels.

What Is Testosterone and How Does It Impact Your Health?

The quantity of alcohol you consume has an effect on testosterone. While the effect is more pronounced in males, women may also suffer from reduced testosterone as a result of alcohol usage. Maintaining healthy testosterone levels throughout one’s life is critical for physical, mental, and sexual wellness. However, some lifestyle choices, such as alcohol misuse, might impact the male reproductive system and testosterone levels.

In general, heavy alcohol use lowers testosterone levels.

Testosterone is the major sex hormone in males. It is in charge of functions such as sexual desire, hair growth, and bone and muscular development. Testosterone levels fluctuate throughout a person’s life. While testosterone levels are greatest throughout adolescence and early adulthood, they begin to gradually fall around the age of 30. Low testosterone levels have been linked to sadness, reduced bone, and muscular mass, and diminished sex desire.

The Short-Term Effects of Alcohol on Testosterone

After consuming alcohol, testosterone levels might decline as soon as 30 minutes. Both men and women may suffer a variety of short-term negative effects when their testosterone levels are disrupted by alcohol usage.

Low testosterone levels in alcoholic males may result in:

  • Irritability due to low energy
  • Reduced sex desire
  • Hair loss on the body
  • gaining weight
  • Breast enlargement
  • Shrunken testicles

Women who drink alcohol and thereby drop their testosterone levels may suffer the following symptoms:

  • Swings in mood
  • High sex drive
  • Irregular menstrual periods
  • Excessive hair growth
  • Brittle bones

Long-Term Effects of Alcohol on Testosterone

While low and moderate alcohol use seems to have no long-term impact on total testosterone levels, excessive alcohol consumption might cause your body to struggle to keep up with regular testosterone production. As testosterone levels continue to fall, the risk of long-term health issues rises. Among the impacts are:

  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Infertility
  • Depression

Men are more likely to get prostate cancer, whereas women are more likely to develop breast cancer.

Women and males are at a higher risk of congenital impairments.

How long does it take to go back to normal after quitting alcohol?

Quitting drinking may help reverse some of the brain and testicular damage.

Recovery, however, might take months or years, depending on how much and how long you’ve been drinking. Some harm may be irreversible.

After 10 weeks of abstaining from alcohol, one research discovered that alcohol damage to the male reproductive system was partially reversible. Although animal studies may not usually translate to people, the findings of this research imply that at least a partial recovery is conceivable.

More study on human subjects is required to better understand the degree to which the human reproductive system can mend itself.

Adopting a healthy lifestyle in general might aid in your recuperation. Avoiding junk food, eating a balanced diet, exercising frequently, and getting enough sleep may all help you keep your hormone levels in check.


Quitting alcohol completely may help you reverse its effects on your hormone levels. However, depending on your degree of alcohol use, your body might take months or even years to recover. Some of the damage may be irreversible. Most people assume that abstaining from alcohol will result in at least a partial recovery. More research, however, is required.

In Summary

  • Heavy alcohol intake may reduce testosterone levels and reduce fertility.
  • Men who consume more than 15 drinks a week are considered to be heavy drinkers.
  • Quitting or reducing your alcohol use to a healthy level may help reverse some of the harm caused by persistent drinking.

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