Men’s testosterone levels have dropped over 20% in the last 20 years.
Ongoing research has revealed many factors contributing to lower testosterone among men. A modern, sedentary lifestyle has plagued men leading to unhealthy diet choices, increased stress, and poor sleep.
Moreover, endocrine disruptors in plastics, pesticides, and pollutants can interfere with testosterone production. An aging population could also be the cause since testosterone declines with age.
But how do you avoid falling into this statistic?
If you’re interested in the answer to this question, keep reading. You can nail the basics of maximizing your testosterone. But only guys who are on NoFap will enjoy a boost above their normal levels. We call this the NoFap advantage.
Why should I even care Mr.MindBlowing? Why is testosterone so important?
Higher testosterone levels are associated with more muscle mass and strength. It’s also a hormone that influences sexual function, cognitive function, mood, and energy levels. Lower testosterone is also known to place individuals at increased risk of metabolic conditions such as type 2 diabetes. We’ll unpack these benefits and more in this article.
What Is Testosterone?
Testosterone is a hormone. A hormone is a chemical naturally produced by the body that sends messages to molecules. These messages instruct cells on how to do their job.
For example, testosterone is made in the testicles and released into the bloodstream. It can then bind to androgen receptors on muscle cells. It initiates processes in the cell that increase muscle-protein synthesis. This results in muscle gains and repair.
Aside from maintaining muscle, testosterone is also responsible for bone density, facial hair, body hair, sperm production, and libido.
We hear many guys that say they’re “really horny” so they must have high testosterone. This may be true but it’s usually not the case. If you’re feeling the urge to watch porn, it’s likely not your natural sex drive. It’s your addiction talking. Your brain has been chemically altered to crave porn.
A Brief Overview of NoFap
Etymology: NoFap comes from the word “fap” which is the sound produced when a dude masturbates (fap fap fap fap). The word “no” should be clear to you. Put the two together and voila! It translates into a resolution guys make when they notice their masturbatory habits becoming problematic. It’s simple to get started, just stop watching porn and masturbating.
But it goes a bit deeper. What is the actual problem here? Is it masturbation, porn, or both? And what effect does this have on your testosterone?
TL;DR — porn is the problem.
Click here to read about its scary effects on your brain.
NoFap sounds easier than it is. But it takes many months or years to be fully free of porn use. Even a decrease in PMO (porn, masturbation, orgasm) is a win. The idea is that NoFap should be seen as a gradual change where men strive to improve over time. Moreover, the reasons for doing NoFap and the goals men have are different.
Some men aren’t addicted to porn, but they may want to rid themselves of the habit for religious or moral reasons. Others notice an increase in energy, more motivation, and improved sleep among other benefits. The reasons for doing NoFap boil down to guys getting what they want from life. Women, money, status, and virtue. And testosterone is the key that unlocks that.
Is there science-based evidence that suggests long-term testosterone gains or drawbacks from NoFap? It’s unclear.
But there is a popular study from 2002 (one that’s credited to the genesis of the NoFap movement) that suggests a 145.7% spike of serum testosterone on the seventh day of abstinence from PMO.
|Note: Some claim this 2002 study was retracted which was proven false. Click here to read more.
On the second to fifth day, testosterone was stable due to abstinence. On the seventh day, it’d spike, and on the eighth day, it’d go back down to baseline. You may be thinking, what’s the point of doing NoFap for testosterone gains if it just goes back down? This is a popular critique of this study, and it’s sometimes used to “debunk” NoFap.
Let’s take you on a thought exercise to counter this critique.
Follow along — you have a full day to reap the benefits of higher testosterone. What you choose to do during this time will determine your long-term testosterone levels.
For example, you could speak to more women in public and try to set up a date. If you’re successful and end up with a partner, it’ll elevate your testosterone. This study from Farrelly and colleagues shows that men in new relationships have higher testosterone levels on average than men in long-term relationships.
You could also go to the gym. Resistance training is associated with higher testosterone. And the more you have, the more likely you are to engage in activities that boost your testosterone.
Apply this idea to the realm of wealth. Increasing your net worth is easier with more testosterone. And what comes with more money? Higher-quality mates. More money. More testosterone. These are all factors that’ll increase your testosterone further. It’s an upward spiral of success. And all because you used a boost in testosterone correctly. Instead of seeing it as a temporary boost, focus on how to use it.
A study in January of 2023 explored the effects of testosterone on the pain threshold of biological males. It established that high levels of testosterone increase the pain threshold. What’s interesting is that biological females experienced higher pain intensity with estrogen fluctuations.
Why You Want Higher Testosterone
You want significant levels of testosterone because it’ll enhance your life. How? A masculine appearance is seen as more trustworthy. People will want to do business with you and you’re more likely to move up the ladder. Moreover, it’s what most women are looking for — a masculine man. Not only men but women and children will respect you more.
Being more masculine increases the pool of people attracted to you. This gives you access to higher-quality potential mates when choosing a partner.
More energy, a better memory, and spatial abilities will allow you to perform well in many endeavors. Add to that better bone density and muscle mass make physical tasks easier. This means a better metabolism, contributing to easier weight management and a superior body composition.
Your success is tied to your testosterone.
A study from 2015 showed that traders made significantly more profit when their morning testosterone was higher. They took higher-quality financial risks. This may have been due to their improved decision-making and greater affinity to risk. Both are benefits of high testosterone.
Lifestyle Factors That Affect Testosterone
Now let’s delve into some factors that affect your testosterone:
- Activity level: Resistance training such as lifting weights has been shown to increase testosterone levels.
- Diet choices: Some processed foods contain ingredients that lower testosterone. Examples are trans fats, soy products, and processed grains. Also, excessive caloric intake may lead to an unhealthy body fat percentage. This can negatively affect your hormonal balance.
- Stress: Chronic stress leads to higher cortisol. This can inhibit testosterone production.
- Sleep: The quality and quantity of your sleep is essential for overall health. Poor sleep affects hormone regulation which can decrease testosterone.
- Age: On average, testosterone declines with age. If you have chronically low testosterone and improve your habits — you may see a rise in testosterone despite your age. A condition known as hypogonadism (low testosterone) affects 40% of men over 45 and more than half of men over 80.
- Endocrine disruptors: Minimize exposure to chemicals found in pesticides and plastics among other endocrine disruptors. These can interfere with testosterone production and regulation.
- Alcohol: Chronic, excessive alcohol consumption may lower testosterone. Moderate consumption can have negative effects, so quitting altogether is the best option here.
- Smoking: Smoking affects your overall health negatively. Testosterone levels will take a dip since it interrupts your hormonal balance.
- Social interactions: A healthy social life has been associated with higher testosterone. Conversely, social isolation and loneliness may lead to negative effects on testosterone.
Impact of Porn on Testosterone
You’ll notice there’s one lifestyle habit we haven’t covered yet, porn.
That’s because the relationship between porn consumption and testosterone levels is a complex and debated topic. And we want to cover it in detail. We wish we could give you an easy answer, but there isn’t clear scientific proof that porn impacts testosterone significantly.
Some studies reveal that short-term exposure to sexual content can temporarily increase testosterone.
Just because there isn’t a direct impact on porn use and long-term testosterone levels, doesn’t mean you should fap endlessly. We want you to apply the same reasoning we used above. Consider the ripple effect of porn use in other areas of your life.
For instance, if you’ve just whacked off to a dozen women in high def — you won’t be motivated to talk to women in real life. Porn use is an isolating activity. This means you’re more likely to end up alone, and that harms your testosterone levels.
Also, think about when you use porn. Maybe it’s at night, robbing you of sleep. It’ll cut into your morning hours which could be time you could use for the gym. That gym session multiplied over weeks and months is exactly where the testosterone gains come from.
On the flip side, quitting porn will enhance your hormonal balance. But only if you get off your ass and do something with the extra time and energy. Only quitting PMO isn’t enough.
If abstinence from PMO doesn’t increase your testosterone levels long-term, why do we experience “superpowers” related to higher testosterone (higher confidence, better mood, sleep, facial hair growth, etc)?
We’ll break down the personal experience of an unknown Redditor to explain this.
Whenever you ejaculate, there’s a decrease in your androgen receptors. They take up to 72 hours to recover. Testosterone binds to your androgen receptors, making use of it. This means your brain absorbs less testosterone after ejaculation. This poses two problems:
- If you ejaculate before your receptors have recovered, you may increase the time it takes for a full restoration of androgen receptor density. And many porn users ejaculate once a day. It’s likely there’s an exponential decrease after every ejaculation.
- Your brain notices the trend of your receptors decreasing. So even after a few days of NoFap, it doesn’t increase the density of receptors because it expects another decrease.
Why is this a problem? Well, the longer you’ve been doing this, the longer it takes before your brain decides to increase your receptors.
When your androgen receptor density starts increasing, your body absorbs testosterone more effectively, you don’t produce more of the hormone. This makes sense since you have more receptors that can bind to testosterone. This is where the “superpowers” come from.
What’s interesting is that this mechanism could be applied to dopamine as well. This comparative study looked at the difference in prolactin secretion after masturbation, and coitus. Prolactin was 400% greater in participants who had partnered sex.
Prolactin is an indicator of sexual satiety. The more you have, the more your brain thinks you’re sexually satisfied. It decreases arousal by inhibiting dopaminergic processes. But what exactly does this mean? Take a break from artificially satisfying yourself and you’ll have less prolactin in your system. Your body won’t be inhibiting your dopamine and you’ll find that healthy activities conducive to your recovery feel fun again. Go to the gym, take a walk, read a book, or cook a healthy meal.
How to Incorporate NoFap in Your Life
Here’s a framework to get you started on incorporating NoFap into your life. Everything mentioned here is fundamental to the lifeforce mastery program:
- Set goals: Formulate your “why” — do you want to boost your confidence? Be more focused? Be a better partner to your significant other? Whatever the reasons, write them down.
- Educate yourself: Understand the harm porn causes to your body and society. Learn the positive impact of quitting and your potential for recovery. Knowing the science behind it will help you stay committed.
- Stay productive: A major reason guys stray off the path is boredom. Pursue hobbies, be social, and get out of your comfort zone.
- Trial and error: You’ll relapse many times, but don’t get discouraged. NoFap is a season of discovery in your life. Treat each relapse as information. Figure out why you relapsed (time, place, mood) and use the data to prevent future slips.
- Support: Share your journey with a partner, or friend, or connect with people online. Talking to others serves as a great outlet for pent-up emotions. It also holds you accountable. And those who are experienced can share their knowledge with you.
A potential challenge that may come up is flatline. Flatline is a time during your recovery when you may feel depressed, have a loss of libido, lack motivation, and experience insomnia among other things. There are many theories behind why flatlines happen, click here for a guide on the symptoms, causes, stages, and what to do if you find yourself in a flatline.
There’s a complex interplay of genetics, environment, and lifestyle that decides your testosterone levels. Just because you’re not beating your meat doesn’t mean you can’t have a poor testosterone level.
You should maximize testosterone from other sources before you look at NoFap as a fix. If you’re getting poor sleep, or your diet is out of whack, fix those factors first. NoFap is a supplemental practice that boosts healthy testosterone levels.
As always, keep fighting the good fight. There are a host of personal and societal benefits to NoFap. You’re in a fight to improve yourself, and the world holistically. We encourage you to press forward regardless of why you’re pursuing NoFap.