How Does Posture and Stress Affect Male Sex Hormones?
Well, in short, poor posture puts stress on the body and potentially an increased risk of inflammation. With prolonged stress and inflammation, the body begins to produce cortisol, the stress hormone which increases physiological response during “fight or flight” stress activation. In the fight or flight mode, the body’s top priority is survival so reproduction (and therefore, testosterone production becomes secondary). As a result, high cortisol levels are correlated with lower levels of testosterone.
Decreased testosterone is linked to:
- Lower libido
- Lower sperm count and motility
- Erectile dysfunction/performance anxiety
- Decreased muscle mass
- Mood and sleeping issues
- Metabolic and cardiovascular diseases
In addition to the aforementioned symptomology, excess cortisol can lead to extra weight gain and belly fat. Residing in the belly fat is aromatase, an enzyme responsible for converting testosterone into estrogen. This means that the more belly fat a man has, the higher the estrogen to testosterone ratio will tend to be.
Here are a few ways to balance out stress and hormones:
- Sleep at least 7-8 hours/night
- Let your body rest after intense workouts
- Regular exercise
- Testosterone replacement therapy