Testosterone is one of the crucial building blocks in making a man masculine, it boosts sexual function and helps us become stronger. It should come as no surprise that many men, especially as age slowly creeps up, look for ways to naturally optimize and increase testosterone production. With veganism on the rise, and more men than ever before deciding to take it up as part of their lifestyle, it begs the question “what is the impact of going vegan on testosterone?”
Being vegan is often associated with some negative stereotypes, such as being a “soy boy”, or relatively irritating. In reality, there are actually a host of great reasons why men might want to become vegan, which have nothing at all to do with animal welfare.
The Effects of Going Vegan on Testosterone
Veganism is more popular than ever. You may have even been on a date with a vegan and had the lifestyle recommended to you. If you’re looking to gain respect from women, going vegan can actually help you in that pursuit.
About 79% of vegans are women, which means that male vegans are a rare breed. People are far more likely to want to date and hook up with people who share their ideals, and you could be a strong contender in this niche where few men are available. Keep in mind, you’ll have to actually care and share the values of these women, as they’ll be able to sniff out a liar. However, if veganism enables you to have more success in dating and sex, this could cause a natural boost in testosterone.
As for the actual direct effects of a vegan diet on testosterone? There are essentially none.
Vegans had higher testosterone levels than vegetarians and meat-eaters, but this was offset by higher levels of sex hormone-binding globulin. There were no differences between the diet groups in free testosterone. Omnivorous testosterone and veganism testosterone levels are identical.
Free testosterone, as opposed to total testosterone, is associated with the benefits we expect from testosterone. The increase in total testosterone is of no significance when it comes to increasing libido and expanding muscle-building capacity, as it is unfortunately canceled out by other factors the body generates in response. Veganism testosterone is real but has no direct benefit.
This, however, doesn't mean that veganism has no effect on testosterone in indirect ways. In fact, there are quite a few beneficial changes veganism can bring about that increase not only your natural testosterone but also improve your sex and dating life.
Vegan weight loss and testosterone
People looking to get in better shape and find more dating success often lean towards “fad diets” to try to shed a few pounds. Most of these have no actual scientific basis that makes them more effective than simply cutting your calories while maintaining a regular diet.
In fact, cutting calories is really the only way you can lose weight, fancy diet or not. Thankfully, veganism generally restricts you to foods that are fulfilling, yet tend to be on the lower calorie spectrum. As a result, individuals who take up a vegan diet tend to lose weight.
This loss in weight, specifically fat mass, also greatly assists in increasing testosterone production. This is because moderate obesity leads to a significant decrease in testosterone production, and available free testosterone. Similar results can occur from a vegetarian diet too, which can lead to vegetarian testosterone levels being higher than those in overweight, omnivorous individuals.
Vegan testosterone and sex
In the vegan-friendly Netflix documentary “The Game Changers,” which is produced by none other than six-time Mr. Olympia winner Arnold Schwarzenegger, it is claimed that a vegan diet can make erections last 3 times longer, and have them 9% harder.
As fantastic as this sounds, there isn’t any actual scientific evidence to prove these claims.
However, according to some individuals' on forums such as Reddit, a vegan diet can help in boosting one's self-image and overall satisfaction with their appearance. A confidence boost can have major implications when it comes to dating and sex, as both men and women rate confidence as being an extremely attractive quality in a partner.
Women aren’t interested in sleeping with a man with no confidence, so it’s important to understand how to present yourself in a way that women love.
Plant-based testosterone and hair loss
Following a plant-based diet puts you in a bit of a strange limbo when it comes to hair loss. Both vegan and vegetarian testosterone are like that of an omnivore, yet both groups are more likely to experience hair loss.
The oddity of this phenomenon is that, at the same time, vegans and vegetarians are less likely to experience total balding as opposed to omnivorous men. Thankfully, whether you’re balding or not, it doesn’t really matter. The vast majority of women are just as happy to date a balding man, as they are to date a man with a full head of hair.
Following a plant-based diet won't put you at any risk with the ladies! Hair implant surgery is also an option, they use your own hairs from donor spots on your body, so no animals are harmed. The confidence boost can also benefit testosterone.
Are there plant-based testosterone supplements?
Certain online groups swear by plant-based testosterone boosters such as ashwagandha and ginseng. Claims that both can increase free testosterone have been around for ages, and while they certainly can provide health benefits in other forms, there is no strong evidence that either can actually boost testosterone.
Ecdysteroids can be found naturally from plant-based sources, they are sometimes taken as a supplement for muscle growth. They are ineffective but often marketed as a great source of testosterone for vegans and vegetarians. We are not plants and naturally should not expect “plant steroids” to be particularly effective on us.
In addition, ecdysteroids are not the same as synthetic anabolic steroids, which are very well studied, and are infamous for their testosterone-increasing, muscle-building effect.
Synthetic anabolic steroids are not animal products, making them “vegan friendly”. All of the vegan bodybuilders competing at a world-class level are on steroids. Otherwise, it would be impossible to compete against bodybuilders eating meat, and are also on steroids.
In short, there really isn't anything you can take, plant-based or not, to raise your testosterone levels. A healthier lifestyle is your best bet, in the form of exercise and an acceptable body fat range. Individuals with naturally low testosterone should visit a doctor, who will likely suggest regular shots of intramuscular testosterone, known as “TRT” or testosterone replacement therapy.
Dating as a vegan
There are a wide range of great dating apps out there that can help you find fellow vegans. Our personal favorite is eHarmony because the site actively matches you with people who have the same lifestyle. So whether you're a vegan who's just starting out, a pescetarian who's working his way towards being vegan, or just open to becoming vegan someday, eHarmony has a huge number of users to choose from.
As for other options, there's even a dating app specifically for vegans called “Grazer,” and it’s outperforming Bumble’s “friend finder” feature. It's a pretty niche site that doesn't have as many members as eHarmony. But if you're strict about only meeting fellow vegans, it's worth a shot.
Vegan individuals tend to also hang out around coffee shops that specifically cater to their dietary requirements. You could have a ton of success meeting vegan and vegetarian women around these areas, and you’ll conveniently already be near great coffee for a first date! Just make sure you know how to have a coffee date like a pro, you don’t want to mess things up with the vegan beauty you’ve just attracted.
Many vegans also choose to embrace other positive activities, such as using recyclable, or reusable cups and straws. You’re bound to earn extra points in your date's mind if you show her that you care about other topics like sustainability and eco-friendly brands.
She probably won’t be too impressed by your vegan lifestyle if you're walking around in clothes from brands that promote and utilize unsustainable practices, or animal products.
Sex with vegans: more complex than you’d think
If vegan women don’t want to eat animal-based products, the last place they’ll want them is inside their intimate parts. Remember that not all condoms are vegan-friendly. It’s crucial that you buy from a brand that doesn't rest their latex condoms in casein (a milk byproduct) to render them smoother.
Nothing's surer to kill the mood with a vegan woman than having her realize you’ve just infiltrated her with a non-vegan product. Not only will you go home feeling unsatisfied, but you’ll also go home feeling stupid. You can check out some vegan safe condoms here.
Condoms aren’t the only things where non-vegan chaos can ensue during sex. Many lubricants are also totally unfit for use by vegans, as they can contain multiple ingredients which are byproducts of animals. Into the Wylde makes vegan-safe lubricants you can use, or you can simply look for some alternatives online. Lubrication is generally more of an afterthought, but if you mess up here, the only afterthought you’ll be having is the great sex you could have had with the gorgeous vegan who just stormed out your door.
Speaking of afterthoughts, there’s more!
Plenty of sex toys are made using animal byproducts, you’ll really need to look into each and every toy you purchase, or simply shop only from vendors who sell sex toys specifically made for vegans. Honestly, you’re better off just letting her bring her own toys. Focus on these big turn ons which are sure to make any girl go wild, vegan ones included.
Can being a vegan negatively affect my dating life?
You might be worried that becoming a vegan could limit your options, and turn many women away from you. Have no fear, as long as you aren’t judgemental of omnivorous women, or actively try to turn them vegan, they’re very unlikely to care that you don’t eat meat.
In fact, men are actually far more likely to judge a woman for being vegan, than a woman is to judge a man. This is mostly due to preconceptions that vegans are always on the alert to convert non-vegans to their way of life. This may be true for some vegans, but for most, it’s just a personal life choice they don’t discuss often.
As far as your options, your dating pool won’t shrink, quite the opposite. It will most likely actually expand, as many vegan women are somewhat picky about who they date due to their strict moral code.
By having a larger dating pool, and access to women who turn away most other men, you’ve got a greater chance of success in finding hookups, and a longtime partner. Men who hook up more often have more testosterone too, so long as they keep at it.
While being a vegan won't increase your testosterone in any meaningful way, there are still plenty of benefits to taking up the lifestyle. You could lose weight, find love, feel better about yourself, and get involved in more sports than you may have before. Your dating life will probably hit an upswing too, as you meet like-minded people. There are many great places you can meet women to get laid, and vegan women are bound to hang out around these places too. Just remember to use vegan condoms and lubrication once you get her home, or you’re going to have a bad time!