Does belly fat affects your testosterone levels?

Testosterone is responsible for the growth and development of male characteristics like deepened voice, muscle growth, bone strength.

It will start to decline as you age, that's one of the reasons why your bone strength and muscle loss happens as you age.

Testosterone will help to prevent muscle loss as well as fat gain.

Does fat or obesity affect testosterone levels?

From a study published in the journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism its shown that obese people have 30% less testosterone than ordinary people. (study 1)

Hypogonadism is a condition in which the testosterone levels will be too low. This condition is common in males with morbid obesity. Obesity-related hypogonadism will be reversed with weight loss.(study 2)

Does fat tissue increase aromatization?

Testosterone is converted to estrogen by aromatase enzyme. Studies show that the stromal cell of the adipose tissue contains the aromatase enzyme. Stromal cells of fatty tissue are the source of increased estradiol in obese persons.(Study 3)

Not overall fat; belly fat causes more aromatization

Your body fat level has a direct impact on aromatization. From a study published in the aging male journal, it shows that your belly fat have more effect then visceral fat. Aromatize activity increase with belly fat.(study 4)

The higher levels of aromatase cause a decreased release of gonadotropin-releasing hormone from the pituitary gland. Causing decreased production of gonadotropins, and leading to lower luteinizing hormone and ultimately lower testosterone levels. (study 5) (study 6

Our BMI had a negative correlation with testosterone levels and have a positive relationship with estradiol.(study 7)

Do you hear of DHT?

DHT is a more potent androgen than testosterone. Testosterone in your blood gets converted to DHT.  Aromatase will not metabolize your DHT, but don't be happy. The DHT will be converted to inactive metabolites in the fat tissue.(study 8)

DHT inactivation happens most in the subcutaneous and visceral fat tissues. The DHT inactivation rates are higher in obese people.(study 9)

Notes: for obese people
Their testosterone production will be low
Existing testosterone will be converted to estrogen
DHT a more potent androgen will be converted to inactive metabolites in the fat tissue.
The three processes will be accelerated by belly fat.

Testosterone deficiency and weight gain

Testosterone deficiency causes weight gain and fat deposition. The increase in fat causes an increase in aromatization and can lead to lower testosterone levels further lowering your testosterone levels. But this is not permanent. It can be reversed.

Obesity affects free and total testosterone

Moderate obesity leads to a reduction in total testosterone due to insulin resistance associated reductions in SHBG. While severe obesity can lead to lower free testosterone levels due to the suppression of the hypothalamic-pituitary-testicular (HPT) axis. (study 10)

Even testosterone therapy suggests favorable changes in body fat and distribution patterns. (study 11)

Testosterone deficiency causes muscle loss

Testosterone deficiency can lead to loss of muscle mass. It can reduce energy expenditure and causes fat gain. The fat gain due to testosterone deficiency is caused by a lack of muscle mass. (study 12)

Androgens like testosterone and DHT act directly on fat cells by upregulating the adrenoreceptors, thus activates lipolysis.

You can increase your testosterone levels by supplementation and exercise. I have started a case study to 2x my testosterone levels. You can read more about the case study.

If you like the video please subscribe to our channel and don't forget to like the video.

How to burn that belly fat

We can burn fat by putting your body in a calorie deficit state. You can achieve this by eating fewer calories and spending more.

Here we will discuss about burning calories through NEAT and exercise.

Diet and nutrition is a vast topic. I think it needs an entire article to cover the subject.

Let's lift weights

Lifting weights cause muscle growth and burn some calories. This, in turn, causes an increase in resting energy expenditure. Muscles will cause you to drop weight and burn that extra fat.  Also lifting weights cause your body to change to favorable body compositions. (study 13)

Non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT)

Your body will burn fat if there is a deficit in calories intake. You can keep your body in a calorie deficit state by taking fewer calories and spending more.

An easy and less daunting method is NEAT. You can increase the calories expend with NEAT activities.

As I said earlier exercise helps to burn more calories, but it's not necessary to join a gym and start lifting weights. Your activities other than exercise can add up and may burn more calories than workout alone. If you lead an active lifestyle, your metabolism will be higher.

You can use stairs instead of using an elevator, have a small walk during lunch break. Is your grocery store is near, walk and purchase.

Move more.

These activities will add calories and helps  to keep your body in a calorie deficit state. Your body will use fat to fuel your activities.(study 14)

Exercise and include more NEAT activities in your daily life; you will burn more calories. Your body fat will get reduced.

This will helps to raise your testosterone levels.


  1. Tajar, A., Forti, G., O'Neill, T., Lee, D., Silman, A., Finn, J., Bartfai, G., Boonen, S., Casanueva, F., Giwercman, A., Han, T., Kula, K., Labrie, F., Lean, M., Pendleton, N., Punab, M., Vanderschueren, D., Huhtaniemi, I. and Wu, F. (2010). Characteristics of Secondary, Primary, and Compensated Hypogonadism in Aging Men: Evidence from the European Male Ageing Study. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, [online] 95(4), pp.1810-1818. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  2. Pellitero, S., Olaizola, I., Alastrue, A., Martínez, E., Granada, M., Balibrea, J., Moreno, P., Serra, A., Navarro-Díaz, M., Romero, R. and Puig-Domingo, M. (2012). Hypogonadotropic Hypogonadism in Morbidly Obese Males Is Reversed After Bariatric Surgery.Obesity Surgery, [online] 22(12), pp.1835-1842. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  3. CLELAND, W., MENDELSON, C. and SIMPSON, E. (1983). Aromatase Activity of Membrane Fractions of Human Adipose Tissue Stromal Cells and Adipocytes*. Endocrinology, [online] 113(6), pp.2155-2160. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  4. Vermeulen A, e. (2019). Estradiol in elderly men. - PubMed - NCBI. [online] Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  5. George, J., Millar, R. and Anderson, R. (2010). Hypothesis: Kisspeptin Mediates Male Hypogonadism in Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes. Neuroendocrinology, [online] 91(4), pp.302-307. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  6. Hayes, F., DeCruz, S., Seminara, S., Boepple, P. and Crowley, W. (2001). Differential Regulation of Gonadotropin Secretion by Testosterone in the Human Male: Absence of a Negative Feedback Effect of Testosterone on Follicle-Stimulating Hormone Secretion1. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, [online] 86(1), pp.53-58. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  7. Vermeulen, A., Kaufman, J., Deslypere, J. and Thomas, G. (1993). Attenuated luteinizing hormone (LH) pulse amplitude but normal LH pulse frequency, and its relation to plasma androgens in hypogonadism of obese men. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, [online] 76(5), pp.1140-1146. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  8. Blouin, K., Richard, C., Bélanger, C., Dupont, P., Daris, M., Laberge, P., Luu-The, V. and Tchernof, A. (2003). Local Androgen Inactivation in Abdominal Visceral Adipose Tissue. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, [online] 88(12), pp.5944-5950. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  9. Blouin, K., Richard, C., Brochu, G., Hould, F., Lebel, S., Marceau, S., Biron, S., Luu-The, V. and Tchernof, A. (2006). Androgen inactivation and steroid-converting enzyme expression in abdominal adipose tissue in men. Journal of Endocrinology, [online] 191(3), pp.637-649. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  10. Grossmann, M., Tang Fui, M. and Dupuis, P. (2014). Lowered testosterone in male obesity: Mechanisms, morbidity and management. Asian Journal of Andrology, [online] 16(2), p.223. Available at:;year=2014;volume=16;issue=2;spage=223;epage=231;aulast=Tang  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  11. Allan, C. and McLachlan, R. (2010). Androgens and obesity. Current Opinion in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Obesity, [online] 17(3), pp.224-232. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  12. Santosa, S., Khosla, S., McCready, L. and Jensen, M. (2010). Effects of Estrogen and Testosterone on Resting Energy Expenditure in Older Men. Obesity, [online] 18(12), pp.2392-2394. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  13. Santosa, S., Khosla, S., McCready, L. and Jensen, M. (2010). Effects of Estrogen and Testosterone on Resting Energy Expenditure in Older Men. Obesity, [online] 18(12), pp.2392-2394. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
  14. Levine, J. (2004). Nonexercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT): environment and biology. American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism, [online] 286(5), pp.E675-E685. Available at:  [Accessed 14 Apr. 2019].
How helpful was this article? Click a star to rate.
Arun Kumar T

Arun is the founder @workoutable. He is Learning different ways to transform his body from fat to fit. Himself as a crash test dummy, experimenting with his body. He is trying to help people to transform their body.