Cigars are a symbol of luxury and relaxation for centuries, and smoking them has been associated with a wide range of health effects, both positive and negative. One question that frequently arises among cigar aficionados is whether smoking cigars can increase testosterone levels in men. Testosterone is an important hormone that plays a critical role in many aspects of male physiology, including muscle mass, bone density, libido, and overall well-being. In this article, we will explore the question, “Does smoking cigars increase testosterone?” in detail, drawing on the latest scientific research on the subject.
Let’s start by understanding what testosterone is and what role it plays in the body. Testosterone is a hormone that is primarily produced in the testes of men and to a lesser extent in the ovaries of women. It plays a vital role in the development and maintenance of male sexual characteristics, such as facial hair, deepening of the voice, and muscle mass. Testosterone also plays a role in bone density, red blood cell production, and mood regulation.
The Effects of Nicotine on the Body
Cigars are a form of tobacco product, and as such, they contain nicotine, which is a highly addictive substance that has been shown to have a range of physiological effects on the body. Nicotine acts as a stimulant and can cause the release of adrenaline, which increases heart rate, blood pressure, and overall energy levels. Nicotine also stimulates the release of dopamine, a neurotransmitter associated with pleasure and reward.
Beneficial effects of testosterone
- Helps in improving Heart health: Testosterone helps in red blood cell production through bone marrow. Low levels of testosterone can lead to cardiovascular risks.
- Increased lean body mass, strength and stamina: Testosterone is responsible for increasing muscle mass; leaner body mass helps in controlling weight and increases energy. So, people with leaner body mass who complain about no increase in strength, it’s time you combine your strength training and exercise with doses of testosterone from natural or artificial supplements.
- Stronger bones: Testosterone plays a very important role in bone mineral density. Bone mineral density decreases with age as testosterone levels drop.
- Better verbal memory and Spatial abilities: Testosterone is responsible for thinking abilities and faster processing speed, low testosterone levels can also increase the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
- Better libido: Testosterone levels rise in response to sexual arousal and activity. Men with higher levels of testosterone usually have greater sexual activity.
- Improved mood/sense of wellbeing: Lower testosterone levels are associated with poorer quality of life often with symptoms of depression, fatigue and irritability.
Does Smoking Cigars Increase Testosterone?
There is little evidence to suggest that do smoking cigars can increase or decrease testosterone levels in men. In fact, some studies have suggested that smoking cigars may have the opposite effect on testosterone levels.
Research Studies on “Does Smoking Cigars Increase Testosterone”
Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism publish that smoking cigars has association with a decrease in testosterone levels in men. The study, which included over 1,000 men, found that men who smoked cigars had lower testosterone levels than non-smokers, even after controlling for factors such as age, body mass index, and alcohol use.
Journal of Andrology also publish that smoking cigars also has association with a decrease in semen quality in men. The study, which included over 300 men, found that men who smoked cigars had lower sperm counts and motility than non-smokers, even after controlling for factors such as age, body mass index, and alcohol use.
Possible Factors Contributing to Decreased Testosterone While these studies suggest that smoking cigars may have a negative effect on testosterone levels and sperm quality, it is important to note that they are observational studies and cannot prove causation. It is possible that other factors, such as lifestyle habits or pre-existing health conditions, may be contributing to the observed effects.
Does smoking lower testosterone levels?
Though there are unsettling debates about smoking reducing testosterone levels, studies showed significant differences in serum testosterone levels being lower among smokers as compared to non-smokers. Indicating that smoking reduces testosterone levels. Although the mechanism behind why smoking reduces testosterone levels is unclear. On the contrary, latest evidence shows that testosterone levels in both smokers and nonsmokers indicated almost same testosterone levels, this result indicated testosterone levels probably remain unaffected by smoking cigarettes.
So, you see the confusion still continues …
But science never fails to answer that smoking reduces zinc levels in the body which is one of the principal minerals required to produce testosterone. This indicates that men with poor dietary habits and smoking habit can have zinc deficiency which may lead to low testosterone levels.
Natural ways to increase your testosterone levels
Herbs like Ginseng, ashwagandha, pine bark extract, saw palmetto
- Vitamins like Vitamin D, dehydroepiandrosterone, L- arginine and Zinc
- Foods like garlic, tuna, egg yolks and oysters
NOTE: These can boost your testosterone levels only in combination with strength or resistance training.
Other Health Effects of Smoking Cigars
In addition to the potential negative effects on testosterone levels, smoking cigars also associates with a range of other health effects, including an increased risk of cancer, heart disease, and respiratory problems. Quitting smoking, eating a healthy diet, and engaging in regular exercise may all be beneficial for maintaining optimal testosterone levels and overall well-being.
Factors That May Affect Testosterone Levels
In addition to smoking cigars, there are several other factors that may affect testosterone levels in men. These include:
- Age: Testosterone levels naturally decrease with age, starting in the late 20s or early 30s.
- Body mass index (BMI): Men with a higher BMI may have lower testosterone levels.
- Alcohol use: Excessive alcohol consumption can decrease testosterone levels.
- Sleep: Lack of sleep or poor sleep quality may lower testosterone levels.
- Stress: Chronic stress can also lower testosterone levels.
It is important to note that while these factors may influence testosterone levels, they do not necessarily cause low testosterone. The effects of these factors may vary depending on the individual.
Potential Mechanisms for the Effects of Smoking on Testosterone Levels
The mechanisms by which smoking cigars may lower testosterone levels are not well understood. One theory is that the nicotine in cigars may interfere with the production of testosterone in the testes. Another theory is that the chemicals in cigars may damage the testes or other organs involved in testosterone production.
Overall, the evidence suggests that smoking cigars is not a reliable way to increase testosterone levels in men. In fact, smoking cigars may have the opposite effect on testosterone levels and sperm quality. If you are concerned about your testosterone levels, it is important to speak with a healthcare professional. Quitting smoking, eating a healthy diet, and engaging in regular exercise may all be beneficial for maintaining optimal testosterone levels and overall well-being.