Though the hormone estrogen is usually associated with women, a small amount of the hormone is also necessary in men. High estrogen levels can cause unwanted side effects in males such as decreased sex drive, fatigue, weight gain, prostate problems and enlarged breasts (gynecomastia). As men age, estrogen levels tend to increase. Certain lifestyle and diet changes can help men decrease estrogen levels and increase testosterone in the body.
Maintain a healthy diet that is well-balanced and high in fruits and vegetables. Exercise regularly--at least 30 minutes a day. Engage in moderate- to high-intensity workouts such as aerobics, bicycling, running, walking or weight training. This will increase muscle mass and help decrease estrogen levels.
Reduce consumption of alcohol and limit intake to no more than one drink per day. Alcohol affects the liver's ability to break down estrogen, resulting in increased estrogen levels in the body.
Avoid or limit consumption of soy protein, which is nearly identical to the chemical makeup of estrogen and can mimic some of the hormone's effects.
Take supplements of the vitamin zinc--50 mg twice per day. Lower frequency or dosages when symptoms begin to diminish. Zinc helps convert estrogen into testosterone and can lower levels.
Explore hormone replacement therapy, which comes in a variety of prescription medication options such as gelatin capsule pills, injections, topical creams and gels, skin patches and pellet forms. The pellets are implanted under the skin by a physician. The pellets and capsules usually release the highest level of hormones compared to the other forms.
Make sure to consult your physician before implementing any lifestyle change to alter hormone levels.