low carb -> low libido

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low carb -> low libido


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Old 07-18-2019, 20:44   #1
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Default low carb -> low libido

Hi. Not diabetic here (, although a1c is higher than I'd like, ) and I am looking to lose some weight. I've lost five pounds in the past month by shaving off some carbs here and there, and cutting back somewhat on the quantity of food I consume. I still consume at least 100 grams of carbs daily, maybe 120 grams. I have been generally Paleo for 10 years, meaning no gluten or dairy, but I do consume a modest amount of rice daily (..basmati or brown rice).

I am thinking keto/LCHF would be a good diet to keep me at an ideal weight AND keep my a1c at a more ideal level. Unfortunately the experience I had a several years back gives me pause. When my diet was strictly no starchy veggies or grains of any kind my weight dropped and I got very lean in no time; I looked great and felt decent overall (, although my weightlifting at the gym suffered). It was a challenging diet to start but far from torture. Yet I could not sustain it because my libido tanked to near zero. I noticed my testosterone level was only about 400 at that time, abnormally low for someone in his mid-50s. Adding carbs back improved the situation noticeably right away but it took YEARS too get my libido back to normal (..and a testosterone level of 570, per the last test).

Now certainly there are many possible causes for low libido/low testosterone. Has anyone heard of a low carb diet triggering this situation? I truly think my low carb diet was the key factor but the fact it took years to recover makes me think other things were also involved.


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Old 07-19-2019, 14:51   #2
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I’m not somewhere where I can research more extensively right now. But in three years of examining the pluses and minuses of LCHF/keto, I do not recall lower libido being mentioned as a common side effect (on the order of, say, “keto breath”).

And, though “anecdote” is not the singular of “data”, it absolutely has not been my experience. If anything, the loss of weight and improved energy levels and certain (shall we say) *cosmetic* improvements added to my libido. (Source: male, near 60.)

Not to dismiss your previous experience at all — it was real to you — but I’m firmly convinced that, on most people, the biggest sex organ is between the ears and that perceived success or failure begins there.

I’m interested to hear others’ comments on this.

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A1c 10-30-2018 still 5.6 with no meds. Thank you LCHF!
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