Signs and Symptoms of High Estrogen in Men

You might have learned about the term estrogen in the context of hormone replacement therapy for women. 

But do you know estrogen is found in men too? 

The presence of estrogen in men is a normal finding. 

However, high levels of the hormone estrogen can lead to several problems. 

But what is estrogen? And what are high estrogen symptoms in men?

Keep reading to find out.

About Estrogen 

Hormones are specialized proteins produced by the body’s endocrine glands responsible for an array of roles. 

Estrogen is considered a female sex hormone, while testosterone is regarded as the male sex hormone. 

This is because these hormones impart specific sex-associated features (internal and external). 

In women, estrogen plays a crucial role in regulating the menstrual cycle.

You will find a high estrogen level in women and high testosterone in men, but that doesn’t mean that they are absent in the opposite sex. 

Estradiol

A special form of estrogen i.e. estradiol, is critical for masculinity. 

A study found that estradiol carries out the following roles in the male body:

  • Regulates the hypothalamic-pituitary-testicular axis
  • Controls reproductive function 
  • Monitors skeletal growth and metabolism 
  • Modulates body composition 

The normal estrogen levels in adult men are 10-60 picogram/ml (pg/ml) of blood. 

An estrogen level might be undetectable in prepubescent and pubescent males. 

But, when present, you might find up to 16 pg/ml in prepubescents and 60pg/ml in pubescents. 

Estrogen hormonal balance is critical for aging men, and levels greater than the average values can be problematic for men.

Get Your FREE Low Testosterone Diet Plan

  • The untimate testosterone boosting diet
  • combined with exercise & lifestyle advice
  • Developed exclusively by our nutritionist

By clicking “Download Now”, I agree to Ben's Natural Health Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.

High Estrogen Symptoms In Men

Below are some common high estrogen symptoms you may experience:

Erectile Dysfunction 

A high estradiol (E2) level is associated with erectile dysfunction, especially in type 2 diabetes patients. 

It was concluded in a 2020 study that higher serum estradiol levels and lower penile rigidity were seen in erectile dysfunction patients, thus establishing a direct link between erectile dysfunction and estrogen levels.

Gynecomastia 

A condition of abnormally large breasts in men is called gynecomastia. 

Excess estrogen levels in the body can lead to it. 

A study showed that estradiol stimulates ductal and glandular growth of breast tissues in men.

Another study found gynecomastia linked to abnormal hormone levels (estrogen) in young men.

Infertility 

Studies have found high levels of estrogen and low levels of testosterone in sterile men. 

It was found in a report that a large number of infertile men had high levels of estradiol. 

Thus, it is clear that high estrogen levels may lead to or at least increase the risk of male infertility

Moreover, it is believed that high estrogen leads to a fall in sperm levels.

Slow Growth 

Too much estrogen in the blood can delay the normal process of growth in young men. 

Young boys suffering from high estrogen often report delayed puberty.

Changes to Physique 

The raised levels of estrogen in males can present themselves as what we call unmanly physique and features that are characterized by:

  • Shrinked muscles 
  • Low bone density 
  • Hair loss (on all parts of the body)
  • Reduced growth of reproductive organs (penis and testicles)
  • Low sex drive and sperm concentration
  • Having trouble concentrating and focusing 

High estrogen levels affect muscles, tendons, and associated structures, leading to poor performance and increased risk of injury

The enlarged breasts and weak muscles act as factors for shyness and low self-esteem in young men.

Some patients have also reported having menopausal symptoms like hot flashes. 

Causes Of High Estrogen In Men

Abruptions in estrogen production can be paired with alterations in testosterone levels. 

In most cases, a rise in estrogen production links with reductions in testosterone levels.

The major causes of elevated estrogen in men are below:

Aromatase Excess Syndrome

Aromatase excess syndrome is a condition where there is an excess estrogen due to gene mutation. 

The main symptoms of the syndrome include:

  • Male gynecomastia during peri- or pubertal period 
  • Premature epiphyseal closure resulting in a short stature 
  • Elevated levels of estradiol in the blood 

Furthermore, mutations can affect aromatase gene expression that can cause excess production of estrogen.

Medications 

Certain drugs can skyrise the levels of estrogen in your body. 

The list of drugs includes:

  • Antibiotics 
  • Phenothiazines 
  • Phytoestrogens (such as gingko biloba and ginseng)

Stress

Chronic stress directly links to increases in estrogen levels. 

Persistent stress leads to the release of the cortisol hormone. 

This release then leads to the depletion of testosterone levels in the body. 

Studies show that low testosterone in turn links to a raised estradiol level. 

Therefore, stress and anxiety can be causative agents in the overproduction of estrogen in men.

Obesity 

A relationship between obesity and aromatase was found. 

Research showed that obesity can cause elevated estrogen levels and low testosterone levels.

Another study concluded that overweight/obesity was associated with lowered testosterone (and elevated estradiol level) in men. 

In addition to weight, depression was also a causative agent.

Aging 

Estrogen levels can fall with the increasing age. 

Therefore, low estrogen levels are often reported in the blood of older men.

Diet

Consuming large amounts of refined carbohydrates can increase body fat. 

Excessive fat and the carbohydrate diet both increase your propensity to have elevations of estrogen.

Liver Disorders

A hepatic disorder relates to alterations in estradiol levels in males. 

The liver issue might be an underlying issue.

Hypogonadism

Male hypogonadism is when the male’s body does not produce an optimal amount of male hormones (testosterone). 

Therefore, there is a lack of masculine growth in males with hypogonadism.

The infirmity directly links to lower than normal testosterone and higher estradiol levels.

Tumor 

Specific tumors or cancer can also shoot your estrogen levels.

Diagnosis of High Estrogen Levels

Your doctor should order a blood test for detecting estrogen levels. 

You should receive your test results within a week, where you can then appreciate the level of estrogen in picograms/milliliters. 

Complications Of Raised Estrogen 

Thyroid Dysfunction 

Overproduction of estrogen can also increase the risk of thyroid dysfunction in men, which presents as weight changes and chronic fatigue.  

Cardiovascular Issues 

Studies show that men experiencing acute myocardial infarction have hyperestrogenemia as compared to normal men. 

This is believed to be the underlying cause for thrombosis that eventually leads to acute MI.

A study suggests that high estrogen levels, high aromatase activity, and low androgen levels link with an unhealthy artery wall.

Therefore, men suffering from hyperestrogenemia (high blood estrogen levels) must be cautious about their heart health. 

Cancer 

As the American Cancer Society says, the risk of cancer increases with estrogen dominance.

Estrogen dominance is a state of too much estrogen in the body as compared to other sex hormones. 

The effects are most evident in cases of endometrial cancer in women.

Treatment 

There are many treatment options for the management of raised estrogen in men. 

Some of these strategies are:

Dietary Changes

Modifying your diet can be an obvious step in improving the overproduction of estrogen levels. 

You should add cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, kale, etc.), grapes (red), sesame seeds, and pomegranates to the diet while staying away from diets low in fiber. 

Try to limit carbohydrates in the diet too.

Medicine

Aromatase inhibitor drugs restrict the aromatase enzyme activity that is responsible for the conversion of androgens to estrogen. 

Studies show that aromatase inhibitors can revert gynecomastia.

Some common aromatase inhibitors are:

  • Letrozole 
  • Anastrozole 

Exercise

Maintaining a good weight can help you resolve problems caused by estrogen. 

You can start by doing light exercise and then switch up to cardio and other hectic exercises.

Then, losing weight reduces the burden on your muscles and bones and helps develop a better physique. 

Reduction in obesity will also help in alleviating the raised estrogen levels.

Conclusion 

Estrogen is a female hormone that is present in small quantities in men too. 

With increasing age and falling testosterone levels, this hormone tends to rise. 

However, in some cases, the issue can arise in pre-puberty, leading to multiple issues, including gynecomastia, infertility, erectile dysfunction, and epiphyseal fusion.

Stress, obesity, aromatase excess syndrome, and hypogonadism are causative agents.

And we can treat the condition with medicines and dietary modifications.

Next Up

estrogen blocker for men

Find out about our Natural Estrogen Blocker for Men: Estro Clear.

Sources

  1. Schulster M, Bernie AM, Ramasamy R. The role of estradiol in male reproductive function. Asian J Androl. 2016. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4854098/
  2. Russell N, Grossmann M. MECHANISMS IN ENDOCRINOLOGY: Estradiol as a male hormone. Eur J Endocrinol. 2019. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31096185/
  3. Dhole B., Kumar A. (2017) Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Testicular Axis. In: Kumar A., Sharma M. (eds) Basics of Human Andrology. Springer, Singapore. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-981-10-3695-8_9
  4. De Rocco Ponce M, Garolla A, Caretta N, De Toni L, Avogaro A, Foresta C. Estradiol correlates with erectile dysfunction and its severity in type 2 diabetic patients. J Diabetes Complications. 2020. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1056872720305067
  5. Chen HR, Tian RH, Li P, Chen HX, Xia SJ, Li Z. Estradiol is an independent risk factor for organic erectile dysfunction in eugonadal young men. Asian J Androl. 2020. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7705979/
  6. Lorek M, Tobolska-Lorek D, Kalina-Faska B, Januszek-Trzciakowska A, Gawlik A. Clinical and Biochemical Phenotype of Adolescent Males with Gynecomastia. J Clin Res Pediatr Endocrinol. 2019. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6878348/
  7. Sansone, A., Romanelli, F., Sansone, M. et al. Gynecomastia and hormones. Endocrine 55, 37–44 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12020-016-0975-9
  8. A. Rivera-Diaz, P., Patricia Ortiz, C., & Ricardo Delgado, D. The crucial role of estrogen/androgen hormones and their receptors in male infertility risk. https://www.cajmpsi.com/article_126833.html
  9. Chen, T., Wu, F., Wang, X. et al. Different levels of estradiol are correlated with sexual dysfunction in adult men. Sci Rep 10, 12660 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-69712-6
  10. Nilsson O, Weise M, Landman EB, Meyers JL, Barnes KM, Baron J. Evidence that estrogen hastens epiphyseal fusion and cessation of longitudinal bone growth by irreversibly depleting the number of resting zone progenitor cells in female rabbits. Endocrinology. 2014;155(8):2892-2899. doi:10.1210/en.2013-2175
  11. Weise M, De-Levi S, Barnes KM, Gafni RI, Abad V, Baron J. Effects of estrogen on growth plate senescence and epiphyseal fusion. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2001;98(12):6871-6876. doi:10.1073/pnas.121180498
  12. Chidi-Ogbolu N, Baar K. Effect of Estrogen on Musculoskeletal Performance and Injury Risk. Front Physiol. 2019 Jan 15;9:1834. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2018.01834. 
  13. Shozu M, Fukami M, Ogata T. Understanding the pathological manifestations of aromatase excess syndrome: lessons for clinical diagnosis. Expert Rev Endocrinol Metab. 2014;9(4):397-409. doi:10.1586/17446651.2014.926810
  14. Berg SJ, Wynne-Edwards KE. Changes in testosterone, cortisol, and estradiol levels in men becoming fathers. Mayo Clin Proc. 2001 Jun;76(6):582-92. doi: 10.4065/76.6.582. 
  15. Cohen PG. Obesity in men: the hypogonadal-estrogen receptor relationship and its effect on glucose homeostasis. Med Hypotheses. 2008;70(2):358-60. doi: 10.1016/j.mehy.2007.05.020. Epub 2007 Sep 6. 
  16. Stanikova D, Luck T, Bae YJ, Thiery J, Ceglarek U, Engel C, Enzenbach C, Wirkner K, Stanik J, Kratzsch J, Riedel-Heller SG. Increased estrogen level can be associated with depression in males. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2018 Jan;87:196-203. doi: 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2017.10.025. Epub 2017 Nov 2. PMID: 29107881.
Alternative Text

Dr. Sheraz Khan

Dr. Sheraz has just completed his MBBS and is working as a house doctor in Nishtar Hospital Multan. He believes to use natural foods as primary medicine. He is a prolific writer and knows how to break complex medical concepts in easy, layman terms. He aims to pursue his career in Cardiac Medicine.

Comment

 

Top Products

They helped thousands of people get better.

Shop Now →

Total Health

$109.95

Glyco-Optimizer

$79.95

Testo-Booster

$89.95

Deep Sleep

$39.95
?