Total Shape is a reader-supported site. Purchases made through links may earn a commission. Learn more.

Does Testosterone Affect the Thyroid? (Backed by Science)

Michael Garrico
Published by Michael Garrico
Last updated: December 30, 2022

The thyroid gland and testosterone levels are tightly linked.

We have known for a long time that the thyroid gland is partially responsible for regulating testosterone.

With the recent innovation and increased use of testosterone boosters, as a fitness trainer, I needed to look into the potential effects of testosterone on the thyroid.

So I spent hours researching the science of how testosterone affects the thyroid to fully understand the matter.

I will share in detail the relationship between thyroid and testosterone and the treatments for thyroid disorders.

Keep on reading.

Quick Summary

  • The thyroid is responsible for releasing a hormone called gonadotropin hormone-releasing hormone, which leads to increased levels of testosterone.
  • A disorder called hyperthyroidism causes the thyroid to be underactive, leading to low testosterone.
  • Hyperthyroidism can also result in erectile dysfunction and affect sperm count and quality.

How Does Testosterone Affect the Thyroid?

A doctor explaining how testosterone affects the thyroid while holding a thyroid model

Testosterone affects the thyroid by decreasing its function when T levels are high.

However, when they are low, testosterone impacts the thyroid by over-elevating its operations.

Testosterone levels and thyroid function are closely related.

The thyroid gland produces thyroid hormone, which is responsible for many processes in the human body, including weight regulation, energy levels, and sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) [1].

SHGB picks up testosterone, decreasing the amount of free testosterone in your blood [2].

Your thyroid is also responsible for releasing a hormone called gonadotropin hormone-releasing hormone (GnRH). Increased levels of GnRH lead to increased testosterone levels [3].

Because the thyroid controls GnRH and SHBG, it is responsible for increasing and decreasing testosterone in your body.

In addition, one study showed that testosterone might protect the thyroid from autoimmune responses in men with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis [4].

Another study showed that too-high and too-low testosterone levels could cause the thyroid to release less T4, a hormone responsible for mood and metabolism [5].

Thyroid Disorders and Low Testosterone Levels

A doctor holding a thyroid model while explaining thyroid disorders and the relation with low testosterone levels

Because the thyroid is responsible for regulating testosterone, many disorders or diseases that affect the thyroid can cause lower testosterone levels.

Hypothyroidism and Testosterone

Hypothyroidism and low testosterone are connected because it is a disorder causing the thyroid to be underactive, which usually results in low testosterone [6]. Grave’s disease, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, or the presence of goiter can lead to this disorder [7].

Some of the symptoms of hypothyroidism include:

  • Tiredness
  • Weight gain
  • Depression
  • Being sensitive to cold
  • Muscle cramps and weakness

Many signs of hypothyroidism are similar to those of other illnesses, making it misdiagnosed easily.

Symptoms typically appear gradually, and you may be unaware that you have had the medical condition for several years.

With that in mind, it's essential to contact a doctor as soon as these symptoms manifest.

Related: What Causes Low Testosterone?

Hyperthyroidism and Testosterone

Hyperthyroidism can cause the thyroid gland to release extra thyroid hormone, which will, in turn, increase extra SHBG and extra GnRH [6].

While extra SHGB by itself may cause decreased testosterone levels, the high activity of the thyroid in hyperthyroidism usually results in increased testosterone.

Symptoms of hyperthyroidism in men include: 

  • Fatigue
  • Shakiness
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Anxiety
  • Weight loss
  • Feeling overly hot [8].

Hyperthyroidism can also affect sperm count and quality.

Additionally, some men with hyperthyroidism experience erectile dysfunction and loss of muscle mass.

“The greater amount of thyroid hormone causes some functions in your body to become faster, like your heart rate. You may also experience weight loss and difficulty sleeping.”
– Kelly Wood, MD for Healthline

Treatments for Thyroid Disorders

A doctor pouring a pill bottle on his hands

The treatment used to treat a thyroid problem depends on whether the patient has an overactive or underactive thyroid and the root cause of the issue.

Patients with hyperthyroidism may take anti-thyroid medications, beta-blockers, and surgery in some extreme cases [9].

People suffering from hypothyroidism are usually given extra hormones to make up for what their thyroids are not producing.


Does Testosterone Affect TSH Levels?

Yes, testosterone affects TSH (thyroid-stimulating hormone). Research suggests high testosterone levels can stimulate the thyroid to produce extra TSH.

Does Testosterone Cause Hypothyroidism?

No, testosterone does not cause hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism can result in irregular testosterone levels, but taking testosterone supplements or boosters will not cause a thyroid disorder.

Can I Take Testosterone With Thyroid Medication?

No, you cannot take testosterone with thyroid medication. Thyroid medication can interact with anabolic steroids and testosterone boosters.

If you are on any medication, always talk to a doctor or pharmacist before beginning a supplement or steroid.

Can Low Testosterone Harm the Thyroid?

A thyroid disorder can significantly impact the amount of testosterone in your body.

Additionally, recent studies show that irregular testosterone levels may affect the thyroid in return.

If you are feeling symptoms similar to hypothyroidism, like muscle loss, and you get approval from a healthcare provider, natural testosterone boosters may help you regain muscle mass and strength.

My clients and I have gone through a ton of testosterone boosters before finding the best ones, but ultimately we’ve found the ones we like best.

If you’re struggling with symptoms, I would absolutely recommend checking these out.


Was this article helpful?

About The Author

You May Also Like

Write a Reply or Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *