Cold plunges and testosterone parties

Tech bros are into testosterone parties now.

The structure of testosterone on a red and black background.

Are you ever chilling with the boys when you realize you ought to be measuring testosterone? Well, for ~$100-$400, that could be you.

Jeff Tang, founder of the now-shuttered note-taking startup Athens Research, launched a “men’s health company” in June offering “T parties” to tackle declining testosterone levels among men, per The Information.

Here, men gather, test their T levels, enjoy meat-centric meals and homemade kefir, check each other’s deadlift forms, and take dips in the cold plunge. In the future, Tang may also offer coaching, meal prep, and more.

Is there a problem with their testosterone?

Testosterone levels have been declining across genders over the last 20 years, possibly due to chemicals absorbed from plastics and pollution. Testosterone also naturally decreases as men age.

Normal measurements are 300-1k nanograms per deciliter:

  • Symptoms of low testosterone include decreased energy, libido, and muscle.
  • Too much testosterone can lead to issues including acne, blood clots, and liver disease.

Only ~2% of men actually have low testosterone, per the American Urology Association.

But hormone worries…

… have created a booming testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) business worth $1.75B worldwide, buoyed in the US thanks to relaxed DEA rules around prescribing it and often filled with misinformation and scams.

Tang is not a medical doctor, nor does he have low testosterone, boasting 1k+ ng/dL.

But he prefers a holistic approach to TRT that sounds a lot like being healthy — working out, sleeping and eating well, managing stress, taking vitamins, meditation, and “talking to “hot people.”

And unlike other testosterone advocates, he’s not spouting hate speech about transgender people, who also use hormones for gender-affirming care.

So, uh, bros will be bros?

BTW: Another Tang method is apparently “semen retention,” which is… exactly what it sounds like. A urologist who spoke with The Information did not think this would boost T levels.

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