I get asked all the time, “is there a way to know my testosterone levels without doing a hormone test?”
I initially ask how do you feel? How are your erections? How is your energy levels?
But, there is a physical test that can give you some insight as to how your testosterone levels are, and that’s with the finger test.
Hold your right hand up in front of you as if you were trying to protect your face in a food fight. Now, look at it….
Is your ring finger (the fourth finger, counting the thumb) considerably longer than the finger you point with (the second, “index” finger)?
If your ring finger is longer, consider yourself lucky. It seems that finger size, or more specifically, finger ratio, correlates strongly with “higher” testosterone levels, as well as better success in a variety of sports.1
As you see in the picture above, the one of the left side – the ring finger is longer than the index, “pointer” finger. This means higher testosterone levels.
You’re Crazy Dr. Sam!
Now you might think I’m making this up, but I’m not.
Scientists have long noticed that men’s ring fingers are generally longer than their index fingers. With women, it tends to be the reverse: their index fingers are usually longer.
They’ve called this difference in length between the index finger and ring finger the “2D:4D ratio.”
2D stands for “second digit” — that’s your index finger, and 4D means “fourth digit” — your ring finger. So if your index finger is 2.9 inches long and your ring finger is 3.1 inches long, you have a 2D:4D ratio of .935 (2.9/3.1 = .935).
A longer ring finger compared to your index finger is considered a “low 2D:4D ratio.”
Oddly enough, the ring finger seems to have a higher number of receptors for testosterone during early fetal development. Thus, the ring finger grows in proportion to the amount of testosterone produced.
The more testosterone produced, the lower the eventual 2D:4D ratio.
Interestingly, the 4th digit of the right hand is more sensitive to fetal testosterone than the ring finger of the left hand, so use your right hand to appraise your Testosterone levels.
A longer ring finger is merely a biomarker of high levels of fetal testosterone, and this early surge of testosterone is instrumental in influencing the growth of not only the brain and heart but also muscle and bone, all of which are vital to sports performance.
However, I want to point out that even though this has been scientifically proven in 1980, 1998 and again in 2011.. This doesn’t necessarily indicate where your testosterone levels are right NOW.
Lifestyle (diet, exercise, stress management, supplements) and more importantly, aging – are bigger and indicators of where your TRUE testosterone levels are at this moment.
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- Tomkinson, Grant, Dyer, Makailah, “Finger Length Could Predict Athletic Ability.” LiveScience, September 7, 2017.