As we’ve discussed before, testosterone is a big-deal hormone for men looking to increase their muscle mass, maintain high levels of energy, and boost their sex drive. While men can always choose to turn to steroids or testosterone injections, with the approval and guidance of a doctor or not, there are plenty of ways to raise your testosterone levels naturally. Read on to learn five natural ways to combat low testosterone.
#1 Shed Some Pounds
Easier said than done, of course, but overweight men are more likely to have high levels of estrogen than men who are slimmer, according to information from a 2012 meeting of the Endocrine Society.
Losing those extra pounds of fat through exercise and a healthy diet can help you bring up your testosterone levels. To ensure that your diet will help increase your testosterone availability, cut out processed sugars and refined carbohydrates, and replace them with fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins.
#2 Focus on Vitamins and Minerals
There are a number of vitamins and minerals that are absolutely crucial to testosterone production. The B vitamins, especially vitamins B5, B6, and B12, as well as folic acid, can help to increase the amount of testosterone that your body naturally produces. Zinc is another big one (although if you choose to take a supplement, limit yourself to 40 mg per day to avoid interfering with the absorption of other minerals). Another testosterone-boosting nutrient to watch out for is Vitamin D. Deficiencies of any of these nutrients have been shown to lower testosterone levels in men.
#3 Get Enough Sleep
Your body makes more testosterone while you sleep, so making sure you catch enough winks is hugely important when it comes to boosting your testosterone levels. Various studies have found significant correlations between high testosterone levels and 6-8 hours of sleep per night, whereas low testosterone has been linked to too little or poor-quality sleep. Plus, getting enough sleep has been linked with lower levels of stress, which turns out to be the main target of the next point…
#4 Chill Out
Stress leads to a skyrocketing of cortisol production, which essentially causes the testes to stop producing testosterone during the period of stress.
The stress hormone cortisol is also responsible for weight gain, which, if you read point number one, has been tied to an increase in estrogen and a reduction in testosterone levels. Moreover, happiness and relaxation have been showed to increase the amount of testosterone that your body makes. So make sure to calm down and have fun every once in a while!
#5 Lift Weights
Finally, make sure that weight lifting or some other kind of resistance training is a part of your exercise regimen. Strength training has been shown to help increase testosterone production, which is especially high during breaks between sets. And of course, weight lifting has the added bonus of helping you lose weight (see #1) while adding some bulk to your muscles, which is likely one of the reasons you want to boost your testosterone levels in the first place.
What suggestions have you heard, from your doctor or others, for boosting testosterone? Have you taken any steps?