If you are thinking “increase testosterone” now, then you are thinking right. Higher testosterone means higher sexual desire. In work, in sports, in sex, in life, testosterone is everywhere. In this article we will tell you how to increase testosterone and you will learn 9 scientifically proven methods to boost your testosterone – without using drugs.
Testosterone, the sex hormone, is found in both the female and male body, although it is present in greater amounts in men. For this reason, testosterone is often called the “male hormone”. It determines not only potency (as shown, for example, in a study in which erectile dysfunction was cured by testosterone injections), but also plays a key role in men’s health in general. American researchers have found that low testosterone levels are often related to chronic diseases. If you can boost testosterone naturally, you will benefit health-wise.
Low testosterone level – The symptoms of testosterone deficiency
Menopause in men is not really accepted by our society yet, but this does not change its existence. Affected men suffer from a decreasing testosterone level and thus also from relevant symptoms, which include the following:
- Irritability, dissatisfaction and anxiety
- Lack of energy and fatigue (e.g. falling asleep immediately after eating), in turn sleep disturbances at night
- Decreased sexual desire
- Less frequent morning erections
- Decreasing muscle strength
- Lower athletic performance and lower performance in everyday work life
- Hot flashes, sweats
- Smaller testicles
- Less beard and chest hair growth
- Increased belly fat
- Symptoms of metabolic syndrome (diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure)
- Decreasing bone density
- Joint pain (which has nothing to do with osteoarthritis or arthritis, but is hormonal)
These symptoms of testosterone deficiency already show which tasks testosterone – the so-called male hormone – normally has in a healthy man:
It provides strength and assertiveness, ensures a healthy libido and potency, increases bone density and makes body hair sprout.
How to Increase Testosterone Naturally
Your lifestyle has a significant impact on testosterone production. You can get your body’s testosterone production back on track by changing your lifestyle habits and following a few essential tips.
This is where high-intensity interval training is most effective. According to studies conducted researchers, short sessions of strength training on weights or 20 to 40 minutes of interval running training are very effective in boosting the metabolism. Following intensive training, an increase in testosterone levels of up to 40 percent had been measured in the blood.
The book ‘The Best Sex of Your Life’ describes in detail interval training sessions that can be done at home, such as in the living room. These special interval training workouts have a very positive effect on both the penile infrastructure (composition of penile tissue) and the blood vessels feeding it. Furthermore, the very recent studies have revealed that interval training has an immensely positive effect on testosterone balance as well!
For instance, you will learn how to slowly increase the times of the intervals and the pauses between intervals as a beginner, the number of repetitions or sets you should perform, and how to determine the optimal heart rate. In this way, it is possible to get the best out of the individually tailored interval training, depending on the heart rate, and also to raise the testosterone level accordingly.
Do not overdo the training. If you haven’t exercised for a long time or you are overweight, you should gradually increase your exercise routine and have a medical check-up beforehand.
Lengthy endurance sessions – like training for an ultra-marathon – are more likely to have the opposite effect, i.e. a decrease in testosterone production. While in most cases those well-trained individuals also have well-developed muscles, they may suffer from a testosterone deficiency with the corresponding symptoms.
Stay tuned for more in our how to increase testosterone ultimate guide!
You can also naturally increase your testosterone levels by cutting down on your daily calorie intake. By not eating any carbohydrates from 6 p.m. onwards in the evening – in other words, by avoiding foods with sugar and white flour in particular – you can achieve several positive effects at once.
For one, this greatly increases your testosterone levels in the morning hours. For another, a reduced calorie intake means that more growth hormones are released. The latter ensure regeneration of the body’s cells and stimulate muscle growth.
Reduction of the Abdominal Girth
Those men who have an abdominal girth of over 94 cm may be able to increase their testosterone levels by reducing the so-called bad abdominal fat (visceral adipose tissue) in a targeted manner. Obviously, this is because visceral abdominal fat transforms the testosterone hormone into the female hormone estradiol.
Therefore, the less visceral adipose tissue you have, the less testosterone will be converted accordingly. If you have an abdominal circumference of over 102 cm, testosterone levels can be increased particularly effectively by losing weight.
Vitamin D Levels
Latest scientific studies have demonstrated that insufficient levels of vitamin D in the blood can also lead to a reduction in testosterone levels. Exposure to sunlight can result in an increase in vitamin D levels. In most cases, taking vitamin D tablets also results in a significant increase in natural testosterone.
Stress As a Testosterone Killer
When under stress, you release more of the so-called stress hormone cortisol. In the short term, this hormone makes sure that you have more energy available. But it is also a kind of antagonist for testosterone and at the same time it is bad for your immune system. Reducing stress usually increases testosterone levels in a short period of time. So if you are looking for ways on how to increase testosterone in your body, reducing stress is one of the must dos.
The testosterone molecule biochemically is made up of a fat formula. Thus, consuming healthy fats, like those found in nuts or avocados, is essential for your testosterone balance. Stay tuned for more in our how to increase testosterone ultimate guide!
Having a good and sufficient sleep is also essential for your testosterone balance. When sleep is insufficient, there is a significant drop in testosterone levels, even in healthy young men. When you wake up early in the morning, your testosterone levels are at their highest.
In general, there is a difference between the total testosterone value and the biologically active testosterone. However, what value is now crucial for how one feels, for example, so that the brain or the muscles are fed most effectively? Total testosterone value only shows how many testosterone molecules are in the blood.
This does not tell us anything about the ability of these molecules to “dock” with the appropriate receptors and pass on appropriate information to the cells. Such cells can be located, for example, in the brain or in the muscles. Testosterone molecules in the blood can, for example, be “blocked” by two proteins which are also found in the blood – these testosterone molecules can then accordingly not carry out their task at the receptors.
Therefore, it is so essential to measure the biologically active testosterone. More precisely, this is calculated on the basis of three different blood parameters. There are still no accurate laboratory kits in the world that can accurately determine this value.
The most reliable way is to have the three laboratory parameters (total testosterone, albumin (as a weak testosterone binder) and SHBG (as a strong SHBG binder) measured in the blood on the same day. From these three parameters obtained, you can then calculate your biologically active testosterone. According to international regulations, this value should be at least 0.074 µg/l. Any values below this range are below the international standard limit and should be treated if symptoms are present.
What else affects testosterone levels in the blood?
A little further down, we will describe that the visceral abdominal fat tissue turns the male hormone into the female hormone estradiol. The aromatase enzyme is ultimately responsible for this. The question is, how can we reduce the activity of this enzyme through natural nutrition?
One option is to eat two handfuls of broccoli, cauliflower or white cabbage for lunch. They contain secondary plant compounds such as indole-3-carbinol. However, other cruciferous vegetables or green leafy vegetables like spinach or kale are also good sources of aromatase inhibitors. These natural aromatase inhibitors are definitely a step in the right direction.
The majority of nuts are also rich in monounsaturated fatty acids. Eating about 200 grams of hazelnuts, almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews or peanuts all day long is ideal! If you choose nuts as a snack for in between meals, make sure you choose unsalted products – you don’t need to increase your salt intake unnecessarily. You can also have a positive effect with sunflower seeds or sesame seeds, which are best eaten in mini handfuls throughout the day.
Finally, we come to the biggest secret weapon that properly boosts biologically active testosterone: Oatmeal. Remember, there is a certain compound in oats called avenacosides. They lead to having more biologically active testosterone!
Therefore, it is best to eat a small bowl of oatmeal each morning, no less than five times a week. Additionally, eating oatmeal has a positive effect on the nitric oxide necessary for erection. This is essential for the blood vessels to carry enough blood. Mixing nuts or fruit with the oatmeal is even better – because double is better.
The already mentioned unsaturated fatty acids (the essential ones) are also very important. They are those that cannot be produced by the human body. You can find unsaturated fatty acids in safflower or sunflower oil, for example, but you can also find them in hemp oil, soybean oil and, to a lesser extent, in rapeseed oil.
Although the consumption of eggs is subject to controversy, but egg yolks have a high level of saturated fatty acids, a high amount of good cholesterol, HDL. Furthermore, these proteins are essential, for example, to build up your muscles – including the potency muscles – well.
In general, sugar intake should also be reduced. And do not forget: Take enough vitamin D: Its importance is also supported by the latest scientific studies. Stay tuned for more in our how to increase testosterone ultimate guide!
Influencing the testosterone balance mentally
So what are you actually doing with your body right now? Just how many of you have your arms crossed in front of your chest right now? And how many of you have your legs or even ankles crossed? Which of you is sitting slumped in a chair?
Are you actually making yourself smaller than you are? Or do you sit wide-legged, like someone who has something to say, tall, upright, maybe leaning back in your chair, and even have your hands clasped behind your head?
Actually, your body posture has a tremendous impact on your well-being and on how you are being perceived. And, obviously, on your biologically active testosterone levels.
In a study, 31 men were brought into a room and their testosterone and cortisol levels were measured. These are two hormones that really couldn’t be more different. Testoterone, the king hormone of men, the one that drives them, in bed, in life, in self-esteem. And then there’s the second, which tells us a lot about stress and makes us tired, ill and weary: cortisol.
In the study participants then adopted two different poses:
- With their arms folded behind their heads, and quite boldly with their feet on the table.
- Slumped like a heap of misery, shoulders pulled forward.
What do you think? How did it look with the testosterone? With the first pose – the one with the arms folded behind the head – in only three minutes testosterone more than doubled on average and cortisol decreased. In the second pose – slumped like a heap of misery – it all happened the other way around. The stress hormone, cortisol rose sharply.
Have you ever heard of a drug that has such a strong effect on your body in just a few minutes? One that makes you feel better, stronger, more energetic? It is so simple: your attitude affects your hormones and how you feel. So if you are looking for ways on how to increase testosterone in your body, having a good mentality is one of the must dos.
When athletes win, what do they do? They raise their arms in the air, make themselves big, and maybe even scream with happiness. It is just like in the animal kingdom. Whoever is afraid runs for survival. And those who are strong like to show it. Among primates, alpha animals have high testosterone levels and low cortisol levels.
Primates researchers have discovered that alpha animals tend to have the highest levels of testosterone and the lowest levels of cortisol. When the testosterone level of the alpha animal drops, it often loses the alpha position. Therefore, the lower an animal is in the hierarchy, the higher its cortisol level. So make use of the winner attitude and learn how to strike a pose. Stay tuned for more in our how to increase testosterone ultimate guide!
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Certain chemicals can also lead to a reduction in testosterone levels
Products which contain phthalic acid esters/phthalates reduce testosterone levels in both men and women. The phthalates are the so-called “plasticizers” which are used to soften plastic products. For instance, phthalates are found in shower curtains, food product packaging, toys, plastic bottles, and occasionally in shampoos and soaps.
Bisphenol-A (BPA) also results in a reduction in testosterone levels. BPA is the raw material in the synthesis of polymeric plastics. Food can coatings, varnishes, paints and adhesives may contain BPA. A study showed that workers who were in regular contact with this substance had decreased testosterone levels. In most of the people studied, this led to erectile dysfunction, a reduced sexual desire, fatigue and tiredness.
Testosterone Replacement Therapy: Side Effects and Risks
A testosterone replacement therapy is often used for men whose body is no longer able to produce enough of its own testosterone. In medicine, this condition and associated defined symptoms are referred to as hypogonadism.
In this context, a differentiation is made between causes that are governed by the brain (e.g. disorders of glands in the brain that are in charge of testosterone production in the testicles) and disorders in the function of the testicles. These lead to the fact that the man is no longer able to produce enough testosterone of his own.
According to studies, testosterone production declines from the age of 30, or 40 at the latest. This loss of testosterone can lead to affected men complaining of fatigue, exhaustion and/or sexual problems. When testosterone levels are raised by therapy, there is frequently a significant improvement in symptoms after weeks or months.
However, there are also side effects. When using testosterone gel, skin irritation can occur. This gel contains reduction enhancers that make sure the testosterone is absorbed through the skin. Furthermore, there may be more hair growth on the body, a change in the number of red blood cells or weight gain.
Rarely, men have what is called gynecomastia, meaning a change in the breast region. Or they may experience hypersensitivity or discomfort in the nipple region. Changes in the skin are also not at all uncommon, and sometimes even acne occurs.
How to increase the testosterone level naturally?
That is a question that many doctors often hears in his consultations, including telephone consultations. Because many men want to know how to increase testosterone levels naturally, and without taking artificial hormone supplements. This question is also based on the following fact: externally supplied testosterone leads to the natural production of testosterone in the body being strongly reduced or even partially completely disabled (inhibited).
Therefore, if men stop hormonal substitution therapy, it may take several weeks or even months for the body’s own testosterone production to be revived. This will also depend, among other things, on which drug was used – particularly if human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) was not prescribed.
According to the patient’s goals and the level of free, biologically active testosterone, it is necessary to supply the body with testosterone externally (exogenously). In doing so, there are several things to keep in mind, particularly with regard to the period after testosterone therapy.
As previously described, several lifestyle parameters exist that help to lower natural testosterone levels or raise them again. In case the testosterone level has to be raised by 50, 100, 200 or even more percentage points, an exogenous testosterone preparation will most likely not be avoided. Other measures are also available, such as HCG therapy (gonadotropin therapy). To administer these, however, medical expertise is required – the choice of doctor thus needs to be carefully considered.
How does the body’s own testosterone production work?
Often in exogenous testosterone therapy, as well as in stimulation of testosterone production, people forget that testosterone is converted into 17-ß estradiol (which is a female hormone). If necessary, this must be prevented or reduced. Stay tuned for more in our how to increase testosterone ultimate guide!
How reversible lowering of testosterone levels happens
All in all, there may be many factors that are responsible for this. An important piece of information in advance is that anabolic androgenic steroids (AAS) can create a short-term disorder. For some men, the disorder will persist despite stopping AAS. In some cases, for a lifetime! (Boregowda K et al, kanayama G et al).
There are also natural indications or substances that may have a negative effect on testosterone production. Sometimes it is not that difficult to avoid or change them – and thus to improve the testosterone level.
- Insufficient Sleep
- Malnutrition (malnutrition)
- Excessive Weight gain (fat)
- Severe Underweight
- Predominantly Sedentary Occupation
- Chronic High Stress
- Alcohol Consumption
- Metabolic Syndrome or Diabetes Mellitus Type 2
- Endocrine Disruptors (Xenohormones, Endocrine Disruptors or Endocrine Disruptors)
Not having enough sleep or sleeping poorly will not only lower testosterone levels (Leproult R et al.), but will also have other negative effects on your health. In fact, LH is not released while sleeping unless you get at least three hours of good, deep sleep (of course, six to eight hours of sleep is even better). Lack of sleep can lead to the following other symptoms:
- Increase in cortisol (growing appetite is the result).
- Increase of ghrelin (also leads to large appetite)
- Reduced leptin (leptin leads to curbing appetite. So if you don’t have enough leptin in your blood, your appetite increases).
- Decreased insulin secretion (the level of glucose in the blood increases, in the long term there is an increase in insulin resistance)
- Increased secretion of thyroid hormones (the basal metabolic rate is reduced, as well as protein synthesis. As a result, muscles can be built up poorly)
- Reduced growth hormones (this affects tissue and bone repair, and the metabolic rate is also reduced)
- Lower aldosterone levels (this means less energy/high potassium levels in the blood)
- Increase in epinephrine (adrenaline) and norepinephrine/norepinephrine (blood levels increase, anxiety increases)
Note: Sleep apnea may also be the cause of a sleep deficit. It is essential to exclude this as part of the diagnosis.
When we take in too little food, we generally also take in too few vitamins and minerals. As a consequence, there is a lack of important substances for the body’s own testosterone production. Stay tuned for more in our how to increase testosterone ultimate guide!
Excessive Weight Gain
If you have too much body fat, this generally leads to a reduction in the natural testosterone level and also converts testosterone into estradiol. In many cases, this results in a feminization in the appearance.
Heavy underweight, for instance as a result of malnutrition, is also mostly accompanied by a drop in testosterone levels. Moreover, even if weight is regained, the low testosterone level may remain for a long period of time.
Being physically active promotes normal testosterone levels. It is therefore unsurprising that primarily sedentary behavior is often associated with lower testosterone levels (Priskorn l et al.).
Chronically High Stress
Over an extended period of time, stress results in lowered testosterone levels. An inverse relationship exists between cortisol and testosterone.
A high alcohol consumption also has a harmful effect on testosterone levels. However, a glass is allowed once in a while. So if you are looking for ways on how to increase testosterone in your body, reducing alcohol consumption is one of the must dos.
Stay tuned for more in our how to increase testosterone ultimate guide!
Metabolic Syndrome or Diabetes Mellitus 2
Both the metabolic syndrome and diabetes type 2 lead to lower testosterone levels. There is a mutual relationship here. Males who have low testosterone and diabetes need much less antidiabetic medication when their testosterone levels are restored to normal. Incidentally, men who have recently developed type 2 diabetes can easily reverse it with certain lifestyle measures, but also with normal testosterone levels.
Endocrine disruptors, or environmental hormones, or xenohormones, have an adverse effect on the endocrine system. Health damage is not at all uncommon. It is therefore advisable to avoid these “environmental toxins” at all costs!
What can you do to increase your natural testosterone levels?
Several things are possible here. For instance, men who have sleep apnea should try to get as much sleep as possible, preferably seven to eight hours. Those men with sleep apnea who are also overweight should try to lose weight – with medical assistance if necessary. Weight loss sometimes also leads to an improvement in sleep apnea.
Having a balanced diet can contribute to raising testosterone levels as well. The latest studies support the idea that 50 per cent of the daily diet must be made up of fruit and vegetables. This does not include processed fruits and vegetables. The best thing is to prepare your meals fresh yourself. Of course, it is also essential to adhere to micro-nutritional levels. The supply of vitamin D, for example, should be ensured. But zinc is also crucial for the production of testosterone.
How about physical exercise? Scientific studies now show that strength training is a more important form of exercise than regular endurance training. In some cases, it is sufficient for “normal” cardiovascular training to regularly walk (10,000 steps per day), take the stairs and avoid the elevator. For muscular training, it is not necessary to go to a fitness club. You can also train your muscles at home or in the great outdoors.
Now let’s move on to the topic of stress. When you have an office job, you should try to get up from your desk and move around on a regular basis. Have mini breaks. Not only will it do your body a world of good, it will also benefit your mind.
There is also very good instructions for minimal exercise in the office. For those who are exposed to a lot of stress, it is useful to reduce the stress level. For this purpose, meditation, for example, is a good solution. Everyone has to find out which of the many programs for stress reduction helps best for themselves. And finally, an invitation to smokers: quit your habit – for your testosterone level and your general health!
So if you are looking for ways on how to increase testosterone in your body, having regular exercises, even in the office is one of the must dos.
So how does testosterone production work anyway?
In the brain, the hypothalamus, which is the highest regulatory center responsible for all autonomic and endocrine processes, produces gonadotropin-releasing hormones (GnRH). These are passed via the blood to the pituitary gland (hypophysis).
There, GNRH will stimulate the synthesis and release of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH).
LH will stimulate the Leydig cells of the testicles to make testosterone. FSH similarly stimulates the testicles, but is not important for direct testosterone production.
Adipose tissue and the liver perform testosterone conversion to estradiol (which is a female hormone) via the enzyme aromatase.
While both testosterone and estradiol have a negative feedback to the hypothalamus, but also to the pituitary gland. This leads to blockage of GNRH and also LH and FSH production and release.
How to Increase Testosterone – Bottom Line
Testosterone plays a role in many important functions throughout the body and affects male and female physical, mental and sexual health.
One can boost the levels of testosterone by maintaining a healthy diet, sleeping enough, minimizing stress and regular exercise. In case you wish to go for some of the medications, supplements or products available on the market, please always check with your doctor beforehand.
Heavy alcohol drinking and insufficient sleep, as well as others, might also have a harmful effect on testosterone levels.
Females also require adequate testosterone. Nevertheless, not many studies exist yet that address this issue. However, to increase testosterone levels in the female body, you must not use the same products that men are using.
In this article other than explaining how to increase testosterone levels in your body, we tried to answer as many of you questions as we could. However, if you still have any questions on how to increase testosterone in your body, don’t forget to ask them in the comments section below.