Draining the life out of yourself in the gym and being on top of your diet are essential to building muscle mass. However, learning how to increase testosterone is often buried in the sand when it comes to training advice, when instead it is an imperative component in allowing you to max out your body’s potential. There’s good results, and then there’s great results. The latter will only come when you have given yourself the opportunity to increase the amount of testosterone in your body through natural methods that have been scientifically proven to help bring about that desired boost. As all of you should know, testosterone is the single most important component in our bodies that guides our ability to put on muscle. The higher your testosterone levels, the better your results will be. So without bogging you down in an endless sea of scientific knowledge behind the benefits of higher testosterone, let’s get into how you can adjust your diet and your daily activities to help yourself increase testosterone naturally over time!
There’s certain foods you should be eating, and certain other things you should avoid. These are not things that you should carve your eating habits out of, but they certainly should be a staple in your diet. Eat the right things, and over time the testosterone will have no choice but to level up.
1. Broccoli, Cabbage, Brussels Sprouts – 2 servings a day of these veggies and pesky estrogen will start to dip. Estrogen is the female hormone, the more of it you have, the more it interferes with testosterone. These foods, along with radishes, help decrease estrogen in the body.
2. Red Meat – steak time. Feast like a king, specifically on red meats. Of course, don’t go too crazy as basing all your meat choices on red meat might not be the brightest idea long term (high amounts are related to heart disease). Nonetheless, within your meat menu, include a mix of red meats as they are a great way to boost testosterone production.
3. Nuts – nuts contain monounsaturated fat, which has been hypothesized to have a direct effect on the testes. There’s good fats, and bad fats. Learn what they are, and focus on eating things high in the good fats (such as nuts) in order to increase testosterone. These are especially great to much on as snacks in between meals. To add, lower your carbohydrate intake and increase your fat intake. A diet high in fat and protein has been shown to provide a boost in testosterone over time. Dietary fat is necessary for the production of testosterone, if that doesn’t tell you something I’m not sure what will. Aim for at least 30% fat in your diet. To add, carbohydrates aren’t the only macro-nutrient that can give you energy, fats serve the function well. You’d be surprised. Check out our Fats for Preworkout? article for more information.
4. Celery, Oysters, Avocado – need something to snack on to compliment those nuts? Eating these three foods has been shown to aid in testosterone production as well. Oysters are especially great because they are rich in zinc. Munching on these throughout the day certainly won’t hurt.
5. Onion Juice – although the study was done on rats, there’s something important to note here. At .5grams per 1kg of bodyweight, after 20 days the rats had improved sperm quality and an increased concentration of testosterone in the blood (tripled!). That’s a decent amount of onions to be juicing down each day, but those mega-results are worth something.
Tip: Try not to obtain your protein sources from soy. Consistent soy protein has been shown to lead to an increase in estrogen, the exact opposite of what we’re aiming here for. It’s fine to have soy protein here and there if it’s in a food, but do not make it a staple.
There’s some essential supplements that you should be taking to increase testosterone levels naturally. You’ll hear about many “placebo” pills that claim to do a great job, however, only a few particular supplements are actually worth a penny. Let’s highlight the two that have been shown to actually work, and work very well.
1. Zinc - zinc is essential to sexual function. It is necessary for the production of testosterone. Among other things, stress and caffeine consumption increase the need for zinc supplementation. It’s pretty hard to get an effective amount through diet, which is why it’s here in the supplements section. Aim for 30-60mg per day, always after food (to avoid stomach discomfort). Buy L-OptiZinc to get the type of zinc that is most easily digested and absorbed by the body. You want as much of those doses being used by the body as possible.
2. Vitamin D-3 - besides maintaining muscle strength and bone density, Vitamin D3 (specifically, D3) boosts testosterone levels. In a study done in Australia, the more Vitamin D3 men supplemented with, the higher their testosterone was. Now, don’t get carried away here. Limit your Vitamin D3 intake to 10-15,000UI. Grab Vitamin D3 pills that are 5,000UI strength. Just a couple a day can do wonders, especially coupled with Zinc.
Boosting testosterone levels isn’t simply about diet and supplements, your daily lifestyle plays an important role in how much testosterone is roaming around in your body. Here’s some things to keep in mind:
1) Rest well – it is essential that you allow your body at least 7-8 hours of sleep a night. Depriving yourself of proper recovery will not only hinder your results in the gym by not allowing your body to recover and grow, but can cause a dip in your testosterone levels. Well rested means well tested.
2) Focus On Big Compound Lifts – that set of dumbbell curls isn’t going to help your testosterone levels. Instead, do exercises that hit multiple muscle groups at once and should be a staple in any training regimen. Ever notice how you get hornier after a monstrous leg workout? If not, get on it. Exercises to focus on include: bench press, overhead shoulder press, squat, lunge, deadlift. The effects of these tough exercises might be short lived, but a spike is better than nothing, especially if repeated often.
3) Don’t Pet the Monkey Around Workout Times – yeah, I think you know what I mean. There’s a study around that measured testosterone levels over a few hours after the deed was done. Levels were alright up to 1 hour after, but started dropping 80-140 minutes later. Save it for later on. If testosterone might decrease for a short period of time, we certainly don’t want it around workout time.
4. Alcohol Consumption – remember that talk about estrogen? Yeah, alcohol certainly doesn’t help as it increases estrogen levels. Binge drinking has been shown to decrease testosterone levels pretty noticeably. If your’e going out, have fun, but keep it within limits. Check out our Alcohol and Fitness article on how you can reconcile the two without impeding your results.
A natural increase in testosterone is not something that will happen over night. Keep in mind that all of these changes take time to bring about any type of result. You’re not looking for a way to boost testosterone that you have to struggle to maintain in order for it to continue “working”. These are things you should, if you aren’t already, include in your diet and daily lifestyle simply as part of your every day habit. There’s no magic pills, or magic foods you can eat to increase testosterone. It is, instead, the culmination of the things outlined above that can help you get the most out of what your body has to offer. Implement what you’ve learned, and with time you won’t be disappointed. Good Luck!
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