In this case they’d be right! Study after study has demonstrated testosterones ability to enhance muscle growth.
In men, testosterone plays a key role in the development of male reproductive tissues such as the testis and prostate as well as promoting secondary characteristics such as increased muscle mass, bone mass, and the growth of body hair.
In addition, testosterone is essential for health and well-being as well as the prevention of osteoporosis.
Food Boosting Testosterone Myth
What are the best foods out there that will naturally increase testosterone level? Well, the truth is that optimizing your natural testosterone levels is not going to be determined by whether you specifically eat oysters, nuts, or avocado. Instead it’s going to be determined by your overall diet and your overall lifestyle as a whole.
You’ll find a tons of articles online that list things like “10 super-foods that boost your testosterone” or something along those lines, but the fact is their leaving out the big picture.
Eating certain food sources might help out simply because they might be higher in fat and protein content, which might help to bring your daily totals into the proper range if they’re currently too low.
Going out of your way to consume a higher amount of red meat or egg yolks isn’t going to magically increase your testosterone levels into an above-normal range.
Truth is that there are no “special” food items out there that are going to magically make a big measurable difference to your testosterone levels on their own. Just focus on the proven basics.
It’s important to know that IF your testosterone levels are already within the normal range to begin with. Then there’s not really a lot you can do aside from actual anabolic steroid use to further raise those levels high enough in order to positively impact muscle growth or gym performance.
6 Ways to Increase Testosterone Levels:
1. Getting enough fat in your diet. Stick to healthy fat source and stay away from trans-fat.
Our body can synthesize an array of compounds for example our very muscle fibers are created using muscle protein synthesis which uses ingested amino acids from our diets.
Similar with testosterone although we can synthesize it, the actual building blocks have to come from somewhere else. They come from cholesterol which comes from dietary fat.
There was an actual research on this exact topics called ‘Diet in serum hormones in healthy men’. Published in the Journal of Steroid Bio-chemistry.
Subjects were healthy male volunteers. Not too old, not too young me, and then they made them eat through 6 weeks of a diet with high fat intake. 40% of their calories were coming from fat. Then they made them switch to a diet with moderately lower fat intakes 25% calories were coming from fat.
A good examples of this would be like a person eating about 2,500 calories diet to go from 40% of his calories coming from fat, which equals 110 grams of fats. Down to 25% of fats, which is 70 grams of fats. That’s a reduction of 40 grams of fat down to what they were given before is a sizable reduction.
What they found was that free testosterone levels decreased from 29.7% to 19.3% nanomoles per litre. This was because of a decreased fat intake in addition to a decreased saturated fat intake.
Remember, there are many different kinds of fat. There’s saturated, Monoun Saturated, Poly-Unsaturated, Trans fats.
There is good fats and bad fats but in this study there was a combination of overall fats. Specifically saturated fat reduction which seemed to have caused this decrease in testosterone to a significant and noticeable level.
Another study called “Testosterone and Cortisol Relationships to Dietary Nutrients and Resistance Exercise”.
They found a positive correlation between both overall fat intake and testosterone. And another positive correlation between saturated fats intake and testosterone. Positive correlation meaning that there are two variables that move up together and move down together.
So, to answer the question of does a decreased fat intake and thus decrease saturated fat intake caused a decrease in your body’s ability to synthesize testosterone? The answer is YES. Lower fat equals lower testosterone.
2. Moderate Protein
Avoid too much protein. A myth is that you need a lot of protein to stimulate your testosterone. No, you need a moderate amount. What’s a moderate amount? Between 6-8 ounces per meal. We’re talking about the weight of the actual food like a piece of steak or a hamburger. We’re not talking about the grams within the food because the grams within that is a lot less.
If you consume too much protein you’re going to feel tired. The reason is half of the amount of protein it can easily be turned into glucose . When you turn it into glucose because your body doesn’t necessarily use amino acids as its fuel, some but not much. It has to be converted into glucose to be used as fuel. That excess amount of insulin that’s triggered by the glucose is going to block your testosterone. So just do a moderate amount of protein.
3. Get a good restful sleep each night, at least 8 hours
There are many studies show that the more high quality sleep you have the higher your testosterone levels will be. This is mainly because while we’re sleeping our bodies are producing testosterone.
Multiple studies have shown a strong positive correlation between total sleep time and total testosterone levels. One study showing that subjects who routinely slept for 4 hours a night had testosterone levels that were roughly half that of subjects who routinely slept for 8 hours a night. In fact, each hour below 8 hours of sleep seemed to drop testosterone levels by around 15%.
Aiming for around 8 hours of quality sleep on a consistent basis would be ideal. To help achieve that you want to keep your room pitch dark. Use curtains instead of blinds and all electronics must be turn off.
Cooler room which will lead to better sleep. Avoid using stimulants in the afternoon as they will keep you up.
Avoid too much blue light which is a type of light that will throw off your circadian rhythm essentially your sleep schedule.
4. Exercise on a consistent basis – Lift heavy weights
By lifting heavy weights you’re actually improving the connection between the muscular system and the central nervous system. This allows your body to recruit muscle fibers causing muscle tears which in turn stimulates a higher demand for protein synthesis. It also allows higher levels of testosterone to bind to receptors aiding in recovery.
But what muscle group is the most important? Probably the one you’re neglecting most. Training Legs is crucial for increasing testosterone levels being such a large muscle group. Every time you squat heavy you have more tears that need to be repaired.
Some suggestions to give your testosterone a boost through exercise:
- Include exercises in your routine which work large muscle groups (bench press, back rows, squats).
- Make sure your workout includes at least 3 sets of each exercise.
- Give your body at least one day (preferably two) to rest and recover before working the same muscle group again.
HIIT for Higher Testosterone
Many scientific studies have evaluated the natural increase of testosterone that happens with HIIT or higher intensity interval training . Recent studies have shown that comparing low intensity training to higher intensity interval training. High intensity training improves testosterone significantly more by 8% higher T levels after high-intensity interval training versus only a 5% increase with low intensity training.
High intensity training has also been shown to improve T levels in all age groups. Another recent paper showed that total testosterone levels increased by 17 percent in sedentary 60 to 70 year-old men.
5. Manage stress levels effectively.
Stress directly correlates with testosterone levels. Cortisol is a stress hormone. When we face stress our adrenal glands secrete cortisol to prepare our bodies for the primal fight-or-flight response. This causes the body to shift from making good hormones to making stress hormones. The ratio between your testosterone and cortisol levels will help determine your mental and catabolic anabolic states this is called the TC ratio.
The mind and body working great synergy and balance as one. A healthy mind makes for a healthy body and a healthy body makes for a healthy mind. What defines a man’s body is testosterone and cortisone. Two essential hormones each serving a very specific and essential purpose. Your goal for healthy living should be to increase your free testosterone and decrease cortisone.
As a general rule more testosterone means less cortisone and more cortisol means less testosterone. They are on opposite ends of the scale which needs to be tipped in your favor.
High cortisol is linked to:
- compromised immune system
- higher risk of infection
- high blood pressure
- mood swings
- reduced libido
- increased anxiety
To reduce cortisol:
- manage healthy relationships
- take specific supplements
- sleep well
- avoid caffeine
- eat a healthy diet
- care for a pet
- Employ relaxation techniques (meditation, mindfulness, and deep conscious breathing)
Get enough of certain vitamins and minerals
Vitamins and minerals are crucial to testosterone production and are an easy way to raise testosterone levels.
- Zinc strongly correlates with higher levels of testosterone.
- Magnesium is also great for sleep and also correlates with high testosterone.
- Vitamin D is becoming a common deficiency due to an increase in office jobs as well as an indoor culture. Experts found that just supplementing 3000 IU per day in men has been shown to improve testosterone levels significantly.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that you can die from vitamin D overdose. It’s important not to supplement too much.
Another thing you want to take note of is to make sure you get the D3 form Viatmin D as the D2 form can be harmful to your body.
TestoFuel has one of the highest consumer ratings for naturally increase your testosterone level.
- Also check out: Strengthen Immune System with Vitamins and Minerals
J S Volek 1, W J Kraemer, J A Bush, T Incledon, M Boetes. Testosterone and cortisol in relationship to dietary nutrients and resistance exercise. 1997 Jan;82(1):49-54. doi: 10.1152/jappl.19126.96.36.199. PMID: 9029197
P Herbert, LD Hayes, NF Sculthorpe, and FM Grace4. HIIT produces increases in muscle power and free testosterone in male masters athletes. 2017 Jul 21. doi: 10.1530/EC-17-0159. PMID: 28794164