Natural Ways to Boost Your Testosterone Output
By Shaun Stafford. (@shaunstafford)
Testosterone is the dominant male sex hormone, largely produced from the testicles in men and a small amount from the ovaries and adrenals in women. Having optimal levels of testosterone in the body is important during the developmental stages of growth (puberty) but is also important for your adult life.
From a health and fitness point of view it is essential for not only supporting lean muscle growth, but for keeping your well being (both sexual and cognitive) in check and ensuring other major bodily functions are safely regulating.
Here are a few tips and tricks you can do to naturally boost your testosterone levels and reap the benefits for your health and fitness goals.
Train Hard and Lift Heavy Ass Weights!!!
Now this might seem like an obvious statement as most guys you see that seem to be riddled with testosterone are usually found in the weights room picking up and putting down heavy ass things!
Whereas they might naturally have elevated levels of testosterone (genetically), they are probably reaping the benefits of some damn hard training too!
A structured, progressive resistance training program has been proven to have the most significant impact on boosting testosterone levels in both the short and long term (for both men and women), and has been shown to be even more significant when incorporated with training at very high intensities.
Whereas all exercise will have a positive impact on natural testosterone levels, if you really want to get the most bang for your buck… lift hard and lift heavy!
Pay Attention to Your Diet…
Again this might seem like an obvious statement but how you are fuelling your body will have a dramatic impact on all of your bodily hormonal responses, especially that of testosterone and other essential hormones.
Having enough protein in your diet is key to being able to sustain lean tissue, and having adequate carbohydrates to fuel your training will mean you can lift harder and heavier to get that anabolic boost.
But it is probably having enough healthy fat, from sources such as nuts, avocados, and oily fish, that will help grease the hormonal pathways and keep that testosterone flowing…
It is also crucially important to keep your eyes firmly fixed on your daily calorie intake: being in a calorie deficit has a severe impact not only on energy levels but also long and short term hormone balance. And although less obvious, especially from an energy point of view, over-eating can have an equally nullifying effect…
The key to optimising your testosterone output through diet is to never be too long in either a deficit or a surplus and to have a diet that is balanced with macronutrients and largely coming from whole, nutrient dense food.
Supplement Your Diet Effectively.
Now the basis for any nutritional supplementation has to be just that… supplementation! It should not form the corner stone for any testosterone-boosting plan! This should be based from a solid training and eating platform (see above).
Saying that, if you have your training and diet ducks in a row, there are a few things you can add in that might help give you a little boost in natural testosterone.
Multivitamin products high in Vitamin D and Zinc show the most evidence in supporting and elevating natural testosterone, with other micronutrients such as vitamin A, C & E having associated benefits. If you can find a multi that fits this profile, great… if not, you might be better off taking separate Vitamin D and Zinc supplements.
Other products such as Horny-Goats Weed, Tibullus and D-Aspartic Acid have accumulated a lot of anecdotal evidence and success, but this is yet to be proven over the long term in scientific research.
Now I know we all want to find an excuse to hit snooze, but now we might have just given you one. Recent research suggests that getting enough good quality sleep is on a par with following a basic exercise and nutrition program in terms of your heath, and it may also have major ramifications on testosterone levels.
Whereas “sleep need” is highly variable between individuals, research has shown that those who are regularly getting less than 5 hours per night or had very restless sleep, saw a drop in hormone function of approximately 15%.
Conversely, those who were sleeping on average 7-10 hours per night had better long-term health and higher levels of natural testosterone.
Why Is This Important?
As you age, natural hormone levels start to dip and this has been linked to several health related problems such as obesity, osteoporosis and increased disease.
Keeping all our hormones functioning optimally will only be beneficial at improving your long term health, fitness and wellness overall: follow these tips and stay fit, healthier and well for longer!