According to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, the average male’s testosterone levels are plummeting — and experts believe the modern lifestyle is to blame. Testosterone, the primary male sex hormone, plays a vital role in building muscle, maintaining low levels of body fat, and boosting sexual desire.
Testosterone levels peak in your late 20s, then start to decrease. A poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle can cause testosterone levels to decline faster. Low levels of testosterone are associated with increased body fat, loss of muscle mass, low energy, and decreased libido. The good news is that simple diet and lifestyle changes are often enough to correct hormonal imbalances. Here are a few ways to raise your testosterone levels safely and naturally.
Get Enough Sleep
A study published in the Journal of Andrology found that men who slept only four hours per night had 60 percent less testosterone in their blood than men who got a full eight hours of shut-eye. To improve the quality and duration of your sleep, keep your bedroom cool and dark. Turn off your smartphone and tablet, or use the night-time display settings to suppress blue light. Studies show that this type of light can interfere with melatonin, the body’s sleep inducing hormone.
One of the most effective ways to boost testosterone production is to lose excess weight. Numerous studies have found a correlation between obesity and low testosterone levels in males of all ages — even teenagers. Experts are unsure why clinically overweight men tend to have lower levels of testosterone than their slimmer counterparts, but one theory is that fat cells promote inflammation in the body, which can interfere with testosterone production.
Getting regular exercise can help increase your body’s levels of free testosterone. And the harder you train, the more testosterone your body will naturally produce. To benefit the most from your training sessions, keep workouts short and intense. Use heavy weights, and focus on compound exercises like bench presses, squats, and seated rows.
Consider a Testosterone Booster
Even with your best efforts, you may not be able to increase your body’s testosterone levels naturally, This is where testosterone boosters come in. Testosterone boosters block estrogen and encourage testosterone production. T-boosters, which can be purchased at HealthandFitnessVitality.com and other online supplement shops, can help you gain muscle mass and burn fat in a short period of time.
Improve Your Diet
Boost your testosterone levels by including healthy fats in your diet. Good fats — such as monounsaturated and omega-3 fatty acids — help your body preserve protein, which is essential for muscle growth. Other foods to add to your diet are:
- Cabbage – Cabbage is high in indole-3-cardinal (IC3), a phytochemical that is thought to increase testosterone.
- Eggs – Eggs are a great source of protein and zinc. Consuming eggs also helps increase levels of healthy cholesterol.
Fix Vitamin and Mineral Deficiencies
If your testosterone levels are low, supplementing with zinc, magnesium, and vitamin D can help bring your levels back up to the normal range. Natural sources of zinc include red meat and oysters. Foods rich in magnesium include green leafy vegetables and brazil nuts. The best source of vitamin D is your own body, but you’ll need plenty of direct sunshine to produce it. If you don’t get enough sunshine, try taking a vitamin D supplement. Keep in mind, however, that vitamin D is fat soluble. You’ll need to take the supplement with a meal containing fat to help your body absorb the vitamin.
Add Creatine to Your Diet
Studies show that adding creatine to your diet can increase testosterone levels by 20 to 25 percent in men 18 to 35 years old. Creatine is an organic acid that occurs naturally in the body and aids in muscle growth. While small doses of creatine can be found in red meat, taking a supplement is more convenient.
Research shows that ingesting sugar can cause testosterone to decrease. Replace sugary snacks with healthier alternatives to keep the weight off and your libido high. Grapes, watermelon, and dark chocolate are a few examples of foods that will satisfy your sweet tooth without causing a spike in your blood sugar levels.
You may no longer be a 30-year-old, but you don’t have to suffer from low testosterone. From improving your diet to performing the right exercises, there are many natural ways to keep your testosterone levels in check. Follow the above tips to keep your testosterone levels up in your 40s, 50s, and beyond.
Adam Davidson has worked in Fitness business for over 11 years. He has a B.S. in business from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. He has worked in Brazil before he established his own company.