When we’re young, testosterone levels are rarely an issue.
It kicks in during puberty, and all of a sudden, we’ve got hairs growing all over the shop, Lean muscles developing definition, and we can’t stop thinking about our science class crush.
But when we get a little older, testosterone levels drop. It’s a perfectly natural process, but it’s not without its issues.
A dearth of this primary sex hormone can lead to weight gain, a reduced sex drive, diminished bone density, low energy and mood, and can even contribute towards erectile dysfunction.
I know that sounds like an absolute horror show, but don’t worry, as there are plenty of natural, science-backed measures you can take to keep your testosterone levels through the roof.
1. Sleep Your Way To Jacked Testosterone Levels
Failing to get enough shut-eye can have a seismic effect on chemicals and hormones in the body, testosterone being just one of them.
During sleep studies in which blood tests were carried out on 24-year-old men having a full 10 hours sleep for three nights, then only 5 hours sleep for 8 nights, it was discovered that daytime testosterone levels plummeted 15%.
Now, considering the average decline in testosterone due to aging is only 1–2% per year, this is some serious hormone loss, so do yourself a favor, and get some rest — 7–8 hours a night is the sweet spot.
2. Eating Healthy
It’s no secret that eating a balanced diet will keep you fit and healthy, but what you may not know is that low nutritional or changeable diets can wreak havoc on your testosterone levels!
Over-eating also has a drastic effect on the chemical balances in our bodies, so it’s important to form healthy eating habits and maintain them over long periods of time.
Avoid yo-yo dieting, and if you must change your diet in any significant way, keep the transition gentle. Amending your eating habits incrementally will help to maintain optimal body chemistry.
A balanced diet should be predominantly composed of whole foods and should provide an even spread of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats.
3. Exercising And Weight Loss
In my opinion, if you’re happy with your body, it doesn’t matter what the labels of your clothes say; however, studies have shown that heavier set people don’t produce as much testosterone as those with leaner physiques.
In fact, obesity can decrease testosterone levels by as much as 50%, so losing a bit of weight by exercising regularly and eating well is a great way to bolster your T-levels.
4. Live An Active Lifestyle
Although weight loss is a sure-fire way to boost testosterone levels without resorting to medication, it’s not quite as beneficial as simply staying active. It’s generally accepted that the more active you are, the more testosterone you’ll produce.
That said, it’s important to know your limits, especially as you get older. Overexercising has been linked to decreased hormone levels, so, by all means, work lots of healthy activities into your day-to-day life, but give yourself time to rest, too.
5. Letting Go Of The Stress
I know this is much easier said than done, but letting go of stress will work wonders for your health.
Granted, there is no overwhelming scientific evidence that suggests stress and its associated hormone, cortisol, reduce testosterone levels, but it is largely accepted that the lack of it can help ease some of the commonly associated symptoms of low T.
It’s not that chilling out boosts your testosterone levels, it’s that stress could be having its own impact on T-related aspects of your health, such as mood, energy levels, and libido. In light of this, removing stress from your biological equation will feel as if your testosterone has been given a boost.
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6. Dietary Supplements
While popping pills is absolutely not the way to address a low T-count, popping supplements absolutely is! Which ones, you ask? Well, let’s take a look, shall we?
Vitamin D is a great way to recuperate low testosterone levels. You can take it as a supplement if you like, but if the sun’s out, why not just go for a lovely 15-minute walk?
If you’re not big on supplements, try your hardest to consume foods in which vitamin D naturally occurs, such as salmon and cereal products.
DHEA is a hormone precursor, an intermediary in the biosynthesis of androgen steroids, which translates from science talk into… It plays a pivotal role in the production of testosterone.
As we age, DHEA starts to dwindle in our system, but studies have shown that topping our natural supply off with a supplement can have a small but noticeable impact on testosterone production.
Magnesium And Zinc
Pre-standing deficiencies in magnesium and zinc can lead to reduced testosterone levels, so taking a few supplements will kill two birds with one stone. Plus, bolstered magnesium and zinc levels have been linked to better sleep!
Both magnesium and zinc occur naturally in leafy greens such as spinach, but if you’re looking to isolate the intake of just one of these nutrients, eat plenty of whole grains for magnesium, and plenty of flaxseed for zinc.
Creatine is known to have a gentle but positive effect on testosterone levels. It can be taken as a supplement or consumed in foods such as beef, tuna, and salmon.
Setting The Sauce Aside
It’s long been known that alcohol and drug abuse has an adverse effect on hormone levels, testosterone included, so, if possible, stop taking drugs, and reduce your alcohol intake.
Assess Your Medication
Some medicines prescribed to treat unrelated ailments could also be having a detrimental effect on your testosterone levels, so I’d recommend giving the pill bottle or box a thorough read.
If you find that this is indeed the case, don’t stop mid-course, keep taking your meds, and report your concerns to your doctor. They may then be able to suggest an alternative.
There you have it, folks — 8 ways you can either stabilize, boost, or lessen the impact of low testosterone levels without taking any dubious quick-fix meds.
Essentially, all you need to do to get your T-level back into the green is to live healthy, so be self-aware, be vigilant with your diet, have lots of active fun, and you’ll feel like a whole new person.