8 Natural Ways to Boost Your Body’s Testosterone
As men, we want to “feel” like men our entire lives. What does that mean, exactly? For a lot of people, it means having more energy, having a higher libido, having stamina to work for long periods of time, being competent. And as we age, these attributes can wane slightly due to a natural, gradual decrease in testosterone.
This phenomenon is sometimes called “andropause,” but this isn’t a great term for it, mainly because it’s nothing like menopause — the end of ovulation for females, which involves a dramatic change in hormones over a relatively short period of time. Unlike women in menopause, men produce less and less testosterone after the age of 30, and it goes for the rest of their lives.
Lots of men over the age of 30 are alarmed by this. They feel less “manly” in their daily lives and want to feel young again. So they seek out supplements and even receive testosterone therapy in an attempt to get back to “normal.”
Unfortunately, not all the solutions you see in advertisements are good ones. That’s why I put together this list of natural ways to boost your testosterone.
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- Resistance training. Lifting weights has been shown to boost testosterone temporarily, for up to an hour after exercise.
- Do full-body exercises. Full-body exercise has been shown to increase testosterone levels more than split-body exercise. Let me explain that. Split body exercise is when you use only one muscle group (arms, back, chest) per day in the gym. Full-body uses all muscle groups. Some examples of full-body exercise are yoga, burpees, a calisthenics routine, or full-body strength training (lifting weights).
- Get to a healthy weight. Body fat secretes hormones that inhibit the production of testosterone. To raise testosterone, you need to lose excess body fat.
- Lie on your back and blow up a balloon every day. I know it sounds strange, but you may find this extremely challenging. Doing this gets you to breathe deeper, and deep breaths engage the “rest and digest” side of your nervous system—i.e., it gets you really relaxed. By regularly lowering your stress, you decrease the amount of cortisol in your blood. Cortisol inhibits testosterone. Cut cortisol, boost testosterone. It’s like a hormonal see-saw.
- Take a zinc supplement. Low zinc has been associated with low androgen concentrations in infertile men, and taking a zinc supplement has been shown to increase serum testosterone levels in healthy adults.
- Drink less alcohol. Alcohol intake has been associated with lower testosterone levels, and damage to the testicles’ ability to produce testosterone.
- Take select dietary supplements. Certain dietary supplements like ginger, ashwaghanda, and fenugreek have been shown to increase testosterone levels.
- Meditate. Meditation has been shown to decrease stress and cortisol over time. By reducing your stress through meditation, you reduce your serum cortisol. By reducing serum cortisol, you increase testosterone. (Remember the see-saw!)
What you should do
Increasing your testosterone sounds great, especially when you’re dealing with annoying symptoms of low-T like fatigue, depression and low sex drive. However, it’s important to remember that these symptoms can be caused by tons of health problems.
See a health professional instead of self-diagnosing.
Stay tuned and stay well,
Geo Espinosa, N.D., L.Ac, C.N.S., is a renowned naturopathic doctor recognized as an authority in integrative management of male and urological conditions. Dr. Geo is the founder and director of the Integrative Urology Center at New York University Langone Medical Center (NYULMC), a center of excellence in research and integrative treatments for urological conditions.
Learn more at Dr.Geo.com.