Testosterone is crucial for men to optimize a wide range of healthy bodily functions from muscular development, bone density, libido, mood, mental health, metabolism, energy levels, and many more things!
However, in a world saturated with poor dietary choices, an indoor sedentary lifestyle, xenoestrogens, and trendy social pseudo-movements decrying so-called “toxic masculinity” while elevating “dad bods” and “fat acceptance,” weakness and unfulfilled masculinity have almost become the norm.
Consequently, a vicious cycle of obesity, ill mental health, and low testosterone has been set in motion, affecting millions of men in the developed world.
But curing low testosterone levels is remarkably easy — unless you suffer from a legitimate disease shuttering your natural T production — and only require slight lifestyle modifications to SUBSTANTIALLY improve your quality of life by boosting your T production.
We will split up how to boost your natural T levels into two categories: lifestyle and supplementation.
Boost Testosterone Through Lifestyle Changes
Lifestyle changes shouldn’t break the bank too much, but you might need to dish out some cash for certain supplements.
On a side note, a testosterone booster, while it may help push your natural T production into the normal range, won’t elevate your T to a supraphysiological level. If you have normal T, you won’t get steroid-like results from a T booster; but if you suffer from low T, a test booster might help with normal production.
How To Know if You Have Low Testosterone
Many men suffer from low testosterone in this day and age. Testosterone is the hormone most associated with masculinity, and although it is also important to women’s bodies and their health, the increased levels of testosterone in the male body are responsible for the host of traits that make men men, rather than women.
Body hair, muscle mass, bone density, strength, aggression, dominance and competitiveness – increases in all of these things are associated with increased testosterone in men.
Low Testosterone — A Societal Shifter
Falling testosterone levels are a fact of life for all men as they age. After the age of 30, a man can expect to lose 1% of his testosterone every year for the rest of his life.
But the natural reduction all men can expect to suffer pales in comparison with the society-wide collapse in testosterone levels that has occurred over the second half of the twentieth and the first quarter of the twenty-first century.
Men today have considerably less testosterone than men of the same age even a single generation ago.
A 2007 study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism showed a significant reduction in the testosterone levels of men since the 1980s. A 60-year-old American man in 2004, for example, had 17% less testosterone than a 60-year-old American man in 1987.
These findings were corroborated in a study of Danish men, who displayed a two-digit decline between the 1920s and the 1960s.
So how can you tell if you have low testosterone?
The easiest and most definitive way is to have a blood test. A normal testosterone level range for men is 300 to 1,000 nanograms per deciliter (ng/dl), whereas for women, it’s between 15 and 70 ng/dl. If as a man your testosterone is below 300 ng/dl, you have low testosterone.
But this is putting the cart before the horse, because before you decide to have a test you will experience some or all of the following symptoms, assuming you actually do have low testosterone.
You’ll have good reason to ask the question ‘Do I have low T?, because in some very obvious ways you’ll feel like less of a man.
The main symptoms include:
- Reduced libido
- Erectile dysfunction
- Fertility problems (inability to conceive)
- Fatigue/Low Energy
- Depression/Lowered Mood
- Weight Gain
- Muscle Loss
Boys with low testosterone may develop slower, with little or no body hair, under-developed muscles and smaller penises; and men with low T will have difficulty building muscle, no matter how hard they try.
In extreme cases of low testosterone, usually referred to as hypogonadism, men may also develop breast tissue (gynecomastia) and osteoporosis (reduced bone density).
Hypogonadism has a variety of causes, which include:
- Certain genetic disorders
- Pituitary disorders, including pituitary tumours and injuries
- Inflammatory diseases
- Obesity and also rapid weight loss
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Steroid use
Obesity, in particular, is an increasingly common cause of hypogonadism.
Stored fat is highly estrogenic and can wreak havoc on your testosterone levels.
In fact, losing fat is one of the quickest ways to remedy low testosterone — as well as chronic inflammation.
Viable Lifestyle Changes
Lifestyle: Lose fat (but don’t get lower than 8-9% bodyfat unless you’re prepping for a photo shoot or competition as it will begin to lower your T levels and increase stress) — losing fat is the number one way to quickly and naturally boost your testosterone levels, athleticism, and decrease inflammation.
1) Lift Heavy Weights
3) Move around more
4) Get More Sunshine
5) Have more sex, fap less
6) Sleep more, sleep deeply
7) Destress — although cortisol, the “stress hormone,” has a legitimate function in regulating the body’s metabolism and blood sugar levels during times of stress — think war or famine –, cortisol can make it harder to burn fat while stripping away hard-earned muscles to keep energy reserves high.
8) Avoid drinking excessively — especially beer, the hoppier it is, the worse it is.
9) Avoid processed foods and xenoestrogens
10) Eat more “healthy” fats — salmon, mackerel, avocado, nuts, coconut oil.
Boost Testosterone Through Supplementation
11) Magnesium Supplement ZMA — men lose zinc and magnesium through sweat and conventional bodybuilding diets might be lacking in both metals.
14)Vitamin D3 — supplement this throughout the winter months, if you live somewhere with poor weather/few annual sunshine hours, or if you have higher levels of melanin.
15) Vitamin E, a Multivitamin — if you’re eating properly, there shouldn’t be micronutrient deficiencies, but if you’re cutting weight to lose fat, you may need to supplement with a multivitamin just to be sure that your hormone levels are functioning at a normal level.
Ok, the last one is a little more roundabout — it can help with fat loss, which in turn can help with boosting testosterone levels.
But, having said that, fat is highly estrogenic and excess body fat can wreak havoc on your endocrine system.
Luckily, we have various strategies including a free eBook to help you torch fat.
Failing this, a relatively new so-called testosterone booster has come to light, showing a lot of promise.
We have covered this amazing new supplement in a previous article:
In its homeland it is known by many names, such as ibhucu, ingcelwane and rooiwortel.
The sap of the plant has long been used for treating wounds, burns and rashes, and an infusion made from the root is used to treat vomiting, diarrhea, convulsions, sexually transmitted diseases, diabetes and rheumatism.
It is only recently that the plant has come to the attention of western practitioners as a potent testosterone booster and libido enhancer.
In a study at the University of Fort Hare, South Africa, rats given a dose of the plant had a serum testosterone level that was 347% that of the control group that did not receive the plant.
The dosed rats also had 35% less estrogen and observably more libido.
The plant apparently works, at least in rats, because it increases testosterone levels in the testes and blood; the testes grow in size and, in turn, secrete more testosterone.
Bulbine natalensis does this by, among other things, raising levels of compounds in the testes which are used in the production of testosterone and by raising levels of hormones which stimulate the testes to produce testosterone.
It also boosts the activity of an important testicular enzyme that is involved in ensuring healthy sperm; all in all, making it a promising testosterone booster supplement.
There are very few human studies of the effects bulbine natalensis, since it is a relatively new health product.
Its long-term effects are unknown, but a clinical study of its use in men for a period of 28 days stated that the supplement is safe according to various markers of health, including blood, kidney, liver and heart markers.
Although more research needs to be done, there is already a wealth of anecdotal evidence for its efficacy, whether in online product reviews or forum posts as a viable testosterone booster.
Fitness writer and trainer Mike Mahler, for instance, has made bulbine part of his ‘Aggressive Strength Testosterone Booster’, a supplement he sells on his website.
One poster on anabolicminds.com writes: ‘Strength is amazing, up not only one rep pr. Exercise but multiple rep on all sets and exercises – even the exercises that have seemed to plateau. Fatigue completely gone, and im on week six going on week seven monday – that’s almost the most amazing part, cause my brain works better (no brain fog).’
Product pages are also awash with glowing reviews.
‘I have been taking 1 tablet every day, for 18 days now. My muscles have notably grown, also my muscles are harder than before and I have been getting a lot leaner, especially from stomach/oblique area. This is by far the strongest natural testosterone booster I have ever tried and I have tried a lot of those. Including tribulus terrestris and fadogia agrestis.’
In the absence of established data on human dosage, it is worth following closely the dosage instructions stated on whatever product it is you buy.
The plant seems to follow an inverted-U dose response curve, which basically means that up to a certain point you will experience the results you want, but then if you exceed a certain dose, it will have the opposite effect.
Don’t think you can just take more and get better results; in fact, you may be compromising your results or even throwing them into reverse.
Many have experienced the best results through cycling on and off the drug; some suggest a fortnight or a month on and then a fortnight or a month off.
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