Testosterone is produced naturally in the body and is essential for healthy sperm, sexual performance, and even muscle growth: according the the ‘Journal of Applied Physiology’ it triggers the increased protein synthesis needed to pack on muscle. If the levels in your body drop too low you can end up suffering from erectile dysfunction, muscle loss, depression, fatigue and even a decrease in bone mass. Depending on your lifestyle and diet you can be either hobbling, or boosting testosterone production (which naturally starts to decline after age 30) so use RSNG’s hacks to ensure you’re keeping yourself ahead of the drop…
1. Score A Success
Something that biologists have known about for a long time is the ‘winner effect’ – if an animal has won a fight or competition then they are more likely to carry on winning. For the first time, a 2018 [study]http://psycnet.apa.org/buy/2018-22169-003) in the Journal of Personality And Social Psychology has looked into the effect of social prestige on human testosterone, rather than dominance based on fear or intimidation.
The scientists looked at 177 marching band members, asking them who they thought were the most skilled, successful and respected individuals in their community. ‘Men who achieve high standing in the group’s prestige hierarchy, in the initial weeks of group formation, show a rise in testosterone over the subsequent two months, whereas men with low-prestige show a decline or little change in testosterone,’ said Joey T. Chang, corresponding author of the study.
So, score a win at work, or within your sport or pastime’s community, on your own merits, and your natural levels of testosterone will rise.
‘Binge drinking causes a collapse in testosterone levels for a day or so’
2. Catch Some Rays
Levels of Vitamin D appear to be connected to raised levels of testosterone in men, and a 2018 study published in the International Journal of Endocrinology gave men Vitamin D replacement therapy and found that: ‘Vitamin D is important for the wellness of male sexual function, and vitamin D administration improves sexual function.’ Some 10% of adults in the US are Vit D deficient, so whether you get yours from sunshine, oily fish, seeds or eggs, then make sure you’re not hobbling your testosterone levels by not getting enough…
3. Don’t Binge On Booze – Or Donuts
Heavy, regular alcohol consumption diminishes testosterone, with one study showing that binge drinking causes a collapse in testosterone levels for a day or so. Chronic drinking also makes you more at risk of putting on bodyfat. And overweight men with a body weight that’s 30% or more than ideal can end up with hormonal imbalances, which are definitely not in the favour of testosterone. So, if you are reaching for either a beer or comfort foods in a bid to de-stress then switch the bar stool for the weights bench, because exercise has been shown to increase testosterone, and resistance moves do more than cardio.
4. Include Meat In Your Diet, OR...
Bad news for vegans: a study in the British Journal Of Nutrition showed that vegans had 3% lower free testosterone than omnivores. But avoid meats high in sat fat: a University of Utah study showed that eating too much sat fat-rich lamb and beef can make testosterone drop. And if you are vegan then make sure you use the following hacks…
5. Eat More Honey
Honey is rich in Vitamin B, which is essential for the production of testosterone, and there is some evidence that eating honey is may boost levels of testosterone, says a review published in the Saudi Journal Of Biological Sciences. The same review says that the high content of nitrus oxide in honey (which is involved in vasodilation) may help to alleviate symptoms of erectile dysfunction. One hundred grams of honey is enough to increase nitric oxide in the blood by 50%.
‘Replace some of the soy with other plant sources and proteins, like hemp’
6. Cut Down On Soy
If you’ve switched to soy milk, use soy protein isolate in place of whey, and eat other sources of the bean, then you may be putting your hormonal balance at risk. There’s a loud and contradictory debate doing on about the effects on testosterone of the isoflavones in soy, which are converted by your body to phyoestrogens, similar to the human estrogen that occurs in both men and women, naturally. But new evidence from the University of Colorado has linked consumption of soy to a chemical called equol in the gut, which interferes with testosterone.
It’s never a good idea to overload on any single food, so replace some of the soy with other plant sources and proteins, like hemp, which contains all of the essential amino acids.
7. Ditch The Sodas
Sugary drinks and snacks are pretty rubbish on all fronts, in terms of health, but are particularly damaging to your testosterone levels. Cakes and candy are obviously high in sugar, but you know that when you eat them – far worse are fizzy drinks, which slip down easily but are total sugar bombs. A study published by The Endocrine Society and performed by Dr Frances Hayes, St Vincent’s University Hospital, gave 74 men 75g of pure glucose in solution and saw that their testosterone levels plummeted by 25%, regardless of their individual insulin resistance.
WHAT NEXT? Read RSNG’s interview with testosterone expert Professor Joe Herbert – from the vaults...
Comments are for information only and should not replace medical care or recommendations. Please check with your Doctor before embarking on exercise or nutrition regimes for the first time.
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