Testosterone affect various parts of the male lifestyle to include libido, mental health, and physical health. If you’re finding you have symptoms of low testosterone (Low-T), then take a look at these healthy lifestyle changes that will boost production.
What is testosterone?
Testosterone is an important hormone, present in both sexes but significantly higher levels are found in men than women. For men it is predominantly produced in the testicles. Whilst for women testosterone is produced primarily in the ovaries and adrenal gland.
Why do testosterone levels matter in men?
Testosterone levels are important in maintaining a healthy life as it regulates fertility, muscle mass, fat distribution, and red blood cell production. It can even influence human behavior such as sex drive and aggression.
A natural decrease in testosterone levels is no cause for concern, as men get older production naturally decrease.
A healthy man’s testosterone levels are anywhere between 270-1070 ng/dL, with a peak at age 20 and a gradual decline of around 1% per year after the age of 30.
However, if production drops dramatically below this you may experience a range of indicators such as;
- Loss of libido
- Erectile dysfunction
- Low sperm count
- Enlarged breast tissue
- Mood changes
- Hair loss
- Loss of muscle mass and increased body fat
- Decrease bone mass
People with high levels of testosterone can experience:
- Mood changes
- Increase in muscle mass
- Sleep apnea
However, high levels of testosterone are much less common than low testosterone and aren’t usually cause for concern.
If you become concerned that your testosterone production has dropped or increased dramatically seek medical advice diagnosis or treatment from your GP or doctor. However, these small lifestyle changes do have the ability to create a healthier lifestyle and regulate the production of hormones such as testosterone.
Ways to increase testosterone naturally
Leading a healthy lifestyle can help improve multiple areas of your life and that means, you guessed it, physical activity. Now any exercise is good for helping get you in shape, but when it comes to increasing testosterone levels there are clear winners.
Resistance training such as weight lifting is proven to increase short and long-term testosterone production, in people with penises. A close second is high-intensity interval training, however, it is important to note that exercising in any form is a great way to lead a balanced lifestyle and in turn boost the production of necessary hormones in your body. Don’t overdo it - excessive exercise can have an adverse effect causing your testosterone levels to drop.
What you put into your body can have a big impact on how your body works, putting your body under strain by constant dieting or overeating can disrupt your testosterone levels.
Whilst some foods appear to boost the production of testosterone through nutrients such as vitamin D and zinc. Food such as oysters, leafy greens, fatty fish, and olive oil all have been found to encourage testosterone production due to the high levels of vitamin d or zinc.
- As a healthy male over 14, you should aim for 11mg of zinc each day, if this isn’t achievable through diet think about taking zinc supplements.
- Vitamin D supplements usually have 15 micrograms a day which should be enough to boost vitamin D in the body for most people.
By avoiding soy-based, over-processed foods, and alcohol you can increase your testosterone.
3. Minimize stress
Long-term high levels of stress can negatively affect your body in multiple ways including the production of cortisol. These unnaturally high levels of cortisol can reduce your testosterone production. By minimizing life stressors, and avoiding putting yourself in stressful situations you can achieve lower cortisol levels and in turn, increase testosterone production.
Exercise is great for lowering your stress levels. Although going for a run won’t fix all your problems it can certainly help keep you relaxed.
4. Vitamins & Supplements
Multivitamins are a great way to ensure you’re getting enough nutrients into your body especially if your diet is restricted due to food intolerances or lifestyle choices. As previously mentioned vitamin D has been proven to work as a natural testosterone booster if you aren’t having regular sunlight exposure then choose to take a vitamin D3 supplement daily. Think about incorporating vitamins into your diet to re-energize yourself, and make you feel good from the inside out.
Sleep is very important for cognitive function but your sleep pattern can also affect physiological well-being. Lack of sleep has been shown to decrease testosterone production. Change this by ensuring you are well-rested and having quality sleep.
It is recommended for adult males to get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night to maintain a healthy lifestyle. If you’re prone to waking up every hour take some steps to make sure your sleeping environment is distraction-free and calming to help you relax further.
6. Healthy Lifestyle
Many of these tips aren’t new or groundbreaking and should be practiced as a way to achieve and maintain a healthy lifestyle. An important factor when it comes to a healthy lifestyle is the health of your sex life. Regulate your sex hormones and the production of testosterone through sex.
Take these tips to lead an overall healthier and happier lifestyle whilst boosting your testosterone naturally. If you become concerned that your testosterone production has dropped or increased dramatically seek medical advice from your GP or doctor.