Posted October 14, 2013 by Strensa in Fitness

4 ways to naturally increase your testosterone levels

naturally increase your testosterone levels
naturally increase your testosterone levels

Testosterone is somewhat of a dirty word. Misconceptions about testosterone arise, however, due to an inherent lack of understanding about its benefits. The common consensus is that high levels of testosterone result in negative impacts, such as aggression and anti-social behaviour.

Nothing, however, could be further from the truth.

High levels of testosterone, especially in men, can have such positive benefits as: decreased body fat levels, an increase in muscle mass, an increase in libido, a strengthening of the heart and bones, and improved cognitive function, to name but a few.

What we’re going to discuss today, therefore, are 4 ways to naturally increase your testosterone levels, helping you to reap the associated rewards.

1. Strength training

In order to maximise testosterone production while weight training, it’s important to remember one thing: lift heavy.

Research indicates that adopting compound lifts, such as bench press, squats, deadlifts, and military press, are optimal for stimulating the production of testosterone. These exercises should be performed in sets of 3, with a maximum of 5 reps per set. The idea is to go as heavy as you possibly can. While it’s fine to add other exercises in to complement your workout, ensure that each workout consists of at least two of these exercises. Around the 1 minute 30 second mark is an ideal rest period to maximise testosterone production too.

2. Increase your vitamin D levels

Vitamin D deficiency is a common problem. And it’s an issue that drastically inhibits the body’s production of testosterone.

Vitamin D is produced when we expose our bodies to direct sunlight, but, with more and more time spent working and playing indoors, we deprive ourselves of this important ingredient in the testosterone production recipe.

In order to increase our vitamin D levels, and thus optimise our body’s production of testosterone, the easiest thing to do is to start spending more time outdoors, in direct sunlight. This is, however, somewhat of a scattergun approach and not always feasible.

A more scientific means of increasing our vitamin D levels in to increase our intake through taking vitamin D supplements. Before taking any kind of vitamin D supplement, it’s best to consult a doctor, in order to get your current levels measured. From there, it’s a matter of taking 4,000 -8,000 IU of vitamin D per day, until you reach blood levels of 55 ng/ml, which is optimal for the production of testosterone.

3. Eat more fat, but the right kind of fats

Overhearing conversations where people talk about needing to lower the fat content of their diets is frustrating, largely because of a distinct lack of understanding about our body’s need for fat, some of which are extremely beneficial, especially when we are concerned with maximising our body’s production of testosterone.

The reality is that our body should be deriving around 50% of its energy from fat, especially if we are looking to optimise testosterone production. Far from advocating eating more sugar, grains and other starch-rich carbohydrates, however, we are recommending that you consume mono, polyunsaturated and saturated fats derived from sources such as meat, dairy, olive oil, coconut oil, raw nuts, and avocados.

In addition to deriving more fat from these natural foodstuffs, it’s possible to naturally increase your body’s production of testosterone by taking fermented cod liver oil and vitamin-rich butter fat capsules. These are by no means cheap, but two in the morning and two before bed is a proven way of increasing testosterone, which is derived from the cholesterol contained in the tablets.

4.  Optimise your zinc intake

Those with lower zinc levels in their body tend to have lower levels of testosterone, owing to zinc’s importance in the testosterone production cycle. The easiest way to remedy a zinc deficiency is to increase your intake of beans, yoghurt, fermented kefir, meat and fish.

Zinc deficiency tends to be most common in vegetarians and those meat eaters with a poor overall diet, or those who eat too much produce that is grown using chemical fertilisers and pesticides, as these deplete the soil of nutrients such as zinc.

If your diet isn’t rich in the foods we’ve mentioned, taking a 40mg daily supplement of zinc, in the form of a pill, is a great way to ensure that you’re getting the zinc you need, while you work to make the longer term dietary changes that we’ve mentioned above.

Rethinking testosterone

No matter your fitness goal, whether it’s to run a marathon, add substantial weight to your lifts or just improve your overall health and wellbeing, increasing your body’s production of testosterone is a great way to speed up the process.

So, forget the myths and negative stories you may have been fed about testosterone, listen to the science and put some of our recommendations to the test. We’d love to hear about your experiments and what benefits you’ve felt or seen, so please drop us a comment below and share your experiences with the Strensa community.