If you are aged above 45 years old, you need to pay more attention to the information below.
1) Get lean and stay lean, because the more body fat that you have, the more likely that your hormones are going to be out of whack. In fact, there has actually been a lot of research done in this area, with many studies showing that the more fat you carry, the lower your testosterone levels will be.
So it’s definitely worth getting your eating under wraps and starting an exercise program aimed at burning through some of that excess fat.
2) Get 8 hours of sleep each and every night, and try to nap during the day if you can. Getting adequate sleep has a strong correlation to optimal testosterone levels and should be high on your priority list if you’re serious about correcting them.
In fact, a study published at the University of Chicago showed that men who averaged just 5 hours of sleep or less experienced a drop in testosterone levels of 10-15 percent. So your goal is to get at least 6 hours a night of solid sleep, but 8 seems to be what is optimal.
3) Ensure that you’re getting an adequate intake of healthy fats such as fats from coconut oil, Extra virgin olive oil, nuts, avocado, fish oil, and lean animal meats. This will ensure that there are high enough levels of healthy cholesterol to support proper testosterone production functioning.
But wait – fats and cholesterol?
Yep, that isn’t a typo. There is actually a strong correlation between consuming a diet that is higher in healthy fats and testosterone production. So eat up!
4) Limit your intake of alcohol (especially beer) as alcohol consumption definitely has a negative impact on testosterone levels, not to mention your waistline.
Now, while it’s true that short-term alcohol consumption probably won’t affect your testosterone levels too much, I’m of the opinion that you’re better safe than sorry, and trying to minimize drinking as much as possible (that’s not to say that you can’t enjoy a drink or two every once in a while).
5) Reduce your exposure to environmental estrogens. Xenoestrogen is a chemical that imitates estrogen in the body. When we are exposed to too much of this estrogen-imitating chemical, our testosterone levels can drop significantly.
The scary part of this is that Xenoestrogens are everywhere – in our plastic, toothpaste, on our foods (that’s why it’s important to eat organic wherever possible), shopping bags, cleaning products, and even in our water.
6) Start your day with a high protein/medium fat/low carbohydrate meal like eggs or steak, along with some green vegetables and avocado/nuts. Most people who I’ve seen a switch from a carbohydrate-dominant breakfast to a high protein/moderate fat breakfast immediately report increases in energy, and satiety (the feeling of fullness), and almost always end up leaner from that one change.
As you’re about to find out (in the next point), carbohydrates temporarily drop our testosterone levels and seeing as our testosterone levels are at their highest in the mornings, we don’t want to disrupt that by eating some carbs.
7) Control your carbohydrate intake because immediately following any high-carbohydrate meal there is a temporary drop in testosterone levels.
While this drop is only temporary, if you are eating 3-4+ carb-dominant meals per day, this will lead to lower testosterone levels overall.
In order to control your carbohydrate intake, all I want you to do is to limit your consumption of starchy or simple carbohydrates to the 2-3 hour window after your training session for the day. This will ensure that your body is adept at handling the insulin spike a little better, and will also limit your consumption of these types of carbs to one meal per day – leading to better testosterone levels.
8) Eat lots of vegetables, especially cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage. Cruciferous vegetables contain indoles, which have been shown to remove the bad estrogens from our bodies.
In general, vegetables also help to support alkalinity and keep inflammation down (kale and spinach are great for this, as are blueberries), which will help promote a lean body, as well as overall health – both of which can indirectly help with testosterone levels.
9) Keep your training sessions to 45-minutes, or less, of intense work. Once you start getting beyond 45-minutes of intense training, your cortisol levels start to elevate significantly, causing there to be a decrease in testosterone. If you’re taking longer than 45-minutes to get through your sessions, then you’re probably not optimizing your time as best as you can be.
10) Make sure you do your big, compound lifts frequently – squats, deadlifts, rows, bench presses, chin-ups, shoulder presses, and lunges have been staples in many successful programs for decades for a reason.
It’s because exercises that are associated with larger muscle groups have been shown to result in increases in testosterone.
11) Be mindful of your stress, and be sure not to let it get out of control. A high level of stress increases cortisol (sometimes chronically), and when cortisol is high, then testosterone is low.
Putting some stress-management processes in place will help you keep this under wrap, as well as improve your mental focus and well-being – because no matter how ripped or muscular you are, nobody likes a crazy son of a gun – am I right? As a side note, although it probably won’t be a problem, overtraining has been shown to severely decrease testosterone levels.
12) Have sex more often, preferably with a partner. This one goes without saying, right? More sex = more testosterone. Beyond that, having sex more often will lead to an increase in confidence, as well as a decrease in stress. The combination of these factors can mean that having more sex becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy in that the more sex you have, the more sex that you want to have.
13) Keep your conditioning (fitness) work to higher intensity stuff, such as interval sprints, strongman training, or cardio finishers. HIIT style training has been shown to have a positive correlation to testosterone levels, at least according to a study contained in the British Journal Of Sports Medicine.
14) Don’t restrict calories by too much (no more than 20% below base needs) when trying to lose fat. Yes, your low-calorie diet is not only bad because it’s driving you insane, and making you feel like crap every day, but it can also be lowering your testosterone levels. By ensuring that you don’t cut calories too far from your maintenance levels, you can be sure that you don’t suffer from the side effects of low testosterone (and other hormones, for that matter). While I’ve done my fair share of research when it comes to supplements, I have to do my due diligence in saying that if you want to really delve into this subject, then do yourself a favor and head over to my friend Sol Orwell’s site, Examine.com, for what is the best database of summarized research on the Internet.
15) Take the appropriate supplements–Eat Maca: Maca is a good best bet for enhancing testosterone and boosting erections. Grown in Peru, this plant contains compounds called sterols that may block the body’s production of estrogen while boosting testosterone levels. Try mixing three to six tablespoons of whole maca root powder into a drink or cereal daily (extracts and capsules are not as effective). Stick with it for at least four weeks — some guys report that it makes them hornier as well as stronger.
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DHEA – DHEA is a naturally occurring hormone that is very effective in increasing testosterone levels, especially in those who are older in age (40 years+). The reason for this could be because our DHEA levels naturally drop as we age beyond 30, and so we need a little bit of external help when it comes to getting our levels up.
The effective dose of DHEA seems to be between 25-200mg/day, although the research is mixed. Personally, I’m about to experiment with taking 100mg/day, and adjust it as I see fit.
Magnesium Oil – I’ve spoken about the benefits of magnesium in a previous post, but know that, along with its other benefits, it will definitely help testosterone levels, particularly if you’ve found out that you have a magnesium deficiency. Considering that magnesium is a mineral that’s used mostly when we’re stressed, there is a good chance that you might be below if you haven’t been supplementing with it.
I use magnesium oil and take it as per the directions on the bottle.
Zinc Citrate – a deficiency in zinc levels can most definitely result in low levels of testosterone; in fact, it’s one of the most crucial minerals for optimal test functioning.
In fact, there is research out there showing that a zinc deficiency can lead to as much as a 50% reduction in testosterone levels. Again, this is something that you can easily check with a blood test, and when you go to get your testosterone levels checked, I recommend getting them to do vitamin D, zinc, and magnesium at the same time.
My magnesium oil contains zinc within it, so I don’t supplement with any oral form of zinc, outside of my food, of course.
Fish Oil – as we’ve covered already, an optimal intake of healthy fats plays a significant role in producing optimal levels of testosterone. Fish oil is the cream of the crop in regards to healthy fats.
The effective dose for fish oil is around 2-3g of the active ingredients (EPA/DHA) per day, so be sure to find a high-quality fish oil supplement, otherwise, the number of capsules that you have to swallow can become ridiculous.
Vitamin D – vitamin D is another nutrient that can play a role in decreasing testosterone should the body be deficient in it. While our bodies should get a lot of our vitamin D from the sun, given that the majority of the population works indoors nowadays, this simply isn’t the case anymore.
Research has shown that supplementing with anywhere from 3-5000IU of vitamin D per day can help fix this deficiency, and as a result, increase testosterone levels.
Beyond that, there are some Tribulus and bulbous-based products that could help with natural testosterone levels, but I haven’t looked into them enough to recommend them one way or another.
Regardless, the list above is extensive enough for you to go and make some changes to your nutrition and lifestyle habits so that you can get a little extra kick start to your training, recovery, and sex life!
For more information about how to Boost Your Testosterone Levels Naturally: