Maximize Natural Testosterone Levels With These 6 Tips
If you are trying to build muscle or maintain a healthy lifestyle, maximizing natural testosterone levels are probably a goal of yours.
The supplement industry is flooded with testosterone boosters aiming to help you enjoy some gains, sex, and have that luxurious beard you love.
Fortunately, there are some ways we can achieve a higher testosterone level while remaining natural.
Boost Testosterone Levels
1.) Get Some Zinc
Zinc deficiency has been associated with lower testosterone levels.
Being low or zinc deficient can cause growth retardation, a loss of appetite, and impaired immune function. If you are chronically deficient, it can cause delayed sexual maturation, impotence, hair loss, diarrhea, slow healing wounds, and mental lethargy.
It's pretty bad.
Eat zinc-rich foods like lamb, grass-fed beef, pumpkin seeds, or cocoa powder or try a zinc supplement. Studies have shown supplementing zinc increases testosterone in mend with zinc deficiencies.
2.) Get Out in the Sun and Eat Some Mushrooms
Vitamin D is associated with lower levels of testosterone. Studies have shown that seasonal levels in testosterone follow the same pattern of vitamin D, with the lowest levels in early spring and late winter.
Increasing the time you spend outside, eating vitamin D rich foods, or supplementing with vitamin D3 can increase your testosterone levels.
3.) Watch Your Diet
Dieting down to get lower body fat has an effect on your testosterone. An older study took amateur wrestlers and showed the lower levels of body fat correlated with a lower testosterone level. Another case studied a natural bodybuilder found as they dieted down for a contest, their testosterone levels jumped off of a cliff.
If getting shredded is your goal, that's cool. I just want you to understand that getting that lean is going to come at the cost of a lower testosterone level.
If you have to get that lean, I recommend getting with a coach and dieting down in a smart and calculated manner.
4.) Sleep More
Not getting enough sleep makes recovering slower, your cognitive function declines, and it causes a lot of hormonal imbalances.
Testosterone is thought to be impacted by your sleep habits. One study suggests one week of sleep restriction caused participants' testosterone levels to be substantially lower throughout the day. The participants only had to restrict their sleep to five hours to notice this effect. Most of my friends like to brag about only sleeping for a few hours, but not me.
Inadequate sleep impacts your physical and mental performance, so make sleep a priority.
5.) Get More Recovery
Cortisol is a stress hormone. Studies show that cortisol and testosterone work like a seesaw — testosterone is higher when cortisol is lower, and vice-versa.
High training volume coupled with inadequate recovery will increase your cortisol levels and keep you from making gains.
This is often called overtraining.
Destressing, getting enough sleep, and maintaining lower cortisol levels have been associated with a higher testosterone level.
6.) Maintain a Healthier Body Composition
We went over how getting shredded wrecks our testosterone, but so does carrying excess body fat. Studies suggest higher levels of lean body mass are associated with higher levels of testosterone, while the opposite is true when there are higher levels of body fat.
Obese men have higher levels of estrogen and lower levels of testosterone. Losing body fat appears to help increase your testosterone levels and simultaneously lowering estrogen levels.
Maintaining a healthy body fat level ensures your body can have the best testosterone levels — too lean or too fat will reduce them.
Wrapping It Up
Look, your testosterone levels will be fine if you eat mostly nutritious foods, get enough physical activity, lift some weights, and sleep hard.
Make sure you get out into the sun and eat some zinc and vitamin D rich foods.
If you are wanting to look like shredded wheat, know that your testosterone levels are going to tank. As you lose body fat and get to a healthy level, your testosterone levels will naturally rise — a small to moderate calorie deficit can help you lower your body fat.
Take time for yourself.
I can't stress this enough. When training, find the intensity and frequency that allows you to progress without overtraining. Prioritize getting adequate sleep, drink enough water, de-stress, and enjoy life. The lower your stress levels, the higher your testosterone levels.
Oh yeah, and quit testing your one rep max.