Low testosterone can be a killer, but thankfully there are great tips for boosting your natural T levels from the good doctor himself, Dr. Testosterone.
For bodybuilders, increasing muscle mass, controlling body fat and weight management, and seeking to improve overall health are the keys to getting those goals to be a reality. One important to note with this when it comes to improving these goals is your production of natural testosterone and your body’s response to increasing it. Since testosterone is important for both men’s and women’s health, those with low T will unfortunately feel the negative effects that come along with this.
Dr. Testosterone sat down with Generation Iron to discuss the effects that low testosterone has on bodybuilders and the best ways to naturally get those T levels to where you want them. He is one of a small selection of certified doctors whose mission is to improve the health and safety of bodybuilders and as someone who understands the laws and regulations surrounding steroid and PED use, he does his best to help bodybuilders understand the safest way to enhance their overall physique and performance while staying safe. In our latest GI Exclusive interview, Dr. Testosterone describes the best ways to naturally boost testosterone levels, top foods to aid in this process, and what low T levels can do to the body.
Testosterone is a hormone produced by the body that affects a man’s physical appearance and sexual development. Not only does testosterone aid in sperm production and sex drive, but also muscle growth and bone development (1). While testosterone boosting supplements can be great aids for those suffering from low T levels, knowing how to naturally boost testosterone will provide for healthier ways to get you back on track.
Best Ways To Boost Testosterone Naturally
Boosting your natural testosterone levels involves many different aspects of changing certain facets of your lifestyle. Dr. Testosterone first talks about weight loss and management and that those who are overweight or obese tend to have a hard time keeping those levels high. Fat cells work against you to metabolize testosterone into estrogen and also reduce levels of the sex hormone globulin which carries testosterone in the blood (2). For this reason, those looking to preserve muscle while also lowering their body fat percentage will allow the brain to better produce testosterone. In short, being leaner allows for better testosterone production.
In terms of overall lifestyle, Dr. Testosterone says that between the hours of 11pm and 7am is the best time for recuperation and recovery to really maximize both T levels and overall performance. In terms of training, high-intensity interval training and resistance training with lactate reduction will really work to your benefit (3). Performing 8-12 reps with high intensity is the goal, but not overdoing it is key. Anything longer than 45 minutes will produce cortisol which has the unfortunate side effect of lowering testosterone.
Foods For Natural T Production
Dieting is obviously something bodybuilders take very seriously and knowing what to eat and when to eat are important to see that growth. When it comes to boosting natural testosterone, cholesterol is key for testosterone synthesis. Those with too low of cholesterol levels will find that their T levels do tend to be lower (4). Foods like egg yolks, red meat, leafy greens, avocados, and even ginger can all help raise your testosterone levels. Red meat is a great food to naturally boost T levels because it contains zinc, which is necessary to convert androstenedione, a naturally occurring steroid hormone, into testosterone.
Dr. Testosterone does point out that alcohol and medications like opiates and SSRIs are important to avoid if you can, as well as marijuana. Alcohol, for example, can damage Leydig cells in the testes which produce and secrete testosterone (5), and also releases endorphins. While endorphins provide for a relaxed feeling, they can interfere with testosterone synthesis.
Other foods and substances to avoid are important to note in your efforts to naturally boost testosterone levels. Soy products tend to have similar compounds to estrogen which can act against testosterone (6). Some dairy products may also contain synthetic or natural hormones that act against T levels and if animal feed contains soy, you get the by-product of increased estrogen levels from that source. Processed foods contains high amounts of salt, sugar, and trans fats which can impair testicular function and reduce testosterone levels as well.
Warning Signs Of Low T
While lower levels of testosterone can be frustrating, there are warning signs to look out for which can help you catch this and work to improve your T levels whichever method you choose. As you age, your levels may start to naturally lower and erectile dysfunction and low libido, the urge to have sex, may be signs to watch out for. Physically, you may notice muscle wasting and visceral fat, which can add to that flabby appearance.
Cognitively, you may find yourself more fatigued and with less energy, as well as a depressed state of mind. With age, you may get morning depression, a state where you may not be as mentally sharp and can lose passion for a lot of activities you enjoy (7). Since testosterone boosts both dopamine, your reward hormone, and serotonin, your joy hormone, it is important to catch these warning signs of low testosterone to keep you physically active and mentally sharp.
Low testosterone can be more than frustrating, especially in younger men. While cases of men in the twenties and thirties are rare, they almost always come as a result of trauma or an accident to your testes and certain syndromes that have unfortunately come on. For these men, it just takes constant work to keep those T levels high. As you age, low testosterone levels are natural but that doesn’t mean you can’t stop it. Dr. Testosterone uses his knowledge and expertise to help bodybuilders find success in safe and effective ways and this video offers valuable insight into just how to boost your natural levels of testosterone so you can keep performance high and doing all the things you love.
*Images courtesy of Envato
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- Yu, Chunxiao; Jiang, Fangjie; Zhang, Meijie; Luo, Dandan; Shao, Shanshan; Zhao, Jiajun; Gao, Ling; Zuo, Changting; Guan, Qingbo (2019). “HC diet inhibited testosterone synthesis by activating endoplasmic reticulum stress in testicular Leydig cells”. (source)
- Widenius, T. V. (1987). “Ethanol-induced inhibition of testosterone biosynthesis in vitro: lack of acetaldehyde effect”. (source)
- Zilaee, Marzie; Mansoori, Anahita; Ahmad, Hosseini S.; Mohaghegh, Seyede M.; Asadi, Maryam; Hormoznejad, Razie (2020). “The effects of soy isoflavones on total testosterone and follicle-stimulating hormone levels in women with polycystic ovary syndrome: a systematic review and meta-analysis”. (source)
- Bebb, Richard A. (2011). “Testosterone Deficiency: Practical Guidelines For Diagnosis and Treatment”. (source)