How To Increase Testosterone Levels Naturally
Why is testosterone important?
Testosterone is a hormone that your body needs in order to function properly, and in order for your body to carry out several of its tasks.
Having too little testosterone will cause several health problems.
Such as erectile dysfunction, infertility, fatigue and sleep problems. And many more.
And chances are – your testosterone levels are far from optimal. Particularly if you live a normal city-life.
You are not alone. It is estimated that as many as 800 million men worldwide (the number is probably even higher) suffer from testosterone deficiency.
However, there are several actions you can take to fix this.
This guide will tell you everything you need to know about how to increase your testosterone levels naturally.
By ‘naturally’, I mean making healthy changes to your lifestyle and giving your body what it needs in order to function optimally.
No hormone injections, testosterone replacement, pharmaceutical drugs or medications.
And this guide will also tell you what happens to your body if you have inadequate testosterone levels.
If you follow the steps in this guide, you are likely to see a dramatic increase in your testosterone levels.
In this guide, we will examine 12 actions you can implement today to start improving your testosterone levels.
We will explore all of these actions in detail and I also will explain how each of them impact your testosterone levels.
There is no simple trick that will naturally increase your testosterone levels overnight.
If you want to have a sustainable higher testosterone level, this will entail long-term solutions. And you will need some patience.
These are the 12 actions you can take to increase you testosterone levels:
- Eat Smart – Give Your Body All The Nutrients It Needs
- Exercise Regularly And Be Active As Much As You Can
- Loose Excess Body Fat
- Sleep Well And Sleep Long
- Don’t Stress
- Get Adequate Sun Exposure
- Stop (Or Reduce) Alcohol Intake
- Avoid Pollution
- Use Non-Toxic Personal Care And Cleaning Products
- Avoid Certain Medications
- Have Frequent Sex (But Don’t Come Too Often)
- Take Testosterone Boosting Supplements
But before we get into the details about how you can naturally boost your testosterone, lets first understand what testosterone is and what functions it has in our bodies.
What Is Testosterone?
Testosterone is the primary male sex hormone. It belongs to the group of androgens, which is the group containing all the hormones that regulate the development and maintenance of male characteristics.
Both men and women have testosterone, but men have approximately 10 times more of it. For women, the primary sex hormone is estrogen.
Testosterone is also what is called an anabolic steroid. Which means that when testosterone enters androgen receptors in muscle tissue or bones, it promotes creation and growth of muscles and bones.
Androgen receptors are the ‘docking stations’ or ‘ports’ where testosterone connects and then instructs the body to carry out certain tasks. Such as to increase sperm production or to create more muscle tissue.
95% of your testosterone is produced in the testicles.
The remaining testosterone is produced in what is called the adrenal glands which sit on top of the kidneys.
But how exactly is testosterone made?
It all starts in your brain. As the first step, a hormone called gonadotropin releasing hormone, is produced in one part of the brain.
This gonadotropin releasing hormone causes another part of the brain to produce two more hormones, called luteinizing hormone and follicle stimulating hormone.
The luteinizing hormone and follicle stimulating hormone then travels down your spine to your testicles. In the testicles, they enter cells called the leydig cells.
Inside the leydig cells, these two hormones instruct the leydig cells to manufacture testosterone.
After the testosterone is produced, it is released into your blood stream.
Most of this testosterone will immediately bind to two proteins called sex hormone binding globulin and albumin. The reason testosterone binds to these proteins is: 1) to be stored for future use, and 2) to be transported somewhere else in the body.
Only 1-3% of the testosterone will be un-bound to these proteins, or free.
Only free testosterone can carry out the tasks of testosterone (binding to androgen receptors and send instructions).
When this free testosterone binds to an androgen receptor, it causes things to happen.
Depending on what has been instructed, this can cause your body to build more muscle, increase bone density, cause facial hair to grow, etc.
Let’s look at some of the common functions of testosterone in your body:
Testosterone is essential for the development of the male sex organs such as the penis, testicles and prostate.
In fact, before you were born, testosterone influenced whether you became a boy or a girl.
As male babies become boys and then grow to men, testosterone is responsible for the development of characteristics such as curiosity, high levels of activity and risk taking.
It is also behind growth of pubic hair, facial hair and chest hair, as well as acne formation, rapid growth of arms and legs, a deeper voice, increased muscle mass, broad shoulders, the Adam’s apple and increases in sex drive.
For male adults, testosterone regulates sperm production and growth hormones, and is also necessary for proteins to form in the body.
It also helps with oxygen uptake, controls blood sugar, maintains the immune system and is also critical for production of red blood cells.
Testosterone levels normally peak when a person is in the late teens, and then gradually decline over time.
Most men can expect total testosterone levels to decline by a little more than 1% per year after turning 30, and free testosterone to decline by a little more than 2%, also after the age of 30.
To learn more about testosterone on Truelibido, please go here.
Now that we also know the basics of Testosterone, lets understand what your testosterone levels should be.
What Is A Normal Testosterone Level?
For a grown man, a normal total testosterone level is considered to be between 300 ng/dl and 1,050 ng/dl (ng/dl = nanograms testosterone per deciliter blood).
A normal free testosterone level is generally considered to be be between 5 ng/dL and 21 ng/dL.
These are the numbers set by the medical industry.
Did you notice the huge range of what is considered normal?
If your first thought was something like: ‘Well, this wide range should probably catch just about anyone’, I’ll give you a point for smart thinking.
Because yes, this range for what is considered normal is very wide, and yes, it will therefore catch the vast majority of men.
Does this mean that if your testosterone level is within this range, that you will have enough testosterone?
First of all, you would want to avoid being at the lower end of the range.
Secondly, testosterone levels change with age.
Because, as we already know, testosterone levels normally go down as you age, and therefore it is more appropriate to compare your current testosterone level with averages for your age.
The chart below shows average testosterone levels by age group from a research study done by A. Vermeulen.
As can be seen from the chart, total and free testosterone normally decreases as we age. You will also see that testosterone levels are above 500 ng/dl for most age groups.
If your testosterone are below these averages, it is in indication that your testosterone levels are low.
Further down in this guide, we will talk about the common consequences of having low testosterone.
Before we move on, I wanted to make one point:
Although research shows that testosterone normally declines with age, there are normally also many other factors that also tend to go hand in hand with age.
Many men exercise less when they get older, are overweight more frequently, often stress more, etc. Many of these other factors also have a negative impact on testosterone.
Therefore, what research also has shown, is that men that age can still maintain a high level of testosterone as long as they live a healthy life.
Now that we better understand what normal testosterone levels are, lets investigate how common it is to have low testosterone, and also how many people world-wide have inadequate amounts of testosterone.
How Common Is Low Testosterone?
The answer is: Very common.
Particularly if we were to compare testosterone levels today with levels 50 or 100 years ago.
We just sadly don’t have the data this far back.
But we do have data for the last 20-30 years, and the development for even this short time period is rather scary. More about this in a minute.
The medical industry defines testosterone deficiency (or hypergonadism) as testosterone levels below 300 ng/dl.
100 years ago, this lower limit would have probably been set significantly higher.
Btw, for most men, an optimal testosterone level is probably above 1,000 ng/dl. Which means that if you have testosterone at 300 ng/dl, you only have about a third of the optimal amount.
However, even though the lower level is as low as 300 ng/dl, several research studies have still reported that large numbers of men still experience hypergonadism (or very low testosterone levels).
Let’s look at some of these numbers:
- One study of 2,162 men reported that the rate of hypogonadism was 39%
- Another study of 890 men reported that the rate of hypogonadism was 19%
- A study on 2,719 men reported that the rate of hypogonadism was 19%
- Another study of 55 men reported that the rate of hypogonadism was 57%
- Another study of 734 men reported that the rate of hypogonadism was 24%
There are other studies as well showing similar results.
If we conservatively assume that the bottom range of these results, 20%, is approximately the right number for testosterone deficiency, we arrive at some interesting numbers.
Let’s also for the sake of simplicity apply this to all males and not exclude very young males who have not been part of these studies.
There are approximately 330 million people in the US. Applying the 20% estimate to the male population, means that approximately 33 million American men are testosterone deficient.
Of the 750 million people in Europe, approximately 75 million males are, based on this estimate, testosterone deficient.
Of the almost 8 billion people on planet earth, if this estimate is correct, approximately 800 million men are testosterone deficient.
These are some very large numbers. And as mentioned above, the numbers are in all likelihood even larger because 300 ng/dl of testosterone is a very low number. You may even be deficient at 400 ng/dl.
Because testosterone deficiency causes a large number of health complications, ranging from erectile dysfunction, to depression and to fractured bones, this is a health problem of epic proportions.
Now that we understand more about how common low testosterone levels are, lets have a look at one very interesting (and worrisome) fact: The overall decline in testosterone in men word-wide.
Why Are Testosterone Levels Dropping World-Wide?
Testosterone tests done on men over time show one frightening development:
Men have less testosterone today than their fathers did.
Let’s look at the facts:
The Massachusetts Male Aging Study (MMAS), gathered data on 1,500 randomly selected men in the Boston area in three different time periods over 17 years (1987-89, 1995-97, and 2002-04).
The study measured both total testosterone and free testosterone levels. It found that total testosterone levels – for men at the same age – decreased by 1.2%, and free testosterone by 1.3%, every year.
That’s between 20.4% and 22.1% during the years of the study.
Meaning that an average 40-year old man had ~20% less testosterone in 2004, than an average 40-year old man in 1989.
Another study, known as The Finnish Study, analyzed data of more than 3,000 Finnish men over 30 years (1972, 1977 and 2002).
This study reported similar results:
An average man in 2002 (in Finland) had 20% less (or for certain age groups, even less than 20%) testosterone than their fathers.
Why is this happening? What is going on?
No-one has a precise answer.
There are lots of different theories. Some of them point to chemicals that interfere with our body’s hormonal systems, called endocrine disruptors.
A large number of chemicals have been introduced into our lives in recent times.
Chemicals are added to our food, water, used as pesticides and herbicides, used in toiletries and sanitation products, etc. Many of these chemicals contain endocrine disruptors.
Other theories argue that it may have to do with our eating habits, eating more processed foods, foods containing ‘things’ our bodies are not supposed to have, increased obesity, etc.
Yet other theories point to wireless and mobile phone radiation, as well as generally more radiation in our homes, cars, cities, etc.
Other theories argue that lack of sleep, sedentary lifestyle, pollution, etc., are causing this drop in testosterone.
Although we don’t have a definitive and complete answer, the answer is probably a combination of many or all of the above.
In all likelihood, the answer is rooted in the dramatic changes in the lives of the modern human being over the last few decades.
Now that we also understand that testosterone levels are falling world-wide, lets have a look at what typically happens to you when your testosterone levels are low.
What Are The Consequences Of Low Testosterone?
If your testosterone levels are low, it normally means that your body is out of balance somehow. Something in your body is off.
If your body was perfectly healthy, it would have normally produced enough testosterone.
When your body has inadequate testosterone, several changes will normally happen to your body. You may experience all of these, or only some, depending on the severity of your testosterone deficiency.
Let’s explore each of these changes and also explain why they are likely to happen:
- Erectile dysfunction
- Reduced libido
- Infertility and low levels of ejaculate
- Smaller penis and testicles
- Reduced muscle mass
- Increased body fat
- Enlarged breasts
- Sleep Problems
- Persistent fatigue and loss of energy
- Emotional and mood changes
- Loss of memory and mental functions
- Low red blood cell count
- Reduced bone density
Erectile dysfunction is one of the most common results of having low testosterone.
The reason is that testosterone is the fuel that keeps your reproductive organ and functions going.
Without this fuel, or with too little of this fuel, these reproductive functions will simply not work properly.
Think of a car running on low fuel, or having run out of fuel. It sputters, or stops.
The process from start to finish of getting an erection is complex and depends on a series of events that all need to happen in succession. Testosterone facilitates and supports these events.
When there is not enough testosterone to facilitate and support these events, it will normally by significantly more difficult to get and maintain erections.
Therefore, with low testosterone, you may have a difficult time getting erections, or you may be able to get erections, but you may loose them quickly.
To learn more about erectile dysfunction on Truelibido, please go here.
Reduced Libido (or sex drive) is another very common consequence of low testosterone.
The reason is the same as the reason why many men struggle with erectile dysfunction.
Testosterone supports your reproductive system and your urge to have sex.
When you have inadequate testosterone levels, your your body simply doesn’t have the same (or any) desire to have sex (or to reproduce). As a result, you will normally feel your sex drive diminishing or vanishing.
This means you will normally be less interested in sex, you will rarely have random sexual thoughts, rarely spontaneous erections, and sex will sometimes simply be gone from your mind.
To learn more about libido on Truelibido, please go here.
Low levels of ejaculate and infertility are also connected to the reproductive system.
Therefore, these also depend on testosterone to function well.
In order for you to produce sperm, and to produce healthy sperm, you need a certain amount of testosterone.
If you have too little testosterone, the sperm will normally not swim well, or can otherwise be unhealthy. Also, the number of sperm you produce will normally be lower.
Therefore, low testosterone often means little sperm that are bad swimmers. This in turn will typically make it significantly more difficult for you to make a woman pregnant.
Smaller penis and testicles are also potential consequences of inadequate testosterone levels.
The penis and testicles are main parts of the reproductive system, and therefore their functions are supported by and dependent on testosterone.
If you don’t have enough testosterone, neither the penis nor the testicles receive enough of this fuel to perform their reproductive tasks properly.
As mentioned already, that means you will probably have fewer erections, your sperm production will probably slow down and your sperm are more likely to be bad swimmers.
Which again means that the use and maintenance of your penis and testicles will likely be very low.
When your penis and testicles are left idle for longer periods, they often experience decay (atrophy) and therefore often lose vitality and size.
Reduced muscle mass is also likely to occur if you have inadequate testosterone levels.
In order for your body to build muscle, it needs testosterone. Testosterone is needed in order to set in motion the building of and expansion of muscle fibers.
With little or no testosterone, it is very difficult for your body to build muscle.
But testosterone is also required simply to maintain muscle mass.
When there is not enough testosterone floating around in your body, muscles will not be maintained as they should, but will instead normally experience decline, or what is called atrophy.
Therefore, if your testosterone levels are low, you are likely to loose muscle mass.
To learn more about my experience with exercise on Truelibido, please go here.
Increased body fat is closely linked to the point above about reduction in muscle mass.
Testosterone plays a vital role in how our bodies metabolizes (or uses) glucose, fat and proteins. Testosterone also plays a vital role in how effective insulin is at enabling your cells to use glucose.
When your body doesn’t have enough testosterone, it is not able to metabolize energy efficiently. As a result, your body will often store a lot of this energy as fat. This makes you gain weight.
Also, when you first get overweight, further fat build-up will normally come even faster.
That is because fat tissue contain an enzyme called aromatase. Amomatose converts testosterone to estrogen.
So when there is more fat, there is more aromatase, which means less testosterone.
This can easily cause you to enter a vicious cycle:
Because of more aromatose, you have less testosterone than before. This again causes increases in fat deposits. Which means more aromatose. Which means less testosterone, etc.
Enlarged breasts (gynecomastia) is also a common result of having too little testosterone, and it is connected to the point above about increased body fat.
This condition occurs when there is more estrogen relative to testosterone in your body.
When you have too little testosterone, you often either have the same amount, or more, of estrogen. This means that the testosterone / estrogen balance is tipped towards estrogen.
Estrogen is the hormone responsible for development of female body characteristics.
When you have too much of this hormone relative to testosterone, you will normally start to loose the expression of some of your male traits, and increase the expression of your female traits.
And one of the first signs of too much estrogen relative to testosterone is increased breasts in men.
Sleep problems are more likely to occur in men with low testosterone.
Meaning, if your testosterone levels are low, you normally experience more periods awake after sleep onset and also have more sleep interruptions, than you would if you had normal amounts of testosterone.
Although the scientific community is not entirely sure why this is the case, research has indicated that testosterone is necessary for a person to smoothly go from one sleep cycle to the next, and to efficiently enter deep sleep, or what is called REM sleep.
So when your body has inadequate levels of testosterone, it is believed your sleep is interrupted when you go from one cycle to the next, and that you may not spend enough time in the deep sleep state.
To learn more about my experience with sleep on Truelibido, please go here.
Persistent fatigue (and lack of energy) is also common in men with low testosterone.
This is because testosterone plays a vital role in how our bodies metabolize energy such as glucose, proteins and fat.
Most of our energy comes from carbohydrates, protein and fat, and when the absorption and distribution of these energy sources is not working well, your body will often not have the energy it needs.
As a result, you will often feel low on energy and fatigued.
In addition, testosterone affects red blood cell production. If your testosterone levels are low, your red blood cell production normally falls as well.
This condition is called anaemia. When there are fewer than normal red blood cells in your blood, your blood is not able to transport enough oxygen around your body. As a result, fatigue and lack of energy often set in.
Depression is commonly seen in men with low testosterone.
Why does this happen?
First off, it’s linked to the point above about fatigue. When you experience persistent fatigue or lack of energy over time, you may simply get depressed.
Or put differently: If you over a long periods of time simply feel down, this can easily lead to depression.
Testosterone is also responsible for behaviors such as aggression, risk taking, dominance, confidence, etc. These behaviors are synonymous with feeling good, being alert and being full of energy.
When your testosterone is low, you are more likely to have low confidence, be passive and indifferent. As a result, depression is more likely to occur.
In addition, if you loose your sex drive, ability to get erections, loose muscle and strength and gain weight, it is also common to feel down and get depressed.
Research has also pointed to an interesting find. If you have low levels of testosterone, you will also often have low serotonin levels. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter with many functions, and research has indicated it may regulate your mood.
Emotional changes are also common in men with low testosterone. This is connected with the points above about fatigue and depression.
If you have low testosterone and this causes you to feel fatigued and low on energy, this can also manifest itself in mood swings and getting irritable.
Also, if your testosterone levels are inadequate and you loose the abilities and characteristics you are used to, such as being confident, being able to have sex, your sex drive, etc., this can also prompt emotional changes and cause mood swings.
In addition, the body is a very finely tuned system. When one part is out of balance (low testosterone levels) this is likely to cause a cascade of effects on other parts of the body.
Many of these we simply have no or little knowledge about. It is very possible that one or more of these can affect your emotions.
Loss of memory and mental functions, and even onset of Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia are more prevalent in men with low testosterone than in men with normal testosterone levels.
Testosterone is essential in order for the brain to function optimally. Testosterone is simply one of those critical ingredients the brain needs in order to carry out various tasks.
Therefore, a lack of testosterone will normally produce cognitive decline. Testosterone has also been shown to be neuroprotective as it inhibits oxidative stress in the brain which causes neuronal damage.
Research has also shown that men with low testosterone levels are significantly more likely to develop Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia. On reason for this is that testosterone supports and protects neural connections.
If you have inadequate amounts of testosterone, your brain normally experiences more and more rapid atrophy.
Testosterone also plays a critical part in ensuring that your blood has the right amount of elements, such as glucose and fat.
If your blood does not deliver the right nutrients and right amounts of blood to your brain, Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia are more likely to occur.
Reduced bone density is also common in men with low testosterone levels. This condition is called osteoporosis when it becomes significant.
The reason is that the hormone testosterone is essential for bone to form as well as being maintained. If there are inadequate amounts of testosterone in your body, the maintenance of your skeleton will be poor.
When you have inadequate testosterone, pockets of empty space inside your bones are likely to form. When several of these have formed, your bones become less strong and prone for fractures.
Now that we understand what is likely to happen to you if your testosterone levels are low, lets explore what you can do to boost your testosterone naturally. And lets also understand exactly how and why these actions will normally increase your testosterone levels.
12 Actions To Boost Testosterone Naturally Today
The following are actions you can take to increase your testosterone levels naturally. If you implement these, you are likely to start seeing improvements.
If you are consistent, and keep doing these over time, you will in all likelihood see dramatic increases in your testosterone levels.
However, none of these are quick fixes. Quick fixes that are also natural and sustainable simply don’t exists.
You will need some patience.
But your patience will most likely be rewarded.
All of you; your ears, eyes, hands, etc. have been created and maintained by the foods and drinks you have consumed.
If you consume bad building materials, the structure will be poor as well.
If you eat unhealthy foods, you will be unhealthy.
If you don’t provide your body with all the nutrients it needs, it will no longer operate optimally. Normal functions will operate poorly, and some functions will even stop working.
Dysfunctions are likely to show up.
If your diet is poor, it is very possible that your testosterone levels will drop as well.
In order for your body to produce the right amounts of testosterone, it needs the right building materials.
Also, if your body is an unhealthy condition, your body will try to deal with the most critical issue first. Normally, testosterone productions will be further down the list and not get much attention.
To restore your overall bodily balance and to get your testosterone production back on track, you absolutely need to eat healthy and provide your body with all the nutrients it needs.
I recommend that you take a careful look at your diet, and that you ensure that it is balanced and healthy. Which means eating lots of fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds, berries, fungi and fish.
And also, I recommend avoiding foods that have been highly processed.
In addition to eating healthy, I recommend that you are careful with sugar, as excess sugar has a negative impact on your testosterone.
To learn more about my experiences with diets and healthy eating on Truelibido, please go here.
Exercise Regularly And Be Active Every Day
To exercise is one of the smartest actions you can take for your testosterone. In fact, exercise increases your testosterone in three ways:
Firstly, Studies have shown that exercise, and particularly strength exercise, directly increases your testosterone levels:
When you exercise and push your limits, your body responds by growing more muscle so that next time you do the same exercise, you can do it faster or exert more force.
In other words, your body has adjusted itself to what you subject it to. The body is an incredibly flexible system.
In order for your body to grow more muscle, it needs more testosterone (among many other elements) and therefore it produces more of it. As a result, the exercise you did increased your overall testosterone levels.
To maintain your testosterone levels, you simply have to exercise regularly.
Secondly, when you exercise, your muscles also need more energy. This means that you will start burning any stored fat you may have.
As your fat reserves are burned up, you will have less of the enzyme aromatase which converts testosterone to estrogen. As a result, you will have more testosterone.
And thirdly, when you exercise, you directly (and also indirectly through less fat), reduce your cortisol levels.
When your cortisol levels drop, your testosterone levels normally increase as these two hormones compete for a limited amount of space.
Although research has shown that strength exercise is a very good way to increase your overall testosterone levels (not just temporary levels), all kinds of normal activity and exercise are useful.
Walking, for instance, is a very potent way of increasing testosterone levels. But even work in the garden, wood-chopping, and lawn mowing are good activities for raising your testosterone.
One problem with the modern human being is that he is much too sedentary. We sit too much on our butts. In fact, the average human being sits on his butt for more than 9 hours every day.
We are created to be active, not sit in chairs.
Therefore, any increased activity is likely to have a positive impact on your testosterone levels.
I recommend exercising for one hour, and to otherwise be active for at least another hour every day. Which means at least two good hours of activity. If you can do more, even better.
To learn about my experiences with exercise on Truelibido, please go here.
Loose Excess Body Fat
If you are overweight, your testosterone levels are very likely suppressed.
It’s because of this thing called aromatization.
Fat cells contain an enzyme called aromatase, and the more overweight you are, the more of this enzyme you have.
And aromatase is not kind to your testosterone. Because aromatase converts testosterone to estrogen (estradiol).
That means you will have more estrogen, which is not good, and you will also have less testosterone, which also is also not good.
Now a bad cycle starts:
Since you have less than optimal testosterone, you are likely to loose more muscle. When you loose more muscle, it’s even harder for your body to ‘burn’ excess fat.
As a result, you will normally accumulate even more fat. Which normally leads to even lower testosterone. And so on.
But there is also another reason why being overweight is likely to reduce your testosterone levels:
As we know already know, testosterone and cortisol are hormones that compete for the same space and normally hold each other in check.
However, if you are overweight, cortisol has the upper hand.
When you are overweight, more cortisol will be produced, and this crowds out your testosterone.
If you are overweight and want to restore your testosterone levels back to normal, I recommend that you loose excess body fat.
Not only is this a very effective method for improving your testosterone, but it is most likely also necessary in order for you to normalize your testosterone levels.
Get Enough Sleep
If you don’t sleep well, or sleep too little, your testosterone levels are probably suffering.
Why is sleep so important for your testosterone?
Because your testosterone is produced while you sleep.
If you don’t sleep enough, your body will have less time to make testosterone, and therefore, you will have less testosterone than if you slept for longer.
Also, if the quality of your sleep is not good, your body will also produce less testosterone than it otherwise would.
It is particularly important to get enough of what is called deep-sleep, or REM sleep, in order to produce enough testosterone.
In addition, when you are sleep deprived, your body becomes much less able to use glucose in your blood as energy. This is because you become what is called insulin resistant.
In order for your cells to absorb glucose, they need the hormone insulin. When you become insulin resistant, the insulin is simply less able to feed your cells with glucose.
This condition (insulin resistance) also causes the leydig cells in your testicles to produce less testosterone. And the more insulin resistant you are, the less testosterone production you will have.
Not only have several research studies demonstrated that people that sleep less than optimal, have low testosterone levels, but studies have also shown that sleep is the greatest independent predictor of testosterone levels.
Therefore, if your testosterone levels are lower than optimal, I recommend that you sleep enough. And I recommend that you get great quality sleep, meaning continuous and deep sleep.
Most men need at least 7 hours of quality sleep to produce adequate testosterone, therefore this is probably a good target for you.
I recommend sleeping in a room that is completely dark, and also, if you are sensitive to sound, I recommend that that your place of sleep is quiet.
Also, it’s smart to avoid TV, phones, laptops, and other devises with bright lights before you go to sleep. These lights make your body produce less of the hormone melatonin, which you need for sleep.
Stress is good sometimes. Stress is useful because it makes us super alert and gives us extra energy in times when this is needed.
For instance, imagine you see a snake while on a hike in the mountains. In an instant, you jump away and get away from it. Stress just saved your life.
Or imagine you fall off a cliff and into the cold water. Stress now gives you a burst of energy and sharpens your senses so you can get to the shore.
During stress, your heart rate increases, blood flows faster through your body, your vision, hearing and other critical senses get sharper, and your muscles get a boost of energy. This can save your life.
Therefore, stress can be very useful.
Let’s take a look at how this energy and alertness is brought about:
And that is why long-lasting elevated stress levels are bad for you. It can cause depression, erectile dysfunction and a number of other problems.
And this long-lasting elevated stress is particularly common in today’s world.
In today’s modern world, many people live with almost constant stress. They are shaken out of sleep by an alarm clock in the morning, commute to work with stress, experience pressure and stress at work, stress on the commute back home, etc.
The problem is:
A person who experiences frequent stress will normally have elevated cortisol levels.
And cortisol kills your testosterone.
There are three main hormones that provide this energy and alertness: Adrenaline (also called epinephrine), norepinephrine and cortisol.
Adrenaline and norepinephrine are largely responsible for the instant boost of energy.
After the initial rush of energy has been provided, cortisol takes over to continue to provide you with energy and keep you alert.
The two first hormones last only for a short period, but cortisol can be produced continuously.
But that was ‘good’ stress. Let’s talk about bad stress.
Yes, stress can save your life, but your body doesn’t like stress. Stress is a shock to your body. It shuts down many of the normal functions in your body and causes chaos.
Cortisol and testosterone are similar hormones, and they compete for the same limited space. When cortisol levels are elevated, it means testosterone levels are normally depressed.
Also, cortisol and testosterone are both made from cholesterol. So when cortisol production takes up a lot of the available cholesterol, there is not much left for production of testosterone.
If you stress a lot, you probably have lower than optimal testosterone levels.
If you want to restore your testosterone to normal levels, I recommend that you try to stress as little as possible. And instead relax more.
Keep in mind that the stress you feel in day-to-day life (on the metro, at work, at school, etc.) is often strictly not necessary. We often tend to stress about things not worth stressing about. If you do, I encourage you to let this go.
To learn more about my experience with stress on Truelibido, please go here.
Get Adequate Sun Exposure
Sun is a force that makes life possible. It makes plants grow, and enables organisms to develop and thrive. With no sun, life on planet earth would vanish.
However, the modern human being doesn’t get much sunlight. We tend to spend most of the day inside buildings, and when we are outside, we cover ourselves up with sunscreen.
But do we, human beings, also need sun?
Yes we do! We need sunshine on our bodies for a number of reasons.
But sunshine is also critical for your testosterone production. In order for your body to produce enough testosterone, you need direct sunshine (ultraviolet B sunrays) on your skin.
It turns out that vitamin D3 is essential in order for your body to manufacture testosterone. And in order for you to get enough vitamin D3, you need the sun.
You can get some vitamin D3 from foods, but it is practically impossible to get enough, and particularly in the long term.
10-20 minutes of sun expose can fill you up with all the D3 you need for a day.
If you live a normal life, and if you spend much of the day inside, chances are you are vitamin D deficient.
It turns out that the majority of people in many parts of the world are. Even in sunny places like Australia and California.
As a side note, research has also indicated that direct sun exposure on your genitals increases your testosterone even more than sun on other parts of your body.
If your testosterone levels are low and you want to restore them to normal levels, I recommend that you get adequate sun exposure. Try to get at least 10 minutes a day on average, on large parts of your body (not just your face).
An alternative is to take a vitamin D3 supplement. However, the natural way is probably going to give you far better results.
To learn more about my experience with sun on Truelibido, please go here.
Stop (Or Reduce) Alcohol Intake
Alcohol is fierce enemy to your testosterone, and even moderate alcohol consumption will often significantly reduce your testosterone levels.
Btw, research has also demonstrated that alcohol reduces your sperm count as well as the swimming ability of your sperm.
And alcohol doesn’t simply attack your testosterone one way, but it attacks your testosterone in four different ways:
Firstly, it causes your testicles to produce less testosterone. In your testicles, there are cells called leydig cells that are responsible for producing testosterone. In the presence of alcohol, these cells produce less testosterone.
Secondly, alcohol slows down your body’s ability to process and break down estrogen. This lets large amounts of estrogen accumulate in your body.
Excess estrogen shifts your testosterone / estrogen ratio, which (even if your absolute testosterone level is fine) causes many of the same symptoms as low testosterone.
Estrogen also binds to your androgen receptors, but is unable to activate them. Hence it leaves the receptors idle as long as estrogen is connected to them.
The more estrogen you have, the more androgen receptors are left inactive.
Also, high estrogen levels causes your body to make fewer androgen receptors, meaning that less testosterone can find a receptor where it can carry out its tasks.
Thirdly, alcohol consumption will increase your cortisol levels. Cortisol is a hormone that crowds out your testosterone and therefore, more cortisol means less testosterone.
Also, more cortisol has also been shown to stimulate the urge for increased alcohol consumption.
Another potentially vicious cycle.
Lastly, alcohol has also been shown to deplete zinc levels in your body. Zinc is a very important mineral needed by your body to create testosterone.
With inadequate levels of zinc, your body will not be able to produce enough testosterone.
If you drink large amounts of alcohol and your testosterone levels are lower than desired, I recommend that you significantly reduce, or stop completely, your alcohol consumption.
This will normally slowly start reversing the damage done to your testosterone levels, and start bringing your testosterone back to normal.
Water, air and food pollution (or any pollution for that matter) can have a significantly negative effect on your testosterone levels.
If you live in a large city, chances are that the air you breathe contain lots of pollutants, such as PM10, PM2.5, SO2, NOX and CO.
Any city with a large number of fossil-fuel powered cars will have these pollutants.
Research has shown that exposure to many of these pollutants will decrease testosterone levels.
Research has also indicated that exposure to these pollutants are likely to cause your sperm production to decline, as well as to make your sperm swim poorly.
Also, if the water you drink is not clean, or if it is treated with certain chemicals, it may also reduce your testosterone levels.
Compounds such as chlorine, arsenic, mercury and BPA are all endocrine disruptors. Endocrine disruptors are defined as elements that disrupt the endocrine, or hormonal, system.
And very often, these disruptions to the hormonal system either 1) increase your estrogen levels, or 2) decrease your testosterone levels. Or they can have both effects at the same time.
Therefore, if your drinking water contains these compounds, even in small amounts, your drinking water is likely to have a negative impact on your testosterone levels.
In modern agriculture and farming, we use a lot of chemicals in order to produce as much food as possible.
We use chemicals to kill weeds and bugs, we use chemicals to make plants, fish and animals grow faster and bigger, we use chemicals to make our foods obtain a certain shape or color, etc.
We use chemicals such as pesticides, herbicides, hormones, antibiotics, BPA, PCBs, etc.
Unfortunately, many of these chemicals have negative effects on us.
And many of these chemicals are also endocrine disruptors, which means they can interfere with your hormone levels.
If you live a normal life, particularly a city-life, chances are high that you are exposed to large amounts of pollution. Which in turn is likely to have a negative impact on your testosterone level.
If you want to restore your testosterone back to normal levels, I recommend that you avoid air pollution as much as possible.
You could use a high grade face mask if you travel through polluted streets, and you could try to spend less time outside when pollution is high.
Alternatively, you could re-locate to a cleaner place. I did that.
If your water is contaminated, I recommend using a high grade water filter to treat your drinking water. I am using this as well.
And I recommend that you do your best to pick foods that contain as little pollution as possible.
Use Non-Toxic Personal Care And Cleaning Products
Did you ever think that the toothpaste you put in your mouth could reduce your testosterone levels?
Many of our personal care products are designed to kill germs. Ever thought that they may kill more than germs?
Many of them do. They can also kill your testosterone.
Many personal care products such as deodorant, shampoo, facewash, toothpaste, mouthwash, body lotion, etc. contain these harmful endocrine disruptors.
One of the most common endocrine disruptor in these products are something called phthalates.
These are often used to preserve and stabillize your personal care products, as well aid coloring or fragrance of your products.
Studies have detected phthalates in more than half of personal care products tested.
Not only can these phalates cause declines in testosterone, but they can also cause testicular cancer, genital deformations, low sperm counts, and infertility.
Another endocrine disruptor often found in personal care products are parabens. Parabens are very commonly used as preservatives in many kinds of cosmetics, such as sun lotions, moisturisers, personal-lubricants, shampoos, shaving gels, toothpaste, etc. You may even find them as food additives.
Two other endocrine disruptors often found in personal care products are called triclosan and triclocarban. Their purpose is to kill germs, and you find them in many antibacterial soaps, lotions, hand sanitizers, etc.
And your sunscreen (as well as cosmetics) may very well contain endocrine disruptors called benzophenones. The purposes of these are to act as UV filters to protect you from the sun.
But they may do more harm than good.
However, the use of these endocrine disruptors goes beyond just personal care products.
Many cleaning products used to clean floors, windows, baths, etc. also contain endocrine disruptors such as nonylphenol ethoxylates, glycol ethers, APEs, formaldehyde, organochlorines, benzene, toluene, xylene, methanol, and ethylbenzene.
If you live a normal life, you are most likely exposed to some of these endocrine disruptors through personal care or cleaning products. This could happen in your home, at the hairdresser or in your office.
As we already know, endocrine disruptors tend to either increase your estrogen levels, or decrease your testosterone levels, or both.
If you want to improve your testosterone levels, I recommend that you check your personal care and cleaning products. What do they contain?
If any of them contain any known harmful endocrine disruptors, I recommend that you swap them out for products that are better for your health.
Or you could do what I do: I only purchase cleaning and personal care products that are free of known harmful agents. And I limit my use of even these products as much as I can.
Avoid Certain Medications
Some medications save lives. Other medications improve lives. There is no doubt that medication and drugs have several fantastic uses.
However, there is one general problem with most medications:
They have side-effects. Meaning, in addition to the drug’s intended effect, it normally also have one or more un-intended effects.
One side effect of some common medications is reduced testosterone levels.
Some of the most common medications that reduce testosterone as a side effect are:
- Several opioid pain killers such as Codeine, Actiq, Duragesic, Fentora, Hysingla, Zohydro, Lorcet, Lortab, Norco, Vicodin, Dilaudid, Exalgo, Demerol, etc.
- Drugs for hypertension (high blood pressure), particularly Spironolactone and beta blockers
- Diuretic medications (for increased urine production in the kidneys)
- Anti-depressant medications, particularly selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)
- Anti-diabetic drugs, particularly Sulfonylureas
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) – used to treat inflammation, mild to moderate pain, and fever. Particularly Ibuprofen and Paracetamol
- Stomach ulcers and stomach acid reducing drugs, particularly Cimetidine (Tagamet)
- Hair-loss drugs, particularly Finasteride and Dutasteride
- Drugs that lower blood cholesterol levels, particularly statins
- Prostate cancer drugs, such as Nilutamide, Flutamide, Bicalutamide and all GnRH antagonist
- Anti-fungal drugs such as Clotrimazole, Terbinafine and Ketoconazole
If your testosterone levels are low and you are using one or more medications, I recommend that you check whether this medication could have a testosterone reducing effect.
If so, I recommend, if possible and practical, that you switch medication to one that does not reduce your testosterone, but that still helps you in the same way. If there is such medication.
However, please consult with your doctor before you do this. I am not a doctor, and I cannot take any responsibility for your medical needs.
Have Frequent Sex (But Don’t Come Too Often)
Not only does sex feel good, but sex also has several very positive effects on your body.
Sex is your body’s way of passing on your genes, which is your body’s ultimate goal. Therefore, your body rewards you when you have sex.
Sex normally increases your mood, reduces stress hormones in your body, even supports brain development, improves your immune system, and also increases your testosterone levels.
But sex can also have a dampening effect on your testosterone.
Because every time you have an ejaculatory orgasm (simultaneous orgasm and ejaculation), something happens in your brain.
Immediately after the ejaculatory orgasm, your brain is flushed with a hormone called prolactin.
Prolactin is the hormone that puts the euphoria of the orgasm to an abrupt end. It rips you out of your bliss and brings you back down to planet earth. And it makes any desire for further sex disappear in a second.
Then you get tired and sluggish. You are now in what is called the refractory period. This is the period where you are unable to enjoy further sexual stimulation.
If you have these ejaculatory orgasms too frequently, long-lasting changes can take place in your brain:
- The number of androgen receptors can decrease
- The number of estrogen receptors can incease
- You can have an increases in opioids that block libido
What do these effects have in common?
They decrease your testosterone levels.
But why does this happen? Why does having too frequent ejaculatory orgasms reduce testosterone?
For your body, the act of producing sperm (sperm btw is a substance richer in nutrients than any multi-vitamin you can buy), and releasing this for the purpose of creating new life, is an incredible costly task.
It is something your body builds up significant resources for and it is a very special occasion. After the body finally sends off its precious cargo to create life, your body takes a breather.
Your productive systems have just put in the ultimate performance and it’s exhausted. It now needs time to build up strength to do it again.
If you don’t let your body build up this strength, you will remain weak and your testosterone levels will be depressed.
So we have just learned two things:
Sex is good for you, but too frequent ejaculatory orgasms are bad for you.
At first glance it seems like this makes sex complicated when it comes to maintaining a healthy testosterone level.
But looking at it again, how about this?
How about having sex often, but simply stopping before you have the ejaculatory orgasm? Then you can have the pleasurable sensations from sex, and you avoid the downside from the ejaculatory orgasm?
By doing this, you can practically have sex every day and maintain a super high testosterone level.
I have practiced this method for many, many years and it has done wonders for me. I only let myself have an ejaculatory orgasm every 3-4 weeks or so.
You may think ‘but the orgasm feels so nice, why would I not experience it while I have sex?.’
Well, it’s a trade-off. A trade-off between increasing testosterone + remaining full of energy, and the short-term blissful orgasm.
To learn more about my experience with limiting my ejaculatory orgasms on Truelibido, please go here.
If your testosterone levels are low and you normally have ejaculatory orgasms, I recommend that you limit these orgasms. Try to hold off coming for as many days and weeks as you can.
This will normally not only increase your testosterone levels, but will normally also increase your sex drive and overall energy.
When you have sex, I recommend that you stop the stimulation just before you have the ejaculatory orgasm.
You can also stop and then re-start, and by doing so, last for as long as you want. As long as you can hold it in.
I also recommend this technique if you struggle with a low libido (sex drive) or erectile dysfunction, because it can be a very effective solution.
Take Testosterone Boosting Supplements
In addition to living healthy and eating well, you can also boost your testosterone by taking supplements that specifically enhances your testosterone production.
Some of these supplements are what’s called adaptogens. Adaptogens work on all (or most) systems in your body and attempts to restore those systems that are out of balance.
The adaptogen works until the systems that are out of balance are back in balance, and does not have any negative effects.
If your testosterone or endocrine system is out of balance, an adaptogen can help get your testosterone back to normal levels.
Other supplements directly targets your testosterone production.
However, keep in mind that if you keep harming your testosterone levels by for instance being overweight or stressing, the effects will be washed away pretty quickly.
The following is a list of supplements that have been scientifically proven to directly or indirectly boost your testosterone levels:
Fenugreek (Trigonella Foenum-Graecum) has been used for thousands of years for a variety of purposes, also for increased energy and as an aphrodisiac.
Research has demonstrated that Fenugreek increases testosterone levels in two different ways.
Firstly, Fenugreek contains a substance called protodioscin which can be a precursor to something called dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), which is in turn a precursor to testosterone.
Meaning that protodioscin can be used to make DHEA, and that DHEA can be used to make testosterone. More protodioscin will therefore normally mean more testosterone.
Secondly, Fenugreek stimulates the release of a hormone called luteinizing hormone. This hormone regulates the production of testosterone, so when this hormone is more abundant, testosterone production is also ramped up.
To learn more about Fenugreek on Truelibido, please go here.
Horny Goat Weed (Epimedium Sagittatum) is another herb that has been used for thousands of years, particularly as an aphrodisiac.
Research has shown that Horny Goat Weed increases testosterone in two (possibly three) different ways.
Horny Goat Weed contains a substance called icariin. This substance has shown to directly stimulate testosterone production.
Although it is not yet established exactly how this occurs, it is believed that in the presence of icariin, your testicles become more efficient at producing testosterone.
In addition, icariin has been shown to reduce cortisol levels. As we already know, cortisol is an enemy to testosterone, and when cortisol levels are elevated, testosterone levels are normally depressed.
When icariin reduces cortisol levels, it will normally also indirectly increase testosterone levels.
Lastly, icariin may also work as an adaptogen, meaning that it has a positive effect on all (or most) systems in your body that are out of balance (including your hormonal system), and no negative effects.
To learn more about Horny Goat Weed on Truelibido, please go here.
Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma Longifolia) is yet another herb that has been used for thousands of years for many purposes, but particularly for rejuvenation and sexual health.
Research has shown that Tongkat Ali can increase testosterone in four different ways.
Firstly, it has demonstrated an ability to increase the production of the hormone called luteinizing hormone.
This hormone regulates the production of testosterone, so when there is more of this hormone, testosterone production is normally also increased.
Secondly, it is reported to impair the ability of sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG) to bind to testosterone. This hormone binds to testosterone in order to transport testosterone to some part of your body where it’s needed, or simply for storage.
When less testosterone is bound to SHBG, it means that more testosterone is free to carry out tasks in your body.
Thirdly, Tongkat Ali has also demonstrated that it can reduce what is called aromatization. This is a process whereby the enzyme aromatase converts testosterone to estrogen.
When aromatization is reduced, it means that more testosterone remains in your body.
Fourthly, Tongkat Ali can also reduce cortisol levels. As we already know, cortisol has a negative effect on testosterone, and less cortisol normally means more testosterone.
In addition, Tongkat Ali is also claimed to be an adaptogen. An adaptogen is a plant that works to restore systems in your body that is out of balance. If your hormonal system is out of balance, an adaptogen will normally help restore it.
To learn more about Tongkat Ali on Truelibido, please go here.
Tribulus Terrestris has also been used for thousands of years for medicinal purposes, particularly in traditional Chinese and Indian medicine.
Tribulus Terrestris has very similar effects on your testosterone to those of Fenugreek.
One of the ingredients of Tribulus Terrestris (similar to that in Fenugreek) is something called protodioscin.
Protodioscin is a precursor to dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), which means that protodioscin can be used to make DHEA.
DHEA is the most abundant circulating steroid hormone in humans and also the precursor to testosterone. Protodioscin can therefoe increase DHEA levels which in turn can increase testosterone levels.
Secondly, Protodioscin also stimulates the release of a hormone called luteinizing hormone.
This hormone regulates the production of testosterone, so when you have more of this hormone, you also normally have a higher testosterone production.
Tribulus Terrestris is also reported to be an adaptogen. An adaptogen targets systems and functions within the body that are working sub-optimally, and it restores these systems and functions to perform optimally (or improves them).
To learn more about Tribulus Terrestris on Truelibido, please go here.
ZMA is a synthetic supplement introduced in the early 1990’s, which is made of three ingredients: Zinc, magnesium and vitamin B6.
All of these three elements by themselves have positive effects on testosterone production, and it is claimed that they also have synergistic effects when taken together.
Zinc can increase testosterone levels in five different ways:
Firstly, zinc is necessary for the upkeep and maintenance of your androgen receptors. These are the ports that testosterone connects to when it carries out its actions.
Let’s say testosterone has been instructed to grow facial hair. It is then transported to an androgen receptor, connects, and then sets in motion the process of building facial hair.
If these receptors are not maintained, they will die.
When they die, your body is less capable of using testosterone. Also, when these receptors die, testosterone in your blood is more likely to be converted to estrogen.
Secondly, zinc can help increase the concentrations of something called thyroid hormones.
These hormones play an important role in maintaining natural testosterone levels, and inadequate levels of thyroid hormones will often lead to low levels of testosterone.
Thirdly, zinc has also demonstrated an ability to reduce cortisol levels. As we already know, cortisol and testosterone are enemies. They are similar and fight for a limited space in the body. More of one therefore means less of the other.
Fourthly, zink has also been shown to inhibit an enzyme called 5a-reductase. 5a-reductase converts testosterone to something called 5a-dihydrotestosterone (‘DHT’).
When some of your testosterone is converted, this means there is less testosterone left.
When this conversion is inhibited, there is more testosterone available in your blood.
Lastly, zinc can also inhibit the enzyme aromatase. As we already know, aromatase converts testosterone to estrogen.
With this conversion also inhibited, you will have more testosterone.
Magnesium also have several positive effects on testosterone:
Magnesium is important for the hormone called dehydroepiandrosterone (‘DHEA’) to remain at adequate levels.
DHEA is a precursor to testosterone, so when your body have healthy levels of this hormone, it will normally lead to healthy production of testosterone.
Similarly to zinc, Magnesium is also plays an important part in regulating cortisol levels.
When your magnesium levels are low, you will typically have more cortisol than otherwise. As we already know, cortisol is bad for your testosterone.
Magnesium also inhibits the protein called sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) from binding to testosterone. When less testosterone is bound to SHBG, more of it is free to carry out its tasks.
Vitamin B6 helps regulate the hormone called prolactin. This is the hormone that abruptly ends the blissful sensation of an orgasm and brings you back down to planet earth.
If you have high levels of prolactin, you will normally also have low levels of testosterone. By holding prolactin in check, vitamin B6 can therefore allow testosterone to be at normal levels.
In addition, vitamin B6 is an essential ingredient in the manufacturing of testosterone itself. So if you don’t have enough vitamin B6, you are likely to also have inadequate testosterone levels.
To learn more about ZMA on Truelibido, please go here.
Mucuna Pruriens has been used for thousands of years particularly in Ayurveda (Indian herbal medicine) for several purposes, including sexual health.
Mucuna Pruriens has demonstrated an ability to increase testosterone in four ways:
Firstly, it has been shown to increase the production of luteinizing hormone. This hormone regulates the production of testosterone, which means that if there is more luteinizing hormone, this will also normally lead to more testosterone production.
Secondly, research has demonstrated that Mucuna Pruriens has the ability to free up a large amount of the testosterone from the proteins it is normally bound to.
Only 1-3% of the testosterone in your body is free. The rest is bound to two proteins called SHBG and Albinum, either for transport or for storage. Mucuna Pruriens de-attaches testosterone from these proteins so it can be active.
Thirdly, Mucuna Pruriens can also enable the androgen receptors to absorb more testosterone than normal. This means that more of the testosterone that floats around in the blood can actually be used faster.
Fourthly, Mucuna Pruriens also lowers cortisol levels. As we already know, when cortisol goes down, testosterone normally goes up.
Mucuna Pruriens is also claimed to be an adaptogen, meaning it has an overall positive effect on all (or most) of the systems in the body.
If the endocrine (hormonal) system is out of balance, an adaptogen will help restore this system without causing damage to other parts of the body.
D-Aspartic Acid is an amino acid commonly found in meats, eggs, dairy and also in some grains such as rice.
D-aspartic acid has shown an ability to increase testosterone in two ways:
Research has shown that D-aspartic acid increases the production of the luteinizing hormone.
As we know, this hormone regulates the production of testosterone, so when this hormone is more abundant, testosterone production is also more abundant.
In addition, D-aspartic acid increases the production of the hormone called follicle-stimulating hormone. This hormone also regulates the production of testosterone.
Therefore, when there is more of the follicle-stimulating hormone in your body, there will normally also be more testosterone.
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