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The Playbook


There’s plenty of reasons to want to keep a high testosterone level. Improving everything from your mood to your cardiovascular fitness and reducing your risk for Alzheimer’s, testosterone offers a wide variety of benefits. As we approach middle age, testosterone levels drop off naturally. We have compiled a guide to a wide variety of foods to help boost your testosterone levels and keep you healthy for years to come.

Vitamins To Watch Out For

Before we get to the foods themselves, let’s do a brief dive into what makes a food beneficial for testosterone development. Some vitamins are regularly cited as being relevant to testosterone production include zinc, magnesium, and vitamin D. 

Additionally, a generally balanced diet with healthy amounts of protein and good fats is necessary. Good fats include unsaturated fats as well as monounsaturated fats. Polyunsaturated fats should be avoided or reduced, with the exception of omega-3 fatty acids, which can often be found in fish.

With this in mind, here is our list of superfoods with a classic staple for any diet.

Eggs


This first superfood shouldn’t come as a surprise. Eggs are a classic food to boost testosterone levels and boosting gains at the gym. Eggs are high in both protein and Vitamin D and contain a healthy amount of good fats. There’s no need to separate the yolks from the whites, though if you only want to have one, the yolks contain most of the nutrients of the egg. Egg yolks are often cited as an unhealthy food but should be totally fine for those who don't struggle with high cholesterol levels.

Unless you really want to, you don’t have to eat your eggs raw. Whether the egg is raw or cooked has no impact on how it affects T production, although cooking your eggs aids in the way your body absorbs nutrients.

Oysters


Oysters are a high-powered, low-calorie snack that makes a great addition to any diet. As far as boosting testosterone growth, oysters are exceptionally high in zinc, an essential element in testosterone production and overall sexual function.

As far as general health goes, oysters also offer great quantities of a wide variety of nutrients, including protein, iron, and vitamin B12. This can be beneficial for you when you’re young and critical for your health beyond middle age, where vitamin deficiencies can pose a serious threat.

While oysters themselves are healthy, they are often served in unhealthy ways. To maximize the health benefits of the food, try to avoid breaded or fried oysters, and opt for low-fat sauces and marinades.

For other seafood that can encourage low testosterone levels, try salmon or sardines. Be wary of consuming too much omega-3. This fatty acid has been linked to a heightened risk of prostate cancer.

Beef


A balanced life is all about moderation, and this is especially true for red meat. Red meat can be dangerous if consumed in high quantities. However, certain cuts of beef can be high in zinc and vitamin D, and protein to assist with any ancillary fitness goals you may have. To maximize the good and minimize the bad of red meat consumption, try to focus on lean cuts that have not been highly processed. 

The iron in beef is also known to help fight fatigue. Similar vegetables that provide minerals like iron and magnesium include spinach and kale. Spinach also has significant levels of vitamin b6. It's not just green vegetables that help increase testosterone. Honey is known to help boost muscle mass with the help of a mineral called boron. 

Tuna


This classic food provides a great source of Vitamin D to help improve testosterone levels, as well as a whole host of other nutrients, which make it great for general health as well. Tuna, and a great deal of seafood in general, also offers omega-3 fatty acids, which in moderation aids testosterone production as well as brain activity. For an effective testosterone booster that is low in calories, you can do a lot worse than this delicious fish. 

Pomegranate


The pomegranate is a fruit whose cultural significance nearly outweighs its nutritional value. In many versions of the myth of Persephone, after entering the realm of Hades, this figure ate from a pomegranate, eating six out of twelve seeds.

From this, she had to remain in the underworld for six months out of the year, during which crops would not grow in the world above her and winter would set in. After returning from the Underworld, Persephone’s mother, Demeter, the goddess of fertility, would allow growth to return to the Earth.

Pomegranates are more than just a good story. Pomegranate juice has been shown to increase testosterone levels in both males and females. They can also improve moods and boost various other general health metrics. Whether eating the fruit itself or substituting your usual hydration for its juice at home or on the go, pomegranates create an accessible way to up your testosterone and maintain your physical health. 

Cereal


Vitamins are important in proper testosterone production, and plenty of vitamin-fortified cereals exist on the market that can help your body operate at its best. Be on the lookout for cereals that are high in vitamin d, zinc, or magnesium the next time you go out grocery shopping. Be sure to avoid ones with high sugar content, as sugar can decrease testosterone production and contribute to obesity. 

Almonds


A disclaimer: Almonds have not been found, on their own, to increase testosterone levels in healthy individuals. Almonds may, however, be able to reverse the damage done to testosterone and other functions by hyperglycemia, high blood sugar, which is common with diabetes.

Rats with diabetes were shown to have lower testosterone levels. After 14 days of a diet that included a significant amount of almonds, this drop was largely reversed.

In other words, Almonds may or may not be a savior when it comes to testosterone levels if you have no extenuating circumstances affecting them. For those whose testosterone levels have been affected, however, almonds may assist with raising them again.

Ginger


For decades, ginger has been linked to higher testosterone production. Mainstream research generally supports that ginger, whether in supplement or food form, can aid in testosterone production due to various properties, including amounts of zinc and manganese. Improved testosterone, however, only scrapes the surface of what ginger has to offer.

Ginger contains gingerol, a compound that has powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. This has been used in professional and folk medicine to aid with a variety of ailments, including ulcers, depression, and even Alzheimer’s disease. In the final analysis, ginger is a food that can give you a boost in all facets of life. 

Grapes


Grapes are a highly versatile food, whether put into a salad or eaten on their own as a snack. This versatility extends to the health benefits offered by the food, which can contribute to heart and bone health. It can also alleviate inflammation associated with many chronic illnesses.

The aspect of grapes that contributes to their status as a testosterone-enhancing superfood is called trans-Resveratrol, an antioxidant found in the grapes’ skin. Trans-Resveratrol affects the body’s estrogen response system, which in tests resulted in higher levels of serum testosterone. Though formal testing on adult men has yet to occur, similar benefits can be assumed, along with the host of health advantages this food offers.

Garlic


As a flavorful and distinct addition to many recipes, the culinary reputation of garlic precedes its nutritional one. However, garlic also has a hidden value on this list as a super-food. From a purely nutritional value, garlic contains carbohydrates, proteins, magnesium, zinc, and manganese, which should already reveal its potential as a testosterone booster. 

In a 2014 study, test subjects were given 200 mg of garlic per kg of weight. One group was given this amount of garlic for 28 days, and another was given this amount for 56 days. While both groups showed gains in testosterone and a variety of sexual parameters, the latter group showcased higher growth as well as notable weight loss. Excessive chronic garlic consumption can cause weight loss in tandem with issues such as anemia, bad breath, and nausea. 

200mg per kg is a lot of garlic, and the average 190lb 20-year-old man would need to consume 17 grams of garlic every single day to hit that limit. Feel free to indulge in this powerful herb for the sake of your health and your food’s taste, but be careful not to go past a healthy limit. 

 Garlic has hearty levels of allicin which lowers cortisol levels. Lower testosterone levels are often linked to high cortisol levels (which itself is linked to anxiety). 

Beyond Diet: Wrap Up and Other Habits To Boost Testosterone

What we eat is only one part of what influences testosterone production. What you do with your mind and your body matters just as much as what you put in it. Once you’ve successfully optimized your diet, here are a few other ways you can improve things:

First of all, lower your stress levels. Stress is a killer in every aspect of life, including in testosterone levels. Meditating is one way to lower the stress of daily life. 

Perhaps one of the best-kept secrets to developing testosterone is sleep. Sleep is integral to function when it comes both to your body and your mind. If you’re having trouble, there are many ways to hack your sleep.

It would be difficult to restrict your whole diet to the ten foods we’ve listed here. By simply picking a few and adding them to your regular caloric intake, though, you can make a major difference. Keep in mind those key benefits in Zinc, Vitamin D, and magnesium, and you’ll be well on your way to higher T levels.

     

Sources:

Natural Testosterone Boosters I Medical News Today

Almond-supplemented Diet Improves Sexual Functions Beyond Phosphodiesterase-5 Inhibition in Diabetic Male Rats I National Library of Medicine

Pomegranate Juice Intake Enhances Salivary Testosterone Levels and Improves Mood and Wellbeing in Healthy Men and Women | Endocrine Abstracts

Retention of Testicular Integrity and Testosterone Levels upon Ingestion of Garlic Cloves (Allium sativum) in the Sprague-Dawley Rat I ScienceDirect

Trans-Resveratrol, a Natural Antioxidant from Grapes, Increases Sperm Output in Healthy Rats I National Library of Medicine

Ginger and Testosterone I National Library of Medicine

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