Low testosterone has become incredibly common in the UK. In fact, researchers have discovered that testosterone levels are lower than they have been in the last three decades. This can result in several symptoms including erectile dysfunction, low mood, low energy and a lack of sex drive. So can we boost testosterone levels by eating certain foods?
Causes of Low Testosterone
There are many reasons why a man may be suffering from low testosterone. Some of the causes may include:
Developmental issues during puberty
Genetic issues such as undescended testicles
Increased SHBG levels
Anabolic steroid use
Male genitals that were not fully developed during the fetal stage
- Use of certain medications such as anti-depressants
Poor diet including a lack of certain vitamins and minerals
Whilst there are several potential causes of low testosterone, as you will see certain changes to food intake may boost natural production.
The Mental Side Effects of Low Testosterone
Low mood, anxiety and depression in young men is becoming a bigger and bigger issue in the western world. More and more young men are committing suicide and facing mental health issues with suicide now being the biggest killer of young men.
Men feel an onslaught of insecurity when it comes to their physique and sexual performance, both of which are strongly affected when struggling with low testosterone levels.
In addition to the insecurity experienced from such symptoms, men are also more likely to experience depression when suffering from the effects of low testosterone.
Symptoms of Low Testosterone
If you are unsure of whether or not you are experiencing low testosterone levels, you may want to check for some of the following symptoms:
A sudden decrease in energy
Low or little muscle mass
Low mood, anxiety and depression
A lack of sex drive
A decline in hair growth or hair loss
A sudden drop in bone mass which may be seen as a hunched posture
Falling asleep after dinner
You will find that mental fatigue, also known as brain fog, is also a common symptom associated with low testosterone levels. If you experience one or more of the symptoms above it’s important to get a blood test done to see if your testosterone levels are where they should be. See our blood tests here.
While many men struggle to cope with the development of low testosterone levels, is this really a natural effect of ageing?
As our bodies age, some men develop higher levels of SHBG, this can result in reduced levels of free testosterone, there is also a small decrease from the production in the hormone levels we once produced when we were teenagers. You can read more here about normal male testosterone levels.
Low testosterone can be a really debilitating condition which no man should have to deal with, regardless of your age.
Read on to learn about potential treatment options and foods for increasing your testosterone levels.
Foods that Boost Testosterone
Fortunately, by flooding your body with the right nutrients, you can rapidly increase your testosterone levels the natural way.
You’ll find that with a little practice these ingredients can easily be incorporated to your everyday routine.
Read on for important foods to incorporate into your diet for healthy testosterone level.
Tuna is an ideal source of protein; it’s also rich in vitamin D and essential nutrients for stabilising testosterone levels.
2. Pumpkin seeds
These small, tasty snacks are loaded with zinc, which is an ideal nutrient source for producing testosterone. You will find that zinc can also be used to enhance your metabolism and increase your immune system making it an overall valuable nutritional source.
3. Fortified milk
You have heard that milk does a body good, and when it comes to testosterone, this continues to be true. Incorporating a glass of low-fat milk into your daily diet can help increase your vitamin D without increasing your calorie intake.
For your body to successfully create testosterone, it needs a fair amount of saturated fats. Which is why you’ll find that diets that are too low in calories or fats can decrease testosterone levels.
By eating foods rich in saturated fats, like coconuts, you will see a natural increase in testosterone levels.
You may have heard that oysters are a natural aphrodisiac, one reason why this legend holds some truth is the fact that oysters can increase testosterone levels.
Share them with a significant other to get them in the mood of feeling confident about your own performance.
6. Wheat Bran
In addition to a healthy amount of fibre, you’ll find that your body receives a solid amount of magnesium when you eat wheat bran. Magnesium is one of the essential minerals used in a variety of functions within your body, including the production of testosterone.
7. Ricotta cheese
When you are looking to increase your testosterone, dairy products are always a great choice. Ricotta cheese is the ideal source of protein, but most importantly it slows the production of cortisol. Since cortisol works against your testosterone production, this is an ideal choice.
Weightloss and fasting for increased testosterone levels
Having excess body fat can lead to low testosterone levels.
More body fat leads to more of an enzyme called aromatase. This enzyme increases the conversion of testosterone into oestrogen.
Not only does this process remove some testosterone in the body, but it also suppresses the pituitary gland’s production of LH and FSH. These hormones are responsible for stimulating the testicles to produce testosterone.
Intermittent fasting is a healthy and sustainable way of losing body fat and therefore increasing testosterone levels in overweight men. It is also very effective at increasing insulin sensitivity, which may also be important for hormone production and general health.
Here is a great resource which you can use to learn more about how to try intermittent fasting, the best type of fasting for you and the benefits of this style of eating.
Evidence for food boosting testosterone levels
The Help You Need for Boosting Your Testosterone
While there are a number of foods that boost testosterone, in some cases testosterone levels need additional help to fully recover.
At OptiMale we can provide comprehensive blood testing to see whether this is likely to be your issue. Following this we can help you to get treatment through one of our specialist doctors.
Dr Chris Airey
This article has been medically reviewed for accuracy by Dr Airey on 12th September 2020.
Dr Chris Airey is a fully registered UK doctor with the GMC (General Medical Council) Reference No: 7490533.
He trained at the University Hospital Southampton and graduated as a Doctor with a joint Bachelor of Medicine and a Bachelor of Surgery, plus a Masters in Medical Science, completing his research project in the Medical Neurosciences Department.
He is undertaking a Master of Science course in Endocrinology and is a member of the European Society for Sexual Medicine, and the Androgen Society.
He has personal experience with taking Testosterone Replacement Therapy and is a pioneer in UK treatment protocols for Testosterone Deficiency Syndrome.