(Last Updated on November 9, 2022)
Are you looking to increase testosterone levels and lower estrogen levels?
Various supplements and treatments promise to restore normal testosterone levels.
However, you can naturally boost T-levels through food and lifestyle changes.
Testosterone is responsible for hair growth, sex drive, energy, lean muscle growth, motivation, mood, and better cognition.
Unfortunately, from the age of 30, men realize a gradual decline in their T levels.
A well-balanced diet is essential in balancing hormones in the body, including Testosterone.
Thus, be mindful of what you eat; some foods lower testosterone in men while others increase testosterone levels naturally.
Some nutrients are particularly vital in boosting testosterone, including zinc, magnesium, and Vitamin D.
They trigger the production of more testosterone.
This article highlights the best foods that boost testosterone while focusing on the most vital nutrients.
Best Foods To Increase Testosterone Levels
Okay, let’s look at how to boost testosterone levels naturally with food;
There is significant evidence that zinc plays a significant role in testosterone production.
This study 1 showed that individuals who took a low zinc diet for 20 weeks, had about 75 percent decrease in T-levels.
Oysters contain the highest amount of zinc per serving than any other food and will boost testosterone levels significantly.
Lobsters and crab can also add zinc to your diet.
Research shows that Alaskan king crab provides about 43 percent of the recommended daily zinc intake in three ounces.
Other sources of zinc include:
- All shellfish.
- Pumpkin seeds.
Leafy green and cruciferous vegetables
Leafy green vegetables such as spinach, kale, and Swiss Chard boost T-levels due to the rich magnesium content.
Studies 2 show that magnesium increases both free and total testosterone levels.
You can source for magnesium from other foods such as:
- Raw cacao.
- Nuts-almonds, cashews, peanuts.
- Black beans.
- Whole grains.
On the other hand, cruciferous vegetables such as turnips, broccoli, sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, and kale contain indoles-compounds that lower estrogen levels, thus increasing testosterone levels.
Pomegranates are rich in antioxidants that lower testicular oxidative stress and increase nitric oxide levels, hence, boosting testosterone levels.
Additionally, they lower cortisol levels, a stress hormone that drastically reduces T-levels.
A 2012 study 3 involving participants who consumed pure pomegranate juice for two weeks, showed a 24 percent increase in their salivary testosterone levels.
Participants also reported low blood pressure and a better mood.
Extra virgin olive oil
Olive oil is a crucial part of the Mediterranean diet.
This might be the reason why there are fewer cases of testosterone deficiency in the region.
Extra virgin olive oil has various health benefits to the body; over and above that, it is considered to be better than Viagra in boosting sexual performance.
In a study involving 60 men who added extra virgin olive oil in their diets for 3 weeks, testosterone levels rose by 18 percent, and luteinizing hormone rose by 43 percent.
Luteinizing hormone stimulates cells in the testicles to produce testosterone.
Ginger is a popularly known culinary element.
Also, it is famous for its healing and anti-inflammatory elements.
Fortunately, recent research 4 shows that ginger boosts testosterone levels, sperm health and antioxidant levels.
Participants showed a 17 per cent increase in testosterone levels.
Ginger contains allicin, a compound that lowers cortisol levels.
Lower cortisol levels are associated with high T-levels.
Fortified cereals, plant milk, and milk
Fortified foods are loaded with Vitamin D, which is very significant in boosting testosterone levels.
Plant milk is made from flax, hemp, almonds, and soy.
However there are controversies that soy milk may lower testosterone while others maintain that it has no such effect.
More research is needed.
Studies show Vitamin D deficiency is closely linked to low T-levels.
Thus, boosting your Vitamin D will automatically raise testosterone.
Sun exposure provides Vitamin D, but with the modern lifestyle individuals may not get enough time to get some sun; hence, go for fortified cereals, plant milk and low-fat milk to spike up your T-levels.
Here are some other foods rich in Vitamin D:
- Egg yolk.
- Beef liver.
- Orange juice fortified with Vitamin D.
- Fatty fish-salmon, tuna, sardine and mackerel.
Keep Away These 5 Foods That Decrease Testosterone Levels
While the above foods that increase testosterone, some foods kill and lower testosterone levels!
If you aim to boost testosterone levels, always focus on having a complete diet check.
That is, eating more foods that boost testosterone and limiting foods that have a detrimental effect.
Mint, mainly peppermint and spearmint, have been shown to lower testosterone.
A study 5 involving rats showed that there was a drop in testosterone levels in rats that consumed peppermint.
In yet another study 6, women who took spearmint tea had a noticeable reduction in testosterone levels.
Most studies on the effects of mint on testosterone levels were done on rats and women.
Hence, more research needs to be done on men.
Licorice root is a common ingredient used to sweeten beverages, foods, and candies.
Research 7 shows that licorice root lowers serum testosterone levels in healthy men.
Avoid foods sweetened with licorice root.
Excessive alcohol consumption has many adverse effects on the body.
It has also been seen to lower testosterone levels in men.
However, more research is needed to determine the actual amount of alcohol that lowers T-levels.
Some studies show that soy products and soy-based foods may lower testosterone levels.
However, some research indicates that soy foods do not affect testosterone levels.
Therefore, research is needed to ascertain the facts.
Processed foods are particular the worst enemies of testosterone.
They contain trans fats that are scientifically proven to decrease testosterone, reduce testicular function and lowers sperm count.
Making changes to your diet may, for the most part, play a significant role in increasing the production of testosterone and maintaining these levels in the long term.
The most important nutrients to watch out for are magnesium, zinc, and Vitamin D; include more foods with these nutrients.
Make sure to avoid processed foods, mint, excessive alcohol, soy-based foods, and licorice root.
These foods have a proven record of lowering T levels.
Read next: Does Testosterone Affect Sex Drive?