Do you have low testosterone? A surprising number of men do, and lifestyle factors are often to blame. The good news is, since many of the factors that contribute to falling testosterone levels are known, there are steps you can take to improve your health and boost your testosterone naturally.
Why Testosterone Matters
Testosterone serves several important functions in the male body. Besides the obvious function of maintaining sex drive and sperm counts, the male hormone also contributes to manufacturing red blood cells (the oxygen-carrying cells needed to power all other body functions,) building strong bones and muscles, and determining where and how fat is stored in the body.
In short, according to Dr. Dominique Fradin Read, M.D., M.P.H., “Testosterone is important for men to function well physically, mentally, and emotionally. When testosterone levels dip below normal, we start to see some dysfunction in each of these areas.”
How to Boost Your Testosterone Naturally
While it’s important to rule out possible medical causes of low testosterone, such as problems with the thyroid or hypothalamus, medical side effects, or cancer, everyone can benefit from improving the lifestyle factors that contribute to declining testosterone levels.
1. Lower Your Stress
Stressful situations can cause the body’s production of testosterone to be erratic. While it may increase during a stressful event, long-term chronic stress has a negative effect on the body that can snowball. The stress hormone cortisol, for example, contributes to accumulating fat and craving high-carbohydrate food, both of which have a negative impact on testosterone production. Some men take CBD oil to lower their stress levels and this may boost testosterone levels.
2. Eat High-Quality Foods
High-quality food includes whole grains, seeds and nuts, minimally processed meat, fish, eggs, and dairy, fresh fruits and vegetables. Compared with refined carbohydrates and highly processed ingredients, high-quality food is less likely to cause inflammation and weight gain. If you’re stuck in a cycle of poor-quality food that doesn’t nourish, a specialist in weight loss could help you to transform your diet.
3. Go to Bed on Time
In one study of the relationship between sleep and testosterone levels, men who were deprived of sleep (just 5 hours of sleep per night for one week) experienced a significant drop in testosterone, the equivalent of up to 15 years of age-related testosterone decline. Seriously, get some sleep.
Being physically active has a positive effect on testosterone levels. If you are already suffering from low energy, weight gain, and other symptoms related to low testosterone, remember that the snowball effect that led you here can also work in reverse. You can produced a significant change by starting small. Just 30 minutes of walking per day can improve your overall fitness, reduce stress, and boost your testosterone levels.