It’s something every single man wants; to increase their testosterone levels. Higher testosterone levels are the gold standard after all, as men who possess it have lower body fat, greater muscle mass, are stronger, have voracious sexual appetites, and are just seen as go-getters.
But as with anything else in life that is worth it, it takes work. Is it hard to accomplish? Not at all. But it does take consistency, which is doing the things that will help you accomplish your goal in a repetitive, predictable manner.
But exactly how should you go about increasing testosterone as you age? The good news is that most of the principles remain the same as it does for a younger man, given a few minor caveats.
In that same vein, there are certain things that you must do to increase testosterone naturally. Looking to cut down the time it takes before you start seeing improvements? Then start off by spending the bulk of your time working on these proven strategies:
1. Lift Weights
Weightlifting can be considered one of the Four Horsemen when it comes to increasing testosterone levels. One of the best ways to force your body to increase testosterone production is to create an environment that looks like a post-apocalyptic war zone after leaving the gym. This means muscle damage. When this happens, the body trips its anabolism switch, to facilitate rapid recovery of damaged muscles and their subsequent expansion in anticipation of the next wave of attack.
A Finnish study recently revealed that men who work out regularly have 49 % higher testosterone levels than men who don’t exercise. Focus on the exercise that works a number of muscles. Squats and deadlifts are a good example.
To elicit a sizable response, you need to lift moderately heavy weight and work out on a consistent basis. Consistent does not necessarily mean often, as three weightlifting sessions per week is a great way to elicit stimulus. If you’re completely new to weightlifting, take two weeks to get familiarized with proper form and what you can handle, then hit it hard to push testosterone synthesis into overdrive.
What if you are older? Should you still lift weights?
Performing regular weight-bearing exercise as you grow older helps preserve bone mass density, decreasing the likelihood of falls and fractures due to weakened support. Stronger muscles also mean a reduced likelihood of impaired mobility, so you will not gain weight as a result of becoming sedentary.
What should change, however, is the frequency of workloads, along with relative intensity. This is because recovery slows as you age, so while you would be able to work out intensely every two days as a young man, as you approach the age of 40 and beyond you may need a longer period to sufficiently recover damaged tissue.
The best plan of action is to lift weights with the space of two days separating intervals, to allow appropriate recovery and minimize the risk of injury.
2. Get Sufficient Sleep
Sufficient sleep is becoming more of the elusive luxury to a large number of people, owing to hectic lifestyles and work schedules. However, even if all other variables called into play, if you’re not getting enough sleep every night, your testosterone levels will never be as high as they could.
During sleep, testosterone and growth hormone levels peak to facilitate behind-the-scenes recovery. These hormones are released in a pulsatile manner throughout sleep, varying naturally with the different phases of sleep.
Shorter sleep duration, in the three to five-hour range, will result in less of these pulses. The result is not only inefficient repair but increased levels of hormones not favorable to the androgens, such as cortisol and adrenaline.
This is why sleep deprivation has serious repercussions on health far exceeding testosterone alone.
Well timed power naps; short 15 to 20 minutes sessions can go a far way to helping you adequately achieve your sleep quota. So, when the night rolls around, and you’re only able to get 5 hours of sleep, those two power naps you had during the day will help bring you closer to the minimum recommended 6 hours daily you should be getting.
And remember- testosterone and growth hormone levels are highest during sleep, so be sure to get enough to facilitate sufficient repair and recovery of the various biochemical processes our body performs around the clock.
3. Aim For Higher Fat, Moderate Protein And Carb Diets
You’ve heard it a million times before that a balanced diet is best. What constitutes a balanced diet varies significantly among who you ask, however. Some people’s balance may be an exact 33% three-way split, while others may emphasize one macronutrient over another.
Of the most detrimental dietary modifications, are the diets low in fat. Saturated fat, in particular, has a bad reputation but is essential in the synthesis of cholesterol, a prerequisite of hormone synthesis. Diets lower in fat naturally offer less of the raw material needed for testosterone production.
Men who consume more fat have higher testosterone levels. However, this can be a bit tricky since too much fat can result in weight gain and impact testosterone levels negatively. The key is to consume only the essential fats like Omega 3 fatty acids and restrict saturated fats from your diet.
The main reason behind this is that all the steroid hormones in the body including testosterone are produced with cholesterol in your body.
Therefore, you must give your body enough good fats’ if you really want to enhance your testosterone levels. Examples of the healthy fats that can boost testosterone include avocados, olive oil, coconuts, unheated organic, palm oil, nut oils, and almonds.
In like manner, diets high in protein may seem advantageous but inadvertently suppress testosterone levels. A good diet split assuming daily consumption of 2000 cal is 40% from fat, with an even 30% from proteins and carbs.
If you’re worried about heart health, mono-unsaturated fats and a smaller amount of saturated fats are the way to go, as both of these favorably lend themselves to increasing test levels, while at the same time minimizing your cardiovascular risk.
4. Reduce Body Fat Levels
Men tend to be less concerned about retaining excessive fat if they have higher muscle mass, but truth be told you can always benefit from losing fat.
A 4 point increase in your body mass index (approximately 30 extra pounds on a 5’10’’ person) can accelerate your age-related Testosterone decline by 10 years. This means, if you are 25 and your BMI is 4 points higher than normal, your testosterone level is likely to be that of a 35-year-old man.
Of particular note is the fact that body fat can be considered an estrogen factory. Body fat is a primary source of testosterone conversion into estrogen, with higher body fat levels equating to greater conversion. Reducing body fat, in turn, decreases the amount of testosterone that can be converted into estrogen at any time, allowing your androgens to be used for muscle building or other functions.
Increasing muscle mass will indirectly contribute to lowering body fat, as a greater number of calories will be expended daily. Be sure to add in a few sessions of aerobic work per week for added caloric utilization.
Meditation is a practice that not many men willingly participate in, but stand to benefit from if they do. How so? Thanks to its stress-reducing properties. Our cortisol levels today are higher than they have ever been in recorded history, owing to lifestyle.
Even in prehistoric days when the threat to life was high, it is arguable that stress levels were still lower than they are today since most individuals now have some degree of low-grade adrenal fatigue.
Meditation can offer an additional mechanism to help decrease the impact cortisol can have on our bodies, and more importantly testosterone levels. We already mentioned how testosterone and cortisol share an inverse relationship, so anything that can be done to reduce cortisol levels will benefit testosterone.
6. Get Daily Sun Exposure
Spending time daily outdoors in the sun has the natural effect of improving testosterone synthesis, owing to the enhanced production of vitamin D by the skin. Studies have linked vitamin D and testosterone levels, with men having the lowest blood vitamin D levels also having the lowest testosterone.
Vitamin D is extremely important for healthy the development of sperm cells and boosts libido.
If you live in a colder region with unpredictable sunlight, consumption of a daily vitamin D supplement is highly advised, though a small amount of time spent outdoors is still advised.
Interestingly, biohacking experts have recently investigated the effects of red light exposure directly on the testes, where it could then trigger a 200% increase in testosterone production. That’s a discussion for another time, however. UV light from the sun contains various spectrums, but it is not advised to go around nude just to get sunlight on your jewels.
7. High-Intensity Exercise Combined with Intermittent Fasting
Short, high-intensity exercise together with intermittent fasting can boost testosterone. This is unlike aerobic or prolonged moderate workouts which have negative or even no effect on testosterone.
Intermittent fasting can boost the testosterone levels by increasing the satiety expression of hormones like melanocortins, leptin, insulin, adiponectin, cholecystokinin (CKK), glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1). All these hormones aid in healthy testosterone actions, high libido and also prevent age-related testosterone-decline.
A typical high-intensity workout routine may follow the following steps:
8. Consume Plenty of Zinc
Zinc is a very important mineral when it comes to testosterone production. Adding zinc to your diet for about 6 weeks can cause a great improvement in testosterone levels.
According to a ‘National Health & Nutrition Examination Survey, about 45 % of adults over 60 years have lower than the recommended zinc levels and approximately 25 % of older adults also have inadequate zinc intakes. Eat plenty of protein-rich foods like fish and meat together with other dietary sources of this Zinc.
Some of the best natural sources of zinc are raw cheese, raw milk, beans and yogurt. Avoid overcooking your food as this will drastically reduce nutrients such as Zinc.
9. Reduce or Remove Sugar Consumption
Testosterone levels decline after you consume too much sugar. This is because, high sugar leads to high insulin levels, another factor that leads to low testosterone.
Therefore reduce the amount of sugar you consume daily, or get rid of sugar from your own diet.
Remember any foods with added sugar & fructose should also be eliminated.
10. Reduce Stress
Mental or physical stress can quickly reduce your testosterone levels. When you are stressed, the body releases very high levels of a stress hormone called cortisol.
This hormone blocks any effects of testosterone. Always make sure you get enough sleep every day. Pay particular attention to sleeping well during the early morning hours; this is the time you are most likely to dream, resulting in greater refreshment upon waking.
Try to reduce your level of stress through some relaxation techniques such as yoga and meditation. Also, quit smoking as smoking may inhibit your body’s ability to produce testosterone.
11. Stay Away from Alcohol and Soy
If you are a heavy drinker, then you need to reduce or stop drinking. Alcohol interferes with your body’s ability to produce testosterone hours after drinking.
Soy and alcohol results in high estrogen levels in your body and this negatively affects testosterone levels. There are many health supplements that contain soy as an ingredient.
Stay away from such supplements and alcohol if you want to get a testosterone boost.
Just as testosterone increases sex drive, it might work the other way round as well; increased sexual activity increases production of testosterone. Do your best to enjoy a healthy sex life. If you feel a loss of interest, engage in it often as this can raise your interest.
From what we have seen, there are many ways to increase testosterone naturally and most of them are quite easy.
So, go ahead, try a few of the aforementioned methods and enjoy your life.
13. Try Cold Showers
Some people hate the cold- regardless of age. While that’s understandable, would you feel the same if you knew that exposure of the testes to cold could initiate a massive testosterone surge? The testes naturally hang lower and away from the body for that exact reason- to facilitate testosterone production and spermatogenesis.
Production of both of these important indicators of male health is impaired at high temperatures, which is why cold showers can be infinitely helpful when trying to improve your test, especially since an older man that needs every bit of help.
You don’t need to soak for hours; a quick 15-minute bath or soak in the tub is plenty. If you still find that a hard task, alternating cold with warm water is a viable option as well, as is sleeping in a slightly colder room (a natural preferably!)
14. Use Natural Supplements That Support Testosterone Production
We listed this as the last strategy for a reason, as this should be the last step you take after reasonably addressing the other six. More times than not, jumping straight to supplements without fixing anything else will not give you the results you want, even if you do notice short-term improvements. Just be clear on your goals – like do you want more sex drive or to lose your man boobs.
Once you have established a decent routine, adding in natural supplements such as ZMA, Fenugreek and a product containing D-Aspartic Acid are great places to start. Not every supplement that claims to increase testosterone levels naturally will, which is why I meticulously perform unbiased reviews of them.
Ingredients that are likely to deliver the best bang for the buck are ones such as D-Aspartic Acid, selenium, zinc, magnesium and fenugreek.
Note: Testogen, Prime Male and TestoFuel all contain these ingredients. Two of the most popular testosterone boosters are TestoGen and TestoFuel.
We also recommend reading this great comparison of TestoGen vs TestoPrime (one of the newer test boosters on the market).
There are many other things you can do that will contribute to improved testosterone levels, such as cutting out alcohol and smoking, and having more good old sex. The tips highlighted above can be considered your fast track to the goal.
Just remember, don’t make supplements a crutch. Add in one of my recommended products after establishing a solid workout, nutrition and sleep pattern and let the results speak for themselves!
As you can see, most of the techniques for increasing testosterone levels remain the same regardless of age. While it can be a bit more difficult for older men, it is most certainly achievable as long as you consistently apply yourself.
Don’t make qualms about using supplements either, as many effective ones can significantly speed up the time it takes for you achieve your goals and help you feel better than ever.