In this article, we took a look at eight different foods, commonly eaten to increase testosterone levels. We evaluated them based on the amount of testosterone-boosting vitamins and minerals they include and on how they interact with the body.
Keep reading to learn more about how you can boost your testosterone levels without supplementation.
Testosterone levels in men begin dropping by around 1% every year after age 30. Since testosterone affects everything from mood to sex drive, keeping these levels high is a must.
Not everyone is comfortable taking testosterone boosters; for those people, using food to naturally increase testosterone levels can help.
Keep reading to find out what eight of the best testosterone-boosting foods are, and exactly how they raise levels of this crucial hormone.
Table of Contents
What Is Testosterone and Why Is It Important for Overall Health?
Testosterone is the male sex hormone, and it plays an important role in many different processes in the body.
Both men and women have different levels of estrogen and testosterone, and a healthy balance of these two sex hormones is essential for us to function at our best.
When men enter puberty, the testes produce testosterone more abundantly, which leads to an increase in hair growth, lean muscle mass, and other male-specific characteristics.
Testosterone plays a part in many different bodily processes, from building lean muscle mass to distributing fat, influencing sperm health, producing red blood cells, and even improving bone mass.
Low levels of testosterone levels can also have a negative impact on sex drive, leading to erectile dysfunction-related health problems.
What Are the Best Foods for Boosting Testosterone Production?
Different foods have been through clinical trials to assess their testosterone-boosting effectiveness.
Some of these foods are helpful because they are full of nutrients that naturally support healthy T-levels, like zinc, vitamin D, magnesium, selenium, and boron. Others have antioxidant properties or are high in omega-3 fatty acids.
Whatever the reason, eating a diet full of more of these foods can help you naturally boost testosterone levels without the need for anabolic hormones and other more risky testosterone replacement therapy.
Honey has been a popular food for increasing testosterone levels since it contains various vitamins, including magnesium, iron, and most importantly zinc, which is an essential nutrient for boosting testosterone levels.
Honey also has the amino acid, aspartic acid, and is full of several antioxidants.
In one study, a group of men took 20 grams of honey for 21 days, which created a measurable increase in their urinary levels of testosterone.
Other studies conducted using honey have also proven effective in increasing serum testosterone, which is the measurable amount of free testosterone in the blood. However, it’s important to note that some of these tests were conducted on rats and monkeys.
Honey is also thought to impact the creation of luteinizing hormone (LH), which stimulates the testes to increase testosterone production.
Some ways to naturally increase the amount of honey in your diet is by using it as a sugar replacement, in your coffee and tea, on pancakes or bread, or in salad dressing or marinade.
Eating more tuna effectively increases testosterone production since it is high in vitamin D, which has been shown to boost the total bio-available, free testosterone levels.
Coldwater fish such as tuna, mackerel, salmon, and sardines are also known for being high in omega-3 fatty acids, which can impact the amount of cortisol in the body by reducing stress.
High levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, are known for reducing blood T-levels, and make it hard for the body to support healthy levels of testosterone.
Omega-3 fatty acids also increase levels of high-density lipoprotein, also known as ‘good’ cholesterol, which is the precursor to testosterone and estrogen creation.
Some studies suggest that tuna can also slash levels of sex hormone-binding globulin, which limits protein from binding with testosterone, meaning there is more of it available in your body for other tissues.
Tuna is an easy replacement for other protein sources, as it can be fried and eaten as a steak, substituted for chicken in many meals, and even ordered in your favorite sushi.
Leafy greens, including spinach, are another fan favorite for raising testosterone levels since they are high in many micro-nutrients, most notably magnesium, which is great for improving blood flow and can even affect testosterone production.
Spinach is also high in a mineral known as folate, which in one study, was shown to improve sperm count by 70% when taken consistently for 6 months.
It’s also known for improving cardiovascular health, and better blood flow is proven to reduce the symptoms of erectile dysfunction.
To include more spinach in your diet, you can start making green salads with spinach instead of lettuce. You can also try putting it in a scramble, or if you’re someone who doesn’t like the taste, you can easily blend it into a fruit smoothie.
Cocao products — as long as they are raw and unfiltered — are chock full of antioxidants, which can increase serum testosterone levels and also play a role in fertility, most likely because of improved sperm count.
It also contains various minerals that play a key role in testosterone production, including magnesium, iron, and manganese, the latter being known for their role in converting cholesterol to testosterone.
Quercetin and apigenin are two other flavonoids found in cocoa products that have a plethora of different health benefits, including being antioxidative.
There is also some research that supports them as being effective at increasing testosterone production in the testicles.
Make sure that any cocoa products you cook with are in their raw and natural form since these have the highest nutrient value. Some ways to use raw, unfiltered cacao are to put it in baked goods, create ‘chocolate milk’ with it, and snack on the cacao nibs.
Avocados are high in healthy fat, which is necessary for supporting healthy hormone levels.
Eating healthy fats is also important in supporting high levels of ‘good’ cholesterol, which is essential in creating testosterone.
Even though high cholesterol levels often have a negative connotation, the truth is, healthy fat is an important part of many of our bodily processes.
Another reason avocados are recommended testosterone boosters is because of the amount of boron found in them.
Boron is an ingredient found in almost every natural testosterone booster since it has been proven effective at increasing the amount of testosterone in the blood.
Avocados are easy to eat since they can be added to many different dishes or eaten completely on their own. You can try diving into a lightly salted avocado, adding them as a topping on toast, or making them into guacamole and eating it with tortilla chips.
Egg yolks are commonly used to increase testosterone since they are high in cholesterol and vitamin D.
Since cholesterol is used in manufacturing all sex hormones, including testosterone, increasing the amount of good cholesterol you eat can be an easy way to provide your body with what it needs to restore and support optimal testosterone levels.
Research also suggests that men who are vitamin D deficient are more likely to have issues related to low testosterone levels.
This is because when vitamin D is ingested, it is targeted toward the male reproductive tract to aid in the production and maintenance of sperm.
Some people recommend eating egg yolks raw, though this isn’t recommended since heat is what kills bacteria. Instead, it’s best to cook yolks on low heat so they don’t harbor any bacteria and retain more nutrients.
Berries, cherries, and pomegranates
These fruits are also known for being high in quercetin and apigenin, two flavonoids that are known antioxidants and also believed to be useful in increasing testosterone production in the testicles.
The symptoms of oxidative stress are similar to that of decreased testosterone levels, including a weakened immune system, memory fog, fatigue, and muscle or joint pain.
Eating testosterone-boosting foods that are also rich in antioxidants is a combination that will get you back to feeling your best.
Pomegranate juice, in particular, has also been proven to increase salivary testosterone levels while lowering blood pressure.
Since around 49% of men with high blood pressure also suffer from erectile dysfunction, finding new ways to restore healthy BP can greatly help reverse one of the most frustrating symptoms of low testosterone.
To include more berries, cherries, and pomegranates in your diet, you can either eat them raw, add them to a bowl of granola, or even get in the habit of making a berry-dominant smoothie every morning.
Ginger has many different properties that are believed to positively affect the production of testosterone.
Most importantly, ginger increases levels of luteinizing hormone, the hormone responsible for triggering testosterone production in the testicles.
It also increases cholesterol levels in the testicles, which is important because testosterone is what the body uses to create sex hormones.
In one study, a group of men struggling with fertility issues were reported to have a 17.7% increase in testosterone after taking ginger supplements for 3 months.
Taking ginger supplements is recommended for anyone who dislikes the taste. Otherwise, raw ginger is great in tea, smoothies, stir-fries, and baked goods.
What Are Other Ways To Boost Testosterone Levels
Taking testosterone supplements will always remain one of the best ways to increase testosterone levels naturally since they are full of ingredients that are scientifically proven to support healthy T-levels.
Suppose you prefer to go a more holistic route.
In that case, there are also simple lifestyle changes that you can make, such as getting more sleep, eating more healthy fats, doing more high-intensity exercise, and reducing stress, all of which can help restore and maintain healthy testosterone levels.
Who Can Benefit from a Testosterone-Rich Diet?
All men and women, need a proper balance of testosterone and estrogen to feel their best.
Many of the same symptoms that plague men with low T-levels also affect women, like low libido, fatigue, muscle weakness, and depression. Testosterone is even integral for the creation of new blood cells in women.
Anyone suffering from low testosterone levels can benefit from increasing the amount of testosterone-boosting foods they eat to combat low testosterone while decreasing the risk of further disrupting their hormonal balance.
How can I increase my testosterone in 24 hours?
Although it will take longer than 24 hours to boost your testosterone levels, doing more high-intensity exercise, eating high-fat foods, taking a zinc supplement, and getting more sleep is a great place to start.
What foods drain your testosterone levels?
More people are becoming aware of seed oils’ impact on testosterone levels, which is alarming since they are added to most processed foods, from salad dressings to cookies.
Other testosterone-draining foods include soy — known for boosting estrogen levels — fried foods, mint, and alcohol.
Can Supplements Boost Testosterone?
Yes, testosterone supplements have gone through clinical trials that clearly demonstrate the positive effect they have on testosterone.
Single supplements like zinc, magnesium, and fenugreek have been clinically proven to boost testosterone levels in men and help them stay boosted over the long term.
To increase the efficacy of these ingredients, many companies have also created herbal blends, which include several known testosterone-boosting ingredients all in one easy-to-take capsule.
What foods increase estrogen production?
Foods that increase estrogen production include many seeds, like sesame and flax, nuts, dried fruit, soy — including soy milk and tofu — and garlic.
This is because they are high in phytoestrogen, a chemical that mimics estrogen when ingested.
What are the best sources of nutrients for testosterone production?
There are quite a few nutrient-rich foods you can consume to boost testosterone production, and each affects testosterone levels in a different way.
If you want to increase your T-levels, you can try eating more oysters, avocados, fatty fish like salmon, and foods high in zinc, magnesium, and vitamin D.
How to tell if you are testosterone deficient?
Low sex drive, loss of erectile function, fatigue, brain fog, loss of muscle mass, increased weight gain, poor sleep, depression, and loss of male-specific hair all indicate testosterone deficiency.
If you suffer from any combination of these symptoms, getting a blood test to assess your free testosterone levels can help you assess if you should take additional steps to improve your T-levels.
There is no single best testosterone booster food.
All of the foods included in this article offer specific health benefits, each of which yields a different result best experienced when combined with other testosterone-boosting foods. maintaining healthy testosterone levels
By eating more of these foods, known to affect testosterone levels, and making diet and lifestyle changes, you can reverse the effects of low testosterone and better support your hormonal health moving forward — without needing to take expensive testosterone-boosting supplements.
This process can’t happen overnight. But if you begin including more testosterone-boosting foods in your diet, over time you can expect to feel more energized and virile.