Many men are caught off guard by the physical and mental changes they start to experience somewhere around the age of 30. They are often even more surprised to find out that declining testosterone levels are most likely behind these changes.
Some men are more likely to notice physical changes first, such as hair loss or weight gain. Other symptoms, such as a general lack of energy or a noticeable increase in irritability and mood swings, may occur more gradually.
Although declining testosterone is a normal part of the aging process, most men are eager to find ways to feel more like their youthful selves. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to naturally increase testosterone production.
Why your weight matters
While low testosterone can be a contributing factor to weight gain, the weight gain itself can actually add to the body’s inability to produce testosterone, making the situation worse. But losing weight can actually help increase testosterone, reversing the entire process.
Getting regular exercise is a great way to lose weight and will also help improve the loss of energy many men with low testosterone experience. A workout that includes high-intensity exercise, which is short bursts of intense activity, can help with weight loss and is especially beneficial in improving testosterone levels. Strength training with higher weights and lower reps should also be a key part of your fitness routine.
How food can make a difference
While exercise is a key component to losing weight and boosting testosterone levels, you should also be mindful of the foods you eat. Certain foods are known to contribute to excessive weight gain and should be avoided by anyone with low testosterone levels. However, there are also foods that have been shown to improve testosterone production.
Examples of what to avoid
Too much sugar is one of the leading causes of weight gain and other health problems, so eliminating as much you can is a good place to start. You may be surprised by just how much sugar you actually consume. While candy, baked goods and sodas are obvious sources of sugar that can be easily eliminated, some seemingly healthy foods like certain fruits, juices and carbohydrates contain sugars that can significantly raise insulin levels and should always be consumed in moderation.
Examples of what to eat
Tuna is a heart-healthy protein that contains a significant amount of vitamin D, which is known to help increase testosterone. Beef liver is another great source of vitamin D, but choose grass-fed beef whenever possible, as it is higher in nutrients and isn’t contaminated with steroids or antibiotics.
For vegetarians, plant-based proteins such as white beans, black beans and kidney beans are a good choice for increasing testosterone. Healthy fats, found in olive oil and coconut oil, are another important testosterone-boosting food source.
Vitamin A is also needed for producing testosterone and can be found in most citrus fruits. As an added benefit, citrus fruits can also lower cortisol, which is a stress hormone known to impact testosterone production. Bananas and pineapples should also be added to your list of fruits, as both contain bromelain, an enzyme known for its ability to increase testosterone.
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