Whether it’s due to age, excess weight or disease, low testosterone levels are no fun. They promote all sorts of ailments but the most common out there are: a lack of libido, difficulties to built mass and strength, metabolic disorders, sperm production decline, and eventually, way more serious conditions. So to avoid going there, can a testosterone booster help you to get those levels up?
A testosterone booster is a supplement that promises to boost your own natural T production. But are those really effective in doing so?
And if they are, what are the best testosterone booster supplements out there? And what are the ones to avoid at all costs?
But before getting into it…
A Reminder on the Importance of The Magical Testosterone
First, let’s start with the basics. Testosterone and oestrogens are the two main sexual hormones. T is produced by both men and women but men produce a lot more. Whereas women produce more oestrogen and men don’t need as much.
Testosterone is the hormone that helps us to go from boys to men (among other things 😉 ). Indeed, without it, we wouldn’t have our current developed sexual organs. Also, testosterone supports the usual masculine attributes: facial hair, broad shoulders and dense muscle development.
Moreover, testosterone also does a lot for our sexual life. For instance, testosterone levels rise and fall throughout the day – when they are high, like in the morning, here comes your best friend out to play!
Nevertheless, after the age of 30, they start to decline but that doesn’t mean they can’t go back up, far from it! It all depends on diet, regular exercise (or a very physical lifestyle), stress and health management, etc.
If you are experiencing low sex drive, it might not be due to low testosterone levels. Get those checked professionally if you are unsure. For example, stress, anxiety, relationship difficulties and depression can also be a cause of low sex drive. Additionally, certain medications, extra weight or a chronic illness can also impair your drive. Therefore, take everything into account – testosterone isn’t necessarily the factor or the only factor at play here.
Should You Use a Testosterone Booster or do Something Else?
So, is it a good idea to use a testosterone boosting supplement? Well, like most things in life… it depends.
For instance, for younger men (less than 50) suffering with hypogonadism (the body can’t produce enough T on its own), testosterone therapy can be helpful. When it comes to prescribed T, a study review found there is little benefits to prescribing testosterone to men over 65. Basically, it’s a case of the side effects outweigh the benefits. And without doing a full dissertation on the matter, when taking any testosterone medication, you should know in detail what are the actual risks AND if they really are worth it. (1)
However, when it comes to natural supplements that boost T, there’s a bit of everything: the good, the bad and the ugly.
Here’s 3 Ingredients to look for in a natural Testosterone Booster:
♦ D-Aspartic Acid (D-AA): D-AA is an amino acid found in Leydig cells (testicular cells). This amino acid acts as a messenger between Leydig cells and the brain, in order to convert cholesterol into testosterone. Thus, the theory is that supplementing with D-AA should increase testosterone levels by improving the communication between the brain and testes.
♦ Fenugreek: Fenugreek is a plant mainly found in India, traditionally used for curries, pickles and pastes. Now, science is getting interested in the anabolic properties of this plant. Fenugreek supplementation can increase both strength and body composition. Indeed, a study showed that resistance-trained men obtained far better results with fenugreek after hitting the much dreaded plateau. Also, the group with fenugreek supplementation had a significant increase of lean body mass compared to the placebo one. (2)
♦ ZMA: ZMA isn’t one ingredient but a combination of zinc, magnesium and vitamin B-6. This cocktail is usually used as a recovery aid to boost deeper levels of REM sleep. However, ZMA also shows potential to increase muscular strength and enhance hormonal profiles. For instance, a placebo controlled study done on professional football players showed a 30% increase in T with the group taking the supplement.
♦ Vitamin D: This vitamin isn’t a vitamin per se, as it acts like a steroid hormone. Normally, vitamin D is produced in the skin, during exposition to sunlight. However, most of us located in the Northern Hemisphere are deficient in it. Many studies have found a correlation between vitamin D deficiency and low testosterone levels. As such, it’s been shown that a daily supplementation of 3000IU of vitamin D3 can significantly increase T levels – especially during grey months and particularly…for people who spend long hours in an office.
Do Your Homework with Your Testosterone Booster
This isn’t an exhaustive list, there’s a lot more interesting ingredients out there. However, you should know that not all testosterone boosting supplements are safe. A background check on your supplier is an obligation to your health. Some products have had adverse effects on notably, the liver (and a healthy liver is crucial to have good testosterone levels). So, be safe and do your homework before buying your supplement. (3)
Check out more EFFICIENT testosterone boosting tips on this website: like how forskolin can help you boost T levels AND lower body fat!
This article was written by Michael King.
(1) Risks and benefits of testosterone therapy in older men. Spitzer M, Huang G, Basaria S, Travison TG, Bhasin S. Nat Rev Endocrinol. 2013.
(2) The effects of a commercially available botanical supplement on strength, body composition, power output, and hormonal profiles in resistance-trained males. Poole C, Bushey B, Foster C, Campbell B, Willoughby D, Kreider R, Taylor L, Wilborn C. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2010.
(3) Effect of testosterone boosters on body functions: Case report. Amer Abdulrahman Almaiman. Int J Health Sci (Qassim). 2018.