You’ve probably heard that increasing the amount of testosterone in your body will help you gain more strength, increase muscle and bone mass, give you more energy, increase your sex drive, and even make your hair grow more which is probably why you’re searching for the best testosterone boosters. So let’s get right into it. I’ll list the best ones and then explain get into more details about the subject of testosterone for those interested.
You’ve probably seen some GNC testosterone booster at their stores but it’s hard to know which ones to get if all you can really judge them by is the price and attractiveness of the labels and name. Fortunately, you can find a lot of these testosterone pills online and read the reviews to see which ones are worth trying and which ones are probably just good marketing. Some other popular boosters include Status Testosterone Booster, Alpha Testosterone Booster and Six Star Testosterone Booster, the last one due to it’s relatively low price.
Of the products above, Test WorX is the most effective in my opinion. This is based on reviews as well as personal experience. Everyone is going to react differently to these supplements so your experience may vary but for me, I really felt the effects about 2-3 weeks after taking it.
I noticed a big difference in strength. My bench press increased 10% which meant I was able to destroy my personal record. I also noticed I had more energy with the same amount of sleep. My sex drive also increased. I can see why there are so many positive reviews for this product. Again, your results may vary.
Now if your main goal is just to have increased strength during your workouts, then you might want to consider this pre-workout.
What Is Testosterone?
Testosterone is a male sex hormone that is primarily produced in the leydig cells in the testicles for males and in the ovaries for women. Men have 7 to 8 times more than women and produce about 20 times more daily for consumption. Levels of T (testosterone) decreases as you age and for some older men, synthetic T is sometimes used to counteract that deficiency.
Testosterone is important because it helps to regulate and influence critical functions in the body. It can help to increase protein synthesis which leads to muscle growth. It also helps to increase your sex drive, fat burning, cardio vascular health, aggression, and also cognition.
How Testosterone is Produced In Your Body
Cholesterol is broken down into testosterone. 94 to 98 percent of testosterone is bound to proteins which helps them to be more soluble so it can be transported throughout your body and to protect them from being broken down by your kidneys.
The left over 2-6% is free testosterone which is what’s left over to bind itself to the surface of the muscle cells in your body. This is the active form of testosterone. So T gets created in your testicles, it then gets transported by being bound to SHBG (sex hormone binding globulin) during it’s inactive state, then enters your muscle cells once it becomes unbounded from SHGB.
As we age, our SHGB levels increase which means your free testosterone levels will decrease. When testosterone is bound to SHGB, it’s inactive and therefore doesn’t reach your muscle cells.
Here’s a video on how testosterone travels through your body.
How Testosterone Relates to Sex
T levels can fluctuate throughout the day. Studies have shown that when you’re in an aroused state or in a competitive mindset, your T levels will typically be higher. This is why single men tend to have higher levels of T than married men, although, this depends on many factors such as relationship experience of the single men. Having lower T levels when married isn’t a bad thing since studies have shown that men who have high T levels during marriage are more likely to engage in extramarital sex (study).
So how can this information help you? It seems that if you are either sexual aroused or in a competitive mindset, your T levels will increase temporarily, giving you a bit more strength and motivation. After working out is when your T-levels are usually high.
How Muscle Growth Works
Muscles grow through resistance training. When you train, you create micro tears in our muscle fibers. Your body responds to the damaged muscles by repairing them with new protein strands. The addition of these protein strands causes your muscles to get bigger and stronger. This process is known as protein synthesis. Testosterone also stimulates growth hormone release.
What testosterone does is binds itself to the receptors on the surface of your muscle cells which helps to amplify the signal that calls for protein synthesis. If you lack in testosterone, your body’s ability to signal protein synthesis will be greatly reduced.
Here’s a video to help you visualize how muscle growth works:
Natural Testosterone Boosters – How To Increase Testosterone
The average level of testosterone in a male’s system is anywhere between 270 and 1070 NG/DL (nanograms/deciliter). Although supplements can be useful, there are things you can do to get to that higher range of the spectrum. The following are a few things you can do to naturally increase your T levels.
Keep Your Fat Low
Body fat stored in your body contains the enzyme aromatase which converts testosterone to estrogen which is the female sex hormone. The more estrogen you have, the less testosterone production there will be which in turn makes it easier for your body to store fat. This is one valid reason to forgo the whole idea of bulking to gain muscle.
When you bulk, you will inevitably increase your body fat. The more body fat you have, the more aramatase you’ll have which leads to more estrogen and less testosterone. This doesn’t mean bulking doesn’t work as it obviously does but perhaps a more efficient method of getting shredded is the lean gains method.
Get Plenty of Sleep
Lack of sleep will lower your testosterone levels significantly so try to get about 8 hours a sleep a night. Studies show that getting only 5 hours a sleep a night for a week can lower T levels 10-15%. If you’re lifting weights, sleep becomes more crucial since your body needs that rest time to quickly repair your muscles and make you stronger. There are other obvious benefits such as better cognitive functions and more energy. When you’re sleep deprived, not only will your T levels be lower, you’ll feel weaker and lazier as well.
When you lift weights, your T levels increase. In fact, after a workout is usually when your T levels are at their highest. Aim to train at least twice a week. However, don’t go overboard. Too much exercise can increase cortisol levels which counters testosterone. To maximize the amount of muscle fibers stimulated, make sure you do compound movements such as squats, bench press, overhead press, and deadlifts. Deadlifts and squats have shown to help increase T levels more than most other exercises.
Aim to increase your intensity each week by increasing the weights or reps. This means to lift heavier in order to get stronger. Just by setting a goal to get a bit stronger each month, that competitive mentality can help boost your T levels which is why it’s a good idea to workout with someone who can help be your motivator and adversary.
This may seem counterproductive when you just read that having too much fat can lower T levels but you do need fat. 20% of your calorie intake should come from fats with 7% of that being from saturated fats which stimulates the transfer of cholesterol into the cells of your testicles. This is good because cholesterol is the prime ingredient when producing testosterone. The more cholesterol in you cells, the more testosterone your testicles will produce.
However, too much cholesterol is bad for your overall health and it also increases your body fat levels which, as discussed earlier, will negatively affect your testosterone levels. So don’t avoid fats but don’t consume too much of it either.
Some good sources of saturated/mono-unsaturated fats are coconut oil, almonds, and olive oil.
Limit Alcohol Consumption
You can have a few drinks a weeks but don’t go overboard. Regular alcohol consumption can lower T levels. Alcohol also kills brain cells and although brain cells can regenerate through a process called neurogenesis which can be activated through things like learning and aerobic activity, there’s a limit so if you can, it’s best to stay away from alcohol.
Things that reduce the rate of neurogenesis include lack of sleep, aging, and stress.
Lower Your Stress Levels
Stress releases cortisol which suppresses testosterone production. Living a high stress life can lead to an array of health issues so it’s important to do what you can to reduce the amount of stress you have in your life.
Getting plenty of sleep, as I mentioned earlier, will help your body rebuild your muscle fibers more quickly, optimize your T production, and also lower your stress levels.
Put your mind at ease. Learn some meditation techniques. Go for a run, a walk, read a book, listen to some soothing music… these things can help reduce your stress levels.
Avoid things like alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine. The latter two are stimulants and can increase your stress levels. Instead, drink water or tea. Speaking of things to avoid…
Foods To Avoid
1. Soy (soybeans, soy protein)
Soy is an estrogen mimicker and has a similar effect that having excess estrogen would on the body.
Sugar is in everything so it’s hard to avoid but do what you can to eliminate processed sugar.
3. Conventional meat and dairy products.
Stop drinking milk which contains a lot of hormones and steroids. Eat grass fed organic meat and drink raw organic milk instead.
Foods To Eat
Vegetables like broccoli, kale, cauliflower, and cabbage can help detox your body of excess estrogen. Milk thistle can help as well.
Some foods that will help boost your testosterone levels are nuts, whole grains, extra virgin olive oil, fats, vegetables, garlic which contains diallyldisulfide which can increase testicular weight, and beans which are high in zinc which can help inhibit aromatase which, as mentioned earlier, converts testosterone into estrogen. Get enough potassium, which aids in testosterone synthesis.
Getting more of certain vitamins will help as well. Vitamin A from foods like carrots, sweet potatoes, and eggs and Vitamin D from foods like mushrooms and salmon. Alternatively, you can take multi-vitamins.
Testosterone Booster Side Effects
Everyone is different so not everyone will have side effects but here are some possible ones when it comes to increasing testosterone levels.
– Skin reaction (more oily skin and acne)
– Aggressive behavior
– Sleep apnea
– Enlarged breasts
Do Testosterone Boosters Work?
Whether or not these work really depends on what you’re expecting, your current fitness level, and how your body reacts to these boosters. If you’re expecting results you’d get from taking steroids, you’ll be greatly disappointed. As mentioned earlier, normal levels of T are between 270 and 1070 ng/dl. Steroids can get you over 3000 while these boosters won’t even come close.
If your levels are on the lower range, these boosters can help get you up to the higher range. If your levels are already pretty high, you might not see as big as an effect as someone who was already low on testosterone.
If you’re going to give these a try, go with the best testosterone supplements listed above. There are plenty of test boosters on the market, most using natural ingredients but which one to choose can be tough. The best thing to do is to read reviews from other people and of the ones I’ve researched, the ones I listed are some of the best testosterone boosters on the market.
The best rated one is the one I personally tried and, at least for me, it worked. So if you’re looking for test boosters that work, I’d go with the best testosterone booster.
Some of them offer a money back guarantee so if it doesn’t work, ask for your money back. Not all of them do of course so read the fine print. If you don’t want to spend any money on test supplements, do the suggested things to naturally increase test levels first to see if you notice a difference. If that doesn’t work, then try one of these test boosters.