You don’t have to be an expert in human physiology to know what testosterone is. This combination of male sex hormone and anabolic steroid has a crucial role in the development and function of the male reproductive system. Testosterone also plays a big part in defining the characteristics that separate men from women, among them muscle growth and bone mass, plus how much hair our body grows and how much body fat we retain in certain areas through puberty.
There are some good reasons why you may need to boost testosterone, so the question of what is the best testosterone booster is a smart one to ask.
Let’s look at what testosterone does and see what your best bets are.
Testosterone is Crucial to Your Health
Testosterone is a crucial hormone for men. The effects of testosterone are complex and manifold, and sufficient levels are necessary for many important functions ranging from sexual performance to weight loss. Here are just a few of testosterone's health benefits, and some of the side effects of low testosterone levels:
- It regulates your sex drive. Low testosterone usually means a decreased libido, and can .
- Your bone mass may suffer if your testosterone is low, resulting in weak bones.
- Muscle mass, muscle gain, and body composition are all tied to testosterone levels. You need sufficient levels if you’re going to lose fat and build strength and muscle.
- Your sperm count and fertility can be compromised by low levels of testosterone.
- Red blood cell production relies on sufficient levels of testosterone.
Why Your Testosterone Levels May Be Lower Than You Want
People usually want to increase testosterone levels for two main reasons. The first is that your free testosterone levels are below normal. The second is that you’re looking for an athletic performance boost that testosterone has the potential to provide.
Testosterone levels decrease naturally as we age, meaning that a significant number of older men may have low testosterone levels. Symptoms of low testosterone, especially with age, include decreased libido, loss of muscle, increase in fat composition, and lower fertility. For older men looking to keep their edge, having enough testosterone is crucial.
If your focus is on athletic performance, testosterone supplements and natural testosterone boosters have a role to play, too. Testosterone has been shown to have a positive effect on training by allowing your muscles to recover more quickly following hard workouts. So, if you're wondering "Do testosterone boosters work to actually improve performance?", the answer is that they definitely have the potential to, especially if your goal is to lift more weight, build more lean muscle, and improve overall energy levels.
Natural Ways to Boost Testosterone Levels
Ready for a boost of your body's T levels? It is hard to qualify what natural ingredients are best since so much depends on each individual's own body and their reason for taking a testosterone booster, but check out these supplements that have had good results across the board:
Ashwagandha has a long history of use in the Indian Ayurveda practice. It’s commonly used for alleviating stress and restlessness, but has shown some powerful testosterone-boosting effects as well. A randomized controlled trial published in the Journal of International Sports Science and Nutrition found increases in both testosterone levels and muscle strength after eight weeks of Ashwagandha supplementation.
If you’re supplementing with ashwagandha, be sure to look for high-quality extracts that provide the highest concentrations. KSM-66 Ashwagandha found in ASYSTEM’s Superhuman Supplements pack is an excellent source of this powerful herb.
DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) is produced naturally in your body. This hormone has a crucial role in the production of both testosterone and estrogen and there are numerous studies that show supplementation with DHEA can provide a boost to your testosterone levels.
Experience has shown that a daily supplement of 50-100 mg of DHEA is an excellent starting dosage for DHEA supplementation. You can take DHEA on its own, or you can look for supplements that include DHEA as one of the ingredients.
Produced from the cholesterol in the body, pregnenolone is a precursor hormone, responsible for making many of the hormones your body uses, including testosterone.
Fenugreek Seed Extract
While the name may be strange, the results of using fenugreek extract can be promising. A study of college men showed that the addition of fenugreek improved testosterone levels in subjects, while also reducing fat and boosting strength.
This herb-based testosterone booster may work by reducing the enzymes that convert testosterone into estrogen. However it works, the test subjects got the boost they needed by taking 500 mg of fenugreek for an eight-week period.
Many people are deficient in vitamin D because they don’t get enough sunlight, a main source that helps your body produce it. Studies have shown a close correlation between low levels of testosterone and low levels of Vitamin D, so this common deficiency could be a major reason for low testosterone.
If you want an easy, natural boost to your testosterone levels, get out in the sun more often. If you can’t do that, take a vitamin D3 supplement or a multivitamin containing Vitamin D, like the Multiman vitamin in the Superhuman Supplements pack by ASYSTEM.
There’s a long history of using this herb in folk medicine as an aid to male performance, and studies show that it may be just the ticket for improving low testosterone levels, though it doesn't seem to offer much benefit with those who have normal levels.
D-Aspartic Acid (D-AA)
D-aspartic acid is an amino acid. What makes this amino acid special is that it stimulates the production of luteinizing hormone, a hormone that prompts the Leydig cells in the testes to increase their testosterone production. According to animal and human research, it may take as few as 12 days of D-AA treatment to increase the natural production of testosterone in the body.
There are many ways to take D-aspartic acid. Supplements in capsule form and as powders are common. Bodybuilders who supplement with D-aspartic acid often do a cycle of 2-3 weeks of taking supplements, followed by 1-2 weeks off.
This basic mineral is found throughout our body and is involved in a multitude of chemical processes. Like the correlation with Vitamin D, subjects with low levels of zinc often also have low levels of testosterone in their bodies. A study that examined the correlation noted that men who took zinc supplements were able to improve their testosterone levels.
Zinc is easy enough to add to your diet. You’ll find it in most multivitamins, and you can add it to your diet via food by making sure you have a healthy intake of dairy products, whole grains, red meat, poultry, and nuts.
Some Honorable Mentions
A few other natural remedies for boosting testosterone include the use of ginseng, vitamin B6, boron, aromatase inhibitors, and even nettle root, though these are not as common as our featured nutrients.
Get the Boost
The market is full of testosterone boosting supplements. When you’re looking for a testosterone booster, be sure to stick to the basics and look for some of the herbs and ingredients we’ve talked about here. There’s no doubt that the smart use of testosterone boosting ingredients from reputable supplements can help you improve some of the effects of low testosterone, while giving you the performance edge you’re searching for.
As always, consult with your physician before adding supplements to your diet, particularly if you are taking other medications regularly.
These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. ASYSTEM products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.