This is one of the most controversial recommendations I make, but it shouldn’t be. It’s no different than using thyroid medication. If your levels are low, and the other techniques here don’t work, use TRT. You will like your life again. If your levels are low, bioidentical testosterone will make you live longer and better, provided you use it right.
Studies have shown that testosterone-replacement therapy may offer a wide range of benefits for men with hypogonadism, including improved libido, mood, cognition, muscle mass, bone density, and red blood cell production. But little consensus exists on what constitutes low testosterone, when testosterone supplementation makes sense, or what risks patients face. Much of the current debate focuses on the long-held belief that testosterone may stimulate prostate cancer.
I’ve been reading all these comments and replies here. This was a great article and if it does anything, it should stimulate you to talk to your physician. Your Dr. can take blood and have it annylized, then prescribe the proper direction to take. A lot of people here have been giving free advice, but who knows your system best? Am I going to take advice from someone who doesn’t know anything other than the symptoms I present? I’m not, but what if I’m allergic?
The one side effect that no one talks about is psychological for me. Because I am 67 years old and suddenly look, feel and act 37 I only want to be around younger people. I have no use associating with people my own age. I have nothing in common and even look different. This year at my class reunion was a glaring example…..no doubt I looked younger than anyone, but it is sooo much more than just very that. My customers are young, all my girlfriends and associates. This all has a large effect on my mind. It’s hard to grasp suddenly looking and acting 30 years younger than your friends. My mind is so confused about how old I really am. I do a lot of adrenalin sports for my age snow ski, wake-surf, wake-board, scuba dive and it is no doubt just a matter of time till I get hurt doing these wild sports. In my mind I’m 37 so I think it’s all normal. This whole experience has been incredible and very positive with the only one psychological effect and no other physical side effect.
When females have a higher baseline level of testosterone, they have higher increases in sexual arousal levels but smaller increases in testosterone, indicating a ceiling effect on testosterone levels in females. Sexual thoughts also change the level of testosterone but not level of cortisol in the female body, and hormonal contraceptives may affect the variation in testosterone response to sexual thoughts.[51]
One study showed that six months of zinc supplementation among slightly zinc-deficient elderly men doubled serum levels of testosterone. And another eight-week trial found that college football players who took a nightly zinc supplement showed increased T-levels and increased leg strength that was 250 percent greater than a placebo! Holy quads, Batman! Research has also shown deficiencies in zinc to be a risk factor for infertility caused by low testosterone levels.
The medical conditions that cause excess testosterone are rare, argues Drincic. "Many people mistake the symptoms of anabolic steroid abuse with symptoms of high testosterone,” he says. Anabolic steroids, which are sometimes abused by athletes and body builders, are synthetic versions of the male hormone testosterone. They can cause behavior and mood changes that include rage, paranoia, irritability, and poor judgment.
This paper will aim to review the current evidence of clinical effects of testosterone treatment within an aging male population. As with any other clinical intervention a decision to treat patients with testosterone requires a balance of risk versus benefit. We shall try to facilitate this by examining the effects of testosterone on the various symptoms and organs involved.
The biggest problem with supplementing your testosterone levels is it can shut off your own natural production and it can also permanently lower your sperm count. Taking testosterone boosters may also leave you open to some of the other unwanted side effects, like acne, male pattern baldness, mood swings and aggressive behaviour. To give yourself the best possible chance of avoiding these side effects, you need to see an expert before going for boosters.
Sitting for long stretches of time increases the odds of illness and untimely death. Here are some simple tricks to get yourself out of your chair: While you're on the phone, stand up and walk around. When watching TV, stand and pace during commercials. Instead of sitting at your makeup table, stand up. In general, try to get on your feet every 30 minutes.
At the present time, it is suggested that androgen replacement should take the form of natural testosterone. Some of the effects of testosterone are mediated after conversion to estrogen or dihydrotestosterone by the enzymes aromatase and 5a-reductase enzymes respectively. Other effects occur independently of the traditional action of testosterone via the classical androgen receptor- for example, its action as a vasodilator via a cell membrane action as described previously. It is therefore important that the androgen used to treat hypogonadism is amenable to the action of these metabolizing enzymes and can also mediate the non-androgen receptor actions of testosterone. Use of natural testosterone ensures this and reduces the chance of non-testosterone mediated adverse effects. There are now a number of testosterone preparations which can meet these recommendations and the main factor in deciding between them is patient choice.

The bones and the brain are two important tissues in humans where the primary effect of testosterone is by way of aromatization to estradiol. In the bones, estradiol accelerates ossification of cartilage into bone, leading to closure of the epiphyses and conclusion of growth. In the central nervous system, testosterone is aromatized to estradiol. Estradiol rather than testosterone serves as the most important feedback signal to the hypothalamus (especially affecting LH secretion).[119] In many mammals, prenatal or perinatal "masculinization" of the sexually dimorphic areas of the brain by estradiol derived from testosterone programs later male sexual behavior.[120]


Osteoporosis refers to pathological loss of bone density and strength. It is an important condition due to its prevalence and association with bone fractures; most commonly of the hip, vertebra and forearm. Men are relatively protected from the development of osteoporosis by a higher peak bone mass compared with women (Campion and Maricic 2003). Furthermore, women lose bone at an accelerated rate immediately following the menopause. Nevertheless, men start to lose bone mass during early adult life and experience an increase in the rate of bone loss with age (Scopacasa et al 2002). Women of a given age have a higher prevalence of osteoporosis in comparison to men but the prevalence increases with age in both sexes. As a result, men have a lower incidence of osteoporotic fractures than women of a given age but the gap between the sexes narrows with advancing age (Chang et al 2004) and there is evidence that hip fractures in men are associated with greater mortality than in women (Campion and Maricic 2003).

Ginger rhizome powder was reported to posses an antioxidant and androgenic activity in doses of 50 mg/kg and 100 mg/kg daily [1]. Ginger administration significantly increased serum testosterone levels at 100 mg/kg [1]. There was also an increases in testosterone at 50 mg/kg daily but it failed to reach statistical significance [1]. A study by Kamtchouing et al. [2] also reported significantly increased serum and testicular testosterone levels as well as increase in weight of the testis and testicular cholesterol level in healthy rats. Another study using doses of 500 mg/kg and 1000 mg/kg indicated that extract of Zingiber officinale possesses pro-fertility properties [3]. Compared with the controls there was a dose and duration dependent increases in the serum testosterone levels and seminal quality [3]. At a very high dose (2000 mg/kg for 35 days), ginger led to slightly reduced weights of testes which might be due to negative feedback reaction from androgenic activity [4]. Combination of ginger and zinc appears to further increase testosterone in rats [24].
Zinc is little more of a nice-to-have ingredient than a must-have. It’s on our radar as an ingredient that possibly boosts testosterone levels, and while we couldn’t find enough supporting evidence that taking zinc would increase natural testosterone, low zinc levels have been connected to infertility. A low zinc level is also possibly a sign of hypogonadism. The closest support we found is in a study which found that people recovered from nutritional deficiency-related problems more quickly if they took a zinc supplement than those who did not. Zinc is available in many foods, such as oysters, fortified breakfast cereals, and red meat.
Then in 2017, Melville carried out another study on DAA.[4] This time he recruited 22 men in a randomized, double-blind fashion and had them consume either a placebo or 6g of DAA. After 12 weeks of supplementation, researchers observed that DAA had no significant impact on resting levels of either free or total testosterone. Any improvements in strength or hypertrophy were similar to those in the placebo group.
Vitamin D3 has the ability to naturally boost testosterone levels.  Increasing serum vitamin D levels in the body can help increase testosterone production, allowing you to potentially build muscle at a faster rate. If you don’t live in an area of the world that allows for a good amount of sunlight, you could become deficient and could benefit from a vitamin D supplement.

Ashwagandha is sometimes included in testosterone supplements because of the hypothesis that it improves fertility. However, we couldn’t find sufficient evidence to support this claim (at best, one study found that ashwagandha might improve cardiorespiratory endurance). WebMD advocates caution when taking this herb, as it may interact with immunosuppressants, sedative medications, and thyroid hormone medications.
Another effect that can limit treatment is polycythemia, which occurs due to various stimulatory effects of testosterone on erythropoiesis (Zitzmann and Nieschlag 2004). Polycythemia is known to produce increased rates of cerebral ischemia and there have been reports of stroke during testosterone induced polycythaemia (Krauss et al 1991). It is necessary to monitor hematocrit during testosterone treatment, and hematocrit greater than 50% should prompt either a reduction of dose if testosterone levels are high or high-normal, or cessation of treatment if levels are low-normal. On the other hand, late onset hypogonadism frequently results in anemia which will then normalize during physiological testosterone replacement.
I’m afraid I have no super cool “secrets” to share and there are no easy shortcuts to increasing your T. If you were expecting some magical potion or supplement or weird body hack that will instantly and naturally increase your T levels, what follows is bound to disappoint. Despite what some companies or websites might tell you, there’s no single thing that will boost your testosterone naturally for the long term.
There are pills in the United States for testosterone supplementation, but their use is strongly discouraged because they cause significant liver toxicity. A safe oral formulation called testosterone undecanoate is available in Canada and in Europe, but not in the United States. What’s quite exciting is that an injectable version of testosterone undecanoate (Nebido) was submitted to the FDA for approval in August 2007. (It’s already approved in many other countries.) It lasts for 12 weeks, so a patient could come in and get a shot about four times a year. [Editor’s note: In December 2009, the brand name of the drug in the United States was changed to Aveed. As of January 2011, it was still awaiting FDA approval.]
In the early days of testosterone boosters, the ingredients used were not placed or based on clinical trials that proved the effectiveness of each of them. Most testosterone boosters were compiled with ingredients that were coming from the mouth of a bro scientist, so to speak. These ingredients had no real evidence to back their effects on testosterone production.
A study out of the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton, Texas, examined the effects of fenugreek supplementation on strength and body composition in resistance-trained men. Researchers found that while both the placebo and fenugreek groups significantly increased their strength during the first four weeks, only the fenugreek group saw significant increases in strength after eight weeks of training and supplementation.[5]
14. Volek JS, Volk BM, Gómez AL, Kunces LJ, Kupchak BR, Freidenreich DJ, Aristizabal JC, Saenz C, Dunn-Lewis C, Ballard KD, Quann EE, Kawiecki DL, Flanagan SD, Comstock BA, Fragala MS, Earp JE, Fernandez ML, Bruno RS, Ptolemy AS, Kellogg MD, Maresh CM, Kraemer WJ. Whey protein supplementation during resistance training augments lean body mass. J Am Coll Nutr. 2013;32(2):122-35. PMID: 24015719
Like other steroid hormones, testosterone is derived from cholesterol (see figure).[128] The first step in the biosynthesis involves the oxidative cleavage of the side-chain of cholesterol by cholesterol side-chain cleavage enzyme (P450scc, CYP11A1), a mitochondrial cytochrome P450 oxidase with the loss of six carbon atoms to give pregnenolone. In the next step, two additional carbon atoms are removed by the CYP17A1 (17α-hydroxylase/17,20-lyase) enzyme in the endoplasmic reticulum to yield a variety of C19 steroids.[129] In addition, the 3β-hydroxyl group is oxidized by 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase to produce androstenedione. In the final and rate limiting step, the C17 keto group androstenedione is reduced by 17β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase to yield testosterone.

In fact, studies on vegetarian and low-fat diets both show reduced testosterone levels of about 12 percent. Where higher fat diets of at least 40 percent of calories, with a higher intake of saturated fat, show increased testosterone levels. Why? It’s not rocket science. After all, cholesterol makes up the building blocks from which testosterone is formed; without it, the hormone simply can’t synthesize. Organic eggs are one of the best dietary sources. In addition to essential fatty acids, a whole egg is rich in aspartic acid, an amino acid that triggers production of testosterone.
Likewise, there are also natural ways to pep up your testosterone through diet, exercise and other lifestyle changes. So if you’re the wrong side of 30 and not feeling as strong in the gym anymore, or if you’re gaining weight where there wasn’t weight before, or if you can't find the energy to finish the day, let alone pleasure your partner, then keep reading — our expert advice may restore you to the peak of masculinity.
I highly recommend using a great essential amino acid mix post-exercise in order to boost testosterone.  These essential amino acids and especially the concentrated branched chain amino acids leucine, isoleucine and valine stimulate muscle protein synthesis.  Getting these amino acids in the post-workout window dramatically boosts testosterone production (14).  I like using our Amino Strong and will often recommend a scoop pre-workout and post-workout for the best muscle building, testosterone boosting benefits.
The hormone also plays a role in sex drive, sperm production, fat distribution, red cell production, and maintenance of muscle strength and mass, according to the Mayo Clinic. For these reasons, testosterone is associated with overall health and well-being in men. One 2008 study published in the journal Frontiers of Hormone Research even linked testosterone to the prevention of osteoporosis in men.
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Sergeant Steel ran into trouble here because it contains Shilajit — a type of plant-based resin. Shilajit is banned in Canada because the Canadian government found heavy metal levels when investigating the ingredient. Shilajit is hard to find, and sensitive to water and variations in temperature, so most manufacturers mix it with additives to make it more stable. Research at Boston University School of Medicine found that “nearly 21 percent of 193 ayurvedic herbal supplements [...] contained lead, mercury or arsenic,” and included shilajit on the list of contaminated ingredients. Even though Sergeant Steel lists its shilajit is “purified,” it doesn’t offer any third-party testing to confirm whether or not their shilajit contains heavy metals, and so we cut it.
Hello I’m 22 years old and for years I’ve been struggling with hypothyroidism and depression. Recently I went to check my blood for low T and was shocked but not surprised at the level (125). That’s terrible for a 22 year old given that’s the time my testosterone is supposed to be the highest. Anyways I’ve been prescribed depo testosterone 200ml bottle. I give myself a shot each week and haven’t really noticed much change. I know I have to give it time, but is there anything else I can do or should be prescribed to help speed up the process?

The biggest change I made to my diet was increasing my fat and cholesterol intake. There’s a reason why old school strong men would drink raw eggs — studies have suggested that higher fat and cholesterol consumption results in increased levels of total T; men eating low-fat diets typically have decreased testosterone levels. The emphasis on increasing fat and cholesterol consumption meant I got to eat like Ron Swanson for three months — bacon and eggs and steak was pretty much the staple of my diet.
That said, magnesium is one of a few ingredients demonstrated to impact testosterone levels. Researchers at Italy’s University of Palermo found that magnesium improved participants’ anabolic hormone status — including their testosterone levels. In a follow-up study, they confirm that even adjusting for age differences in their participant group, “magnesium was positively associated with total testosterone.” They propose that magnesium supplementation might help improve muscle performance in aging men — a group particularly vulnerable to declining/low testosterone levels. Outside of Italy, researchers at Turkey’s Selçuk University found that magnesium supplementation increased testosterone levels for both athletes and more sedentary men alike.
“However, the parallels don’t necessarily follow logically, creating a real need to bring more evidence to this area so that physicians and patients would be able to make more  informed decisions based on the best possible evidence,” said Dr. Gill, a professor of medicine and the lead investigator at the Yale study site, the largest site participating in the TTrials, and coauthor of all 4 TTrials. 

Why bother with such common micronutrients? Because it's not uncommon for athletes to suffer from zinc and magnesium deficiencies, partly due to inadequate replenishing of levels after intense bouts of exercise. Deficiencies in these key minerals can lead to a poor anabolic hormone profile, impaired immune function, and increased cortisol, ultimately leading to decreases in strength and performance.[6]
Testosterone is indisputably the king of hormones when it comes to the gym. While it’s responsible for reproductive development, it’s better known for its major role in promoting muscle growth, increasing bone density, and even how body fat is distributed. Testosterone levels are also a huge influencer in terms of overall health and emotional state. With age, however, natural testosterone production naturally declines, leading to higher levels of body fat and more difficulty building muscle, not to mention a decrease in libido.
Vitamin C (unnecessary). I don’t know where I first heard about vitamin C’s supposed T-boosting benefits, but it’s one of those things you see all over the internet when you Google “how to increase testosterone.” Without trying to find the research that backs up that claim, I took a vitamin C supplement during my experiment. I later found some research that suggests that vitamin C does increase testosterone levels in diabetic mice, but because I wasn’t diabetic (nor a mouse), I’m not sure how much the vitamin C helped. I’ve actually stopped taking vitamin C supplements. I’m likely getting more than enough with my diet. Unless you have diabetes, you probably won’t see much benefit from this supplement. Don’t waste your money.
It could be said that testosterone is what makes men, men. It gives them their characteristic deep voices, large muscles, and facial and body hair, distinguishing them from women. It stimulates the growth of the genitals at puberty, plays a role in sperm production, fuels libido, and contributes to normal erections. It also fosters the production of red blood cells, boosts mood, and aids cognition.

Ryan is a former college wrestler and lifelong fitness fanatic. He has run half marathons, done mud runs, placed in body transformation contests, coached wrestling and now coaches girls soccer. Not to mention he has also tried literally hundreds of supplements over the years and has a vast and thorough supplement knowledge. He is also the owner of this website. Feel free connect with him on his LinkedIn page below.

Bushey, Brandon; Taylor, Lem W.; Wilborn, Colin W.; Poole, Chris; Foster, Cliffa A.; Campbell, Bill; Kreider, Richard B. and Willoughby, Darryn S. (2009). “Fenugreek Extract Supplementation Has No effect on the Hormonal Profile of Resitance-Trained Males” International Journal of Exercise Science: Conference Abstract Submissions: Vol. 2: Iss. 1, Article 13.
Low testosterone levels may contribute to decreased sex drive, erectile dysfunction, fragile bones, and other health issues. Having low testosterone levels may also indicate an underlying medical condition. See your doctor if you suspect you have low testosterone. A simple blood test is all it takes to check if your testosterone falls within the normal range.
In addition to these effects, DHEA supplementation also increases FREE testosterone levels. As you may or may not know, testosterone is found in the body in both free and bound forms. Free testosterone is the biologically active kind that we want more of in order to improve energy, strength, recovery, and sexual function. Bound testosterone is biologically inactive, due to serum hormone-binding globulin (SHBG).
Low Testosterone has a big impact on men. Some males suffer debilitating symptoms when their bodies produce insufficient levels of testosterone, resulting in a condition called hypogonadism. Hypogonadism is the decreased functionality of the testes in producing an adequate amount of testosterone. Hypogonadism is not permanent, and can be treated with hormone replacement therapy, specifically Low Testosterone Therapy.
AC, I just ran across the thread… definitely start the injections. Should help with levels that low. I’m 36 and have battled low T for 6-7 years. My labs came back to show 90ng/dl when I just turned 30, and I’ve done Testosterone cypionate injections @ 100mg/mL weekly, Testim, Androgel, and Fortesta over the years. I’m actually going to my endocrinologist tomorrow to have new blood work done.
Other stereotypical "macho" behaviors can affect testosterone in women, according to a 2015 report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. For example, posing in a powerful way increases testosterone in both women and men. The 2015 report showed that having women role-play a position of power — acting like a boss — had the same effect.

The basis for my thinking that T levels could be boosted by cold baths came from a post I wrote a few years ago on the benefits of cold showers. One benefit I found in my research was that they could increase testosterone levels. I mentioned a 1993 study done by the Thrombosis Research Institute in England that found increased T levels after taking a cold shower. Here’s the thing. I can’t find a link to the original source and I can’t find any other studies that support this claim! So without supporting research, I’m unsure of the effects of cold showers on testosterone.

Vitamin D is arguably the most important vitamin when it comes to testosterone. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology examined the relationship between vitamin D supplementation and testosterone levels in men. The authors found that participants with higher levels of vitamin D had significantly higher levels of free testosterone compared to those with insufficient levels of vitamin D.8 Based on these study results, it appears vitamin D has a strong relationship with testosterone levels.
Some foods, vitamins, and herbs can help boost your testosterone levels. Be sure to talk to your doctor, if you’re concerned about low testosterone. These alternative and natural treatments aren’t proven to be more, or as, effective as traditional testosterone therapy. Some may also interact with any medications you may be taking and cause unintended side effects.
Another recent development is the production of adhesive tablets which are applied twice daily to the buccal mucosa on the gum above the incisor teeth. The tablets gradually release testosterone into the systemic venous circulation and steady state physiological concentrations are achieved in most patients within two days (Ross et al 2004). Some patients do not like the feeling of the tablet in the mouth or find that there is an abnormal taste in the mouth, but local adverse effects are usually mild and transient (Wang, Swerdloff et al 2004).
In this study, an ethical approval No. 20171008 was obtained from Ethical Committee of Qassim province, Ministry of Health, Saudi Arabia. At the beginning, a written informed consent was taken from a 30-year-old man for participation in this study. The patient came to the King Saud Hospital, Unaizah, Qassim, Saudi Arabia, with abdominal pain. He looked pale and hazy, hence, immediately admitted. A battery of lab tests was ordered by the attending physician. Moreover, abdominal ultrasound imaging was performed. The results of the tests showed high levels of alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST), indicating liver injury. Other serum parameters, such as total proteins, albumin, and iron, in addition to the levels of kidney and heart enzymes were all found to be in the normal range. A complete blood count showed normal levels of red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. The ultrasound images of the man’s abdomen were all found to be normal as well [Figure 2]. The patient, a sportsman, described that he was taking a testosterone commercial booster product called the Universal Nutrition Animal Stak for the purpose of enhancing his testosterone profile to achieve a better performance and body composition. The attending physician decided to admit the man for 1 week. Some medications were prescribed, and the patient was discharged later after having fully recovered.

There have been case reports of development of prostate cancer in patients during treatment with testosterone, including one case series of twenty patients (Gaylis et al 2005). It is not known whether this reflects an increase in incidence, as prostate cancer is very common and because the monitoring for cancer in patients treated with testosterone is greater. Randomized controlled trials of testosterone treatment have found a low incidence of prostate cancer and they do not provide evidence of a link between testosterone treatment and the development of prostate cancer (Rhoden and Morgentaler 2004). More large scale clinical trials of longer durations of testosterone replacement are required to confirm that testosterone treatment does not cause prostate cancer. Overall, it is not known whether testosterone treatment of aging males with hypogonadism increases the risk of prostate cancer, but monitoring for the condition is clearly vital. This should take the form of PSA blood test and rectal examination every three months for the first year of treatment and yearly thereafter (Nieschlag et al 2005). Age adjusted PSA reference ranges should be used to identify men who require further assessment. The concept of PSA velocity is also important and refers to the rate of increase in PSA per year. Patients with abnormal rectal examination suggestive of prostate cancer, PSA above the age specific reference range or a PSA velocity greater than 0.75 ng/ml/yr should be referred to a urologist for consideration of prostate biopsy.
The use of anabolic steroids (manufactured androgenic hormones) shuts down the release of luteinising hormone and follicle stimulating hormone secretion from the pituitary gland, which in turn decreases the amount of testosterone and sperm produced within the testes. In men, prolonged exposure to anabolic steroids results in infertility, a decreased sex drive, shrinking of the testes and breast development. Liver damage may result from its prolonged attempts to detoxify the anabolic steroids. Behavioural changes (such as increased irritability) may also be observed. Undesirable reactions also occur in women who take anabolic steroids regularly, as a high concentration of testosterone, either natural or manufactured, can cause masculinisation (virilisation) of women.
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