Joe Costello is a Nutrition & Wellness Consultant, certified by the American Fitness Professionals & Associates (AFPA), author, and internet blogger. Joe has more than 9 years of experience in the sports nutrition industry and over 3 years of experience as a supplement and nutrition blogger. As a certified NWC who specializes in dietary supplements, Joe strives to deliver accurate, comprehensive, and research-backed information to his readers. You can find more of Joe’s work including his E-Books about fitness and nutrition at his official website joecostellonwc.com, or connect with him on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Vimeo, or YouTube.
The aim of treatment for hypogonadism is to normalize serum testosterone levels and abolish symptoms or pathological states that are due to low testosterone levels. The exact target testosterone level is a matter of debate, but current recommendations advocate levels in the mid-lower normal adult range (Nieschlag et al 2005). Truly physiological testosterone replacement would require replication of the diurnal rhythm of serum testosterone levels, but there is no current evidence that this is beneficial (Nieschlag et al 2005).
When I first started TRT, my physician prescribed a cream that you rub into your skin. The cream version of TRT is not too convenient, because if someone touches you while you have the cream on, the testosterone can rub off on him/her. This can be really bad around kids or pregnant women. If you’re sleeping next to someone, the cream can get on the sheets and transfer over that way, too. The cream can be annoying, but it works. There’s also a gel version called AndroGel; I skipped it because it doesn’t absorb as well as the cream does.
“I'm 55 years old and hitting the ball further than I've ever hit, and I'm not getting tired going 18 holes! And when I play softball I'm hitting the ball further. I work for the DWP in LA and it's a very physically demanding job. Andro400 really helps because we work 16 hour days a lot. I was turning down a lot of overtime, but when I started taking Andro400, it got me through the day. I really notice a difference – even my wife did. It really works!”
During the second trimester, androgen level is associated with sex formation.[13] This period affects the femininization or masculinization of the fetus and can be a better predictor of feminine or masculine behaviours such as sex typed behaviour than an adult's own levels. A mother's testosterone level during pregnancy is correlated with her daughter's sex-typical behavior as an adult, and the correlation is even stronger than with the daughter's own adult testosterone level.[14]
Testosterone, historically believed to be important only for male sexual function, has over the past decades transformed from niche hormone to multi-system player.22 There is increasing recognition of the harmful consequences of hypogonadism (also known as testosterone deficiency) wide spectrum of beneficial health effects of testosterone therapy and.23, 24
Both testosterone and 5α-DHT are metabolized mainly in the liver.[1][155] Approximately 50% of testosterone is metabolized via conjugation into testosterone glucuronide and to a lesser extent testosterone sulfate by glucuronosyltransferases and sulfotransferases, respectively.[1] An additional 40% of testosterone is metabolized in equal proportions into the 17-ketosteroids androsterone and etiocholanolone via the combined actions of 5α- and 5β-reductases, 3α-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase, and 17β-HSD, in that order.[1][155][156] Androsterone and etiocholanolone are then glucuronidated and to a lesser extent sulfated similarly to testosterone.[1][155] The conjugates of testosterone and its hepatic metabolites are released from the liver into circulation and excreted in the urine and bile.[1][155][156] Only a small fraction (2%) of testosterone is excreted unchanged in the urine.[155]
If you have low testosterone, your functional medicine or anti-aging physician will help you diagnose it. There are several different hormones your physician should measure, but the most important two are your free testosterone and estrogen levels, because converting too much testosterone to estrogen is a problem that’s different from not making enough testosterone in the first place. In my case, I wasn’t making very much testosterone, and what I was making my body converted to estrogen way too effectively.
You may be interested in boosting your testosterone levels if your doctor says you have low levels, or hypogonadism, or need testosterone replacement therapy for other conditions. If you have normal testosterone levels, increasing your testosterone levels may not give any additional benefits. The increased benefits mentioned below have only been researched in people with low testosterone levels.

The all-new True Grit Test Booster is scientifically engineered to deliver the most powerful testosterone-boosting ingredients on the market today. This powerful 3-in-1 formula offers the benefits of both free and total testosterone boost as well as cortisol balance. Using powerful clinically studied key ingredients, True Grit Test Booster works with the body to naturally increase testosterone levels while staying within the normal healthy range
Fortunately supplementation of Vitamin D3 has been noted to significantly boost testosterone levels up to 20%.[40,41] This occurs via a reduction in sex-hormone binding globulin (SHBG) and aromatase expression, which limits the breakdown of testosterone into estrogen. It’s also worth mentioning that Vitamin D3 has been shown to raise levels of the anabolic hormone IGF-1.[42,43]

Using steroids eventually trains your body to realize that it doesn’t have to produce as much testosterone to reach its equilibrium, so to reach the same highs you’ll need to take more steroids, and when you stop taking them, your body will need to readjust — you’ll be living with low testosterone for a while (and you’ll need to see a doctor if your body doesn’t readjust on its own). Forcing your body to stay above your natural testosterone, even if you’re naturally low, can create this kind of dependency which ultimately decreases the amount of testosterone your body will produce on its own.
Nutritional developers formulated Nugenix® with Testofen®, a key natural ingredient to help boost “free” testosterone along with resistance training. This key ingredient is carefully extracted from the fenugreek plant. A Testofen® study in Irvine, California indicated positive free testosterone-related results. Nugenix also includes L-Citrulline Malate, Tribulus, Zinc, plus Vitamins B6 and B12 to help promote overall health and performance.*
Everytime you add Testosterone to your system, be it naturally through producing in the testis, injected, oral, or dermal you will receive a spike in your blood levels. Estrogen is mainly created in men by an action of an enzyme called Aromatase. Aromatase floats around and binds to Testosterone and converts it to Estrogen. When you spike your T your E will follow in this way. The obvious and detrimental effects to many of the already estrogen dominant hypogonadal men will be inappropriate over stimulation of the estrogen receptors in the body. Gynecomastia, fluid retention, weight gain, brain fog, erratic emotions, depression, ect. Higher levels of Estrogen cause SHBG to be created. SHBG binds to Testosterone and transports it to the liver for disposal. On top of this Estrogen can bind to your androgen receptors causing Testosterone to float around with no where to go. If you are taking shots or gel or cream and feel little to no effect even though it’s technically raised your T blood ranges, you now have an multiple answers for why you little to nothing or feel even worse. This has been known for years that you must be prepared to control Estrogen. An Aromatase Inhibitor (AI) or anti estrogen medication (Clomiphene, Tamoxifen) is needed to stop the estrogen from getting out of control. By taking an Aromatase inhibitor and monitoring your E2 levels you can easily control Estrogen, Aromatase, and SHBG from getting out of hand and free up those blocked androgen receptors so you can now reap the benefits of elevating T to a healthy level. If your Doctor is not testing your E2(aka Estrogen, Estradiol) levels before and during talks and administration of TRT or will never prescribe an AI then you shouldn’t be following his advice at all and will be harmed by Testosterone usage. This may sound complicated but in the end it’s simple. Elevate Testosterone. Control Estrogen. Only two medications needed. Don’t settle.
There’s a significant failure rate of the PDE5 inhibitors for erectile dysfunction, something on the order of 25% to 50%, depending on the underlying condition. It turns out that a third of those men will have adequate erections with testosterone-replacement therapy alone and another third will have adequate erections with the pills and testosterone combined. There’s still a third who don’t respond, but normalizing their testosterone level has definitely rescued many men who had failed on PDE5 inhibitors.
^ Butenandt A, Hanisch G (1935). "Uber die Umwandlung des Dehydroandrosterons in Androstenol-(17)-one-(3) (Testosterone); um Weg zur Darstellung des Testosterons auf Cholesterin (Vorlauf Mitteilung). [The conversion of dehydroandrosterone into androstenol-(17)-one-3 (testosterone); a method for the production of testosterone from cholesterol (preliminary communication)]". Chemische Berichte (in German). 68 (9): 1859–62. doi:10.1002/cber.19350680937.
Fortunately supplementation of Vitamin D3 has been noted to significantly boost testosterone levels up to 20%.[40,41] This occurs via a reduction in sex-hormone binding globulin (SHBG) and aromatase expression, which limits the breakdown of testosterone into estrogen. It’s also worth mentioning that Vitamin D3 has been shown to raise levels of the anabolic hormone IGF-1.[42,43]
Tailor the above recommendations to your personal needs and lifestyle. If you’re a vegetarian drop the bacon and steak, but keep the whey protein and eggs. If you have an injury that prevents you from heavy weightlifting, move as much as you can in the way that you can. There are no studies out there which can tell you exactly what will happen if you do X and Y, but not Z. And I certainly can’t tell you either. Don’t be afraid of self-education – that’s how I learned all this – and embrace the idea of conducting your own experiment and being your own test subject. Incorporate as many of the recommendations above as you’re comfortable with, consult your doctor, and track your results.
The sexual hormone can encourage fair behavior. For the study, subjects took part in a behavioral experiment where the distribution of a real amount of money was decided. The rules allowed both fair and unfair offers. The negotiating partner could subsequently accept or decline the offer. The fairer the offer, the less probable a refusal by the negotiating partner. If no agreement was reached, neither party earned anything. Test subjects with an artificially enhanced testosterone level generally made better, fairer offers than those who received placebos, thus reducing the risk of a rejection of their offer to a minimum. Two later studies have empirically confirmed these results.[75][76][77] However men with high testosterone were significantly 27% less generous in an ultimatum game.[78] The Annual NY Academy of Sciences has also found anabolic steroid use which increase testosterone to be higher in teenagers, and this was associated with increased violence.[79] Studies have also found administered testosterone to increase verbal aggression and anger in some participants.[80]
Why the difference? The discrepancy in findings between these studies is likely due to the initial training status and base testosterone levels of the subjects. While more research is warranted on this ingredient, D-AA is one of several ingredients suggested to be effective in boosting test levels, especially for older men whose natural testosterone levels have declined due to the natural course of aging.
Sugar is to testosterone what kryptonite is to Superman. Eliminating sugar is probably the single most powerful way to increase your performance, in part because sugar absolutely devastates your testosterone levels (but all carbs do not, especially under heavy training.) In one study of 74 men, a 75g dose of sugar – about the equivalent of a bottle of soda – decreased serum testosterone by 25% in under an hour, and levels stayed low for at least 2 hours [7]. On top of that, 15% of the men who started with normal testosterone dipped into the hypogonadal range after they ate sugar – that’s the range in which doctors diagnose men’s testes and women’s ovaries as failing. When you do eat carbs, stick to Bulletproof ones like sweet potatoes and squash. My recommendations for types of carbs and how often to eat them are here.

Androgens may modulate the physiology of vaginal tissue and contribute to female genital sexual arousal.[48] Women's level of testosterone is higher when measured pre-intercourse vs pre-cuddling, as well as post-intercourse vs post-cuddling.[49] There is a time lag effect when testosterone is administered, on genital arousal in women. In addition, a continuous increase in vaginal sexual arousal may result in higher genital sensations and sexual appetitive behaviors.[50]
When patients ask about risks, I remind them that they already have testosterone in their system and that the goal of testosterone treatment is to restore its concentration back to what it was 10 or 15 years previously. And the molecule itself that we give is identical to the one that their bodies make naturally, so in theory, everything should be hunky-dory. But in practice, there are always some curveballs.
And remember, saturated fats work best (along with monounsaturated fats – olive oil, almonds, avocados etc.). In fact higher intakes of polyunsaturated fats (canola oil, sunflower oil, soybean oil, safflower oil, margarine etc.) are linked to LOWER testosterone levels (14 & 15). I explore the dangers of PUFA's in a lot more detail in this article - PUFA's: The Worst Thing For Your Health That You Eat Everyday.
One more thing that I have experienced from getting injected T is that my testicles have shrunk and they have shrunk quite a good amount. I would say that my testicles are about half the size they were just 4 months ago. This is a result that many men get when they get T injections. I have a buddy who also gets injections and his testicles have shrunk a good amount as well. It’s not a bid deal overall as I am 51yrs old and things like that are not bother. However, I do miss feeling/having larger testicles when I catch a glimpse in the mirror or “adjust” my private parts and I can feel less there. 🙂

I was depressed, getting fat, and zero libido. My doc did a full blood work up. My Total Testosterone level was 289 ng/dl. He offered TRT but I declined because I knew, at 53, that if I went on TRT my own testosterone production would shut down and at my age I would have a pretty difficult time kick starting it up again. I researched and researched for about a month. I started on Vitamin D 10,000 iu per day ( I knew this was a safe amount because I tested at 26ng/dl and optimum level is anywhere between 40-80ng/dl. I also took 1,200 mg of magnesium, 9mg of Boron and Vitamin K Complex. Tested again 3 months later and blood work showed I was at 720.
Zinc is an essential mineral that plays an important role in improving testosterone levels as well as sperm production. Oysters are rich sources of this mineral. An increase in testosterone levels also helps improve your sexual desire and energy, which means that you are going to derive more pleasure from your sexual encounters besides having higher chances of conceiving.
The aim of treatment for hypogonadism is to normalize serum testosterone levels and abolish symptoms or pathological states that are due to low testosterone levels. The exact target testosterone level is a matter of debate, but current recommendations advocate levels in the mid-lower normal adult range (Nieschlag et al 2005). Truly physiological testosterone replacement would require replication of the diurnal rhythm of serum testosterone levels, but there is no current evidence that this is beneficial (Nieschlag et al 2005).

The unsexy truth is that increasing T naturally simply comes down to making some long-term changes in your diet and lifestyle. As you’ll see, what I did to increase T largely boils down to eating better, exercising smarter, and getting more sleep. That’s pretty much it. But as with most things in life, the devil is in the details, so I’ll share with you exactly what I did and provide research that explains why the things I did helped boost my testosterone.


Low testosterone levels have a dramatic effect on emotional state. The American Academy of Family Physicians lists depression, impaired cognition and increased fatigue as symptoms of low testosterone production, or hypogonadism. Testosterone replacement therapy for hypogonadal men has successfully reduced negative moods relating to fatigue and depression while increasing feelings of self-esteem. Increasing testosterone in eugonadal men has also shown positive emotional benefits such as increased feelings of self-esteem and reduction of fatigue. The intensity of these benefits is dependent on dosage; a wide body of literature on testosterone increase has shown that at higher dosage aggression, and aggressive response, can become pronounced.
The maximum hormone concentration in the blood is reported immediately after the workout. And the effect lasts throughout the day. However, it’s important to ensure that your physical activity is moderate. The matter is that too much high-intensity exercise can give an undesirable result. But even if for any reason you can’t attend a gym, it’s not a problem. Just move as much as possible during the day. Even simple walking will be of great benefit.

Now, many men bypass the natty test booster category altogether, head straight for designer anabolic steroids, and start injecting testosterone (among other things). And, while exogenous testosterone administration will always trump the effects of natural testosterone boosters, that instant gratification does not come without a long, dreadful list of unwanted consequences.
That said, a group of researchers at the National University of Malaysia did a systemic literature review of longjack, looking for clinical research that demonstrated a relationship between the shrub and testosterone levels. Of 150 articles, only 11 met their inclusion criteria — involving humans and scientifically rigorous. However, of those 11 studies, seven “revealed remarkable association” between using longjack and improving male sexual health, while the remaining four “failed to demonstrate sufficient effects.” The team concluded that longjack looks “promising” when it comes to raising low testosterone, and that there is convincing evidence that it works.

Exercise is the original testosterone booster, and it’s one of the most powerful full-body hacks around. Men see a sharp increase in both testosterone and human growth hormone (HGH) after lifting weights, and the boost is greater with shorter rest time between sets (1 minute rest outperforms 3 minutes rest) [9]. With the shorter rest time, women also get a large boost in HGH.

I’m 56 and 5 years ago dropped to 270 with all the side effects listed for low test. After trying shots and not liking the roller coaster effect, I switched to gels. Androgel and Axiron had too low a dosage and far too messy. They need to not call them gels but liquids. If it pours like water it’s a liquid. My doctor recommended a compounding Pharmacy that made a cream and it was perfect. It had a click dispenser that looked like a deoderant that would pre-measure the dosage and I could rub it on my arms and shoulders or on my neck, really anywhere not covered in hair but the thinner the skin the better. It dried instantly so I could get dressed in a couple minutes. My totals never got out of the 400’s until I started the 150mg daily cream dosage, then they hovered around 700. The down side was Insurance didn’t cover it and I had to pay $50 a month vs free shots from the doctors office or $10 for the so-called gels. Bad news is it has now doubled in price due to new Federal production regs on compounding Pharms. Now, I am going back on the shots which I now have to buy the vile for $125 for 10 doses and have to take it to my doctor to administer it every 2wks while I am looking into bioidentical pellet implants.
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Any supplement can have side effects, and testosterone pills or powder are no exception. Talk to your doctor before beginning any new regimen to be sure it is right for you. Side effects can include sleep apnea, ankle swelling, prostate growth, increased urination, acne, and an increased risk of developing a blood clot, which can be serious or even deadly.
February 22, 2018 - Since our last review, the manufacturers of two of our top picks have gone out of business, and some new testosterone boosters have entered the arena. We’ve updated this review to evaluate the current field of testosterone supplements, as well as beef up analysis on what kind of results you can expect from t-boosters. Our only current top pick, Beast Sports Nutrition, is a new player in the industry that contains all four of the ingredients with studies showing a positive effect on testosterone.
This doesn’t mean Super Test is perfect — we take a closer look at some of its ingredients below — but it beats out the competition. Every other supplement we looked at either didn’t have all four ingredients, overdosed us on vitamins or minerals (a good way to develop kidney and liver problems), contained ingredients that would harm us, or some combination thereof.
I am 31, been on HRT for about 6 months now. Started with Oxandralone (orally, 3 x 10mg tablets per day) and found a 20-30% increase in strength and outlook on life. Stopped taking it and now use Primo Testostin Depot (test enanthate – 1 x 250mg shot every 2 weeks). In the first week I feel a lot stronger, voice deepens etc but these benefits quickly diminish after about 5-7 days

Hi Douglas, this is a great question, thanks for reaching out. Apart from having a solid training plan that’s suited to your current level of fitness, and goals, you can also use a quality Testosterone Booster which could give you the lift you need to get back into the gym. If you find it difficult to swallow tablets, you can always empty the capsule into a glass of water, juice, or coffee to make it easier to take.
I am 56 and I have been taking 100 mg of Test Cyp IM once a week for the last 4 months. My total T fluctuates between 500 and 1000 and my E2 has been staying under 30 with the help of Arimidex 0.5 mg every 3.5 days. I do not know what my free T is due to the expense but I feel much better than I did. Not great but much better so I will continue. If you are not feeling good on TRT then you should have your E2 checked because it is probably over 30 which will counteract the effects of your free T.

Testosterone is significantly correlated with aggression and competitive behaviour and is directly facilitated by the latter. There are two theories on the role of testosterone in aggression and competition.[81] The first one is the challenge hypothesis which states that testosterone would increase during puberty thus facilitating reproductive and competitive behaviour which would include aggression.[81] Thus it is the challenge of competition among males of the species that facilitates aggression and violence.[81] Studies conducted have found direct correlation between testosterone and dominance especially among the most violent criminals in prison who had the highest testosterone levels.[81] The same research also found fathers (those outside competitive environments) had the lowest testosterone levels compared to other males.[81]


Cardiovascular disease, and its underlying pathological process atherosclerosis, is an important cause of morbidity and mortality in the developed and developing world. Coronary heart disease in particular is the commonest cause of death worldwide (AHA 2002; MacKay and Mensah 2004). As well as increasing with age, this disease is more common in the male versus female population internationally, which has led to interest in the potential role of sex hormones in modulating risk of development of atherosclerosis. Concerns about the potential adverse effects of testosterone treatment on cardiovascular disease have previously contributed to caution in prescribing testosterone to those who have, or who are at risk of, cardiovascular disease. Contrary to fears of the potential adverse effects of testosterone on cardiovascular disease, there are over forty epidemiological studies which have examined the relationship of testosterone levels to the presence or development of coronary heart disease, and none have shown a positive correlation. Many of these studies have found the presence of coronary heart disease to be associated with low testosterone levels (Reviews: Jones, Jones et al 2003; Jones et al 2005).

Inaccurate or misinterpreted test results can either falsely diagnose or miss a case of testosterone deficiency. Your testosterone level should be measured between 7 am and 10 am, when it's at its peak. Confirm a low reading with a second test on a different day. It may require multiple measurements and careful interpretation to establish bioavailable testosterone, or the amount of the hormone that is able to have effects on the body. Consider getting a second opinion from an endocrinologist.
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