One of the biggest industries on the health market these days — to the tune of $2.4 billion — is the testosterone industry. And with more and more men being diagnosed with low T levels, it’s no wonder the market for testosterone supplements has exploded. On average, men lose 1-2 percent of their T levels after the age of 30. But the more researchers are looking into this topic, the more they are finding that lifestyle habits could be more responsible for a decrease in T levels than aging.
One of the top culprits in low T levels is being overweight, which constitutes the majority of American men. For every one point of BMI gained, the testosterone level drops by 2 percent, which could prove detrimental to one’s health. Testosterone is important and essential in that it plays a significant role in regulating libido, bone density, muscle mass, strength, motivation, memory, and fat burning.
Perhaps the best way to save your T levels and prevent them from dropping is to live a healthy lifestyle and focus on maintaining an optimal weight without the extra fat. Here are seven easy ways you can boost your testosterone and keep it there, even after the age of 30!
1. Add more zinc to your diet
Our bodies use zinc to create testosterone, so increasing your intake of this mineral can help give your T levels a jump-start. Oysters have a very high zinc content, but if you’re not a fan of these mollusks, you can get your zinc from lean meats and spinach.
2. Spice up your meals with chilis
Flaming hot chilis play a dual role in your health: they help burn fat and they act as an anti-inflammatory. So, what do anti-inflammatories do for testosterone? Well, inflammation can be a precursor for increasing belly fat, which lowers testosterone and actually turns testosterone into estrogen.
3. Take more vitamin D
Low levels of vitamin D are often related to low T, so aim for about 1,000 to 2,000 IU supplements daily, or 15 minutes of sun a day. Both will help maintain adequate levels of testosterone.
4. Get plenty of restful sleep
You may not know this, but while you’re sound asleep at night, your body is creating more testosterone. The less sleep you get, the lower your T levels will be. So don’t lose out on sleep — aim for eight hours a night. This means putting away your phone, laptop or tablet at night before bed. The LED light emitted can suppress your pineal gland’s secretion of melatonin, which is essential for a deep sleep and, indirectly, maintaining testosterone.
5. Exercise with high intensity intervals and/or strength training
Stimulating your muscles with strength training and performing short periods of high intensity training both stimulate the body to make more testosterone. Anaerobic training has been proven to do this much better than low-intensity aerobic training.
6. Mom was right: Eat your vegetables!
Those veggies that many people rarely eat, like broccoli, cauliflower, kale, watercress and Brussels sprouts, will not only lower your belly fat percentage, but also helps lower estrogen in men.
7. Eat healthy fats and proteins
Chemically speaking, good cholesterol forms the skeletal structure of testosterone molecules. Lean meats and proteins, as well as healthy fat sources like nuts, olives, avocados, seeds and coconut oils, can support a healthy balance of testosterone hormones.
For more on maintaining testosterone, click here.