Is there such thing as a ‘testosterone food’?
While no single food is guaranteed to raise your testosterone levels through the roof, you might be surprised how many common foods have been linked to higher amounts of this important hormone.
What is testosterone?
Testosterone – the ‘male hormone’ – is made in the testicles. Testosterone is responsible for typically male characteristics including sperm production, libido, muscle mass and body shape. It also has a hand in red blood cell production in men. 1Symptoms of low testosterone include unexplained weight gain, thinning hair, low energy, low libido and low muscle mass. 2
How can I raise my testosterone levels naturally?
Although hormone replacement therapy (HRT) might be an option in some cases, (such as following a diagnosis by an endocrinologist – a specialist in hormones), 3 there are ways to boost your levels of testosterone naturally.Exercise, including lifting weights and high-intensity interval training (HIIT), have been proven to increase levels of testosterone in as little as 4 weeks. 4
How to increase testosterone level by food
Try the following food for testosterone gains…
Oysters, crab, shrimp and mussels are all rich sources of zinc. Zinc is vital for healthy sperm production.
The NHS recommends 9.5mg a day for men (aged 19 to 64 years). 5 Oysters have around 5.5mg zinc per oyster – so you’d only need to indulge in a couple before you’d reached your recommended daily amount of zinc.
Did you know that a humble cereal grain could help raise testosterone levels naturally? Cereals containing wheat bran are especially good.
This is because wheat bran is high in magnesium, which is proven to raise testosterone levels, especially if you’re working out regularly, too. 6
Use wheat bran sprinkled over your usual cereal as well as in baked goods. You can also use as an addition to savoury dishes such as stew and casserole. We recommend up to 2 tablespoons per day.
Eggs, especially their nutrient-rich yolks, contain the cholesterol, protein and vitamin D you need to produce testosterone. There’s no limit on how many eggs you can eat per day, 7 but in most people 1-2 per day is a good benchmark.
Eggs also contain protein for muscle growth – great if you’re experiencing low muscle mass, a side effect of low testosterone.
Rich in testosterone-boosting magnesium and zinc, beans are also a great weight loss food. Being overweight often causes lowered levels of testosterone 8 due to fat cells turning testosterone into oestrogen. 9Chickpeas contain around 47mg magnesium per 100g, while black beans contain around 70mg magnesium per 100g. Remember, men aged 19 to 64 years need 300mg magnesium a day.10
The juicy pomegranate is associated with female fertility, but it could also give men a higher testosterone count.
Over two weeks, participants found that pomegranate raised their testosterone levels by 24%. 11
The UK study from 2012 was based on pomegranate juice – which is handy as adding a glass of pomegranate juice to your daily diet for two weeks has to be the easiest way to raise those T levels.
Pomegranate juice is also thought to help beat impotence, 12 which in turn may boost libido. Low libido can be an undesirable side effect of low testosterone levels.
Leafy green vegetables
Leafy green vegetables like spinach, kale and watercress are packed with magnesium. Much like with wheat bran and beans, this healthy food can help with weight loss while delivering testosterone-raising magnesium.
Spinach boasts around 79mg magnesium per 100g, which goes a long way towards your daily 300mg.
Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds are known to be nutritional powerhouses, thanks to their impressive profile of vitamins, minerals and omega 3 fatty acids.
They’re rich in both magnesium and zinc, the two minerals strongly linked with boosting testosterone levels. 14
Easy to carry with you wherever you are, nuts and seeds are also great for staving off hunger pangs, helping you to avoid picking up an unhealthy choice.
Ginger is loved for its fiery flavour, but it might also be able to boost testosterone naturally. Researchers believe it helps to improve the conditions inside the testicles, where testosterone is produced, among other mechanisms. 14
More research is needed, but the link between ginger and testosterone levels is a promising one. Ginger is safe for most people so there’s nothing stopping you adding it to your diet now!
Eating lots of meat, especially red meat, has something of a ‘manly’ reputation. While it’s true meat can help boost testosterone in small amounts, too much can have the opposite effect as well as coming with other health concerns.
Our verdict? It’s all about balance.
Meat is a great source of protein, which will help keep your weight down, minimising your chances of having low testosterone levels in the first place.
Red meat is high in testosterone-friendly zinc and vitamin D.
You shouldn’t eat too much meat, especially red meat, however. It’s high in saturated fat and eating too much has been linked with bowel cancer and cardiovascular diseases. The NHS recommends no more than 70g per day.15The quality of your meat matters, too. Higher intake of processed red meat – think hotdogs, ham, bacon and pepperoni- is actually known to cause lower sperm count in men. 16
Always choose unprocessed, lean cuts and don’t eat red meat every day.
The healthy unsaturated fats found in avocadoes could replace calories from refined carbohydrates (such as white bread) in your diet, leading to a raise in testosterone levels.
A USA study from 2014 found that a diet rich in healthy fats and lower in carbohydrates increased testosterone levels among a group of 26 young men. The diet included 75% healthy fats, 20% protein and 5% carbohydrates. The participants were all fit and resistance trained three times per week, which could have had an effect on the results. 17Other studies confirm that a diet too low in fat can lower testosterone levels. 18
However, a diet that high in unsaturated fat might not be right for everyone, so we suggest speaking to a doctor before proceeding.
What foods reduce testosterone?
Men who eat a diet high in fried, processed foods tend to have lower testosterone levels as a result.
One study found that men who ate a fried, processed diet had T levels which were ‘significantly decreased’. 19
It’s important to know that disruptions to your eating pattern can disrupt testosterone levels. This include excessive calorie restriction, such as with crash dieting, and regularly overeating.
Drinking too much alcohol reduces testosterone, which leads to loss of libido and a drop in sperm quantity and quality. 20
Foods containing soy, such as tofu and edamame beans, are a good source of protein and omega-3 acids, but they might not be the best foods to load up on if you’re looking to boost testosterone.
They contain phytoestrogens, which are compounds with the ability to mimic the female hormone oestrogen in the body. Some researchers believe this can lead to males experiencing a drop in testosterone and typical male traits such as body hair and a deep voice. Research is ongoing. 21
Last Updated: 9th November 2020
- https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17051372/ https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/9660159/ https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17051372/
What food raises testosterone the most fast? ›
- Ginger. Share on Pinterest Ginger may help increase testosterone levels and improve male fertility. ...
- Oysters. ...
- Pomegranates. ...
- Fortified plant milks. ...
- Leafy green vegetables. ...
- Fatty fish and fish oil. ...
- Extra-virgin olive oil. ...
- Fatty fish. Fatty fish like salmon and sardines are rich in nutrients that are important for hormonal health, such as vitamin D, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids. ...
- Dark, leafy greens. ...
- Cocoa products. ...
- Avocados. ...
- Eggs. ...
- Berries, cherries, and pomegranates. ...
In all honesty, out of the complete list of foods we shared above there is one above all that is known to increase testosterone by 52% and that's … fatty fish! Yes, you read that correctly. Fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel, and tuna have been proven time and time again to help your body produce more testosterone.Which fruit is best for testosterone? ›
Bananas can boost testosterone as well as improve energy levels. Other beneficial fruits include watermelon and grapes. Citrus fruits can help testosterone production and reduce the hormones that make testosterone production less effective.How many eggs increase testosterone? ›
Eggs, especially their nutrient-rich yolks, contain the cholesterol, protein and vitamin D you need to produce testosterone. There's no limit on how many eggs you can eat per day, 7 but in most people 1-2 per day is a good benchmark.What nuts boost testosterone? ›
- Macadamia Nuts. Macadamia nuts have high levels of monounsaturated fatty acids, which help increase the production of testosterone in the body. ...
- Tiger Nuts. ...
- Almonds. ...
- Walnuts. ...
- Peanuts. ...
Milk is an outstanding source of protein, calcium, and vitamin D. It can also keep testosterone in check for men with low levels. Drinking the correct type of milk matters, however. Select a milk that is fortified with vitamin D and is low-fat or skim.
Resistance training, such as weightlifting, has been shown to boost testosterone levels in the short term ( 13 ). High intensity interval training (HIIT) can be very effective as well, although all types of exercise should work to some extent ( 14 , 15).How many bananas to increase testosterone? ›
Add bananas to your diet if you want to boost testosterone
As for how many you should eat — one or two bananas are more than enough for a healthy person per day.
It plays a role with testosterone production, but it actually helps to increase it levels and decrease the levels of estrogen. Oatmeal is a great source of nutrients especially B Vitamins and one of the foods that can boost testosterone.
Do bananas increase testosterone? ›
No, bananas do not lower testosterone. In contrast, bananas help increase testosterone levels in the body. Several studies confirm that it increases sex drive and testosterone levels in the body.How can I increase my testosterone after 60? ›
Exercise can increase your testosterone. The best types of exercise to increase your testosterone levels are weightlifting and high-intensity interval training (HIIT). Lifting heavy weights is the best exercise to increase testosterone levels. Building muscle mass triggers the body to produce testosterone.Do eggs increase testosterone? ›
Controlled consumption of egg yolk will help boost testosterone levels over time, and reduce any risks of cholesterol-induced diseases. Egg yolks contain a great source of vitamin D and can help boost testosterone levels.Does coffee increase testosterone? ›
Among men, consumption of caffeinated coffee increased total testosterone and decreased total and free estradiol. Among women, decaffeinated coffee decreased total and free testosterone and caffeinated coffee decreased total testosterone.Are apples good for testosterone? ›
They're also rich in amino acids, which bolster testosterone levels and muscle growth. An apple a day delivers quercetin, a flavonoid that reduces the risk of allergies, heart attack, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and prostate and lung cancers.Is tuna good for testosterone? ›
Tuna is rich in vitamin D, which has been known to be related to testosterone production and lengthening life. Besides, tuna is also a protein-rich, heart-healthy food that is low in calories. Whether you're eating it fresh, canned, or even raw, consuming tuna is a natural way of boosting testosterone.Does avocado increase testosterone? ›
Avocados. Another one of the foods that boost testosterone is avocados. It is a source of healthy fat, and as we mentioned earlier, healthy fat is perfect for healthy hormones. Avocado contains magnesium and boron, and according to studies, these positively affect your testosterone levels.Does water increase testosterone? ›
Furthermore, hydration state had no measurable effect on testosterone concentrations before, during, or after exercise at either intensity. Regardless of exercise intensity, cortisol concentrations were greater during hypohydration than euhydration pre-exercise and 20 min post-exercise.What dry fruits increase testosterone? ›
Macadamia nuts – these nuts are enriched with testosterone boosting monounsaturated fats and directly stimulates testosterone production. Tiger nuts – these nuts are found to increase testosterone levels upon regular consumption.Does honey boost testosterone? ›
Mechanistically, honey may increase serum level of testosterone by increasing the production of luteinizing hormone, enhancing the viability of Leydig cells, reducing oxidative damage in Leydig cells, enhancing StAR gene expression, and inhibiting aromatase activity in the testes.
Are raisins good for testosterone? ›
Resveratrol, a powerful antioxidant found in raisins, has been linked to increased testosterone levels and lowered estrogen levels. Lastly, raisins are a high-quality source of boron, which has been linked to increased testosterone in several scientific studies.Does yogurt increase testosterone? ›
Yogurt is a great probiotic, and as such, it has a lot of nutrients and good bacteria that make up its consistency. As such, it aids in synthesizing Testosterone in the Adrenal Gland and Testicles.Does bacon increase testosterone? ›
And both bacon and eggs contain relatively large amounts of arachidonic acid, which, while pro-inflammatory in some instances, plays an important role in testicular production of testosterone.Does broccoli increase testosterone? ›
Testosterone levels significantly increased by broccoli (300 mg/kg) compared to control and caraway (300 mg/kg). The serum and testicular SOD and CAT activity significantly increased by broccoli (300 mg/kg) compared to other groups (p < 0.05).How can I increase my testosterone in 2 days? ›
- Stock up on fats. This one's easy. Just eat more good fats. ...
- HIIT up a new cardio workout. Instead of sticking with steady-state cardio – that bi-weekly plod around the park, for example – focus your attention on becoming a HIIT wonderkid. ...
- Get out there.
Go Fish. Fatty kinds like salmon, tuna, and mackerel are rich with vitamin D. It's a natural testosterone booster because it plays a crucial role in hormone production.What foods to avoid for testosterone? ›
Soy and soy-based products
Some research shows that regularly eating soy products like edamame, tofu, soy milk, and miso may cause a drop in testosterone levels. For example, one study in 35 men found that drinking soy protein isolate for 54 days resulted in decreased testosterone levels ( 3 ).
As the use of cinnamon leads to the elevation of testosterone secretion, it could enhance its fertility properties (18, 19). This study showed that using 75 mg/kg of C. zeylanicum as an antioxidant in food increased SOD, GPX, and CAT, leading to the elimination of ROS.Are grapes good for testosterone? ›
Grapes are considered to be vitamin-infused berries that are good for your general heath. On top of that, they can greatly boost testosterone levels in the body. Scientifically, the skin of grapes contains resveratrol which is great for sperm health.Does dark chocolate increase testosterone? ›
Since oxidative stress is a cause of testosterone deficiency, consuming dark chocolate can boost testosterone levels and sperm production. Dark chocolate also has a number of flavonoids and other antioxidants. Therefore, they can improve testicular function.
What is the best testosterone booster for men over 60? ›
- D-AA (D-Aspartic Acid) (2,000 mg)
- Panax Ginseng (8,000 mg)
- Ashwagandha Extract (668 mg)
- Fenugreek Extract (800 mg)
- Green Tea Extract 70% Catechins.
- Garlic Extract (1,200 mg)
- Pomegranate Extract 40% Ellagic Acid (360 mg)
- Black Pepper Extract 95% Piperine.
Testosterone replacement therapy, in the form of injections, pellets, patches or gels, can improve the signs and symptoms of low testosterone in these men.Should older males take testosterone? ›
Testosterone replacement is likely beneficial in healthy older subjects with significant hypogonadism. Testosterone replacement in individuals with borderline low or low-normal testosterone levels is yet to be proven effective and may not outweigh the risks.Do potatoes increase testosterone? ›
Potatoes. The right source of carbohydrates can provide ample energy for testosterone production, and potatoes are an excellent source. Sweet potatoes, russet potatoes, red and brown potatoes, and other potato varieties also make a great alternative to grains and simple sugars as your main source of carbs.What foods affect men's testosterone? ›
According to a 2020 study, (1) men who followed a “Western” diet of red meat, fried foods, high fat, and processed snacks over a nine-year period experienced the most adverse impact on their testosterone and sperm count.How to naturally increase testosterone? ›
- IMPROVING LOW TESTOSTERONE NATURALLY. The following information is a summary of materials featured in the “Men's Health” Whole Health overview. ...
- MAINTAIN IDEAL BODY WEIGHT. ...
- AVOID DEVELOPING DIABETES. ...
- EXERCISE. ...
- SLEEP WELL. ...
- AVOID TOBACCO PRODUCTS. ...
- AVOID EXCESSIVE ALCOHOL. ...
- AVOID OPIOID PAIN MEDICATIONS.
The immediate effects of glucose ingestion also include significant decreases in total and free testosterone levels in men .Are blueberries good for testosterone? ›
They have a nutrient called calcium-dglucarate that removes toxins and excess estrogen from your body. They also have plenty of resveratrol, which has anti-aromatase and estrogen lowering effects, making blueberries one of the most effective foods to boost testosterone.Is canned tuna good for testosterone? ›
Tuna is rich in vitamin D, which has been known to be related to testosterone production and lengthening life. Besides, tuna is also a protein-rich, heart-healthy food that is low in calories. Whether you're eating it fresh, canned, or even raw, consuming tuna is a natural way of boosting testosterone.Do apples increase testosterone? ›
They're also rich in amino acids, which bolster testosterone levels and muscle growth. An apple a day delivers quercetin, a flavonoid that reduces the risk of allergies, heart attack, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and prostate and lung cancers.
What is the best testosterone for older men? ›
- TestoPrime - Best testosterone booster for men overall.
- Testo-Max - Best testosterone booster for workouts.
- Testogen - Best for boosting free testosterone.
- Prime Male - Best for combating testosterone decline.
- Hunter Test - Best testosterone booster for weight loss.
You can also boost testosterone levels by doing aerobic exercise at least three times per week, like running or walking. You should also be sure to reduce stress and get enough sleep, as relaxation can lower cortisol levels, which helps boost testosterone.