There are plenty of things you can do other than expensive medical interventions, like testosterone replacement therapy, to improve your T-count. You can start by making small improvements to your lifestyle habits to counter some of its symptoms. Let’s look at our favorite ways to boost testosterone and your overall health.
What are the Symptoms of Low Testosterone
Over 13 million Americans show low testosterone, but many do not seek treatment for this condition. The most common symptoms of low testosterone include depression, low energy, low sex drive, erectile dysfunction, and weight gain. With those side effects, you probably don’t want to suffer from low testosterone, but you can eliminate these symptoms in the following ways.
Reduce Your Number on the Scale
Your weight can contribute to low testosterone. As your waist expands, so does the enzyme called aromatase, which converts testosterone into estrogen. When you have less testosterone in your body that resulted from fat, you’ll start to gain deposits of the stuff in your hips and breasts. You can use BMI to calculate your proper weight for your height.
Reducing your number on the scale won’t be easy, but you can do wonders with an exercise regimen and proper food intake. Be sure not to starve yourself and eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Avoid incredibly fatty meats and dairy (as milk also contains estrogen), or you may not reduce the problem enough to bring that testosterone up.
Reduce Stress with Exercise
Physical and emotional stress can affect your hormones significantly, and when your body is going into fight or flight mode, your body stops thinking about sex. As cortisol goes up, testosterone goes down, so try a natural stress reliever, such as reading, playing video games, or exercising to keep testosterone production up.
Aim for 150 minutes of aerobic exercise each week, and pepper in some strength training two to three days per week. Improving your stamina is one of the best ways to enhance sexual performance as well – and not because it helps you last longer. Better overall cardiovascular health will reduce the likelihood of ED and other related issues.
Get Enough Sleep and Rule out Sleep Apnea
Did you know there’s a direct link between sleep apnea and low testosterone? Sleep apnea can cause you to stop breathing in your sleep due to loud snoring, making it more likely you’ll wake up in the middle of the night. If you’re overweight, you’re more likely to have sleep apnea. If you have a sleep partner, ask them if you gasp for air while you sleep.
Sleep is crucial in balancing your hormones because your body produces testosterone during REM sleep. Restricting sleep to five hours per night for one week will reduce your overall testosterone by 15 percent. Never skimp on sleep time if you can help it. If you suspect sleep apnea is the cause of exhausted mornings, speak to your doctor.
Avoid Alcohol and Drugs1
Alcohol actually has estrogen in it and a lot of it. Even though beer is marketed as a man’s drink, alcohol can contribute to lower testosterone because it converts that sex hormone to estrogen. Alcohol can also interfere with signals to the brain and testicles, so if you’re going to drink beer, you should limit it as much as possible.
It’s also in your best interest to avoid drugs like opiates and marijuana because there is a significant link between them and a low sperm count. Long-term drug use can interfere with brain signals, lower testosterone, and decrease sexual performance.