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Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

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June 22 2010

A Primal Primer: Testosterone

By Mark Sisson
221 Comments

If you’ve been reading recently you know I’ve been on a hormone kick recently. That sexy looking molecule to the right and the hormone du jour: testosterone. Testosterone is the principal anabolic and sex hormone in humans, responsible for sexual desire and function, muscular hypertrophy, densification of bones, and hair growth. Compared to females, males famously produce about ten times the amount of testosterone, but females are far more sensitive to its effects. Though testosterone is largely responsible for those traits and characteristics that are considered “masculine” – physical strength, body hair, dominance, and virility – both sexes require it for proper sexual and physical development. In mammals, males secrete it primarily from the testicles (about 95% of the total amount, in fact) and women secrete it from the ovaries. A modicum is produced in the adrenal glands in both sexes.

Testosterone plays an important role throughout every stage of a person’s life:

Prenatally, testosterone – along with dihydrotestosterone, a more potent anabolic hormone – is partly responsible for the formation of the male genitalia. It helps determine gender identity (with society bringing up the rear later in life, of course) and it spurs development of the prostate and seminal vesicles.

In early infancy, boys’ testosterone levels rise, almost to puberty levels, only to plummet at 4-6 months. We’re still not entirely sure what the rise means and what all that testosterone is doing, but it’s definitely doing something. One theory is that the brain is being “masculinized.”

Immediately prior to puberty, testosterone begins to rise in both boys and girls. Childhood is departing, replaced by budding pubic hair, the beginnings of body odor, growth spurts, oily hair and skin, and that ridiculous peach fuzz above the lips that every eleven year-old male tries to cultivate and claim as facial hair. Bones mature and the arm pits grow hair.

 

During puberty, testosterone enjoys a massive increase.  Most of you reading this probably recall those awkward, exciting change-filled times: new odors, inconvenient fluctuations in the functionality and appearance of certain organs, strange new outlooks on the opposite sex. Good times. Thanks, testosterone!

 

In adults, testosterone’s effects on growth and development have largely manifested and maintenance becomes its province. Libido is preserved for both men and women and erection strength and frequency are regulated by testosterone. Muscles resist wasting thanks to T (and even grow larger).

I would be remiss if I failed to mention testosterone’s chief antagonist: cortisol. Cortisol, as you know, is one of the stress, fight-or-flight hormones. It kept us alive and our wits about us under short-term life-or-death situations for much of our evolution. Unfortunately, when cortisol is constantly elevated – as it often is in the sleep-deprived and chronically-stressed – testosterone is muted. Cortisol is catabolic (breaks tissue down), while testosterone is anabolic. Excessive levels of cortisol produce insulin resistance, fat gain, and muscle wasting, while testosterone promotes muscular hypertrophy and lean mass gains. Cortisol contributes to metabolic syndrome, while testosterone helps alleviate it.

Ironically, serum testosterone status seems to predict the cortisol response of people faced with victory or defeat. High T men and women who “lost” released more cortisol, the stress hormone; when they “won,” less cortisol was released. Low T folks’ cortisol changes did not depend on winning or losing. I guess that’s a downside to high T levels, technically, but it’s to be expected. I’m reminded of the Jimmy Cliff classic, “The bigger they come, the harder they fall”.

Low serum concentrations of testosterone are also independently associated with higher mortality rates in men, even when you consider other risk factors and preexisting health conditions.

Testosterone is important in the formation of bones, as I mentioned earlier, but it’s also crucial for the maintenance of bone density, especially in the elderly.

Testosterone aids in protein synthesis, effectively helping rebuild muscle fibers with amino acids. It can preserve existing mass or build upon it, creating more.

So, testosterone is important, and even vital, if you want to build (and keep) strong bones and muscles, maintain a healthy, active sex life, and live long and well into old age – but how do we make sure we’re making enough?

In 1889, a Harvard University professor by the name of Charles-Édouard Brown-Séquard injected himself with a “rejuvenating elixir” containing the extract of dog and guinea pig testicle, reporting increased vigor and feelings of well-being. Traditional Chinese herbalists would often prescribe dried tiger’s penis for impotence, and ancient Greek Olympians feasted on goat and lamb testicles to boost stamina and athletic performance. Clearly, even before testosterone was specifically identified, the ancients (and not-so-ancients) knew that the loins were involved in vigor, strength, and stamina.

Their (our) fixation on consumption of genitalia and genitalia extractions to correct deficiencies in strength, vigor, sexual stamina, and general “well-being” sounds intuitive, in a folksy, endearing sort of way. Does it make sense to eat bull testicles to restore one’s manhood and increase available testosterone?

Not really. Testosterone doesn’t pool up in one’s testicles. It’s not a static reservoir waiting in reserve to be disseminated throughout the body. It’s a hormone that the testicles (in men) and ovaries (in women) produce. That mouthful of fluid you got when biting into a roasted sheep’s testicle on your Greek vacation wasn’t pure, liquid testosterone – sorry. In order to get testosterone, you have to produce it (or inject it, but that’s an entirely different post) endogenously. And if you want to manipulate the amount of testosterone you have available, you can do it the same way you manipulate other hormones, like insulin, leptin, growth hormone, and cortisol. You tinker with your diet, your exercise, and your basic daily lifestyle.

Lift Heavy Things

Resistance training is a potent stimulant of testosterone production, so be sure to lift heavy things every now and again. If you want to tinker even further, messing around with rest intervals between sets can stimulate different hormonal responses. In one study, resting 90 seconds between squat and bench press sets boosted post-workout T levels the most, followed by rest periods of 120 seconds. Resting 60 seconds increased growth hormone the most and T the least.

Sprint

In young men, a short six-second bout of sprinting increased serum total testosterone levels. Levels remained elevated during recovery. Interestingly, testosterone was also correlated with lactate levels in the blood. It would be even more interesting to know if any training that causes lactate levels to rise would also increase testosterone.

Avoid Excessive Cortisol

Since cortisol antagonizes and reduces free testosterone levels, and stress promotes the release of cortisol, avoiding stress becomes crucial for maintaining or boosting T levels. Make sure you get a good night’s sleep, every night (which in and of itself increases testosterone levels). Avoid overtraining, especially in the Chronic Cardio arena, which may affect T levels and reproductive function. And be sure to take time to chill out and relax (read a book, go for a walk, play).

Get Sun, or Take Vitamin D Supplements

Vitamin D, already associated with bone and muscular strength, also positively correlates with testosterone levels in men. Back in February, the vitamin D/T link got a decent amount of media attention.

Eat Clean, Pastured Animal Products

Toxic substances called dioxins have been shown to interfere with the male reproductive system, including production of testosterone. While concentrated sources of dioxins include Agent Orange (which I’m sure you’re already avoiding), we obtain most of our dietary dioxins through conventionally-raised animal products, especially animal fats and dairy (dioxins accumulate in fat). If you’re going to be eating fatty cuts of meat or using dairy, try to go for pastured, grass-fed animals to reduce your exposure and lessen the negative impact on your testosterone levels.

Eat Saturated and Monounsaturated Fat

A low-fat, high-fiber diet reduced serum and free testosterone levels in middle-aged men. T usage wasn’t affected, but T production was reduced. Another look at male athletes found that both saturated fat, monounsaturated fat, and cholesterol intakes were positively correlated with resting testosterone levels. PUFA intake was barely associated with increased levels.

Avoid Foods that Regularly Spike Your Blood Glucose Levels

Researchers found that 75 grams of pure glucose – and the resultant spike in blood sugar – was enough to drop testosterone levels by as much as 25% in a random grouping of healthy, prediabetic, and diabetic men. Now keep in mind how rapidly many SAD carb choices (pasta, cereal, bread, etc) convert to glucose upon digestion…

Get Adequate Zinc Intake

A zinc deficiency predicts lowered testosterone in men (eat your shellfish), but heroic supplementary doses of the mineral don’t boost T levels beyond normal in men with adequate dietary intake.

All in all, testosterone is an incredibly important hormone for health, longevity, and vitality – in both men and women. Leading a Primal life, free of excessive stress and peppered with smart, intense workouts, full of healthy animal fats and plenty of vitamin D, should be enough to promote adequate amounts of testosterone coursing through your veins. It may sound a bit redundant at times (advice: live Primal!), but what can you do when a common, uniting thread seems to run through almost every aspect of human health. It almost writes itself.

TAGS:  Aging, hormones

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221 thoughts on “A Primal Primer: Testosterone”

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    1. Would it be possible to have the moderators automatically remove the “first” comments that obviously add nothing to the comments section? I would also include responses to such comments (like this one) as it obviously adds nothing either.

      While I am sure the “first” posters’ mommies would be duly proud, that isn’t enough reason to allow them to continue junking up the comments here.

      I will not make this request again, or bother to reply to attention-seeking behavior. Sorry for wasting everyone’s time.

      1. Uh oh! Comment section drama! Someone could use a little more testosterone…

  1. Men…
    All about men…typical.
    Why would mother nature just completely screw over females in every aspect of life?
    We are the ones life depends on…
    It doesn’t make any sense.

    1. “So, testosterone is important, and even vital, if you want to build (and keep) strong bones and muscles, maintain a healthy, active sex life, and live long and well into old age”

      That seems pretty inclusive to both genders to me 🙂

      1. So how do women exactly produce testosterone besides the ovaries?
        What if a woman had her ovaries taken out?
        How do these tribal women all over the world keep their bone density?
        Many of them don’t lift heavy things, they never sprint either. Like the tribes of the island of Tanna (saw that series on NatGeo)

        I am on a quest to figure out the best possible way to not have osteoporosis EVER. And this post about MEN and their high testosterone which is THE hormone to keep bone density isn’t helping much.

        Perhaps the RAW primal diet would be the answer…dead food (aka cooked) can’t replace live tissue.

        1. They don’t lift heavy things? Really? What about children? Or food?

          It’s not like women don’t have testosterone. They just don’t have as much as men.

        2. If you had read the article youd see that some is also made in the adrenal glands.

          Also, tribal women who live a more hunter gatherer lifestyle are almost sure to have a more active lifestyle than most westernized cultures, you just need the stimulus.

          Youll never catch a tribal person sitting down at leisure surfing the apple, i guarantee you that.

        3. I don’t think you’re going to find many tribal women that are missing their ovaries.

          Many cultures, women are “beasts of burden” and lift heavy stuff all the time and I think chasing kids down counts for sprinting.

        4. To avoid osteoporosis…

          Maintain healthy levels of estrogen, especially important after menopause.

          Stay active (avoid a sedentary lifestyle)

          Maintain healthy eating habits (avoid eating disorders)

          Get Vitamin D (sunlight is best) suplements help.

          Avoid alcohol in excess.

          Avoid hormone treatments.

          Keep a healthy body weight (not too heavy or light)

          Don’t smoke.

          Get plenty of calcium.

        5. In the old days people would hunt for food. They also grew there own gardens minus all the cemicals. Also they worked and played hard. But most important with all that being said a good nights sleep is very important. Raw food is ok to eat but i must warn you animals have germs so if your going raw it must be a fresh kill. Stay away from all drugs unless your doctor gives it to you. Also make time for sex daily in the morning if applicable.

        6. It also notes that women are much more sensitive to testosterone, equalizing the playing field.

        7. Yams will replace female harm one levels. So go to your local cafeteria and load up on yams(sweet potatoes). This Is good therapy to avoid bone loss in women. And effeminate men too(men who have hormone imbalance). There are lots of scientific studies that support this data.

        8. Progesterone helps women’s bone density! Something to look into as well

        1. Yams reduce effeminacy in men??what on earth do you mean “Ben”?
          Utter hogwash……and why would people want to do that anyway.

    2. Thats rubbish. Women depend on men if it wasn’t for men women would die out. We need each other. dont talk rubbish

      1. native women tend to gather morning wood. sex in the morning is very important to a woman’s health. swallowing in the evening also gives women all the necessary protein and hormones to maintain good bone density.

        1. Wow, how chauvanistic!! Funny though.
          As a native woman, I was like OH no, at first, as morning sex is something I don’t like to take part in too often.

        2. You must live on a different continent….
          All of the women I’ve known are NOT morning people. They are SLEEP people. If I wanted sex in the morning it better be after 10a.m. on a weekend….

    3. “Mother”? nature. perhaps Father nature has been working under a sir name all these years…

      1. Father Sun, Mother Nature. Equal partners in giving life to the human race.

        1. State the world is in its a pity either bothered with the human race
          at all

    4. Sexist much? Just apply everything it says on how to boost t levels. Just because you’re a women doesn’t mean you can’t eat these foods or lift heavy or any of that nature..
      I could complain about how most stores in the mall are “all about women.. typical.” But i find that there are places other than the mall to shop for men’s clothing of my personal interest.
      There are ways around everything. Remember that.

    5. what r u talking about? Just cuz men produce more testosterone? women are the givers of life..the care takers of the family.men got to be more physically active to take care of his queen.if it weren’t for this mankind wouldn’t have evolved thus far.These days women want to be all they can be and i don’t argue with that but come on..we can’t bear children and women can’t produce testosterone.That might be why we come to an em pas in todays society.

    6. I’m sorry, but to be honest, you’re hardly likely to find a man on an article about maintaining/increasing oestrogen levels complaining that it’s all about women…

    7. The purpose of life to; surve and replicate. that’s it.

      You are required for replication.
      Men are required for survival.

    8. Who is screwing you over? A number of times this article has mentioned how T is used in both the male and female bodies…..Stop being a victim.

      1. She is just another victimised feminist, they are just as bad as the male chauvinist. This site is about taking responsibility for your OWN health and your OWN situation, something I am guessing that Suvatar is not familiar with – totally toxic person, and what does the primal blueprint tell us about toxins – avoid them, both in body, and in mind – She must find her way out of her own self inflicted pit of despair, or sit there and rot – its her choice, either way, “Nature” doesn’t care.

    9. Although there are many health benefits to healthy testosterone levels (in both males and females), estrogen is also pretty amazing. One of the reasons why men are more likely than women to get dementia when they age is that estrogen has neuro-protective functions.

    10. Of course it’s about men. The article’s demographic targeted men.
      2nd. Why do you think Mother Nature screwed you over? Are you doing your part? ARe you eating right, getting the proper amount of exercise and sleep?
      Yes, life depends on the female, but don’t forget it takes a sperm too. And don’t tell me a man can’t raise a child.
      Honey, life isn’t all about YOU.

    11. False taking of credit…typical of all humans, male & female.

      Children are a gift from God (Psalm 127:3-5; 128:2-4; Deuteronomy 7:12-14), not the result of human behavior, although certain human behavior was designed to play a participatory role. Just an additional thought, have you ever seen a woman who could give birth without the existence of men or participation at some point by men (or what is provided through the life of men)?

      Life depends on God, not mankind, male and/or female. God’s creation is wonderful: Psalm 139:13-16 We are “fearfully and wonderfully made”.

      And who said mankind is replete with making any sense. We spend more time trying to glorify ourselves, excuse ourselves and justify ourselves than trying to discover the truth and live by it.

    12. So… if women are the ones that life depends on, then why do women even need men?
      Oh yeah!
      because it takes a man AND a woman to have a child. you’re obviously an idiot who got lost on her way to a feminist page.
      if you don’t wanna read an article about men, then DON’T.
      it’s an article for men so what do you expect.
      do you see guys going on page about keeping estrogen levels up and saying what you just said (except about women)
      Just, stfu and let people learn about their own body management

    13. It makes perfect sense. This was Gods pox on women for eve picked the apple from .tree of life.

    14. It wasn’t “all about men” at all, but I guess the sensibilities of some snowflakes will always be upset in the face of logic and reason – you should take your political ideologies somewhere else, this forum only the deals with the real world, and how things are in science.

  2. So would a carb-refeed result in lowered testosterone levels for that day?

  3. You are the ones that life depends on….you’re exactly 50% of the equation, no more, no less.

    It’s pretty clear you did not read the article

    1. Actually, females are more than 50%, if you’re counting the full equation. I’m just basing this on the fact that everyone has their mother’s mitochondrial DNA. You can’t make a person with just DNA. You need a cell with all the goodies in it. That comes from your mom. And then the 40 weeks following conception as well…

      Not to negate men’s contribution. It’s extremely important! I mean, it must be hard to hunt when you’re more than four month pregnant. So, maybe it is 50/50, depending on how you look at it!

      1. No, its 50/50 like was said. Youre fancy egg with its goodies isnt worth anything if it doesnt get fertilized. Who cares if there is more to an egg than sperm, if you could never exist without either? Its 50/50….period.

        The article was for both men and women, just as estrogen plays a role in men as well.

        Mark can you maybe do a post on Estrogen just to keep some of the more insecure women from going coocoo for coco puffs?

        As far as the bone density thing goes, if you eat a primal diet i doubt youll have to worry about it. Eating the way youre supposed to will let your body function the way its supposed to. I highly doubt that Osteoporosis was coded into 2 million years or so of evolution. Just like Diabetes and cancer werent either.

        Ever heard the phrase, “Its not how much you make but how much you keep.”, in regards to money?

        The same goes for calcium, its not that we dont get enough calcium in our diet, we dont get enough of the foods that allow us to KEEP our calcium. Most fo the foods that we are eating are reporting to our bodies as “acidic”, to counter this our body breaks down bone mass to release calcium salts to alkalize the blood closer to a more tolerable ph level.

        Eat right and there is no need for any of that to happen.

        1. Thank you Shawn. That was a nicer version of what I would have said.

        2. If you look into it, females can reproduce without a male contribution. However they can only create female offspring. There is no male contribution in cloning. ….
          …. Just saying..

        3. There’s a reason men rule the world. The only reason women have a say in things in modern times is because men allow them to have a say. Men are naturally stronger, faster, smarter and more reasonable than women. You can’t disagree with this, this is why men and women compete separately in athletic activities, women just couldn’t keep up. It’s also the reason why men have always ruled the world.

          The only things men need women for are pleasure and procreation. Of course, it’s also nice to have them make you sammiches and clean up after you but as far as everything else goes, they’re pretty useless compared to men.

          This isn’t an opinion, it’s just facts. Sure, there are plenty of strong women who could beat the crap out of a weak man, but when you compare the strongest to the strongest, men always win in nearly anything.

  4. Mark, what can we do nutrition or supplement wise to avoid excessive conversion of T in to estrogen and thus having lower free T? Thanks.

    1. Look into Chrysin cream. I found a chiropractic doctor, in California, how would prescribe it from Apex Energetix (I’m in PA). It is called Testanex. My Testosterone was measured at 48. With one month of using the chrysin cream, it measured 278. Chrysin inhibits an enzyme from breaking down the T. Keep in mind that it must be topical, not digested. Hope this helps. – Dan

      1. Dear Dan.
        Interesting information.How much cost this Chrysin cream?
        Thanks.Lorin

  5. Over a year ago, I found out that my 53-year-old female body was not producing testosterone. My muscles were wasting and I was gaining body fat – 46% at the highest. With no testosterone, we ladies will not be able to build muscle no matter how much weight we lift!

    I now have a testosterone pellet surgically implanted in my hip once every four months by my doctor. I am losing body fat and gaining muscle. Last summer, thanks to T, I gained 7 pounds of muscle in just four months!

      1. yes and with no estrogen, there is no libido either! fascinating! estrogen is awesome for males! As testosterone is for females.

    1. Awesome, really nice that it has helped you a lot.

      I used a natural testosterone booster to fight my declining testosterone product ( I am a 42 year old male)
      I Testoturbo by a company called explicit nutrition it helped me a lot.

  6. Just another reason to go primal – it boosts your sex drive!!

    I could come up with 1000 reasons why someone should go primal. Well, on that thought I will get started actually. 🙂

  7. Mark, these last few posts have been amazing! Thanks for investing your time and effort in creating posts like this. Pure Gold!

  8. Mark-

    I’ve also read in the past that alcohol consumption decreases testosterone levels. Any recent research to indicate this is the same or to indicate how much alcohol decreases testosterone?

  9. You did not mention it, but being in a dangerous place can up your Test levels.

    For example, males in jail often have higher test levels than non-criminal people.

    1. That’s interesting. I would think it would be the opposite — that being in the midst of danger would up your cortisol level as “fight or flight” kicks in…

      1. Well, I may be wrong, but I believe cortisol kicks in when you are in the face of immediate danger. In a dangerous environment, high t levels seems to be important. It ensure you keep your enemies away. Ever noticed how most of the guys in jail are muscular? It makes you look and feel good.

        Then again, that is what I read. May be Mark can shed some light on that.

        1. The fight-or-flight response does lead to a temporary increase in physical performance, but being stuck in the sympathetic nervous state burns out the adrenals and throws off the entire endocrine cascade, and thus sabotages the body’s ability to regulate testosterone (as well as causing systemic inflammation, leading to dangerously high or low immune responses, etc.)

        2. I think that is true for men who are confident and don’t stress easily , or repeat jailbirds who basically know what to expect in jail.

        3. I could be wrong, but i think you have it backwards. Men don’t get a higher testosterone level because they’re in jail, but rather, men END UP in jail due to the behavioral effects of having or gaining a high testosterone level (ie. increased aggresion)
          I’ve done a little research myself, and if you want to be kinda steriotypical you could say that the trade-off for the physical health and performance offered by having a high T level is developing a bad personality or personality traits. To be fair though, studies on this particular subject should be taken with a grain of salt, as research methods in this area are limited and rather unreliable.
          Still, I wouldn’t be surprised if a population that experiences increased aggression would also see increased crime rates, testosterone related or not.

          For Alvin Sr’s comment on July 31st, 2012 (which doesn’t seem to have a reply button) I must continue to say:

          Men producing more testosterone are more likely to engage in extramarital sex, but marriage/romance is a different story, as falling in love decreases men’s testosterone levels, thus reducing the chance of male infidelity. However, it is suggested that T levels return to what they were before entering the relationship after the “honeymoon phase” (1-3 years) ends.

          On a side note relating to marriage/romance, while falling in love reduces them in men, it actually increases T levels in women, supposedly to sort-of syncronize the T levels (and thus behavior) of the two. (ie. men: high to medium – women: low to medium)

          note: pretty much all of this is off of wiki, so again, I could be wrong.

      2. Excess Test can also lead to violent behavior and agresive tendencies. You could make the argument that those men were too high to begin with.

        1. Only if you’re predisposed to violent behavior. That’s like saying high levels of T promotes infidelity

  10. @Kishore- to avoid excessive conversion of T to E, you must use aromatase inhibitors. Natural supplements would be high doses of Resveratrol (think red wine) (min 300mg/serving) and even Green Tea. Chemicaly, you would hav to get into things like Arimidex, but that’s last resort. Check out the research articles on LEF.org. (no affiliation for me, just good info)

    @Jeff- alcohol has estrogen-like effects on the body. I don’t have any stats/research, but what does estrogen do to the body that alcohol does as well? Yup, man-boobs and other female-pattern fat-storing.

    1. In most cases these effect as I understand them are more the result of the estrogenic effects of Hops on beer drinkers than the effects of alcohol itself. Though alcohol certainly impairs liver clearance of hormones which contributes heavily to hormonal imbalances.

  11. Is there any danger of getting too much testosterone as a woman? I have heard of women losing their fertility from exercising too much. If you look at Olympic athletes they always have tiny breasts and hips. Is this due to testosterone? I know that the Primal Blueprint does not advocate this much training, I am just wondering what the guidelines are for testosterone as a a woman. How do I know if I have the right amount? Do I need to be careful while pregnant and/or nursing? Thanks!

    1. Women will not over-produce testosterone, generally speaking. Those muscle-bound athletes are the rare exception, not the rule. As a woman, do not be afraid to lift like a man.

      1. Lift like a man – that’s so funny! I have seen some men lift with pretty poor form!!
        How about “lift like a champion” instead?

        1. Ha! Okay, let me modify that statement:

          Lift like a man who lifts correctly, and not like a little girl who is afraid to lift for fear of getting big muscles! LOL!

        2. Holy mother of mercy, I watched some 20-something kid totally hack job some deadlifts today that made me cringe and fear for his back.

          On women; you won’t ever, ever look like those olympic athletes unless you have the genetics and you turn your life over to training like one. It’s really a non-issue.

    2. In April I started a 4 day a week bootcamp after a long sedentary stint. My period stopped for 6 weeks. I believe that exercise caused an increase in my testosterone and caused the absence of my period. My body finally adjusted when I cut back a day of hardcore working out and I’ll probably feel comfortable adding more exercise when my period regulates itself again. Female bodybuilders and gymnasts often have decreased breast size and few or no menstrual cycles, but if you aren’t working out THAT often and to THAT level, I doubt a woman could have too much.

      If you’re concerned, talk to your OB/GYN and have blood tested for testerone levels. You and your doctor can discuss how exercise/testosterone will affect your body and what is a healthy level for you.

    3. I am admittedly not a medcial professional, but my readings have led me to believe that a women is not going to get too much testosterorne from exercising and diet, even lifting heavy.

      HOWEVER…if you want to see what happens when this does go awry for women, just take a look at some of the first women body-builders who were “doing the juice”. They look almost like men, even in the face. Today’s female figure athletes don’t have this look, because they saw what very excessive testosterone supplementation does to the female body.

  12. Excellent post!

    I would add that in cases of low Testosterone removing highly estrogenic plants like Soy and Hops from the diet can be important in normalizing Testosterone levels.

    Aralia nudicaulis, “Wild Sarpsarilla” root can also be helpful both in normailizing testosterone levels (adjusting up or down) and in reducing cortisol by regulating and nourishing the adrenals.

  13. As far as I know T also needs to be RELEASED at some point (a fight, have sex, etc). because too much T is going to make you overly aggressive, lowered focus (though its high focus w/ good levels of T) and some other stuff I have noticed (and been told).

    Any thoughts Mark/other?

    1. Oatstraw infusions will help to free bound testosterone.

      St. John’s Wort will aid in its clearance by the liver.

      As long as the liver is functioning properly and the channels for clearing hormones are not overloaded the body will modulate its own testosterone levels properly

  14. At the age of 64, my husband was found to have critically low T. He now takes an injection of T once per week, and he has to take Arimadex twice per week, to keep from having high estrogen. I would be interested to know what else he could do to keep from having to take the Arimadex…

    1. Check out resveratrol. It supposedly has an anti-estrogen effect plus other good effects.

    2. Green Tea and Button Mushrooms have been shown in trials to reduce Estrogen.

  15. as far as the guys in jail having more testosteron…it’s a chicken and the egg situation. it could be that those with higher testosterone tend to be more violent and commit more crimes. like men who are XXY instead of XY are more likely to commit crimes….

      1. It’s because they lift weights all the time cause all they got.

  16. Being 50 with the ovaries winding down & all, the female side of T is of interest. What else can we do (besides RSL’s hip pellet) to keep up some T in our systems? sounds like another “women’s issues” column (or week) is about due…
    @barefoot_explorer – the reason those female athletes lose fertility is usually tied in to their amt of body fat, etc. Also, overly fit (overly trained?) women tend to lose their womanly shape- alot of our curves are fat.
    Also interesting to note is the women who do produce too much T on their own: those women tend to have a less curvy figure (think little hips, flat butt), fertility issues…
    Another “just goes to show” we’re all different

    1. I would surmise, based on the post, that regular strength training, good sleep, and a Primal diet would be the prescription for older women to keep high T-levels and preserve libido, the same as for young men looking to put on muscle or whatever.

      1. Well, hope springs eternal! Declining hormones, including T, cannot be kept high with healthy living. And depending on your point of view, you either need to balance your hormones to young healthy levels to promote continuing health, or let them decline and get sick. I have decided to replace my hormones with natural, bio-identical ones. I take progesterone, T and thyroid.

        1. I in need of some serious help, my t level is 106.5 barley on the scale, i’ve taken 3 t shots from my doctor of 150, and my level is unchanged, what can I do?

      2. frequent sex and g-spot stimulation greatly reduces anxiety in women. for bone and muscle density, women should swallow frequently to make sure they’re getting proper levels of nutrients.

    2. There are 4 billion women in the world. Why waste our time arguing with those that hate men. Also, why waste time with her egg (4 billion to choose from) – keep her type barren and lonely. Sleep only with the good women…

  17. Serious question. Can a vasectomy affect testosterone production?

    1. Good question. I looked at this a few months back as I was considering a vasectomy. The information about is relatively hazy, but I was able to find one piece of information that suggested testosterone is partially transmitted along the epididymis (sp?) and could be affected when it is cut. That was enough for me… if it ain’t broke – don’t break it!

      1. If you want some information about vasectomy from the other side of the aisle look for the vasectomy group on Yahoo. Lot’s of these guys say their T levels have plummeted and with the expected side effects.

        Not scientific – but it is far from a ‘completely safe’ procedure.

    2. Many men who become naturally deficient in testosterone ponder the relationship between having a vasectomy and testosterone levels if thinking about boosting their testosterone levels with testosterone replacement therapy.

      The connection between vasectomy and testosterone production may influence their decision as to whether to have a vasectomy or not.

      The correlation between having a vasectomy and testosterone levels is somewhat in dispute. Although some facts about the relationship of having a vasectomy and testosterone production seem to be commonly accepted, other studies of vasectomy and testosterone levels have reached different conclusions.

      Research on the matter, however, generally agrees that if there is a correlation between vasectomy and testosterone levels it is probably not a negative one. That is, vasectomies do not cause the manufacture of testosterone to decrease.

      Some research concerning having a vasectomy and testosterone levels shows no change in hormone level in the blood.

      A link between prostate cancer and the amount of testosterone in the blood sheds light on the subject. The association between prostate cancer, and vasectomy and testosterone production research is sketchy.

      For men who already have prostate cancer, increasing testosterone advances the condition. A higher incidence of men who have had vasectomies having prostate cancer indicates a higher relationship between those have had a vasectomy and testosterone production increase.

      In 1993 two large research projects concerning vasectomy and testosterone levels were conducted. In one, 10,000 men that had a vasectomy had 1.5 times the chance of getting prostate cancer. The other study of vasectomy and testosterone levels came to the same conclusion.

      But in June of 1999 a study of vasectomy and testosterone production showed there was no difference in the number of people who had had vasectomies when prostate cancer victims were surveyed.

      After the vasectomy, the apparent lack of testosterone production changes prevent any loss of sexual abilities by the man. The surgery affects neither the subsequent desire for sex by a man nor the frequency at which he can perform it.

      A question arises if there is a safe way to boost testosterone levels for men who have vasectomies and suspect they are suffering from low testosterone levels without side effects.

      One possible solution lies from using a natural herb called tribulus terrestris. Tribulus terrestris is an herb that has been used by many cultures for at least a thousand years to remedy both sexual and also non-sexual problems.

      Tribulus terrestris has no known side effects when used to boost testosterone levels. It may be a safe and effective way to increase testosterone for men who want to have or have had a vasectomy.

      In conclusion, it has been shown that vasectomy and testosterone production variation is probably small enough in most cases to make having a vasectomy a safe procedure to undertake.

      http://ezinearticles.com/?The-Truth-about-a-Vasectomy-and-Testosterone-Levels&id=161734

      1. It has been my observation that guys who have had vasectomies showed no symptoms of reduced T 😉

        1. I WANT TO SAY THANK YOU IT IS ALL IN THIER MINDS IT SURE DIDN’T EFFECT ME WHEN I GIT MINE

    3. I had a my tube done 20 years ago, by a female Dr Cannon (funny & true), and my drive is as good as ever it was… even at 63!

  18. If only us women had an increase in testosterone as a result of exercise. I think that’s what gives guys the edge when it comes to fat loss. It’s definitely the reason they can grow bigger muscles then us.

    Anyway, when my female clients want to lose fat I always tell them we have to focus on growth hormone instead, since we can control its release with many of the factors listed in this blog.

  19. One wonders if the USDA’s drive to increase n-6 PUFA & decrease SFA intakes is a means to chemical castration of the population?!

  20. Great article!
    I am interestd in the link between Sugar spikes and T levels – but the link provided was a dead end! Does anyone know how I can find the original research paper?
    Thx!

  21. I’m hoping someone who is well versed in mechanics of hormones, diet and physical fitness would explore/explain the workings of all these on a woman’s body as she approaches menopause. (Mark- hint, hint)
    I know several women who are approaching mid forties whom I exercise with, who have said that they are starting to gain weight even though nothing has changed in their eating habits and physical fitness. I myself have gone through this, I’m a few years older than them. Even cutting back on the calories and exercising more doesn’t help very much.
    I’m certain that it has everything to do with changing hormone levels as one approaches menopause along with the diet and exercise routine.
    Mark, has your wife gone through this and if so, what does she do to combat this?

    1. I found the book “Ageless” to be invaluable in addressing these very issues.

      I had all those issues, and it was very frustrating! I feel better now!

    2. I have to jump in here since I specialize in hormones. What you are asking is in depth but the short answert is yes, hormones influence your entire body both directly and indirectly. If you are eating Primal and working out but notice they are not helping there probably is a hormonal imbalance resulting from adrenal fatigue. See most comment below on the “pregnenalone steal.”

    3. Cathyx,

      I’m sure as you know that with menopause, oestrogen levels decline, and as a result women lose much of the protection that oestrogen otherwise afforded them. This includes the pattern of fat deposition. With the decline in oestrogen and a relative increase in the testosterone:oestrogen ratio, many women start to take on more of a male pattern of fat depostition, i.e. increased abdominal fat storage.
      Unfortunately, this can be several years in the making. A poor diet might have been consumed for many years but the results smewhat masked by the protection of oestrogen. Losing that oestrogen dominance can rapdily expose this. So the first lesson is, don’t think that just because you don’t tend to store a lot fo fat on your tummy, that you diet isn’t poor. The second lesson is, don’t wait until things are going ‘apple-shaped’ before you start to do something about it!

      Anecdotally, I have helped several menopausal women through my practice. Getting them to eat primally, lift heavy, and do high intensity activity, has seen them transition through a relatively uneventful menopause. One who I began working with mid way through & who was suffering from lots of hot flushes had these completely disappear as soon as she took the last of the grains out of her diet. Her sleep improved drastically, and there were obvious flow on aspects from there.

      I have read that in hunter-gatherer societies, menopause is relatively uneventful for the women there too.

  22. Mark since you are on a hormone kick, you have to discuss the pregnenalone steal and adrenal fatigue. Since we are talking about testosterone, if someone has low testosterone the quesiton is why. More times than not it is due to the pregnenalone steal. The mother hormones pregnenalone gets “stolen” to make cortisol (by progesterone) to combat stress. This process makes the pathway of pregnenalone to DHEA to the sex hormones less viable thus resulting in low testosterone and estrogens. You can lift all you want, eat all you want but if this is happening, it trumps everything else. Repairing the adrenal glands and improving the viability of the pregnenalone pathway is key to really boosting testosterone to the right levels.

    1. James, I like your thinking. Suggestions on repair of the adrenal glands?? Pregnenalone supplementation for men?? Ideas??

  23. I would REALLY like to know how to lower estrogen levels in men’s body without using pills

  24. You mention getting adequate zinc. Is that from eating organ meats like liver? Or is just red meat enough?

    Also would supplements like Zinc from Standard Process be a good idea?

  25. The fact that insulin drops testosterone levels surprised me. As a weight lifter it is pretty common to purposely spike my insulin after a tough training session.

    I have heard from several sources that testosterone in men has been dropping steadily for decades now. I wonder if this correlates to the increase of carbs and subsequent insulin spikes in the diet of the masses?

    Or if it is due to all the strange toxins in today’s foods? Or both?

    1. Right.

      So let’s just make sure we have NO ESTROGEN WHATSOEVER BECAUSE ESTROGEN IS A FEMININE HORMONE. TAKE AROMOTASE INHIBITORS!

      NOT.

      Too many men have this ridiculous unsubstantiated fear of estrogen, not recognizing its potent MASCULINIZING EFFECTS.

      http://www.ucsf.edu/news/2009/10/8199/estrogen-plays-key-role-male-brain-development

      ALso men don’t seem to realize that estrogen is crucial for a functioning libido. Low estrogen = low libido. If you have high testosterone, chances are you have healthy good estrogen levels and good libido due to aromatization, an essential part of steroid mehcanics.

  26. Jimmy Cliff….”the harder they come..the harder they fall…one and all”…!

  27. I lift heavy 3-4 days a week, sprint 1-3 days a week and take zinc supplements with 5000 IU of vit D, and calcium before bed. The trifecta…

    Waking up like a teenager with morning wood. LOL. That wasn’t happening 45 pounds ago on my sad SAD diet.

    Primal living and Testosterone baby!

    1. “morning wood”, ha ha! We didn’t have that expression when I was a teen (I’m 56). When I came back to the US after a long time living abroad (before the internet), an acquaintance and I were discussing the sizes of our respective fireplaces and how to stack the wood inside them, and I innocently asked, “So how long is your wood?” Everybody around us cracked up laughing.

      1. I’m 39 years old, so still a bit young but nonetheless my poor diet and obesity resulted in low testosterone levels and high blood pressure. my blood pressure hit 150/105 which put me promptly on the primal path.

        1. Well, good for you! I was interested in your age to see if you were sayng that “going Primal” at an tyoical age for Andropause (50-60+) caused your testosterone to return to youthful levels.

          Thanks!

    2. i have the same feeling
      i am 37 , just dropped 25 kg , going primal , lifting weights +IF

      The hormones are boiling . the sex drive is enormous.
      i attribute it to loss of fat that was transfering my testosteron to estrogen.

  28. WOW – great stuff – If I order now for only $49.95 (plus S&H) can I get a book too?

  29. That is a very comprehensive review of the testosterone hormone. Great information about the effect of rest intervals during strength training and how tweaking that can boost growth hormones or testosterone.

  30. The day I started working my legs HEAVY i.e. (Squats, Presses, Deadlifts, Lunges etc.) is the day I started gaining muscle everywhere. It was the missing link in my routine. Thanks T!!

  31. The thing that stands out for me about this article is the correlation of cortisol and stress. In an effort to be well, I think learning to adapt, accept or advoid stess is key. For me, exercise has always been able to help relieve the stress of the day. Great article.

  32. I am hoping to gain greater balance in my hormone levels, and the first steps I have been taking is to go Primal as much as possible and quit with the birth control pills which was an 8 year course of convenience that may have been a hindrance to progress in the weight management and muscle gain department. I just stopped the pills… and I try my best to keep my carbs under 100g/day. My last problem is a stressful job that probably has produced more than its fair share of cortisol and exhausts the hell out of me, which pretty much keeps me from exercise most of the week. For anyone who has worked in food service it is a lot of stress and long periods of standing.

  33. Another influence on testosterone levels in both men in women might be social status. Increased pecking order position seems to result in heightened levels of testosterone production. Again this may be a chicken or egg scenario. If you status increases will your T level increase or does your status increase because of higher pre-existing levels of T. Both and either probably.

    Higher social status has also been linked to increased longevity
    “In the UK, a famous study called the “Whitehall Study” which examined government workers (all of whom had the same type of health care), found that the higher someone was in the hierarchy, the longer they lived. Recently, another study also showed the Nobel prize winners simply liver almost 2 years longer than people who were nominated, but did not receive a Nobel. This leads to the second theory, we’ll call it the “Hierarchy Effect,” which states that being lower in the social hierarchy independently impacts health through increases in the release of stress hormones. This has been shown fairly well in animal studies where researchers monitor the levels of stress hormones in primates and have found that being nearer the top reduces the overall level of stress hormones (but note that being at the top actually increases them because the top chimp must continually defend his position).” http://longevity.about.com/od/researchandmedicine/a/hierarchy.htm
    Thanks for a great post Mark

  34. I have read that cetain foods boost T-levels. I think it was Salmon, Celery, Avocados… not sure about this. Anyone?

  35. About two years ago I found that I hit a training ‘sweet spot’ and have struggled recently to produce the same results. What I didn’t do at the time was keep a diary of my training, diet and supplements. Though I do recall it pretty well, it was all fairly primal.

    So it was only recently that I remembered I had bought a bottle of ZMA as an impulse buy and had taken three tablets before bed each night. At the time I had changed several other factors of my training and so I never put any of the results down to the ZMA. Once the bottle had finished I never gave it another thought. Until now that is. Having replicated the training but with a stubborn 14lbs of fat left to go. I have bought another bottle and I am already impressed. Although it’s too early to calculate my gain in lean muscle mass, I feel that I am training harder and my libido is through the roof. That is a pretty simple and conclusive indicator in my book.

    Here I should mention ZMA only corrects the depleted minerals needed for T production. It also helps reduce cortisol and improves sleep. Well at least that’s what it claims. Now that I discovered that testosterone was the missing ingredient, I have also bought Tribulus which is a natural herb that also helps increase T production. Though this doubling up of supplements is not very scientific and I would probably be best to try both of them separately as controlled experiment I am at least happy to be making progress again. So I wonder what you think Mark to these supps?

    1. I have seen a “boost” with ZMA as well. In my case…the brand that I bought had ingredients in it that effected my dopamine levels…which is what I attributed to some very odd dreams while taking it.

      Other suppliments that have help me include Maca and Tribulus…but that’s just me.

  36. Another huge +1 for ZMA. It is merely zinc combined with Magnesium Aspartate (one of the best forms of magnesium). It is a great way to get Zinc and Magnesium in one place.

    Your sleep quality will improve and your T levels will increase, guaranteed.

  37. So testosterone is this great magical hormone that keeps us healthy but when a baseball player uses extra amounts of it to run faster and hit farther he’s a cheater? and it’s an evil illegal drug and the scourge of youth and we must protect the children (from a chemical already in their body keeping them healthy).

    1. You miss the point. Supplemental testosterone goes BEYOND what is normal for most men. In addition, it can have disastrous consequences in destroying natural testosterone levels.

      When a guy supplements with testosterone, his body recognizes that he is getting his hormone requirement from a different source and begins to shut down natural production sources. When he goes off the supplemented test, he is all but dry. And when the body shuts something down, it’s EXTREMELY difficult to turn it back on again.

  38. I’ve tried absolutely everything to increase testosterone naturally. As of now, I still haven’t found that magic something. No wonder why bodybuilders and professional athletes find no other way than to take steroids.

    1. Science has proved things like high sat and mono fats help, zinc may reduce aromatase activity, etc. But when you put numbers to it, say those changes increase your T by 100% (which is unlikely), going from 200 to 400 isn’t really going to get you swole. You might feel a little better, but visually seeing results at those incremental differences would be unlikely.

  39. Can you produce evidence that organic food has less dioxins than conventional?

    Some studies out there show that dioxin content is the same between organic eggs and conventional.

  40. I have type ii diabetes (since 1995 or 6). Metformin 1000mg bid was causing me tremendous cramping followed by bouts of diarrhea. Sex drive was in the tank..”wood” was something burned in a fireplace. Recently went to naturopath and he advised strict Adkins plan plus supps that were basically versions of chromium picolinate. Advised slow walking, no other exercise. Long story but there is a point. I went to a different doctor and he put me back on metformin (500mg bid) glimipiride (4mg) bid and single doses of levathyroxine and lisinopril. Recent readings of fasting and evening blood glucose have been in the low 100’s with one reading of 97. Doc said that the hypothroid could be contributing to lack of weight loss even though I am active and am exercising 3 to 4 times a week. My biggest concern and the subject of this thread is the ED. I have tried the pills and even investigated caverject or its Boston Medical equivalent. Is the ED reversible or will I need to check out the drugs again? I am 57 years old and have seen the decrease in erectile function over the last 3 years. Should I investigate the natural supps for this issue? Also the lisinopril has some concerns for me. I know this is long but I could use some direction.

    1. Glimipride is Amaryl (glimepiride), Glyburide, (Glucovance is glyburide with added metformin)
      Glucatrol, Diabeta (glipizide) Sulfonylurea. Stimulates beta cell to secrete insulin for 8 – 12 hours whether or not glucose is present in bloodstream Raises insulin level Stimulate receptors on heart tissue leading to higher rate of heart attacks by 33%

      Raises insulin levels! That is more dangerous than raising blood sugar.

      Eat Primal, low carb, under 50 grams of non fiber per day. Become a ketone burner instead of a glucose burner.

      BUT FIRST..educate yourself and SLOWLY wean yourself of the meds as you eat lower and lower carb.

      Read Dr. Bernstewins book “DIabetes Solution” give a copy to your doc. Go to my blog…Diabetes is BS.com

      Lets get you healthy first then your T will come online.

  41. You are missing the 2 most important things which are avoid alcohol and caffeine completely. Like this, one doesn’t have to worry about carbs so much, and will experience much less cravings for them anyway.

    Lose the poisons, lose the diet neurosis and supplementation/aggressive exercise nonsense.

    Not easy to do as these are both highly addictive, and widely consumed in our sick society, but worth it.

    good luck

  42. Once I initially commented I clicked the -Notify me when new feedback are added- checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get four emails with the same comment. Is there any way you may take away me from that service? Thanks!

  43. Does having a lot of sex cause an increase in T? I wonder, because at 38 now, I still feel and look young…lol

  44. Eat clean, excercise, stay away from all the sugary crap, THINK your way to strength and get in the gym and work your butt off! There really are NO SHORTCUTS. Tosca Reno has a great book for men (there’s also a ladies version) to help you get and keep TRULY lean and fit. Jack Lalanne and many others would agree: 90% of the equation is CLEAN EATING. The rest is hard, hard work, but we love it don’t we?!
    Hope everyone enjoys their workouts. Blessings!
    Mr. Clean Gene
    Halifax, Nova Scotia

  45. Just thought I would tell my story. At the age of 42 my T levels were in the low 3’s. The doctor prescribed Nebido injections (long-acting testosterone undecanoate). After a year my T levels rocketed to the mid 6’s, I looked and felt great… right up until the time I started to notice HAIR LOSS! Being a vain MF I stopped COLD effing TURKEY and started slathering on Minoxidil to arrest the hair loss problem, which seems to have more or less worked.(!) Stuff is pretty miraculous. Aside from indulging in that fairly toxic topical medication, I started living primally to cope with what I was told would be a hideous onslaught of depression and muscle-wasting. Yeah, I did lose mass. Yeah, my T levels plummeted to a 2.3. But after a year I am doing okay, and I kept my hair. My T cells are at 3.9 so they are inching up. I am told that I could combat the DHT-related hair-loss issues caused by the Nebido by taking Propecia. But I am not jazzed about these synthetic solutions, and countermeasures, and dependencies. I miss the injections and having a little better physique but you can’t always get what you want… That said, I will eventually supplement with injections — but only after I have really done everything I can to go natural. I am 44 tomorrow and hoping I can hold off until I’m 50.

  46. i am a 17 year old guy and i have very less body hair what should i do to increase it?

  47. Hi Mark,

    I’m looking for information on testostorone that you may be able to help with or perhaps point me in the direction to continue searching.

    Specifically, I am trying to find out if the production of testostorone can be changed/increased at an early age by external stressors such as child abuse.

    There are many studies that show violent adults have high testostorone, but in paralel research, I have noted that abuse victims show attributes of high T after the abuse and low T prior.

    Thanks for any comments.

  48. I’ve been browsing on-line greater than 3 hours these days, but I by no means found any fascinating article like yours. It’s pretty value enough for me. In my opinion, if all web owners and bloggers made good content material as you probably did, the web can be a lot more useful than ever before.

  49. hello i am 22 years(running year) old.i am 5.5 tall.i still want grow to taller by at least 2 inches or say 5 cm .what should i do?
    i am doing yoga and few stretching exercise .is this enough ? what else can i do? i want do not want to take any tablet or medicine ,as my parent does not allow me to do so.please help me .i will be grateful to you all.

    1. are you a guy or girl? also, yoga and stretching is not enough. lift hard and rest harder. as ridiculous as it sounds, look up natural bodybuilding. this in turn (if done correctly) should burn fat and build muscle. 6-7 small well portioned meals a day with PLENTY of protein and complex carbs. also, a lot of water and sleep. Sooo much water than you think…

  50. i didn’t understand the no caffeine thing mentioned by someone. Is caffeine bad for testosterone? I’m starting to get depressed, looking at everything i love that may effect test. I’m 43, really fit, bike/run/lift weights, and eat really well (overall). My testosterone level came in at 270. Not good, right? (have yet to go back to doc). One thing that has not been mentioned – my wife and i are late on trying to have kids. Can test replacement therapy impact that? i hear it can, but wondering if a “low dose” of the gel might help me. I feel really good overall, but my libido is kinda lame…

    the beer thing is depressing – i LOVE hoppy beers like IPAs. I don’t go crazy, but it really is my only indulgence, and i partake. Sugary desserts i have no problem with. So now i’m depressed after reading the hops/estrogen connection 🙁

    1. what have you done after finding out about low T? I am 43 and in the low 300s.

  51. take dates honey eggs green tea garlic ginger vit.E milk 25mg viagra(sildenafil citrate)yoga exercises can be best for normal sex life

    1. You can also take ginseng to get sildenafil citrate in its natural form. It is a vasodilater.

  52. This is an awesome list and exactly what I needed. I’ve been trying to brainstorm a list of generating more testosterone naturally for an upcoming post. Excellent writings as always 🙂

  53. This is a really interesting topic with great comments. All seems logical to me, just putting in practice is always the challenge due to the day to day stressors that we all live with.

  54. What’s up Risso? You all need to gizzo! that is because i sidzo! LOL dumbass

  55. Testosterone is the most important hormone in our body influencing the development of muscle mass (in a womanly way in women and a manly way in men), bone density and sex drive. healthy diet, regular exercise and sexual intercourse will increase your testosterone,

  56. so uhm, had a complete blood levels scan done a couple days ago, found out i have very high levels of alot of good things, testosterone being one of them, i have 85% more testosterone then most males at my age, which i found to be really high, my doctor said its not a bad thing and asked about my eating habits, and now hes stumped, so iv been researching reasons i could have such high testosterone levels with poor eating habits, not much heavy wieght lifting, etc, and i cant figure it out, could anyone either explain to me or post a link on reasons i could have such high testosterone?

  57. Than you for posting this. My doctor told me I have a low testosterone level and suggested a testosterone gel. But I read about it and fear the side effects. I know I am often stressed and cheat on my sleep time. I know I don’t exercise enough and am already low in Vitamin D. I need to lose about 15 pounds. All in all, I need to get up and do stuff. Just want to thank you for posting this. It makes me feel better knowing what I need to do instead of having to apply some expensive prescription that may have harmful side effects in other parts of my life.

  58. A recent Japanese study found that vitamin K2 (MK-4) increased testosterone production in rats and concluded that supplementation could reduce down-regulation of testosterone production in the elderly. (PMID 21914161)

  59. If you read it closely, it says that women are just more sensitive to testosterone. Women who lift weights are just healthier. Their bodies don’t bulk up like men, because the bodies react to just a little testosterone and the cycles of hormones change throughout the month anyway, flushing things out so there is more sensitivity to less, because it is not always at high levels. It ebbs and flows much more than men. See estrus, for more detailed info.

  60. Bottom line, just eat fresh food,exercise everyday,enjoy the sun,take sum zinc and have sex as much as possible. Do active and fun things that make you HAPPY! Be well!

  61. hi. i cant get pregnant because of my high testosterone level of about 0.152ng/ml how can i lower this hormone so i can get pregnat. thanks

  62. im 33 and i have 0.152ng/ml testosterone and this cause me not to get pregnant for 8yrs…. how can i lower the testorerone level and how to improve my female hormone…pls help me

  63. I think I could use more testrne. and you tell me to eat my shellfish. I thouhgt shellfish are unclean. you know,like in the book of Deut. ? whats the alternatiove if youre kosher?

  64. there are 4 billion women in the world – why waste 1 second argueing with a man hater. Ignore their “egg” and leave them barren and lonely while they “think” they produce all life. There are 3.2 billion women that love men – those are the givers of live (not the 800 milion that hate).

  65. Testosterone contributes a large role to our body, for men testosterone helps sperm production, as well as causing puberty! For females it helps female sexual desire and the maintenance of healthy bones and muscles. female produce smaller amounts of testosterone than the male does.

  66. Dear Cortisol,

    You decrease Testosterone, and
    Released when the mind tells itself “You are a loser”;
    Released when your status is lower on the pecking chain.

    Yet, I am not a Type A personality, and may be submissive. Does this mean I have to be a jerk and dominate others and ALWAYS WIN in order to satisfy my testosterone levels??

    Hormonally yours,
    Chandler

  67. I tried this Dr Max Powers Testosterone Booster – my first bottle to see if it works. It was worth to try… I can feel much better than before, my strength increased a lot and my muscle mass too, I also noticed some fat loss but I can’t tell if it is due to this product or because the product is giving me more strength to exercise more. Try it and you are going to remember me. Just take it as it suppose to. Some people don’t see results as described because they start a diet together with it, just keep with your regular life and take it. You will see.

  68. I find it hard to believe this article generated this many (idiotic) posts.

    And still no-one pointed out that Jimmy Cliff’s song is “the HARDER they come.”

  69. what is the best natural sorce of testosteron. which can increase testosteron lelel in thr human body.

  70. hi….
    this is the first time I am approaching u.I am a married man but for the last ten years i and my wife is totally stressed.we have a problem of sex.We can not meet at night.due to lack of sexual production.Always feel lazy,do nothing,head ache,body ache and so other problem.This time We have 4 children.I and my wife is 34 year old.Pl suggest a suitable medicine for us.so that we can enjoy our life.I specially involved i a gas problem…….Thanks

  71. For most of my life I have been very athletic, surfing, weight lifting, racquetball,mountain biking, swimming, etc, etc.I have always looked, felt and acted much younger than my age, even today at 57! People always say I thought you were about 40! Bless them!! LOL!
    But for the last year, I have lost my motivation, my drive and the desire to better myself. It is like someone just through a switch, “ON” to “OFF”. I have also gained about 20lbs, but more importantly to me, I have gained a large percent of body fat and muscle lost at the same time. If I try to lose weight, I get severe bouts of Gout attacks, which I have been told is the release of purines in the fat reserves! I’m screwed!! So, the question is, do those Testosterone Injections from “those” specialized clinics help, AND, are they safe? I am really trying to eat properly and only use “Naturally” fed animal proteins and unprocessed foods. HELP!!!!!!!!!!!! thank you!

    1. ‘On/Off’ could be Thyroid. See if painting the soft, bottom part of your foot with Iodine helps. If a plate of oysters gives you more energy think Zinc deficiency. As we get older our digestive system gets a bit tired, you might try some Digestive Enzymes for a couple of months. Add some Vit. B. 😀

  72. Great article! As someone who’s currently on TRT I find articles like this invaluable. Unfortunately for me no amount of “heavy lifting” or vitamin D will completely replace what cancer has taken from me.

  73. ok good information in general .but I have say these are the lamest comments I have ever read. people get a life and don’t bother to answer me I wont be coming back here to read them

  74. I’m a big drinker of black tea. Its recently occurred to me that most tea comes from China or the far-east; now one of the most air-borne polluted areas of the world thanks to the huge industrial growth taking place there(esp China). The question I’m asking is how many of these gender-bending Test lowering chemicals are finding their way into the tea I love so much and have been drinking for years now? The rain that falls on these tea fields must surely be heavily polluted? My libido has tailed off quite alarmingly in the last 18 months as well as my ability to maintain a full erection(although I am 44 now!). Am gonna stop the tea right now and see what happens!

    1. I’m four years older than you and I know that feeling. One of the things that has helped me is to throw out any plastic bottles that contain BPA. I have a water bottle I use everyday and replacing that brought back my morning erections after about 12 days. Doing kegals and strengthening your pelvic floor muscles the proper way has also helped out as well. Be sure to drink plenty of water, I didn’t think that mattered but you have no idea how important that is.

  75. Wow! Is the Issue here about the Article or about what Women want to have written in a different Article.

    I am sure? If you don’t die before a New Different Article for Women’s Testosterone is written, you will have plenty of time to think about your new ways to change what is!

    Read what is written absorb what you can and be ready for your questions when the time is right.

    Just get on with it

  76. @Dan Where did you read that? I’ve read that vegans don’t get the proper amounts of protein to balance their hormones which results in lower testosterone.

  77. @Dan That is a bummer, your posts are very civilized, not sure they would be doing that.

    1. They have. All my replies have to be from a different email address.

      This behavior makes me question the ultimate agenda of the page and lowers my trust in the information given. My original post was simply a correction of the information given here. There’s no reason to delete it without having an ulterior motive.

      I hope you’re still getting these as email notifications.

  78. Just happened across this looking for help for my hubby and myself. We will both be 62 this year. And retired. In our younger years we pretty much lived life in the fast lane and seem to paying now. Although our diet and drinking habits were bad we did manage to be pretty physically active. I had a full hysterectomy at 50 and take no hormone replacement. Aside from being overweight I feel great and have no health problems. Hubs has Afib and arrythmia problems and had a hip replaced 2 years ago due to necrosis. I have been reading up on ways to improve our health. Tell me it isn’t too late.

    I have zero confidence in the medical community so “talking to my doctor” is not an option here. I did just have a full physical and they found absolutely nothing wrong with me other than slightly high cholesterol. We would like to ease back into exercise and improve our diet as well.

    I read an article recently about pitutary damage from head injury causing many problems including affecting hormones. Hubs had a bad knock on the head about 15 years ago and thinking back on it thats when his problems started. I think he needs to see an endocrinologist.

    I have read every comment here and it seems that most of you are intelligent. I would appreciate intelligent responses.

    1. Ruth, I hope you can still get replies to your comments. I would encourage both of you to change to a primal life. The food is good, gives us more energy and we see our health problems decrease and sometimes disappear all together. Give it 30 days or more and see how it feels and then you’ll know that “we are what we eat” and that’s a good thing when you are strictly eating good food.

  79. i am 22 year old boy and dnt have a moustache also i have enlarged breast. how to treat it?

    1. Naresh, have your doctor check hormone levels with a simple blood test. RE:hair -this might be just a separate issue if your family is not very hairy.

  80. hi is this possible to use this testosterone on fat body?
    i mean i m fat and doing exercise regularly can i use this to make my body in shape? or first i have to remove fats from my body?
    is this boost confidence level as well?

    1. Tommy, also have your Thyroid and Zinc levels checked (Re. metabolic rate). Whenever changing body shape (i assume you already know) increase Proteins = muscle growth and decrease Carbs. Increase green vegetables = oxygen and vitamins.

  81. Well, I did not know I even had low-T until I lost libido and had some ED issues. My problem: as a vegetarian eating extremely healthy, I was not consuming adequate fats and was also very low on zinc. While I was exercising daily, I was doing only cardio because I have run my whole life. So after taking zinc supplement, lifting weights and adding some fat to my diet, I was able to bring my T level to normal using only natural means, and I am proud of that. Who knows what I might need when I enter my 50s.

  82. It’s called the pregnenelone steal because this molecule is the common precursor for testosterone and cortisol. It’s more than lowering stress and sleeping well. Cortisol gets going later after a high carb meal spikes your insulin and the blood sugar level falls too low from the overinflated rush of insulin. Keep those blood sugars maintained with a Paleo diet.

  83. Assuming that i hit the gym Monday-Wednesday-friday for doing some compound exercises as you propose in your tips such as “Squats,Bench Press,Deadlist,Olympic lifts, Back rows,overhead press, weightened Chin/pulls ups/, can i also go for 10 to 20 set of 6-8 second burst sprint? in between the gym days with other words “Tuesday , thursday, saturday| aNd sunday is gonna be my day off.. Will this raise my testosterone or it will lower it even more? Iam not expert so i dont know if 6 day program like the above will lower my testo or it will raise it! Iam planning to do 4 set of each exercises with the maximum weight that i can lift! Please someone WHO knows answer (:

  84. I am 31 years old male. how much ng/di testesteron horman be in my body.

  85. Dear Mark

    I have heard about women having 10 x less testosterone than men and young women having 20x more testosterone than oestrogen but I have never heard anything about women being more sensitive to the effects of testosterone. If I used androgel or something like that would I get muscly quicker? I’m sick of having skinny arms but too shy to go weight lift at the gym with all the dench guys

    Thanks
    Jen

  86. Mark, you made a mistake:

    You wrote under the prenatal heading that dihydrotestosterone (DHT) was a more potent *anabolic* hormone, when in reality, DHT’s anabolic activity is weaker than it’s androgenic activity (using the traditional baseline of testosterone as a 1:1 anabolic:androgenic activity hormone).

    Wonderful site, just thought it was important to point this out lest someone reading this get the idea planted in their head that they want to raise DHT relative to testosterone in order to build muscle, when they’ll probably just get a caveman’s jawline (I’m ambivalent) and a receding hairline (not cool).

  87. Help! Hip arthritis and Low T.

    I am being told I need bi-lateral hip replacement at 44 yrs. Old by my Orthapedic dr. I received a 2nd opinion from a Regenexx wellness dr. He said,” give me 6 mos.” I said ok. He ran multiple blood tests and said my T and freeT was low at 295 totalT and 67 Free T. He prescrubed me weekly shots for rest of my adult life. I had my first shot 2 days ago. I was depressed and know there are natural ways to increase T ….. Does anyone know what I can do to raise T without doing heavy squat lifting….Due to my hip joints I am limited. I can swim, do upper body lifting and some leg extensions…… any advice????

  88. What about Synthetic Testosterone, I mean Hey….Arnold Schwarzenegger is still Alive and Looks Good, So does Sylvester Stallone.

  89. I lost my right testicle in March of 82 because it twisted on me cutting off blood flow while I was in the Navy. It happened again in January 19 of 2016 there maybe some life in it still because he kept it wet and warm and took our the two twists and put in four stitches to keep it from twisting. February 4 is when I see the doctor to see if it’s still alive. My wife told me that the doctor said I could take shots but I don’t like that idea. What foods, herbs and spices can I eat and drink?

  90. Tribulus terrestris is the way to go for natural testosterone boost. Tribulus elevates luteinizing hormone, which turns into testosterone. I been buying the Testosterone Booster from Dr Max Powers online, and I have had no side effects with this product. Some of the other testosterone supplements have weird side effects, but the Max Powers one is perfect for me.