Testosterone is most often attributed just to men; however, it is important to the health of both men and women. As everyone ages the natural level of testosterone produced by the body begins to decline and is responsible for many of the natural signs of aging.
Aside from natural factors, there are many environmental factors that can also contribute to low or decreasing levels of testosterone, including exposure to statin drugs.
Other environmental testosterone killers include*:
Phthalates, which are chemicals that have been shown to "feminize" men and disrupt the normal function of the endocrine-system.
According to Dr. Joseph Mercola*:
Phthalates are found to cause poor testosterone synthesis by disrupting an enzyme required to create the male hormone. Women with high levels of DEHP and DBP (two types of phthalates) in their system during pregnancy were found to have sons that had feminine characteristics. Phthalates are found in vinyl flooring, detergents, automotive plastics, soaps and shampoos, deodorants, perfumes, hair sprays, plastic bags and food packaging, among a long list of common products.
Aside from phthalates, other chemicals that possess gender-bending traits are:
Bisphenol-A (BPA) – Common in plastic products such as reusable water bottles, food cans, and dental sealants. BPA can alter fetal development and heighten breast cancer risk in women.
Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) – A potential carcinogen commonly used in water- and grease-resistant food coatings.
Methoxychlor (insecticide) and Vinclozin (fungicide) – Shown in studies to induce changes in four subsequent generations of male mice after initial exposure.
Nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs) – Potent endocrine-disruptors that can interfere with your gene expression and glandular system. They are also referred to as estrogen-mimicking chemicals that have been implicated in unnatural sex changes in male marine species.
Bovine growth hormones – Estrogen-mimicking and growth-promoting chemicals that are added to commercial dairy products.
Unfermented soy products – Contain antinutrients and hormone-like substances, and are NOT health foods (contrary to popular belief).
MSG – A food additive that can impact reproductive health and fertility.
Fluoride – A potent neurotoxin found in certain US water supplies and is linked to endocrine disruption, decreased fertility rates, and lower sperm counts.
Pharmaceuticals that provide synthetic hormones – Pharmaceuticals like contraceptives and provide you with synthetic hormones that your body isn’t designed to respond to and detoxify properly. Chronic illnesses may result from long-term use of these drugs.
Metalloestrogens – A class of cancer-causing estrogen-mimicking compounds that can be found in thousands of consumer products. Included in the list of potent metalloestrogens are aluminum, antimony, copper, lead, mercury, cadmium, and tin.
What Do You Need to Produce Testosterone?
The body is naturally efficient at producing testosterone and uses a sensitive negative feedback loop to keep the body in constant balance. To do this however, the body needs sufficient amounts of key micro-nutrients to facilitate the process.
Two of the most important being zinc and vitamin D3. Zinc is essential to the body and can only be obtained through our diet. Vitamin D3 is created by our body through skins exposure.
Most modern westerners are deficient in D3 from an irrational fear of the sun and from spending all of their waking hours indoors.
We don't advocate for skipping sunscreen all the time, but if you haven't seen the sun in a few days, wait 30 to 40 mins to put on sunscreen to allow your skin to utilize the full potential of the suns beneficial rays.
Stress is also natural testosterone killer. Stress causes increased amounts of cortisol which reduce the effect of testosterone on your body.
Four Foods That Increase Testosterone Levels Naturally
After ensuring you are getting plenty of zinc and vitamin D3, it is important to evaluate the rest of your diet, as a poor diet can also lead to lower testosterone production and poor health in general.
While there are also many other ways to increase testosterone production including exercise and sleep, the food we eat is often the best medicine. If your goal is to slow the aging process, build muscle, increase sex-drive and feel your best, these foods that increase testosterone should be in your diet.
Testosterone Boosting Food #1. Pine Pollen
Pine Pollen naturally contains over 200+ micro-nutrients including valuable minerals such as zinc, which we previously mentioned is critical to the production of testosterone.
However, Pine Pollen's true power comes from the natural phyto-androgens that it naturally contains, including testosterone and DHEA. These androgens, along with Pine Pollen's other compounds supplement the body's own production and help to restore balance.*
Testosterone Boosting Food #2. Olive Oil
Oil olive is not only good for your heart and brain, it is also great for boosting testosterone. In research, participants who consumed olive oil daily experienced an increase in testosterone levels between 17 percent and 19 percent over a three-week period.*
Testosterone Boosting Food #3. Cruciferous Vegetables
Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower contain a powerful compound that can help fight the excess estrogens men and women are exposed to through soy in processed foods and by the chemicals found in household cleaners, pesticides and cosmetics.
The compound contained in cruciferous vegetables, Indole-3-carbinol, may increase the excretion of estradiol (one estrogen hormone) in some men by up to 50 percent, thus increasing the amount of testosterone available.*
This may also help reduce the risk of prostate cancer, which is believed to be partially caused by rising levels of estradiol levels in the body.
Testosterone Boosting Food #4.Whey Protein
Whey protein has been shown in studies to lower the body's production of cortisol when combined with resistance training, thereby improving the amount of testosterone available in the body.
According to Dr. Mercola:
In research from Finland, scientists gave participants 15 grams of whey isolate both before and after resistance exercises. Muscle biopsy showed an increase in testosterone production of up to 25 percent, which was maintained for 48 hours.13
The authors theorized that a greater expression of testosterone in skeletal muscle could allow for greater uptake from the blood. Although important to the production of testosterone, too much protein can have the opposite effect.
Conclusion: Testosterone is an important hormone for both men and women and maintaining healthy levels are key to balancing the endocrine system and reducing the risk of many chronic conditions and diseases.
Though there are many ways to increase testosterone naturally, consuming foods that increase testosterone or at least have the potential to influence the production of these hormones is critical.
Diet is usually the best and cheapest medicine anyone can invest in for themselves. If you do nothing else, make sure you are getting plenty of zinc and vitamin D3 in your diet. Then add powerful superfoods like Pine Pollen to your diet to fully optimize your potential.
Symptoms of Low Testosterone
Higher blood pressure
Decreased strength and loss of lean muscle tissue
Decreased muscular endurance
Low sexual desire
Lack of sexual responsiveness (ED and Libido)
Increased body fat
Increased cardiovascular risk
Dr. Mercola - www.mercola.com
Note: Always consult your physician if you think you are suffering from a serious condition like low testosterone.