Testosterone is the anabolic hormone par excellence, higher levels of testosterone are related to greater muscle development and a lower fat percentage, for this reason many people seek to increase their testosterone levels naturally, in this article we will give some tips for make it happen.
Percentage of body fat
This is undoubtedly the most important point when it comes to increasing testosterone levels naturally.
A percentage of high body fat drastically reduces testosterone levels, so if we want to increase them our first objective in the case that we are in this situation will be to reduce the percentage of body fat to a healthier range, between 12 and a 15% minimum.
Assuming that we have a healthy percentage of body fat, and that it is not necessary to make a definition phase, that is, a phase where we consume fewer calories than we spend to lose fat, there are some dietary changes that we can make to try to increase testosterone levels.
It is important to consume at least the maintenance calories (that is, consume the same calories we spend) as this will favor a more favorable hormonal environment, since a caloric deficit for a long period of time considerably reduces testosterone levels.
On the other hand, not only calories are important, but the origin of these, it is important to base our food on foods with a high nutritional density, and not on processed foods that do not contribute anything.
An error that is usually committed usually is to reduce the intake of fat in the diet; studies (1) show that a higher intake of fat and cholesterol in the diet can increase testosterone levels, so it is not advisable to reduce your intake.
In short and in summary, if you have a body fat percentage try to base your diet on healthy foods, maintain an adequate caloric intake and include enough fat in your diet, these are dietary changes you can make to try to increase testosterone levels .
On the basis that everyone who reads this article trains
Starting from the base that all of us who read this article already train, it is necessary to make clear that there is nothing magical that you can do in the training that is going to suppose a great increase in the levels of testosterone.
Even so, there are several points that I would try to respect:
– The training should be intense and not excessively long
– The training should be based on the basic exercises, since they involve more muscle mass and the hormonal response is better
– The volume of training is a very important variable, greater volume of training is translated into a greater increase in testosterone levels
– breaks between sets should be long enough in the basic exercises so that you can improve on them, and between 1 and 2 minutes for analytical exercises in order to improve the hormonal response
In addition to all this, it has also been observed that HIIT sessions may be a good idea to increase testosterone levels (2).
Something I want to make clear is that the important thing is not to conduct a training focused on increasing testosterone levels, the important thing is to perform a focused training to improve our performance and our body composition, and in that situation, the consequence will be an increase in testosterone levels.
It is also important to clarify that the fact that there is a better post-training hormonal response does not mean that we are going to gain more muscle mass, since it is an acute response and not chronic, so it does not have special relevance, even so, I would pay him some attention when all the basics are covered testosterone boosting foods.
Rest and stress
This point is especially relevant, we have already seen in other articles the importance of rest and its effects on recovery, muscle mass gain, hormonal environment, etc.
Sleeping 8 hours instead of 5 hours translates into a better hormonal environment, a greater loss of body fat, a greater gain in muscle mass and specifically, higher levels of testosterone.
On the other hand, stress negatively affects testosterone levels, chronic stress increases cortisol, and although an acute increase in cortisol levels is not problematic, when these remain elevated chronically there are consequences, such as reduction in testosterone levels.
In fact, it has been observed in some studies that meditation can be helpful, slightly increasing testosterone levels (3, 4).
In summary, reducing the percentage of body fat to a healthy point, controlling the diet well, training with intensity and resting well are the most important pillars to maintain adequate testosterone levels, and even then we cannot expect our levels to double.