Eating the right foods is one of the best and easiest ways to top up your testosterone levels. That’s why we’ve compliled this list of the top 20 testosterone boosting foods! According to recent findings, almost 25% of men over 30 years old suffer from low testosterone. This can cause a whole host of problems:
- Erectile dysfunction
- Low sex drive
- Muscle loss
- Fat gain
- and issues with mood and cognition.
- Get more sleep
- Natural testosterone boosters (yes, they do work)
- And improve your diet.
The Top 20 Testosterone Boosting FoodsSo here’s our list of the top 20 foods that increase testosterone:
#1 NutsHigh fat diets have been shown to increase testosterone production, this is why red meat eaters tend to have higher testosterone than vegetarians or vegans . Certain nuts are very high in saturated fats and can therefore boost testosterone levels in men. Just remember that they are very high in calories, so measure out portions before eating.
#2 Coconut OilWhile the many benefits of coconut oil have been slightly exaggerated, it is still an excellent source of saturated fat. Used correctly, coconut oil can be an excellent part of a high testosterone diet. A 2009 study by Hurtado de Catalfo et al found that of all the oils, coconut oil led to the largest spike in testosterone . There are many other benefits of coconut oil, provided you don’t overconsume.
#3 BeefWhile you may be under the impression that eating red meat is a fast way to die young, the truth is (as ever) more complicated. It’s definitely true that eating too much red meat can increase the risk of cancer, heart disease, and metabolic diseases. However, when eaten in sensible amounts, there are many benefits to eating red meat. Beef in particular is well known to increase testosterone. It is also a source of protein and creatine, so you can see why it is so popular with bodybuilders.
#4 EggsSpeaking of bodybuilders, why do you think that eggs are so popular with them? While they are a cheap source of protein, they are also an excellent source of “good” cholesterol. This has been shown to increase testosterone. Eggs are cheap to buy, and are suitable for vegetarians – so are a great option as part of a high testosterone diet. They are also incredibly versatile meaning you can have them as part of breakfast, lunch, or dinner—or even as a snack. Please don’t try to take them “Rocky style” (i.e. raw and in a glass). Though eggs are far less likely to cause salmonella than they were a few decades ago, it’s still an unnecessary risk!
#5 GarlicIt should be pointed out that this entry is based on a study on rats, not humans. In 2001 a study in the Journal of Nutrition found that adding a garlic supplement to rats on a high-protein diet led to a significant increase in testosterone and a reduction in cortisol . Examine.com points out that studies have shown garlic to protect the testes (where testosterone is produced) from pro-oxidative toxins . However, they also point out that very high garlic intake can actually lead to a reduction in testosterone! What does this mean? Use garlic in your diet, it has many health benefits. But don’t overdo it. It may end up doing the opposite of what you want it to.
#6 Black CoffeeNot just black coffee, but any form of caffeine can increase testosterone . However, as with garlic, too much caffeine can actually harm testosterone. That’s because caffeine can increase cortisol production. Sticking to one or two coffees per day should be absolutely fine. You can also cycle caffeine. This is where you cut your caffeine intake for a few weeks.
#7 ButterReal butter is an excellent source of fat which we have already talked about. Butter is also a source of vitamin D, which can increase testosterone in men who are deficient . As with any high-fat product, a little goes a long way. Remember that there are 9 calories per gram.
#8 SeafoodSeafood is an excellent source of vitamin D, which (as we mentioned in our butter entry) can help people who are vitamin D deficient boost their testosterone levels. Fish such as herring is particularly high in vitamin D, as are oysters, salmon, shrimp, and caviar (for the gentleman bodybuilder).
#9 AvocadoAnother example of a high fat food that can help you increase your testosterone levels, while also providing many other benefits.
#10 Cottage CheeseThis testosterone boosting food is the first indirect booster on this list. It doesn’t actually boost testosterone itself, but it can help to increase testosterone by improving your sleep. Studies have shown that the less sleep you have, the lower your testosterone levels are . By consuming foods that can help you sleep, you are indirectly increasing your t levels. Cottage cheese has been shown to improve sleep because it contains an amino acid called Tryptophan which has a calming effect on the body.
#11 Wheat BranWheat has had a lot of bad press over the last few years, as have carbohydrates in general. But this should stop now! Wheat bran is actually an excellent food for boosting your testosterone levels, and eating carbohydrates is also very effective. It contains high levels of magnesium, which have been associated with higher testosterone levels in athletes who exercise regularly .
#12 RaisinsRaisins contain resveratrol – this is an aromatase inhibitor. It blocks the production of the enzyme aromatase (which turns testosterone into estrogen). Studies have shown it to be very effective as an aromatase-inhibitor. This 2006 study  used red wine (same ingredient as raisins), but raisins do not contain alcohol – making them the better choice.
#13 White MushroomsAnother aromatase-inhibiting ingredient. White mushrooms do not boost testosterone directly, but they can lower estrogen and prevent further loss of testosterone. Which means that long-term, your t levels will return to normal.
#14 KaleKale is part of the cruciferous vegetable family, this is a group of vegetables that help to inhibit aromatase . While most bodybuilders may associate kale with yoga instructors and leggings, this food is actually perfect for men.
#15 Brussels SproutsAnother cruciferous vegetable that is either hated or loved (okay, not many people LOVE them) depending on who you ask. But Brussels sprouts are really effective at lowering estrogen and protecting testosterone. They are also excellent sources of vitamin C and magnesium (which can also boost t levels in men who are deficient).
#16 Olive OilStudies have shown that consuming olive oil as your main fat source can lead to a big boost in testosterone . The study also found that argan oil was equally effective, but this product is almost impossible to find in most shops! As with all high fat foods, use olive oil sparingly. You don’t want to gain weight from tripling your calorie intake! This would actually harm your testosterone levels.
#17 OrangesCortisol, the stress hormone, can seriously affect your testosterone levels. Luckily, there are many ways to treat it. Studies have shown that high levels of vitamin C can actually reduce cortisol levels . Oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C.
#18 CauliflowerCauliflower is another cruciferous vegetable, just like Brussels sprouts. So, it will inhibit aromatase and protect testosterone while reducing estrogen. But that’s not the only benefit of cauliflower. It also contains 80% of your daily recommended vitamin C intake. As we mentioned earlier, vitamin C can help to reduce cortisol – which can protect testosterone production.
#19 Red grapesAs with raisins, red grapes are an excellent source of resveratrol. This is an antioxidant that can increase testosterone and reduce estrogen.
#20 BroccoliThe final food on our list is probably the most stereotypical bodybuilder food there is. Broccoli. If you’ve ever hung out with a bodybuilder, you’ll remember seeing them with a Tupperware container filled with 1) Sweet potatoes 2) plain chicken 3) broccoli. It’s practically a cliché. Broccoli is an aromatase inhibitor which means that it will prevent testosterone being turned into estrogen, protecting your testosterone and lowering estrogen over time. Broccoli is also quite high in protein (for a vegetable). A 148g serving contains 4.2g of protein and it also contains 220% of your RDA for vitamin C. There is also some vitamin B-6 and magnesium, both of which have been linked to increased testosterone (through improved sleep quality if nothing else). So fill your diet with these foods that increase testosterone and you’ll instantly be on the right track to a more testosterone fuelled life!