A woman’s body produces testosterone through the ovaries and adrenal glands. A multitalented hormone, testosterone boosts both libido andenergy, maintains muscle mass, strengthens bone and ensures the nipples and clitoris are sensitive to sexual pleasure. Testosterone also helps prevent bone loss, improves body composition (building lean mass and reducing body fat) and supports cognitive function.
As we age, our bodies produce less androgen (testosterone), estrogen and progesterone. By age 40, women produce about half the testosterone we did in our twenties. These levels drop further still with the onset of menopause or for women who have had their ovaries removed. Many clinicians believe that the diminished energy, decreased sexual desire and “flatness” of mood that some women experience during and after menopause are directly related to declining levels of testosterone.
Females have less testosterone than males (normal male total testosterone values are 0.95-4.3 pg/dl, compared to the 0.7-3.6 pg/dl of females).
Normal concentrations of testosterone range from between 25 and 100 nanograms per milliliter of blood. Some clinicians also recommend an at-home saliva test that checks “free” hormone levels (these are the active hormones), not just total levels.
Several studies suggest, that small amounts of androgen added to estrogen replacement therapy can restore sexual desire, improve energy and promote a sense of well-being.
Now the question arises, how to boost this “T” hormone, Naturally?
- Eat a well-balanced diet to stabilize your hormones- Fiber and foods rich in minerals, such as potassium and magnesium can help balance hormones. Tofu, tempeh and other soy products are excellent sources of phytoestrogens, plant compounds that behave like mild estrogens in the body, helping relieve menopausal symptoms. Other sources of phytoestrogens include apples, alfalfa, cherries, potatoes, rice, wheat and yams.
- Heavy weight train larger muscle groups– The production of testosterone is elevated in body when large muscles groups feel stress mainly caused by heavy loads. So in order to keep your testosterone on optimum levels, heavy weight training on larger muscle groups like thighs, chest and lats for shorter span of time i.e. low-rep heavy-weight training is recommended.
- Ensure healthy fats in your diet- sourced from fish oil, olive oil and nuts. Omega 3 fatty acid has tendency to boost testosterone besides its blood thinning attributes. Eat avocados and fatty fish, and add a flax or fish oil supplement to your diet.
Daily intake should not exceed 40% proteins and 15% of healthy fats of your total caloric intake in a day (2000 kcal diet plan should not include more than 800 kcal from proteins and 300kcal from fats). Proteins encourage testosterone production and fats are vital in regulating hormonal functions.
- Add a lot of green vegetables in your diet- as they are rich in vitamin E
- Add the herbal supplement in your diet like, ginseng: it comes in tea, powder or capsule forms. It is also sometimes used in energy drinks or nutritional juice supplements.
- Add a Vitamin C supplement to your diet. About 1,000 to 1,500 milligrams of vitamin C is enough for the average adult. Vitamin C helps reduce the enzyme naturally produced by your body that converts testosterone into estrogen.
- Keep your sex life alive for a positive effect on testosterone production.
- Limit your intake of alcohol. Alcohol disturbs many of the body’s natural hormonal processes. Women should drink no more than one glass of wine (particularly red wine) or one strong drink per day.
- 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).
Leading a Primal life, free of excessive stress and peppered with smart, intense workout , full of healthy animal fats and plenty of vitamin D, should be enough to promote adequate amounts of testosterone coursing through your veins.