Foods to boost testosterone

upset man having problem...Pic: Shutterstock / Yuriy Rudyy

The word testosterone is often used to describe masculinity, and the truth is it is essential to men's health. This hormone is thought to regulate sex drive, bone mass, muscle size and strength, and of course, sperm production.

If you are suffering from a lack of libido, erectile dysfunction, or have noticed changes in muscle mass or body hair, it could be down to low levels of testosterone, but according to science there are some foods that could make a difference.

Lean protein
It is thought a lack of protein increases the levels of hormones that de-activate testosterone, and a meat-free diet could lower your levels of the latter by 14 per cent. Unfortunately a study by the University of Utah found that eating too much saturated fat could also cause it to decrease, so opt for a lean protein source such as chicken or venison to give yourself a boost.

If you are having problems performing in the bedroom, it could take just a few teaspoons of honey to make the difference. Not only does it contain boron, a mineral associated with high testosterone, but it's also high in nitric oxide, which opens up the blood vessels that create erections. Sweet.

We're not suggesting the cabbage soup diet, but this tasty vegetable is packed with indole-3-carbinol, a chemical that flushes out the female hormone oestrogen. In fact a study at Rockefeller University revealed that healthy men who took a 500mg supplement each day halved their oestrogen levels, thereby making their testosterone more effective, so it's worth adding a little green to your plate.

For those lacking in the libido department, vitamin D is a must. Researchers at Graz Medical University in Austria found that this key vitamin boosted testosterone levels by a whacking great 90 per cent - and just one simple can of tuna will give you all you need for the recommended daily dose.

The benefit of avocado has less to do with boosting your testosterone than doing away with the things that reduce levels of this manly hormone. LDL, or 'bad cholesterol' not only clogs the arteries but leads to a lack of blood flow and potentially erectile dysfunction. The likes of avocado, nuts and vegetable oils are a healthier monounsaturated variety of fat that will keep LDL levels at bay.

Specifically the red grape in this case. The resveratrol found in the skins of these moreish fruits make for tougher sperm, and according to Chinese researchers, just five to 10g of grape skins is enough to increase testosterone levels and improve sperm motility, so tuck in to keep your swimmers in tip-top condition.

Impotence not only affects the ability to perform sexually - it can have a seriously negative effect on a man's self-esteem. But a report published in the International Journal of Impotence Research claimed that 47 per cent of impotent men reported an improvement in their problem with just one daily glass of pomegranate juice.

Have you suffered from low testosterone? Did changing your diet make a difference? Leave your comments below...
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