This article originally appeared in Men’s Health.
By adding these simple foods to your daily diet, you can actively boost your testosterone – naturally!
Grapes for more active sperm
Eat a bunch of red grapes daily to give your own low-hanging fruit a boost: the skins contain resveratrol, which makes for hardier sperm. Chinese researchers found the equivalent of 500mg – roughly the amount in 5-10g of grape skins – was enough to raise testosterone levels and improve epididymal motility (your sperm’s ability to swim).
Tuna for a higher sex drive
Tuna’s ‘fragrance’ may not be ideal for a first date, but its vitamin D content is. The vitamin bolsters testosterone by up to 90%, found a study at Graz Medical University, Austria, slashing levels of libido-killing chemical Sex Hormone-Binding Globulin (SHBG). A can of tuna contains 100% of your RDA.
Avocados to clear your pipes
LDL cholesterol doesn’t just clog arteries – it leads to erectile dysfunction and a lack of flow in the downstairs department, too. Penn State University researchers found men with high intakes of monounsaturated fat – try avocado, nuts and vegetable oils – had lower LDL cholesterol and more testosterone. Try half a mashed avocado spread on a bagel, topped with shreds of smoked salmon.
Pomegranate to fight impotence
Some say it was the Biblical forbidden fruit, and old Adam could have done a lot worse. The International Journal of Impotence Research reports that 47% of impotent men found their condition improved after a daily glass of antioxidant-rich pomegranate juice. You don’t need a serpent to tell you that’s a good thing.
Venison for muscle growth
Veggies look away: “A meat-free diet can lower testosterone by 14%,” says Carruthers. “Lack of protein boosts testosterone-de-activating hormones.” On the other hand, a University of Utah study found a diet overly rich in the sat fats in beef and lamb can also make testosterone dip. The middle ground is venison. Stag-gering.
Garlic for muscle maintenance
Banish vampires and weak muscles alike: garlic contains allicin, a compound that lowers levels of ‘stress hormone’ cortisol. “Cortisol competes with testosterone for the same sites within muscle cells,” says nutrition consultant Alan Gordon. Ditch the cortisol, then the testosterone can get to work. Garlic’s more potent uncooked.
Honey for better blood flow
For extra buzz in the bedroom, dip into honey. It contains the mineral boron, linked to high testosterone. Honey is also rich in nitric oxide, says Gordon: “This is key in opening up blood vessels that create erections. Four teaspoons of honey can boost nitric oxide levels by 50%.”
Milk for a lean physique
Proof we are supposed to have hard bodies, University of Pittsburgh researchers found that fat blokes have more oestrogen. Cut the blubber by boosting your testosterone levels with milk: its amino acids boost production of anabolic hormones, which in turn build muscle and trim fat. The Department of Health recommends three 200ml glasses a day.
Eggs for a hormone boost
Eggs really do have a sunny side. “The yolk’s cholesterol is the precursor for testosterone,” says clinical nutritionist Kim Pearson. Don’t worry about your heart: a University of Connecticut study found that study subjects could eat three eggs a day without affecting cholesterol levels.
Cabbage to flush out female hormones
King of the veg patch, cabbage is full of a chemical called indole-3-carbinol, which rids your blood of girly hormones. Healthy men took 500mg daily for a week at Rockefeller University; their oestrogen levels halved, making testosterone more effective. It’s time to become more of a man at meal times.