Can Asparagus Boost Testosterone?
by Benjamin Bunting BA(Hons) PGCert
Written by Ben Bunting: BA, PGCert. (Sport & Exercise Nutrition) // British Army Physical Training Instructor // S&C Coach.
The hormone puzzle is incomplete without the right diet. When you put all the pieces in place, your testosterone will rise at an incredible rate.
Researchers have found that certain nutrients can have an immediate effect on the male hormones. They stimulate your brain, causing it to produce more than enough testosterone to increase strength, muscle size and libido.
How can you make the right choices when there are so many options?
This article takes a closer look at the widely known aphrodisiac, asparagus. It could be the secret to opening the floodgates of testosterone.
Asparagus is a type of vegetable
Asparagus is both a vegetable and a perennial. The Mediterranean region is the origin of this plant, but it is now grown all over the world.
The fleshy spears are shaped like buds and rest on a stem. The taste is earthy and mild.
Others say that it has an unusual flavor and is not unlike broccoli.
Asparagus comes in a vibrant green, although you may also see purple and even white versions.
Like many other vegetables, asparagus has a high nutrient content and is low in calories.
This food is rich in vitamins and minerals, such as vitamins A, C, and E. It also contains a variety of B vitamins, (thiamine riboflavin, and niacin), and selenium manganese, and potassium. This food is also high in fiber, and low in fat.
Testosterone boosting nutrients
From a testosterone-boosting point of view, the most important nutrients here are D-aspartic acid, magnesium, vitamin B6 and vitamin K.
The food contains only modest amounts of nutrients (e.g., only 4% your daily needs of magnesium), but it is still a balanced nutritional kickstart for hormone production.
Asparagus, a vegetable rich in vitamins, minerals and magnesium, is also a good source of vitamins B, A, C, and E.
Asparagus Is a Natural Aphrodisiac
Asparagus is a healthy food based solely on the nutrients it contains. The strong antioxidants in asparagus can help improve the way cells, tissues and organs function. Here are some benefits:
- Improves digestion
- Anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic and has anti-inflammatory properties
- It may be beneficial for your teeth, bones and vascular system
- Can improve mood and relieve depression
- Reduce the risk of birth defects by using cell protective products
Galen, an ancient Greek physician and philosopher from the second century BC, praised asparagus' libido enhancing properties.
It has since been used in love poems, herbal medicine, and aphrodisiac legends.
Galen was on to something, even though it's not a science-based explanation.
Can asparagus increase testosterone levels?
Asparagus' balanced nutritional profile will boost your testosterone in several different ways. Here's how...
D-AA, an amino acid that has been used for many years to boost testosterone levels and its precursor luteinizing hormonal (LH), is now being studied.
Cooked and drained asparagus contains around 3,000 mg of the testosterone-boosting nutrient D-aspartic acid.
In a variety of studies, this nutrient was found to increase male hormones.
In a 2012 clinical study, supplementation with D-AA over 90 days helped a male group increase their T level by 30%-60%. Their seminal counts and mobility also increased by 60-100%.
Magnesium is an essential mineral that plays a key role in many enzymatic processes. This includes the regulation of muscle, bone and brain tissue.
In a study published by Biological Trace Elements Research,  it was found that a group martial artists who had exercised intensively could still increase their testosterone levels with 10mg of magnesium per kg of weight.
Athletes typically only get around 70% of their magnesium needs from food . Therefore, supplementing with an nutrient booster can be beneficial.
Although asparagus only contains 3% of your daily magnesium needs and still contributes towards your nutrient targets, supplementation is a more effective way of getting the right amount of magnesium and other testosterone-boosting nutrients in your diet.
A man in athletics running along the road of a forest area
The B vitamins all help regulate your energy intake and allow you to use it effectively. The B6 vitamin in particular is known to help with T-building by decreasing estrogen levels in the body and stimulating testosterone production directly in testes.
This hormone also helps you direct energy where it is most needed.
In one study, low levels of vitamin B6 led to lower testosterone levels .
However, supplementing with the water-soluble B6 led to estrogen levels being reduced by 30% . This is a great thing, especially when you consider that estrogen is the worst enemy of testosterone.
Our last asparagus testosterone-boosting nutrient is vitamin K - a fat-soluble compound responsible for regulating your vascular system. The inverse correlation between vitamin K2 and cardiovascular disease is linked with long-term improvements in health.
It is possible that up to 80% of Americans are not getting enough vitamin K2 through their diet. This has an adverse effect on the testosterone level.
Recent clinical trials found that male rats who were given the equivalent human dose of 12mg per kilogram of bodyweight for five weeks saw their testosterone levels increase by 56% on average - but by as much as 70% in certain rats. This is a huge amount in such a short time.
A study in Food & Function found that the K2 supplement increased testosterone levels by boosting the testicular steroidogenesis – a process whereby steroid hormones can be made by converting cholesterol to steroid.
Asparagus has long been recognized for its natural aphrodisiac properties, providing men with a boost of testosterone and libido.
This phenomenon may be explained by asparagus' rich array of vitamins and minerals; specifically its content of B6, folate and potassium that have been shown to promote testosterone production.
Furthermore, asparagus contains several other essential nutrients which support hormonal balance as well as healthy fertility including magnesium, zinc and selenium.
Aspartic acid, an amino acid found in asparagus roots, has been demonstrated to promote secretion of gonadotropin-releasing hormones and luteinizing hormone (LH).
Furthermore, aspartic acid can be converted to arginine for vasodilation purposes that increases nitric oxide production in blood, stimulating testes to produce more testosterone.
Asparagus extract is also thought to contain phytoestrogen compounds known as saponins that act similarly to estrogen.
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- D’Aniello, Getal. d-aspartate, a key element for the improvement of sperm quality. Adv. Sex. Med. 2012; 2: 47–53
- Cinar, V et al. Effects of magnesium supplementation on testosterone levels of athletes and sedentary subjects at rest and after exhaustion. Biol Trace Elem Res. 2011; 140(1): 18-23
- Nica, AS et al. Magnesium supplementation in top athletes – effects and recommendations. Med Sport. 2015; XI(1): 2482-2494
- Symes, EK et al. Increased target tissue uptake of, and sensitivity to, testosterone in the vitamin B6 deficient rat. J Steroid Biochem. 1984; 20:1089–93
- Allgood, VE et al Vitamin B6 modulates transcriptional activation by multiple members of the steroid hormone receptor superfamily. J. Biol. Chem. 1992; 267:3819–3824
- Asagi, I et al. Menaquinone-4 enhances testosterone production in rats and testis-derived tumor cells. Lipids in Health and Disease. 2011; 10: 158
- Takumi, N et al. Dietary vitamin K alleviates the reduction in testosterone production induced by lipopolysaccharide administration in rat testis. Food Funct. 2011; 2(7): 406-11