Which Testosterone Boosters are Safe?

by Benjamin Bunting BA(Hons) PGCert

Ben Bunting BA(Hons) PGCert Sports and Exercise Nutrition Level 2 Strength and Conditioning CoachWritten by Ben Bunting: BA, PGCert. (Sport & Exercise Nutrition) // British Army Physical Training Instructor // S&C Coach.

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Testosterone boosters have become increasingly popular in recent years, with more and more men seeking ways to enhance their physical performance and overall vitality.

However, with so many options available on the market, it can be difficult to know which products are safe and effective.

As a qualified sports nutritionist who is also a military physical training instructor, I've had the opportunity to research and navigate the world of testosterone boosters extensively.

In this guide, I'll be sharing my insights and knowledge on the topic, helping you to make informed decisions when it comes to selecting safe and effective testosterone boosters.

Whether you're an athlete looking to improve your performance or simply seeking to optimize your overall health and wellbeing, this guide will provide you with the information you need to choose the right testosterone booster for your needs.

So let's dive in and explore the world of testosterone boosters together!

The dangers of unsafe testosterone boosters

While testosterone boosters can provide many benefits, it's important to be aware of the potential dangers associated with using unsafe products.

Some of the most common risks include liver damage, heart problems, and hormonal imbalances. Additionally, many testosterone boosters may contain untested or unregulated ingredients, which can be harmful to your health.

To avoid these risks, it's important to do your research and only purchase testosterone boosters from reputable sources.

Look for products that have been clinically tested and approved by regulatory agencies such as the FDA. It's also important to read the labels carefully and avoid products that contain potentially harmful ingredients such as steroids or artificial hormones.

However, even buying comething that is manufactured in a 'FDA approved' facility doesn't gurantee safety. FDA approved facilities just mean that they meet certain manufacturing criteria, it doesn't cover what is contained in supplements.

In fact, the FDA don't regulate supplements that come on to the market, instead they react to products that have caused harm, then they can take action to remove them from the market. Here's a quote from their website:

"FDA has the authority to take action against any adulterated or misbranded dietary supplement product after it reaches the market."

 

But it is important to remeber that they do not test or trial products before they hit the shelves. 

However, products made in the United Kingdom fall under 'Food Law'. This adds a layer of safety to the consumer. Who by law must be informed by the manufacturer exactly what is in the supplement. 

The website states that:

"The underpinning principles of food law are that products have to be safe for consumption and not misleadingly labelled.  Since 1990, increasing levels of regulation have been applied to foods, including to food supplements."

Therefore, it pays to understand exactly where your chosen supplement is made, and what regulations are in place to protect you.

At Military Muscle, we produce in the UK to ensure that our customers receive the best quality, and protection. 

Buy Military Muscle - protected by Food Law!

Natural ways to boost testosterone levels

If you're looking for safe and natural ways to boost your testosterone levels, there are a number of options to consider. One of the most effective ways to increase testosterone levels is through exercise.

Exercise and testosterone levels

Research has shown that regular exercise, particularly strength training, can increase testosterone levels in men.

This is because exercise stimulates the production of testosterone and other hormones that are essential for muscle growth and overall health.

To optimize your testosterone levels, try incorporating strength training exercises into your workout routine.

This can include weight lifting, bodyweight exercises, or resistance band workouts. Aim to work out at least 3-4 times per week, with each session lasting 30-60 minutes.

Do Compound Exercises Yield Testosterone?

One of the primary advantages of training with compound exercises over isolation exercises is that they engage multiple muscles at once, providing a comprehensive full-body workout in less time and burning extra calories through cardio workouts.

Furthermore, compound exercises mimic real world movements which help build strength for everyday living situations - though isolation exercises still have their place when targeted to an imbalance. Incorporating compound exercises as much as possible into your training schedule to maximize time and results.

But there has been much talk that compound exercises produce testosterone. According to this theory, increased stress on the body during these exercises triggers anabolic hormone release such as testosterone and insulin-like growth factor 1, leading to muscle protein synthesis. 

Compound multi-joint exercises tend to produce larger increases in anabolic hormones than isolation exercises as outlined in this 2012 study.

However, post-workout increases may not translate to significant muscle or strength gains.

No matter the debate, we do believe that using compound exercises alongside an effective nutrition and supplement regimen will help you experience optimal muscle and strength gains.  

military muscle testosterone booster banner

Diet and testosterone levels

In addition to exercise, your diet can also play a significant role in your testosterone levels. Some of the best foods for boosting testosterone include:

  • Red meat
  • Eggs
  • Shellfish
  • Spinach
  • Garlic
  • Onions

These foods are rich in nutrients such as zinc, vitamin D, iron, and vitamin A and which are essential for testosterone production. It's also important to maintain a healthy weight, as obesity is associated with lower testosterone levels.

Vitamin and mineral supplements for testosterone

In addition to eating a healthy diet, taking vitamin and mineral supplements can also help to boost testosterone levels. Some of the best supplements for testosterone include:

Zinc Increases Testosterone

Testosterone is an essential hormone for men, responsible for muscle mass, bone density and sexual drive as well as producing sperm and red blood cells. Zinc is a trace mineral essential for immune health, wound healing and growth and development; additionally it plays a key role in producing testosterone; recent research concluded that men with lower zinc levels experienced lower testosterone production levels.

Zinc can boost testosterone by supporting normal body processes that result in hormonal regulation and balance, such as eating certain foods or taking zinc supplements from premium brands. Consultation with a healthcare provider before taking these products is important not just to prevent possible zinc toxicity (though that should rarely occur).

Men should aim for an adequate daily zinc intake, typically 11mg. This can be achieved either through eating foods rich in zinc or taking supplements; especially important if lifting weights regularly as athletes tend to sweat out much of their supply through sweat and not all diets are high in this mineral.

Foods high in zinc include oysters (5.3mg per medium), beef (3mg per three-ounce serving), shellfish like crab and lobster (5mg per three-ounce serving), whole grains, beans, nuts (particularly cashews ) as well as whole grain bread (containing zinc) soaked to reduce phytate (an inhibitory compound which prevents absorption), multivitamins or standalone supplements with zinc content such as zinc gluconate picolinate or acetate supplements can provide additional sources of this essential element

How Vitamin D Increases Testosterone

Vitamin D, commonly referred to as the sunshine vitamin, is produced when exposed to sunlight. Low vitamin D levels have long been linked with lower testosterone levels for men; increasing vitamin D levels is a natural and simple way to raise them - while improving overall health and well being as an added bonus!

One study discovered that taking high doses of Vitamin D supplements increased total and bioactive testosterone in men with low levels, yet production plateaued once participants reached optimal vitamin D levels due to weight loss (a frequent side effect of taking vitamin D supplements).

One study discovered that men with low serum Vitamin D levels experienced higher estrogen levels, decreased lean muscle mass, more cardiovascular disease risk factors and less fertility compared to those who had sufficient levels of Vitamin D. Vitamin D is known for having multiple benefits for bone health as well as mental wellbeing.

As it can be seen, vitamin D is essential for many aspects of our health and can easily be increased through diet and sunlight exposure. There are other natural ways to boost testosterone, such as exercise, taking ashwagandha or fenugreek supplements and testosterone replacement therapy (TRT). As TRT must only be administered by licensed healthcare practitioners, ensure you consult your physician first when considering any new supplements or treatment programs.

Vitamin A and Testosterone

One study used vitamin A and testosterone supplementation to induce puberty among short stature kids who hadn't shown any signs of it yet. The group that received both saw an impressive spike in testosterone levels compared to their control counterparts who didn't receive either supplement.

Vitamin A is necessary to convert cholesterol to testosterone precursor sex hormone in testicular Leydig cells, and studies have revealed that without enough of it being consumed daily, testosterone production will decline drastically.

High-quality Vitamin A can be found in sweet potatoes, cod liver oil and carotenoid-rich orange fruits and vegetables. 

Herbal supplements for testosterone

In addition to vitamins and minerals, there are several herbal supplements that have been shown to boost testosterone levels. Some of the most popular options include:

Ashwagandha for Testosterone

Testosterone levels play an essential role in sexual function, muscle strength and cognitive health - they even aid cognitive wellbeing! But maintaining ideal testosterone levels can be challenging; therefore it's essential that we support the hormone with diet, exercise, sleep and supplements like Ashwagandha which has proven itself as an ancient herb capable of naturally increasing and supporting it.

Scientific research is beginning to demonstrate the many benefits of Ashwagandha, an herb traditionally employed as medicine for centuries. A recent study demonstrated this with its participants experiencing an increase in testosterone while keeping DHEA levels steady - suggesting it helps increase production of this essential hormone.

Ashwagandha can boost testosterone by helping reduce cortisol levels, as cortisol is known to negatively impact testosterone. Ashwagandha's adaptogenic properties allow it to help the body resist stress more easily and hence decrease cortisol.

Fenugreek and Testosterone

Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum) is an annual plant with seeds, leaves and pods used in various ways. It's widely consumed around the world in powders, tonics, teas and dishes like Indian curries, chutneys and salads as well as being taken as dietary supplements in hopes of increasing testosterone and increasing libido.

Scientific exploration has focused on the potential link between fenugreek and testosterone, with numerous studies exploring its effects. This article reviews these studies' methodologies and findings; distinguishing fact from speculation.

Fenugreek seeds contain natural plant compounds such as 4-hydroxy isoleucine, trigonelline and galactomannan that have been shown to regulate blood sugar metabolism while simultaneously supporting a healthy inflammatory response.

Studies show that fenugreek can help men suffering from low testosterone. One such study conducted in 2016 with older men between 43 and 70 was published.

Participants took 600mg daily of an extract enriched with 20% protodioscin for 12 weeks while filling out questionnaires about androgen deficiency symptoms and having their hormone levels assessed.

The results from this double-blind trial proved its efficacy at both improving the symptoms as well as raising testosterone levels among its participants.

Mucuna Pruriens

Velvet beans have become an extremely popular herbal remedy among fitness circles for their natural ability to boost testosterone.

Furthermore, velvet beans possess adaptogenic and antioxidant properties which support hormone balance for increased competitive edge both inside and outside of the gym.

Mucuna Pruriens can provide many testosterone benefits through its seeds' high concentration of L-DOPA (levodopa), a natural precursor for dopamine neurotransmitters such as epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine.

By stimulating production of these catecholamines Mucuna Pruriens can improve mood and motivation while stimulating testosterone in testes while helping reduce prolactin (pituitary hormone which suppresses testicular function).

Mucuna pruriens' primary role is to increase testosterone production; however, its other properties include anti-aging and adaptogenic benefits that could boost its effectiveness even further.

When applied in the gym setting, velvet beans support protein synthesis for anabolic muscle growth. 

Urtica Dioica and Testosterone

Stinging nettle contains numerous vitamins and minerals essential for human health, such as iron which plays an essential role in red blood cell production and can prevent anemia, as well as vitamins A and C which both contribute to building strong immunity systems, plus the herb contains niacin which strengthens bones to combat osteoporosis.

Concerning prostate health, stinging nettle can be effective at blocking estrogen hormone production, making it a valuable treatment option for benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Furthermore, it can prevent calcium oxalate crystal build-up - one of the main causes of kidney stones.

Root of Stinging Nettle can also be used to effectively treat PCOS and excess testosterone symptoms, acting as an adaptogenic herb that optimizes and stabilizes endocrine systems by binding to and eliminating excess androgen hormones before dispersed them where needed which prevents a build up of estrogen.

Is testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) safe?

 For men with low testosterone levels, testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) may be an option. TRT involves using synthetic testosterone to replace the hormones that are naturally produced by the body.

While TRT can be effective for improving testosterone levels, it's important to be aware of the potential risks and side effects. These can include acne, mood swings, and an increased risk of blood clots and heart disease.

If you're considering TRT, it's important to discuss the risks and benefits with your healthcare provider. They can help you determine if TRT is appropriate for your individual needs.

Choosing a safe testosterone booster 

When it comes to selecting a safe and effective testosterone booster, there are multiple factors to consider. 

  • It's important to read the labels carefully and avoid products that contain potentially harmful ingredients such as steroids or artificial hormones. You can check the list of banned supplements.
  • Is there a proprietary blend? This is when the manufacturer doesn't disclose/reveal how much of each ingredient is included. If they don't tell you what is exactly in the product, avoid it!
  • Does it fit with your dietary requirements? Many products still use gelatin capsules which are animal based. HPMC capsules are available for those on a plant-based diet.
  • Where is it made? Remember, just because it is manufactured in a 'FDA approved' facility does not mean the product itself is FDA approved. The FDA doesn't approve products, they merely investigate and can take action against brands and products that are 'misbranded and adultered'. Products made in the UK have to adhere to 'food Law' legislation which protects the customer.
  • Check the dose. Military Muscle contains doses that have demonstrated positive results in studies. Many products don't.¬†

Additionally, consider your individual needs and goals. Are you looking to improve your athletic performance or simply optimize your overall health and wellbeing? Different products may be more effective for different goals, so it's important to choose a product that aligns with your needs.

If you are not sure about a product, run it by a sports nutritionist who should be able to analyse the ingredients.

Conclusion:

In conclusion, testosterone boosters can provide many benefits for men looking to improve their physical performance and overall vitality.

However, it's important to be aware of the potential risks associated with using unsafe products. Be aware that because it is produced within a FDA approved facility it still may contain banned substances.

To ensure your safety and effectiveness, do your research, focus on natural ways to boost testosterone levels, and if you aren't too sure about a product speak to a sports nutritionist.

By following these guidelines, you can navigate the world of testosterone boosters with confidence and choose a product that meets your individual needs.

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