How To Boost Testosterone 2023? 9 Tips According To Expert

Reviewed by Sutton, D., MD

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how to boost testosterone

I have come across many clients with low testosterone. Without exaggerating, their life seems like a disaster. By simply recommending some testosterone-boosting strategies, I have seen people going from zero to hero without testosterone therapy and testosterone supplements. 

For this reason, we have decided to share the 9 strategies that may help. Before getting into these strategies, we have covered what testosterone is, its benefits, the causes of low testosterone, and its symptoms. 

What Is Testosterone?

Testosterone is the male sex hormone. Males produce testosterone in the Leydig cells of the testicles, hence its name ‘testosterone’. To clear any confusion, testosterone production among females takes place in the ovaries as they obviously do not have testicles. I must add that this is a very small amount, it is 20 times higher in males, the reason being why we call it the male sex hormone. Testosterone binds to the androgen receptors of the body, which plays a vital role in overall health and well-being, as I stressed below. 

I should highlight that through aging and underlying medical conditions, we may experience a natural decline in testosterone levels. This adverse effect can be slowed down or even reversed through some interventions we have mentioned in the main body of the article. 

how to boost testosterone

Benefits of Testosterone

Muscle Size & Strength

Testosterone is an anabolic hormone that promotes muscle protein synthesis and reduces muscle protein degradation (catabolism). In other words, healthy testosterone levels can keep you reasonably muscle-bound and strong. 

This highlights how important it is to maintain healthy testosterone levels between 264 to 916 ng/dL[1]. We naturally produce testosterone within this range, anything above the high end of the norm shown in a blood test is usually a sign of artificial usage via injection. In such individuals, testosterone levels can be higher than 2000 ng/dL, which results in an excessive amount of muscle mass and strength. 

Falling below the ‘normal’ testosterone levels, can result in a degradation in muscle mass and strength. This poses a risk of injury from either weak muscle straining or poor mobility resulting in falls and blunt force injuries.

Bone Density

Testosterone has been linked with bone mineral density. Testosterone plays a role in recomposing bone mass, therefore it is important to keep testosterone in the normal range. Bone health is crucial for maneuvering, where any weakness could result in a fracture or a serious splitting of the bone.

how to boost testosterone

Weight Management

Muscle mass and movement are two key variables that influence fat mass. Muscle burns around 6 calories per pound. So if you possess a healthy amount of muscle via optimal testosterone production, the metabolic rate may be boosted. Similarly, movement also burns calories through heat, with normal testosterone levels we can maintain healthy muscle and bone mass, which will aid movement. So in other words, a healthy level of testosterone can promote weight loss and maintenance. 

Prevent Certain Health Conditions

Excessive weight gain and irregular body composition with a high amount of fat mass has been linked to cardiovascular disease, type 2, diabetes, clinical obesity, and certain cancers. As we know, testosterone can help ward off weight gain, by default reducing the risk of many weight related diseases. We will come to learn that some of these diseases cause drop in testosterone, so it can be a vicious cycle. 

Sexual Health

Sex drive and libido are largely influenced by testosterone levels. Maining normal levels of testosterone can help promote erections and sexual performance. In turn, this can help maintain a healthy relationship with a spouse. Testosterone may also promote a healthy sperm count and quality that has a large influence on reproduction.

What Causes Low Testosterone?

There are a couple of variables that can cause low testosterone which we will touch upon. 


As we age, we experience natural testosterone decreases. This is thought to be from the functions in the testicles becoming weakened. Normally, a drop in testosterone starts around the late 30s to early 40s and declines at a slow rate[2] throughout the lifetime. 

Underlying Health Conditions

Many underlying health conditions can interfere with testosterone production. These include; obesity, type 2 diabetes, and testicle-based cancers. Some conditions can be inevitable, but we can certainly ward off conditions like obesity and diabetes through observing a healthy lifestyle and medical assistance. 

What Are the Symptoms of Low Testosterone?

Evidence suggests, if testosterone levels drop below the physiological range of around 300 ng/dL, this is recognized as a testosterone deficiency.  This low testosterone comes with short, medium, and long-term symptoms as mentioned below. 

Short Term Symptoms

Without getting into much detail, lower testosterone levels can wreak havoc by causing;

  • Drop in Mood
  • Drop in Sexual desire
  • Drop in Sexual function
  • Drop in Sperm health
  • Drop in Penile blood flow
  • Erectile dysfunction 
  • Drop in energy

Medium Term Symptoms

In the medium term you would expect an incremental degradation (Continuous loss in functional tissues) in;

  • Muscle mass
  • Bone mass

Not to mention, an increase in;

  • Body fat percentage
  • Visceral and subcutaneous body fat 

Long Term Symptoms

These changes can have major long-term health risks and ailments like;

  • Falls and blunt force injuries
  • Fractures
  • Drop in metabolic rate
  • Muscle strains and tears 
  • Weight gain and obesity
  • Diabetes 
  • Heart Disease 
  • Certain Cancers

How To Boost Testosterone? Following 9 All-Natural Ways

Weight Reduction

Being overweight or obese can affect testosterone levels greatly! If you present a high BMI, chances are that testosterone levels are converted into the female hormone called estrogen. This occurs through a negative signal in the hypothalamus of the brain that tells the body that we may have too much testosterone. 

It is a very well-known fact that losing weight can reverse these effects and boost testosterone naturally. In order to lose weight an individual must drive caloric deficit by eating less food and/or boosting healthy lifestyle activities.  

Let’s say that an individual needs 3000 calories per day to maintain a certain body weight. Come the new year and this individual decides that it is time to lose some weight. In this example, individual begins to eat 2800 calories per day and takes up 30 minutes of cycling on a daily basis. This modification in activity could burn an additional 300 calories. Subsequently, driving a 500-calorie deficit, which in as little as a week can promote weight loss. Reaching a healthy weight may normalize testosterone levels.

Resistance Training 

Resistance training itself is another way to increase testosterone levels naturally. Exercises specifically strength training and high-intensity interval training have been shown to raise testosterone levels through serum concentrations[3]. This may help boost testosterone to enter the normal range.

Some examples of proven exercises to produce testosterone acutely may include;

  • Barbell Squat 
  • Barbell Deadlift
  • Barbell Bench Press
  • Barbell Back Rows
  • Lat Pulldown 
  • Car Pushes 
  • Training Sprints 

Get Adequate Sleep

REM sleep is directly correlated to testosterone. Research by Repoult & Cauter found that reducing sleep from 8 hrs to 5 hrs[4] (3 hrs less sleep) may decrease testosterone by 10.4%. Sleep requirements are entirely dependent on the individual which is not always controllable, so it is difficult to determine if someone is getting ‘enough sleep’. Personally, I can function properly with 5-6 hours of sleep per night. 

Ways to improve sleep could be to tackle sleep hygiene through;

  • Avoiding the use of devices before bed (i.e, mobile phone and laptop)
  • Using the night setting on devices if you do use them 
  • Sleep and wake up at similar times to build sleep drive
  • Get some exposure to the sun rays during daylight hours 
  • Limit alcohol as it can cause sleep apnea 
  • Limit caffeine and do not consume it 6 hrs prior to bed 

Observe A Nutritious Diet

Firstly, I want to highlight that soy products do not affect testosterone levels. A healthy diet can boost testosterone levels. One could

  • Consume a reasonable amount of calories and macronutrients to maintain a healthy body weight 
  • Consume an adequate Macronutrient intake (protein, healthy fats and carbohydrates) 
  • Consume an adequate micronutrient intake to avoid deficiency, so make sure you are getting your fruits and vegetables in 
  • Avoid a low-fat diet as fat helps regulate testosterone

Engage In Stress Reduction Activities

Life can get stressful, which affects the hypothalamus[5] and the way signals are sent to produce testosterone through the testicals. Chronic stress reduction can also increase testosterone naturally. 

Some psychological stress reducing strategies include:

  • Deep breathing 
  • Massage and spa break 
  • Yoga 
  • Talking to friends and family
  • Music and watching TV 
  • Aromatherapy 
  • Exercise 
  • Adequate Sleep
  • Healthy Lifestyle Changes 

Avoid Anabolics

For many fitness enthusiasts and athletes, it can be tempting to begin a cycle of anabolic steroids or hormones. 

These substances may raise testosterone levels and interact with the androgen receptors in the body to modify muscle mass, strength, and performance. Although, comes to the risk of shutting off the natural production of testosterone, especially if they are not administered and cycled properly. On a side note, anabolics may also cause health decrements like skin conditions, heart disease, cancers, brain damage, and liver and kidney damage. 

When testosterone is available in the bloodstream in abundance, the body signals to the brain that there is too much testosterone, where production is then halted. 

My suggestion would be to avoid taking any of these substances unless they have been prescribed by your healthcare provider. If you present low testosterone levels your doctor may recommend testosterone replacement therapy, which can normalize testosterone levels.

Prevent Zinc & Vitamin D Deficiency

Low levels of Zinc and vitamin D levels have been linked to low testosterone, so it is important to consume plenty of foods high in zinc like meats, shellfish, and some nuts. You could also opt for zinc supplementation. Moreover, some sunlight exposure for vitamin D, or vitamin d supplementation, which can be crucial in countries and seasons with less sunshine.

Avoid Recreational Drugs & Alcohol Abuse

Alcohol and drug abuse can impair the functions of the Leydig cells of the testicles, where testosterone is produced. 

Common recreational drugs[6] include:

  • Cocaine 
  • Heroin 
  • LSD 
  • GHB
  • Cannabis 
  • Benzos
  • Hallucinogens 
  • Inhalants 
  • Ketamine 
  • Khat 

There are many services that can help you quit. For example, in the UK we have ‘Mind UK’[7], which provides educational content and 1-to-1 support.

Avoid Estrogen-Like Chemicals

As we mentioned, estrogen is the female hormone. In high amounts, it can offset hormonal balance. 

For this reason, it is important to avoid estrogen-like chemicals. There are a variety of chemicals that are found in certain household products i.e., certain hygiene products, food packaging, and cookware. The chemicals to watch out for include[8];

  • Atrazine 
  • Parabens
  • Bisphenol-a
  • Phthalates 
  • Palates
  • Perfluorinated chemicals 
  • Nonylphenol 
  • Triclosan


Testosterone is crucial in maintaining good health and well-being. Nowadays, it’s common for people to experience low t through normal aging and underlying medical conditions. Lower testosterone comes with many adverse effects. So it may be worth trying one of the suggested strategies.

Frequently Asked Questions

‘Do zinc supplements testosterone boosters?’

Kind of; they do not increase testosterone unless the underlying cause of your low testosterone is zinc deficiency. 

‘What is the final resort if none of the strategies work?’

Through consultation with your health care professional, you may be prescribed testosterone replacement therapy to help normalize testosterone and maintain good overall health

+ 8 sources

MIDSS adheres to strict procurement guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutes, and medical associations. We work mainly with peer-reviewed studies to ensure the accuracy of the information. We avoid the use of tertiary references. You can read about how we ensure the accuracy and timeliness of our content in our editorial process.

  1. Travison, T.G., Vesper, H.W., Orwoll, E., Wu, F., Kaufman, J.M., Wang, Y., Lapauw, B., Fiers, T., Matsumoto, A.M. and Bhasin, S. (2017). Harmonized Reference Ranges for Circulating Testosterone Levels in Men of Four Cohort Studies in the United States and Europe. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, [online] 102(4), pp.1161–1173. doi:10.1210/jc.2016-2935.
  2. Kelsey, T.W., Li, L.Q., Mitchell, R.T., Whelan, A., Anderson, R.A. and Wallace, W.H.B. (2014). A Validated Age-Related Normative Model for Male Total Testosterone Shows Increasing Variance but No Decline after Age 40 Years. PLoS ONE, [online] 9(10), p.e109346. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0109346.
  3. Fry AC;Lohnes CA (2021). Acute testosterone and cortisol responses to high power resistance exercise. Fiziologiia cheloveka, [online] 36(4). Available at: [Accessed 1 Feb. 2023].
  4. Travison, T.G., Vesper, H.W., Orwoll, E., Wu, F., Kaufman, J.M., Wang, Y., Lapauw, B., Fiers, T., Matsumoto, A.M. and Bhasin, S. (2017). Harmonized Reference Ranges for Circulating Testosterone Levels in Men of Four Cohort Studies in the United States and Europe. The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, [online] 102(4), pp.1161–1173. doi:10.1210/jc.2016-2935.
  5. Afrisham, R., Sadegh-Nejadi, S., SoliemaniFar, O., Kooti, W., Ashtary-Larky, D., Alamiri, F., Aberomand, M., Najjar-Asl, S. and Khaneh-Keshi, A. (2016). Salivary Testosterone Levels Under Psychological Stress and Its Relationship with Rumination and Five Personality Traits in Medical Students. Psychiatry Investigation, [online] 13(6), p.637. doi:10.4306/pi.2016.13.6.637.
  6. on, I. (2020). Commonly Used Drugs Charts | National Institute on Drug Abuse. [online] National Institute on Drug Abuse. Available at: [Accessed 1 Feb. 2023].
  7. (2022). Drug and alcohol addiction – useful contacts. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Feb. 2023].
  8. University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. (2023). Estrogen + Estrogen Mimics. [online] Available at:,and%20triclosan%20in%20antibacterial%20soap. [Accessed 1 Feb. 2023].


Shakoor, Z., Nutritionist
Nutrition, Exercise & Health Specialist/Writer
Zack Shakoor Kayani was born and raised in the South East of England/London. Zack has attained a bolus of knowledge regarding biosciences through academia and his career experiences. In terms of his educational background, he has a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology (Hons.), a Postgraduate diploma in sports nutrition with the International Olympic Committee, and a Master of Science in Nutritional Sciences from Middlesex University. Zack has been fortunate enough to apply his Exercise Science and Nutrition Knowledge to aid Hundreds if not Thousands of Patients and Athletes, providing 1-1 consultation, Personal training, Information sheets, offering recommendations to collate nutrition and exercise programs, etc. Not to mention, in 2022, he authored a book called 'The 'Good' Coach Weight Loss Solution.


Sutton, D., MD
Medical Writer & Editor
Drew is a retired ENT doctor who now lives in the Southeastern US. He was a member of the American Academy of Otolaryngology and a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. He has a bachelor’s degree in Biology and Psychology and an MD degree. He completed his internship in General Surgery and Residency in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery and practiced for almost 30 years in all aspects of ENT, including a specialization in disorders of the ear and skull base. Drew is passionate about communicating his clinical experiences and making his knowledge more accessible to the general public by medical writing.

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