I am a 36 year-old slightly overweight male with low levels of testosterone. I am doing cardio & weights to get fit. Is there a way to naturally boost my testosterone levels?

Answer: You are on the right track by adding exercise and losing weight. In fact, that’s about the only non-clinical/medicinal solution that has been shown to work.

Testosterone levels naturally decline with age but other factors can also lead to a decrease. Studies have shown that men with obesity, diabetes or high blood pressure may be twice as likely to have low levels of testosterone. Additionally, even if one is only slightly overweight, studies have found a link between waist circumference and testosterone levels. Men with higher waist circumferences had lower levels of testosterone.

By exercising (specifically weight training) you are on your way to boosting your anabolic hormone levels including testosterone. Losing weight may also move your testosterone levels to the higher end of the normal range. Although numerous websites contend that there are specific foods (e.g. protein, vegetables, etc) that increase testosterone levels, there is no valid research to support these claims.

There are many supplements on the market that claim to boost testosterone levels. However, very few deliver on the promise and if they do, you run the risk of changing many of your other hormone levels as there is a delicate feedback loop which the body uses to keep hormones in check with each other. In other words, one hormone affects all.

Eating a healthy diet to lose weight along with added physical activity will be your best “natural medicine”. Here’s a healthy athletic menu you might try. After reaching your desired weight, you should have your testosterone level rechecked and if it’s still low, consult with your doctor to see whether there’s any reason to seek medical treatment.

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