30+ High-Impact Testosterone Boosting Foods (PDF List)
This is a list of the 30 most important testosterone boosting foods.
I’ve also compiled a done-for-you grocery list of 80+ T-bosting foods (PDF) that you can download here.
This is a heavily referenced, no-nonsense list.
Let’s get started.
1. Whole Eggs
Whole eggs are an all-around superfood.
Not only do they provide a rich source of vitamins and minerals, but they also pack-a-punch of T-boosting fats (38% saturated, 44% monounsaturated), protein, and HDL (aka good cholesterol).
Many misinformed “health-conscious” individuals think that cholesterol is bad, and you should avoid it at all costs. These are the same people who remove the yolk and opt for egg-white omelets.
Whether cholesterol is “good” or “bad” for you is a complicated topic and goes beyond this article’s scope.
As far as its relationship with T is concerned, know this:
Testosterone is quite literally made out of dietary cholesterol.
Eating the yolk provides your body with the fundamental building block it needs to produce T.
For a more in-depth look at how cholesterol affects the body, check this article out.
2. Brazil Nuts
Nuts are a healthy source of fats. Although Brazil nuts contain a hefty amount of monounsaturated and saturated fats, their real T-boosting ability lies in their micronutrient content.
Just 1 ounce of Brazil nuts provides your daily requirement of selenium.
Most fruits contain carbs.
The avocado is unique in that 77% of its calories come from fat, and most of it is monounsaturated fat, i.e., precisely the type of fat that supports T.
Other than the fat content, avocados also provide a rich source of vitamins and minerals, namely:
- Vitamin A
- B vitamins
Avocados are incredibly nutritious, and their health benefits go beyond just increasing testosterone.
Read about all of the ways avocados can benefit your life.
4. Coconut Oil
Countless studies show coconut oil to be amongst the healthiest foods on the planet.
About 91% of the fat in coconut oil is T-boosting saturated fat.
However, unlike other familiar sources of saturated fat (animals, butter, eggs, etc.), the fat from coconut oil is made up of MCFAs (medium-chain fatty acids).
MCFAs are the perfect energy source because they are directly transported to the liver and instantly used as fuel. It is near impossible for them to get stored as fat.
There haven’t been any human studies on the impact of coconut oil on testosterone, but a few rodent studies demonstrate impressive results:
Rats fed coconut oil daily for 60 days had lower cortisol and significantly higher T levels than those who consumed olive oil, soybean oil, grapeseed oil, or no oil (5).
It is not for sure that this exact effect will carry over to humans as well, but it is still interesting to note.
5. Olive Oil
Researchers found (6) that men consuming olive oil every day for three weeks experienced 17% higher testosterone levels. This likely occurred due to the high monounsaturated fat content.
When you buy olive oil, go for the extra virgin kind.
Extra virgin means that it has been extracted from the first press and is free from any added substances.
6. Grass-Fed Butter
Butter provides a rich source of saturated fats.
On top of that, butter also provides CLA (has a positive effect on T) and many vitamins and minerals.
Opt for grass-fed butter because it comes from cows feeding on a natural diet of grass rather than grains.
Also, grass-fed butter has a better nutritional profile of fatty acids and fat-soluble vitamins.
7. Ricotta Cheese
Fermented foods aid testosterone by providing your body with probiotics.
Probiotics are healthy gut bacteria that aid digestion and proper nutrient absorption (9).
Ricotta cheese also provides a natural source of whey protein.
And protein is indeed the least essential macronutrient for testosterone.
However, whey protein intake seems to blunt the stress hormone cortisol during intense training (10).
Bacon is another food packed with T-boosting saturated fat and cholesterol.
But the catch here is that you should go for organic bacon.
The cheap, traditional bacon that you get everywhere is sourced from pigs fed on an unnatural diet and pumped full of hormones, antibiotics, and estrogenic compounds.
9. Minced Meat
Whether you get minced beef, pork, lamb, or turkey, minced meat provides a rich source of saturated fats and animal protein.
Although protein is the least important macronutrient for testosterone production, your body still needs muscle growth and recovery.
Protein coming from animal sources is far superior to any other source.
Tuna is yet another great source of high-quality animal protein that can aid in muscle recovery and growth.
But tuna’s T-boosting properties lie in its high vitamin D and omega-3 content.
Vitamin D is a crucial component in testosterone production, and tuna is one of the best food sources.
If you don’t like tuna, you can opt for salmon, which delivers a similar nutritional profile.
Salmon contains several testosterone boosting ingredients:
- Vitamin D
- dietary cholesterol
- A hefty dose of selenium
Whether its crab, lobster, shrimp, or prawns, shellfish provide a rich source of:
- Vitamin D.
All of these are micronutrients associated with increases in testosterone levels.
Oysters are the quintessential T-boosting food.
The main T-boosting ingredient in oysters is zinc; just six of them provides the recommended daily amount.
But other than the zinc content, oysters also contain magnesium, selenium, copper, and vitamin D, all of which are vitamins and minerals that have a positive correlation with testosterone.
Casanova (the 18th-century ladies man) used to eat 60 oysters for breakfast every morning.
Maybe he was on to something.
The skin of red grapes contains resveratrol, a proven aromatase inhibitor (11).
Recall from earlier that aromatase is an enzyme that converts testosterone into estrogen.
By consuming red grapes, you reduce aromatase activity, therefore allowing an elevated concentration of testosterone.
Pomegranate is one of the only fruits that has been directly studied for its effect on testosterone.
In one study (12), researchers gave subjects pomegranate juice for two weeks, and at the end of 2 weeks, the average increase in testosterone was 24%.
In test-tube studies (13), pomegranates have been shown to have anti-estrogenic effects.
I love pomegranates and include them as an everyday part of my diet (whenever they are in season, that is).
In addition to being delicious, strawberries also contain vitamins and minerals that aid testosterone production.
These include magnesium, vitamin C, and a bunch of antioxidants.
Higher vitamin C intake has been associated with lower levels of cortisol (14).
Also, vitamin C intake is associated with a higher sperm count (15).
Bananas are well known to be a potent source of potassium.
Banana also delivers a little known mineral called bromelain shown (16) to support testosterone production.
You already know that carbohydrate consumption is critical for your body to produce optimal testosterone - especially if you are a man who lifts weights regularly.
The problem is that many of the carbs that form the basis of the Modern American Diet come from refined grains.
The extent to which grains affect the human body is beyond this article’s scope, but eating refined grains causes inflammation (17) and spikes blood sugar (18). Both of these outcomes negatively affect testosterone.
This is why I opt for potatoes (all kinds) as one of my primary carb source.
They provide me with the energy to power through my workouts while minimizing the effect of cortisol.
19. Kidney Beans
Not only are kidney beans loaded with zinc, magnesium, and iron, but they also provide more protein than any other plant source.
Like potatoes, beans provide an excellent source of slow-release energy without spiking blood sugar.
I add a large can of dark red kidney beans to my turkey chili, which I eat on most days.
20. Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds provide an excellent source of zinc, magnesium, and vitamin K, all of which support T.
Furthermore, pumpkin seeds also contain a bunch of T-boosting saturated fat.
Pumpkin seeds are an excellent snack to munch on in between meals.
Mushrooms have powerful anti-estrogenic effects.
They contain an ingredient called polysaccharides, a proven aromatase inhibitor (19).
Less aromatase activity means more testosterone in your bloodstream.
All mushrooms have anti-estrogenic effects, but it is the white-button mushrooms that have been studied (20) to have the most potent effects.
The active ingredient in ginger, gingerol, has powerful anti-inflammatory effects (21).
A human study of infertile men shows that ginger supplementation over three months increases T levels by 14% (24).
It is impossible to say whether this same effect carries on to the same extent in humans, but it is interesting to note.
Onions also contain quercetin, an ingredient that has been shown (29) to have anti-estrogenic effects.
Cruciferous vegetables, including broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and brussel sprouts, are all proven estrogen-blockers (30).
Cruciferous vegetables contain carbinol.
Studies have shown (31) carbinol consumption to increase estrogen excretion by up to 50% in men.
As you know, estrogen holds an inverse relationship with T:
Lower estrogen means higher testosterone (this relationship does not hold when using exogenous forms of testosterone).
Spinach provides one of the best dietary sources of magnesium. Just one cup of cooked spinach offers close to half of your recommended daily amount.
Spinach also contains B vitamins and iron, both of which are micronutrients that your body needs for optimal function.
Although its direct interaction with testosterone production has not been studied, affecting these three areas in such a way is likely to affect testosterone positively.
Asparagus has long been considered a natural aphrodisiac.
It is loaded with B vitamins, magnesium, vitamin E, and potassium.
Vitamin E has been shown to have an essential role in testosterone production (36). Magnesium, as you know, is also a crucial component.
Figs provide a rich source of manganese, iron, potassium, and zinc, i.e., all minerals that aid your body’s cardiovascular health, muscular health, and hormonal production.
Figs also contain many antioxidants that can help flush your body of unwanted materials (37).
29. Chicken Liver
Chicken liver (and all animal organs for that matter) provide a rich source of zinc, vitamin K, and saturated fats.
You already know that zinc is crucial for optimal T.
30. Fermented Foods
As mentioned above, fermented foods (pickles, kombucha, kimchi, yogurt) all provide an excellent source of probiotics.
By eating fermented foods, not only will the probiotics aid digestion, but they will also allow your body to better absorb nutrients.
31. Grass-Fed Beef
Of course, this list would be incomplete without some good ol’ steak.
All types of red meat provide hefty amounts of T-boosting saturated fats.
Steak has been my go-to meal for a couple of years now, and the best part is that it’s so easy to make.
And, as I mentioned above, I always go for grass-fed meats.
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