Testosterone is an androgen, or male hormone responsible for most male sexual characteristics. Testosterone is produced in the testicles and regulated by glands in the brain. A lower testosterone level may result in loss of interest in sex, difficulty getting an erection, fertility problems, tiredness and lack of energy, depression, loss of bone density which leads to brittle bones, muscle weakness and loss of body hair. It supports the body’s natural growth hormone which keeps our body youthful and energized.
Women need a bit of testosterone to ward off excess estrogen which can lead to depression, weight gain, hormonal changes, or just an overall imbalance of sex hormones in the body.
Testosterone levels below 300 nanograms per deciliter to indicate a deficiency as per the American Urological Association.
It is traditionally believed that a meat-based diet including meat, fish and milk helps increase in testosterone levels. However, a new study shows that Men who follow plant-based diets have testosterone levels that are basically the same as the levels in men who eat meat. “We found that a plant-based diet was associated with normal testosterone levels, levels that are the same as occur in men who eat a traditional diet that includes more meat,” says Ranjith Ramasamy, M.D., an associate professor and Director of Reproductive Urology at the University of Miami Health System.
The main ingredients which increase testosterone include amino acids (protein), zinc, B vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, and an overall anti-inflammatory diet. This can be derived even from Vegetarian food. At the same time, one has to distinguish between healthy and non-healthy plant-based foods like soda, chips and juice.
In addition to supporting healthy testosterone levels, plant-based diets have proven to reduce the risks of many conditions, including hypertension, heart disease, heart attacks, strokes, and many cancers.
Some of the Vegetarian food for increasing testosterone levels include Pumpkin seeds, coconut, Maca root, chia seeds, ginger, pomegranate, Leafy green vegetables, Extra-virgin olive oil and onion. Processed plant-based foods and alcohol should be avoided.