Optimising your manliness
posted on 4/11/2016 1:50:00 AM
Optimising your manliness
The best nutrition tips for testosterone production.
WORDS CAMERON WILD
Testosterone: even the sound the word makes is manly. But what is it, I hear you ask? Chances are if you’re not in the know, you probably don’t have a lot of it being produced and should probably just go back to your treadmill for the next 45 minutes and stick to your low-fat diet and fat-burners…
Stereotypes aside, the male sex hormone testosterone needs no introduction. But what certainly does need an introduction is the best nutrition tips for optimising your testosterone production to increase muscle mass and strength, reduce body fat and improve your overall health — and sex life.
Unfortunately, today there are an immeasurable amount of both external and internal factors that smother our manly male hormone and reduce it to levels so low that we start to grow breasts — quite literally. Starting with the poor nutritional choices being made to the chemicals in and on said nutrition to the plastics we package our food in, and other environmental influences, the past few centuries have seen a steady decline in our testosterone levels, making it that much harder to get the health and fitness results we’re all busting our arses off in the kitchen and gym for.
So what are we to do?
Fortunately, there is hope. And while there are a multitude of different ways to optimise your testosterone levels in the body, I’m going to be specifically addressing how we can do this with simple nutritional changes, focusing on the top three that produce the greatest increase in your sperm count.
#1 Dose-dependent alcohol consumption
Who doesn’t love the occasional night out on the town with mates? However, when we’re out with people who are not in a long-term relationship with the gym (I don’t understand them either), more often than not the drinks flow and the lure of an alcoholic beverage is all too real. But while it’s no secret that consuming alcohol in excess has a significant negative impact on our muscle-building results, it’s interesting to note that this phenomenon seems to be dose-dependent. When consumed in low quantities (one to two drinks), alcohol can actually cause a slight increase in your testosterone levels! Due to it being only a minor increase and also coupled with the additional calories being consumed, this isn’t anything to write home about, but it does allow you to still enjoy a drink or two every so often without having to feel like you’re writing off the past week at the gym.
#2 Consume an adequate amount of fats and cholesterol
While I don’t have the time or energy to go into detail about how cholesterol is not the evil thing it is made out to be, I can say that it is a primary component of all of your male sex hormones. Yup, that includes our old friend testosterone. Anyone who is telling you to eat a low-fat diet may as well go all the way and book you in to have your sex changed, as this is one of the worst things you could do for your manly male hormone. A diet rich in quality fats provides the essential building blocks, so leave the fat on your grass-fed steaks and keep those yolks in your omelettes because, my friends, this is how we grow.
#3 Consume foods high in vitamin D and zinc
There is no one specific food that will magically optimise your testosterone levels. However, some of the more commonly-deficient micronutrients critical for your male sex hormone production are important to get on top of; otherwise you suffer the fate of slower gains. Zinc and vitamin D are both an essential part of testosterone production, yet are commonly at sub-optimal levels for maximum growth. Consuming foods such as fatty fish and egg yolks are great for bumping up your vitamin D levels, and shellfish and red meat, to name a few, are great sources of zinc. I’d recommend getting a blood test to check on your zinc and vitamin D levels, and supplement if necessary to bring them up to optimal levels to have you charging toward that mass.
By applying these three simple principles to your nutritional strategy (that is, diet), you will provide the bulk of the raw materials that go into optimising your manliness and have your results in health and performance and aesthetics level up.
It’s important to note that while we have only covered the most important nutritional changes you can make to optimise testosterone, there are still many other critical factors that influence its production in the body such as strength training, meditation, maintaining low levels of body fat and reducing stress to name a few.
Those who have had chronically low testosterone levels due to inadequate nutrition will notice far greater effects from making these simple nutritional changes than those who may only need to make a few minor tweaks.
Either way, as a guy, optimising levels of testosterone in our body is something we need to be constantly working on, as it is critical to our results in stacking on size and leaning up, but simply on a base level, it’s what makes us men in the first place.
THE AUTHOR: CAM WILD
Cam Wild, 23, is a Victorian state physique competitor, nutritionist, and owner of NUFIT – one of the fastest-growing online nutrition and training business in Australia. For years, Cam struggled with getting the results he wanted in the gym. His dedication turned into a passion for nutrition and as a result, Cam developed a simple and results-based nutrition system specifically designed for guys wanting to get noticeable, lifelong results. Cam's system is available online at www.nufit.com.au
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