2 min read
12 Apr

Testosterone is a hormone that is primarily associated with male development and sexual function. However, it also plays a crucial role in bone density, muscle mass, red blood cell production, and overall health. Low testosterone levels can lead to a range of symptoms, including decreased energy, decreased libido, depression, and reduced muscle mass. In this article, we will explore the causes and consequences of low testosterone levels and discuss ways to raise it with and without prescription supplementation, based on data from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Causes of Low Testosterone Levels:

Testosterone levels tend to decline naturally as men age. According to the NIH, testosterone levels decline by approximately 1% per year after the age of 30. Other factors that can contribute to low testosterone levels include obesity, chronic illnesses like diabetes, and certain medications like opioids and glucocorticoids. In some cases, low testosterone levels can be caused by problems with the testes or the pituitary gland.

Consequences of Low Testosterone Levels:

Low testosterone levels can have a range of consequences, including decreased libido, erectile dysfunction, decreased muscle mass, and increased body fat. Low testosterone levels can also contribute to osteoporosis, a condition that weakens bones and makes them more susceptible to fractures. Additionally, low testosterone levels have been associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, depression, and cognitive decline.

How to Raise Testosterone Levels:

  1. Exercise: According to the NIH, regular exercise can increase testosterone levels. Resistance training, such as weightlifting, has been shown to be particularly effective at increasing testosterone levels.
  2. Diet: Eating a healthy, balanced diet can also help to increase testosterone levels. Foods that are high in zinc, such as oysters, beef, and pumpkin seeds, have been shown to increase testosterone levels. Foods that are high in vitamin D, such as fatty fish and egg yolks, have also been shown to increase testosterone levels.
  3. Sleep: Getting enough sleep is essential for overall health, including testosterone production. According to the NIH, lack of sleep can lead to a decrease in testosterone levels.
  4. Stress Reduction: Chronic stress can lead to decreased testosterone levels. Therefore, stress reduction techniques like meditation, yoga, and deep breathing exercises can be effective at increasing testosterone levels.
  5. Prescription Supplementation: In some cases, prescription supplementation may be necessary to raise testosterone levels. Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is a form of prescription supplementation that involves injecting testosterone into the body. However, TRT is not without risks and should only be used under the guidance of a healthcare provider.


Low testosterone levels can have a range of consequences, including decreased libido, decreased muscle mass, and an increased risk of osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease. However, there are many ways to raise testosterone levels, including exercise, diet, sleep, stress reduction, and prescription supplementation. If you suspect that you have low testosterone levels, it is important to speak with a healthcare provider to determine the best course of action. 

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