Does Testosterone Build Muscle Mass
The Link Between Muscles And Testosterone Levels
Does Testosterone really build muscle mass? We are all told this, but is it true?
There is so much information about testosterone out there that it could leave your head spinning.
But what are the facts about this most male of all hormones? Can it really boost longevity, vitality, muscle mass, strength and libido? The media lets us believe so.
But what actually is testosterone (T), and will it help you increase your muscle mass? Lets take a good look at this most male of all hormones and see if all the reports are in fact true, or is it just gym talk and BS.
Table Of Contents
What Is Testosterone
Testosterone is a steroid hormone that is responsible for the sexual development of men. It is also made by women to a far lesser degree.
Made in the leidig cells in the testes, it controls and regulates fertility, sexual response and performance, muscle tone and strength and energy levels. It also plays a part in the processing and distribution of body fat.
“Without Testosterone You Would Not Be Able To Work Out”
It basically controls functions in all aspects of physical activity. Without testosterone you would not be able to workout in the gym for any length of time or intensity.
When your hormone levels dip, usually as we get older, we can start to experience reductions in strength, muscle tone, and sex drive. We can also start to gain weight and put on body fat.
When this happens many men are prescribed testosterone replacement therapy which can take the form of pills, injections, creams or gels.
How Important Is Testosterone
100%, without it you will not be able to build muscle in the gym, and this apples to women too. Normal to high levels of testosterone are critical if you want to succeed at building your body.
When we talk about T levels, we mean natural hormone levels we are not talking about the injecting of synthetic hormone (often referred to as anabolic steroids).
As normal T levels vary from person to person, it is often necessary to boost production of the hormone to achieve optimum results.
During puberty and through our twenties, the majority of us have enough testosterone running through our veins to help us build muscle and strength, its what also gives us our youthful vitality, and of course our strong sex drive.
As we reach our thirties and beyond, our ability to build larger muscles in the gym does start to reduce as our T production wanes.
Experts tell us that from around 30 years old our natural T production reduces by 1-2% per year.
By the time we reach our mid forties, our production can be up to 40% less than it was in our twenties.
“Stress Is A Testosterone Killer”
This is why, especially as you start to get a little bit older you need to carefully assess and maintain your lifestyle, paying particular attention to nutrition, exercise regime and stress levels. The latter being well known as a ‘testosterone killer’
Does Testosterone Actually Build Muscle Mass?
This is the big question….Does natural T really help build muscle mass in the gym? The answer is a rather confusing Yes AND No.
Clinical research has looked at this question in great depth, and the answer in simple terms is this:
If your levels of T are on the low side, (300-400ng.dl) then improving your testosterone production by natural means will without any doubt boost your muscle building results.
If your own natural testosterone levels are to the upper range of normal ( approaching 1000ng.dl) then you will not achieve any better results by trying to boost your T further.
This does not show the complete picture however.
When you think of body fat instead of muscle mass, the answer is completely different.
The higher the levels of testosterone in the blood, the less body fat will be made and stored (usually around the belly area).
So by boosting testosterone naturally, you will achieve a leaner look which will help with your muscle definition.
Boosting Testosterone Naturally
If you are unlucky to have lower levels of testosterone in your blood, you will without any doubt stand to benefit by increasing production.
With all the risks linked to both anabolic steroids and drug based testosterone treatments, there are some good natural methods that you can adopt to help boost your own testosterone levels.
Here are some natural ways to improve your testosterone production.
Try to reduce stress levels. When your body is subjected to stress your body releases a hormone known as cortisol. This has a direct and very negative effect on testosterone production.
The secret is to find ways to reduce stress (and of course exercise is a great way). In simple terms, the less stress in your life, the better your testosterone levels.
Sleep Well. Lack of sleep is almost as bad as stress for depleting testosterone, poor sleep quality can cause weight gain, reduced muscle tone and a complete lack of motivation. Try to get at least 7 hours sleep per night
Eat Sensibly. Your diet should encompass a sensible mix of proteins, complex carbohydrates and good fats. Too many unsaturated fats and processed foods can lead to low testosterone.
Exercise In The Right Way. You need to pump iron as it encourages the body to release more testosterone. The main compound exercises are without the best ( deadlifts, chest and shoulder presses etc). It is crucial however to get the balance right, make sure that you build in a good mix of aerobic exercise too (walking, swimming, riding) to help maintain heart health and keep burning that fat.
Keep Body Fat Low. On the subject of burning fat, try to keep it in check, by eating well, and exercising regularly, your body will keep in fat burning mode and keep you nice and lean. (which as we mentioned above helps boost testosterone.)
Take A Natural T-Booster. We all know the risks linked to steroids and drug based testosterone treatments.
A good natural testosterone booster will encourage your body to increase production of its own natural testosterone.
Better still, as the increased hormone is your own genetic testosterone you will not experience any of the harsh reactions or side effects so often caused by other drug based or artificial methods.
Look for natural products that contain good levels of:
- Vitamin D3
- D-Aspartic Acid
- Vitamin B6
Other key ingredients to look out for include Luteolin, Boron, Ashwagandha, Oyster and Nettle leaf.
One other point to mention and this about another ingredient – Tribulus Terrestris.
This is a mainstay ingredient in many testosterone boosting supplements. But the hard facts are that in numerous clinical trials, it has failed on all counts to provide any boost in testosterone.
Quite Frankly it DOES NOT WORK
What it can do, is help boost a flagging libido in some men, so it does have its uses. But if you are considering a natural T-booster to ensure you have sufficient testosterone to boost your muscles, then avoid any product that is built around Tribulus –You will be wasting your hard earned money.
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