5 Nutrients That Boost Testosterone

Learn key nutrients that boost testosterone, including common food sources and a delicious recipe that features them.

Certain nutrients are known to naturally support and enhance testosterone production, offering a powerful, holistic approach to maintaining this essential hormone. Learn key nutrients that boost testosterone, including common food sources and a delicious recipe that features them.

What is testosterone?

Before we dive into the key nutrients that boost testosterone levels, let’s explore what exactly testosterone does. Testosterone is a primary sex hormone that acts as one of the body's chemical messengers. Testosterone has many significant functions, including influencing muscle size and strength, supporting bone growth, affecting sex drive and function (1). 

It’s important to note that there are other hormones important for men’s health. Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) for example, is crucial for the development of male characteristics and the growth of facial and body hair. Even though estrogen is primarily considered a female hormone, it’s also present in men and important for libido and sexual function (9).

5 nutrients that boost testosterone 

A well rounded, whole foods-based diet (like the ones available with Lifesum) which includes a balance of protein, fat, and carbs is the best way to support healthy testosterone and other hormone levels. However, certain nutrients have been shown to specifically support testosterone levels including:  

Vitamin D

Vitamin D regulates many functions in the body, including helping to keep our bones healthy and strong. Low levels of vitamin D have been associated with decreased levels of testosterone (2). Few foods naturally contain vitamin D, but it’s also created by our bodies when our skin is exposed to sunlight. Fatty fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel), beef liver, egg yolks, and cheese, and mushrooms contain some vitamin D (3). If you’re at risk for vitamin D deficiency, you may want to talk to your doctor about supplementation. 

This Seared Salmon and Mango Salad features salmon, a good source of vitamin D.


Zinc is a mineral important for our immune function, metabolism, and mens’ sexual health. Low levels may impact sexual development, function, and sperm count. Zinc deficiency is also associated with reduced levels of testosterone (4). Foods high in zinc include oysters, beef, pumpkin seeds, and lentils (5). 

Try these homemade crackers that contain zinc containing pumpkin seeds: Seed Cracker with Cream Cheese and Smoked Salmon


Magnesium, especially when combined with exercise, can increase testosterone levels in men (6). It also helps improve muscle function and regulate blood pressure, which is a chronic disease risk factor for men. Magnesium is naturally found in seeds and nuts, black beans, whole grains, and leafy green vegetables (7). 

This Chocolate and Black Bean Smoothie is a great way to start the day or get some muscle relaxing magnesium in after a workout.


Antioxidants are substances that protect our cells. They also help with sexual health, including increasing hormone levels like testosterone (8). Antioxidants are found in a variety of plant-based foods such as dark chocolate, nuts, and brightly colored fruits and vegetables. 

Protect your cells and sexual health with this comforting Roasted Beans and Vegetables recipe. 


Protein foods contain amino acids, such as leucine, which plays a role in creating muscle proteins and the stimulation of testosterone production (10). Adequate protein intake ensures that the body has a sufficient supply of amino acids to support hormone synthesis.

Pump up your protein intake with this satisfying Mongolian Beef dish.

Regulating testosterone and male hormone levels not only comes down to what you eat, it’s also about adopting various lifestyle changes and habits such as getting regular exercise, good quality sleep, and managing stress. If you’re concerned about your testosterone levels, make sure to check in with your doctor. 

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