Does Olive Oil Increase Testosterone? (Science-Based)

James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Published by James Cunningham, BSc, CPT | Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Last updated: November 29, 2023
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Over the past few years, I’ve come across a lot of people at my gym who take anabolic steroids to help them reach their fitness goals. The unfortunate reality is that these kinds of enhancers can cause severe side effects like liver damage or high blood pressure.

As a senior coach, I'm focused on natural testosterone boosters and found olive oil a promising nutrient-rich option.

So, I’ve spent the last five weeks conducting thorough research to gain a deeper insight into this matter.

Here’s what I found out.

Quick Summary

  • Olive oil contains monounsaturated fatty acids, which may boost your testosterone level.
  • Two enzymes, vital for testosterone production, help convert cholesterol into testosterone.
  • A study involving 206 male volunteers revealed a 10-15% drop in testosterone levels when they switched from a high-fat diet to a low-fat one.
  • While olive oil potentially benefits testosterone levels, I emphasise to my clients that its subtle effects may not suffice for intense muscle growth or high-intensity training.

Does Olive Oil Consumption Boost Testosterone Levels?

A person pouring down olive oil

Yes, olive oil consumption improves testosterone levels.

Switching to a diet with monounsaturated fats like olive oil increased my energy and vitality.

Studies link low-fat diets to reduced testosterone in men. A study of 206 men found a 10–15% testosterone drop with low-fat diets [1].

Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) is tied to better male reproductive health [2].

Similarly, other research showed that oleuropein, a key compound found in olives and EVOO, can trigger increased testosterone production by 17.4% and luteinizing hormone by 42.6% [3].

However, further research is needed for confirmation. Olive oil's antioxidants may protect Leydig cells from oxidative stress, negatively affecting testosterone [4,5].

In Moroccan culture, where virgin oil is common, a study showed Moroccan men’s testosterone and luteinizing hormone levels increased after three weeks of EVOO use [6].

How Can Extra Virgin Olive Oil Boost Testosterone Production?

Close up shot of olive oil on a table

Extra virgin olive oil boosts testosterone by enhancing two key enzymes: 3β-Hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase and 17-β-Hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase.

These enzymes convert cholesterol into testosterone.

By increasing their activity, more cholesterol is converted into testosterone, leading to higher levels of the hormone in the body [7,8].

Additionally, EVOO also increases the number of Leydig cells in the testes.

Leydig cells convert cholesterol into testosterone. More Leydig cells mean more cholesterol conversion to testosterone, enhancing levels.

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Are There Any Risks Associated With Using Olive Oil?

Yes, some risks are associated with using olive oil in large doses, such as nausea, low blood pressure, headaches, and dizziness [9,10].

I learned that moderation is key, especially when focusing on weight loss. Each tablespoon packs 120 Kcal, so I had to balance enjoying the benefits of olive oil without overdoing it.

Although research has shown that the Mediterranean diet with EVOO outperforms low-fat diets for weight loss, monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) in virgin oil are proven to cause weight gain if used excessively [11].

It's also important to note that it is high in saturated fat, which can be bad for your heart health if eaten in large quantities.

How to Use Extra Virgin Olive Oil to Boost T Levels?

Close up shot of extra virgin olive oil being poured

To boost T levels using olive oil, simply take around 25 grams of extra virgin oil first thing in the morning or before sleep.

Consuming the recommended amount may significantly improve your sexual health, blood pressure, and mood.

With that in mind, our dietitian recommends not cooking EVOO at a temperature higher than 400 °F. This way, you can enjoy the full taste and get the maximum out of its antioxidants.

Concerning storage, it should be kept in a cold and dark place to keep its compounds intact.

It contains several chemicals that are susceptible to degradation when exposed to heat and light.

Olive Oil and Physical Performance

Olive oil is not just good for overall health. It can also enhance physical performance thanks to four benefits:

  1. Sustained energy: Olive oil provides a slow-release energy source, ideal for prolonged physical activities.
  2. Muscle recovery: Rich in antioxidants, olive oil can help reduce inflammation and speed up muscle recovery after exercise.
  3. Cardiovascular health: The monounsaturated fatty acids in olive oil benefit heart health, which is crucial for optimal physical performance.
  4. Metabolism and weight loss: Olive oil can positively influence metabolism, aiding in weight management, an important factor for many athletes.


Is Olive Oil a Safer Alternative for Testosterone Increase?

Yes, olive oil is a safer alternative for testosterone increase because it naturally supports hormonal balance without the side effects associated with synthetic boosters.

Can Replacing Other Fats with Olive Oil in the Diet Increase Testosterone Levels?

Yes, replacing other fats with olive oil can increase testosterone levels, as its monounsaturated fats positively influence testosterone production.


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