Does Turmeric Increase Testosterone Levels? (The Answer)

James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Published by James Cunningham, BSc, CPT | Staff Writer & Senior Coach
Last updated: January 17, 2024
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While turmeric offers various health benefits, there's limited evidence directly linking it to an increase in testosterone levels in men.

Drawing from years of experience as a personal trainer, I’ve learned that supplementing with turmeric may contribute to factors optimizing testosterone. However, it's crucial to add it into proven strategies like regular strength training, a balanced diet, and sufficient sleep.

You can also check our complete list of natural testosterone boosters. We did extensive research and you will for sure find the perfect choice for yourself.

Quick Summary

  • Turmeric can help increase testosterone levels in the body by blocking estrogen levels, known to interfere with testosterone levels.
  • Turmeric supplementation can positively impact testosterone levels, offering additional benefits for enhancing cholesterol profiles and managing weight.
  • Its anti-inflammatory properties have been shown to effectively alleviate symptoms of knee osteoarthritis in 94 percent of observed individuals.
  • As a fitness trainer, adding turmeric as a supplement has the potential to optimize testosterone levels, particularly when combined with consistent training, a balanced diet, and sufficient sleep.

How Does Turmeric Impact Your Testosterone Level?

man with his arms crossed, two spoons filled with turmeric powder

Turmeric can impact testosterone levels by potentially increasing free testosterone in the bloodstream through its antioxidant properties and other mechanisms, such as blocking excess estrogen, balancing cholesterol, and activating vitamin D receptors [1].

Additionally, scientists have noted other positive effects of turmeric on testosterone, including:

1. Blocking Estrogen

Estrogen is vital for sperm development, but excess estradiol can decrease testosterone levels. Research from ScienceDirect indicates that curcumin, found in turmeric, intervenes at the cellular level, blocking excess estrogen and helping maintain a natural balance of testosterone levels in the blood [2].

2. Balancing Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a crucial precursor for all steroid hormones, including testosterone, as per the National Institute of Health. Turmeric supplementation can help assist in balancing total cholesterol levels in the blood, potentially aiding weight loss and leading to elevated testosterone levels in men [3].

3. Activating Vitamin D Receptors

While a study from the National Institute of Health suggests that curcumin supplementation improved vitamin D levels in women, another study from the same institute indicates that vitamin D supplementation can potentially increase testosterone levels [4] [5].

Turmeric Benefits For Men

young man smiling with both his arms flexing

In a recent discussion with my dietitian, she emphasized the additional health benefits of turmeric, including:

1. Combating Oxidative Stress

Research from the National Institute of Health indicates that turmeric can help in the detoxification process by countering toxins produced during oxidative stress, especially in cells processing oxygen [6].

2. Improving Insulin Sensitivity

woman using a glucose meter

Turmeric enhances insulin sensitivity, potentially stabilizing blood glucose levels and influencing body fat and liver function. This makes turmeric supplements a possible solution for those dealing with low testosterone, often linked to diabetes [7].

3. Reducing Inflammation

Research from Harvard Medical School indicates that, aside from its antioxidant benefits, the curcumin in turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties. A study concluded that 94% of people with knee osteoarthritis symptoms experienced relief from arthritis symptoms with fewer side effects [8].

What’s The Active Ingredient In Turmeric?

handful of fresh turmeric plant

The active ingredient in turmeric is curcumin, known for its anti-inflammatory properties and widely used for various health benefits.

“Why curcumin? It’s a naturally occurring substance, found in the spice turmeric, that has anti-inflammatory effects. Its use has been advocated for cardiovascular health, arthritis, and a host of other conditions.”

- Robert H. Shmerling, Harvard Health Publishing

Given that the botanical term for turmeric is Curcuma longa, it's easy to see why this spice is one of the most abundant sources of curcumin.

It's crucial to note that the spiciness of an herb doesn't influence testosterone levels. Just consuming chili powder, for instance, wouldn't yield the same reaction.

What’s The Best Way To Take In More Turmeric?

handful of supplements. bowl of curry and rice

The best way to increase your turmeric intake and naturally boost testosterone levels, you either incorporate it into your food or take it as a supplement with added black pepper for better absorption.

Food

Turmeric in powder form is readily available at most Asian and Indian specialty food stores, and you won't need much for your spice cabinet. You can add it to your meals or mix it with milk or a smoothie—yes, milk and turmeric make a tasty drink.

Supplements

If you're not a fan of spicy food, you can still enhance testosterone production by taking curcumin as a supplement. Look for one with added black pepper, which may aid in faster nutrient absorption.

Raw Turmeric Root or Powder

To consume raw turmeric, try it as a powder or freshly grated. For better taste and absorption, combine it with a liquid like a flavored turmeric shot, tea, or smoothie. Turmeric powder can be added to dishes like curry, soups, and roasted meat.

Related:

FAQs

What Food Gives You More Testosterone?

Consuming foods rich in curcumin, zinc, and vitamin D may give you more testosterone in the blood. These foods include seafood, nuts, and seeds, offering a natural boost through your diet.

Which Tea Is Good For Testosterone?

Turmeric and white tea are good for testosterone. Clinical study results have directly linked curcumin to testosterone. Additionally, many teas contain polyphenols that block estrogen release, contributing to a higher T count.


References:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5598100/
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S104366181931254X
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2262169/
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8784001/
  5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21154195/
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5551541/
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4338652/
  8. https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/curcumin-for-arthritis-does-it-really-work-2019111218290
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About The Author

James Cunningham, BSc, CPT
Staff Writer & Senior Coach
James Cunningham, BSc, CPT holds a BSc degree in Sport & Exercise Science from University of Hertfordshire. He's a Health & Performance Coach from London that brings a unique blend of academic knowledge of health supplements and practical exercise experience to the table for his readers.
Learn more about our editorial policy
Dr. Kristy June Dayanan, BS, MD is an author with a BS degree from University of the Philippines and an MD from University of Perpetual Help System. Her ability to simplify medical science complexities and dietary supplement jargon for the average reader makes her a valued medical fact checker and reviewer.
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Dr. Harshi Dhingra, MBBS, MD is a published peer-reviewed author and renowned physician from India with over a decade of experience. With her MBBS from Bharati Vidyapeeth and an MD from Rajiv Gandhi University, she actively ensures the accuracy of online dietary supplement and medical information by reviewing and fact-checking health publications.
Learn more about our editorial policy

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