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How to Increase Testosterone in Females Naturally?

Isaac Robertson
Published by Isaac Robertson
Fact checked by Donald Christman, BHSc FACT CHECKED
Last updated: November 13, 2021

The optimal balance of testosterone, a sex hormone produced in men’s testicles and women’s ovaries and adrenal glands, is critical for both genders’ vitality, body composition (muscle growth and fat distribution), sexual function, disease prevention, bone, and general health.

Recently, testosterone therapy has been in high demand because many women experience lowered libido, fatigue, and other symptoms of low testosterone levels due to hormonal fluctuations in their perimenopausal and menopausal periods.

Luckily, you can solve this issue in many simple ways.

Our expert team has selected the most effective evidence-based methods to help you boost your testosterone naturally.

Summary of the Key Findings

  • Maintaining healthy testosterone levels is essential for enhancing sexual function and the overall health of both men and women, especially as people age and these hormones naturally decline.
  • Regular exercise, adequate diet, and simple lifestyle changes can effectively regulate testosterone and other hormone levels, particularly important for pre- and postmenopausal women.  
  • Studies have proven that some popular herbs, vitamin and mineral supplements like vitamin D, vitamins B, zinc, magnesium, Ashwagandha, Tribulus, and other natural remedies may restore your testosterone levels as effectively as synthetic hormonal medications.

1. Exercise, Lift Weights and Play Sports

female in the gym lifting a heavy barbell

Heavy resistance training like weightlifting causes an immediate, significant increase in testosterone levels that typically disappears in an hour [1].

Research has also demonstrated that strength training shorter than an hour with shorter rest periods between sets (around one minute) helps increase low testosterone levels.

Similarly, longer workouts with long rest periods may increase cortisol (stress hormone), lowering testosterone levels.

Playing competitive sports and doing intensive exercise like aerobics, Zumba, running, etc., is proven to increase testosterone in women unrelated to estrogen levels [2].

However, I’d rather recommend moderate to gentle exercise like brisk walks than high-intensity interval training (HIIT) to menopausal and postmenopausal women to avoid overexerting their suprarenal glands.

2. Eat the Right Foods

unsaturated fat food sources

What you eat directly affects not only testosterone but all hormone levels. So, it’s advisable to focus on a balanced diet that contains whole foods and sufficient amounts of healthy fats, carbs, and protein.

Also, avoid long-term severe calorie restrictions and overeating.

Research shows that overweight and obese individuals usually have low levels of testosterone. It means that losing weight and reducing your body fat percentage can aid in increasing your testosterone levels.

However, this doesn’t mean you should eliminate fats from your diet.

On the contrary: you should eat more healthy fats to raise your HDL (good) cholesterol levels because testosterone and estrogen are steroid hormones produced from cholesterol [3]. Plus, studies have found that eating less healthy fats results in lower levels of testosterone.

Furthermore, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) says that a diet high in refined sugars that increase blood glucose levels typically triggers insulin resistance and Type 2 Diabetes over time, which blocks testosterone production [4].

So, cutting down on sugar can help restore optimal levels of this sex hormone.

Some studies have shown that particular food can naturally boost testosterone levels as they’re high in protein, omega-3 essential fatty acids, zinc, magnesium, vitamin D, B vitamins (particularly vitamin B6), and other vitamins, minerals, and nutrients associated with increasing low testosterone levels.

So, What Foods Increase Testosterone in Females?

Foods that may help increase testosterone in women include:

  • Proteins and healthy fats – eggs, liver, wild-caught oily fish (salmon, mackerel, herring, etc.), lobster, crab, oysters, shrimps, olive oil
  • Lentils and beans (kidney, black, or white)
  • Veggies and fruits – asparagus, leafy greens (kale, spinach, etc.), pomegranate juice

Seeds and nuts – pumpkin seeds, almonds

3. Minimize Stress to Reduce Cortisol Levels

woman alone and relaxing outdoors

Chronic stress (physical, emotional, or mental) spikes cortisol levels (the main hormone produced during stress response).

High levels of cortisol further decrease testosterone production (like a seesaw) [5] since the adrenal glands produce both these stress and steroid hormones.

“Stress can cause lower testosterone levels and then turn into a vicious cycle — the lower testosterone level can cause stress, which can cause testosterone numbers to drop even lower.” S. Adam Ramin, MD, Urologist

So, chill out, get plenty of rest and enough good-quality sleep, follow a balanced diet, laugh, have fun, do what relaxes you, and learn how to reduce stress effectively.

It should result in higher testosterone levels.

4. Take Herbal Remedies, Vitamin and Mineral Supplements

pill supplements scattered

Adequate vitamin D intake is critical for regulating both high and low testosterone levels as it’s proven to work as a natural testosterone booster in men and women.

So, ensure you’re regularly exposed to sunlight and consider taking vitamin D supplements if necessary.

Studies have shown that zinc deficiency is related to low testosterone. Taking zinc supplements or eating food rich in this essential mineral (beef, lamb, oysters, etc.) can also raise testosterone levels.

The same goes for boron, a mineral commonly found in nuts and dried fruits (but taking it as a supplement in high doses can cause severe side effects).

Some research findings have suggested that magnesium supplementation can also increase testosterone in healthy athletes.

Other micronutrients such as calcium, vitamin B complex, vitamins A, C, and E may also be beneficial for your hormone levels, but further scientific evidence is needed.

Taking a dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) supplement can dramatically increase circulating testosterone in women. This over-the-counter steroid hormone is a common treatment for low testosterone, but I wouldn’t use it without consulting a qualified medical professional.

Besides providing various other health benefits, several science-backed herbs are also proven to have the same effect on low testosterone levels — to work as natural testosterone boosters.

The herbal remedies most commonly used as a treatment for balancing hormones and improving sexual function include Tribulus Terrestris, Ashwagandha, Malaysian Ginseng, Ginger extract, Trifolium Pratense (Red Clover), and Mucuna Pruriens.

Also read:  What Are the Best Natural Testosterone Boosters for Females?

5. Lead a Healthy Sex Life to Maintain Normal Testosterone Levels

couple feet cuddling under sheets

Yeah, I know that low testosterone levels typically decrease your libido and that sex may be the last thing on your mind, but think again.

Research suggests that touching, cuddling, sexual thoughts, and intimacy can increase testosterone and sex drive in both healthy men and women.

Enjoying regular sex helps maintain healthy levels of testosterone, which may have positive effects on the sex drive, especially in postmenopausal women.

So, find some time to hit the bed and be romantic with your partner, as there’s no better way to try to increase testosterone levels naturally.

FAQs

How Do I Know If My Testosterone Level Is Low?

You’ll know your testosterone level’s low if you feel a mix of the following symptoms:

  • Low libido and sexual dysfunction [6]
  • Weight gain
  • Constant fatigue
  • Mood changes
  • Feelings of sadness and depression
  • Loss of lean muscle mass
  • Body hair loss
  • Poor memory and focus

Lower energy level, endurance, strength, and physical performance [7]

What Does Lack of Testosterone Do to a Woman?

Long-term lack of testosterone can negatively impact various functions in a woman’s body, overall health, and well-being.

It can contribute to Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder (HSDD), menstrual cycle and fertility issues, compromised reproductive tissue health, reduced production of red blood cells, bone density loss, increased body fat, decreased lean muscle mass, etc.

How to Boost Female Testosterone Levels: Wrap-Up

As you age, when your testosterone levels naturally start to decline, it’s vital to bring them back to normal because low testosterone has been linked to increased disease risk, depression, obesity, and even premature death.

Women who’d like to restore healthy testosterone levels naturally without taking medications should include regular moderate exercise in their daily routine.

Then, they should eat food or take herbal remedies and supplements that contain particular nutrients proven to provide noticeable results in restoring healthy testosterone levels.

Also, avoid alcohol, drugs, and exposure to parabens and other estrogen-like chemicals.

Plus, stay sexually active and relax as much as possible.

Experts claim that these simple steps can work wonders for your testosterone levels.


References:

  1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/9660159/
  2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23812088/
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK22339/
  4. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/8964590/
  5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/8884416/
  6. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15592425/
  7. https://bjsm.bmj.com/content/54/10/599

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