Increasing Testosterone Naturally With Supplements and Lifestyle (no TRT)

StarcraftGG

Sparrow
about 1 year ago, I was in exceedingly poor health and dealing with a myriad of serious and complicated health problems. Not surprisingly, my testosterone levels were extremely low - my total testosterone levels were 324 ng/dL. This is in the range for men aged 85-100. Free testosterone was also very low at 56.4 pg/mL. For both, I was at the low end of the entire reference range. My primary care physician would have given me TRT if I wanted it, but I didn't, believing that I could improve it naturally.
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For those who remember the Buzzfeed article about the 4 soyboys, only 1 of the 4 guys had slightly higher free testosterone than I did, and that was when I was catastrophically ill at the time. For me to be seriously ill and still have significantly higher T than 3 of those dudes who were presumably healthy is mind boggling.


Low testosterone is a serious problem. I'm assuming that for a their entire adult lives, those 4 men had low testosterone and never approached normal testosterone, so they never had a reference to compare with what normal testosterone feels like. I believe that their condition feels totally normal to them because it's all that they have ever known. I on the other hand had "normal" T at one time so I understand what both normal and low T feels like, and I can recognize that I have a problem when I have low T.

I decided against TRT because I believe in a holistic approach to overall health and expected to improve my levels slowly over time as my health improved. I am a big fan of Chinese herbs and nutritional supplements and I know they work because I've used myself as a guinea pig over the years. As I recovered over the past year with the help of my open minded primary care physician (MD) and nutritionist, one thing that I've been taking only since March of this year, is a supplement called Tongkat Ali - 1 pill, 3 times a day. I can't say exactly how much it contributed to my increase in testosterone, but along with weighlifting and putting on 15-20 pounds of muscle as I recovered from illness, you can see the huge improvement relative to my original results 1 year ago. 30% increase in total testosterone, and a 53% increase in free testosterone.

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Also, as part of my yearlong recovery while I worked with my healthcare providers, coincidentally I followed every recommendation in this article:


1. lifted weights and went from extremely skinny and underweight (from illness) to regaining nearly 10% of my entire body mass as muscle
2. ate plenty of chicken drumsticks, rice, oatmeal, yuca daily, drank a gallon of water a day
3. minimized stress - only worked a part time job and didn't work to the point of burnout, taking time to take daily walks and meditate and exercise and stretch
4. sun and vitamin D - this was not so simple. as explained to my by my nutritionist, vitamin D needs to get into the digestive tract and that doesn't really happen when you get vitamin D through the sun. I was taking my shirt off during daily walks. In order to get even more Vitamin D, I tried supplements but was allergic to all of them since Vitamin D is derived from lanolin from sheep's wool which I am allergic to. Same goes for lichen-based vegan vitamin D. I am also allergic to cod and fish, so fish-based vitamin D was out of the question. Finally, we found something that did work, which I only started taking recently so I have a feeling the results haven't fully kicked in yet. It's the prescription calcitriol, which is the already converted form of Vitamin D used by your body. The other Vitamin D supplements I listed have to be converted twice by the body to get to the active form. Sometimes the conversion doesn't happen well so for a shortcut, I think that calcitriol might be greatly beneficial to many people who are low in Vitamin D.
5. Take vitamin supplements - while working with an expert nutritionist, we developed a good base of supplementation to help me recover based on what I needed as per various test results. These include: fiber, glutamine, adrenal support, thyroid support, vitamin C, copper, B12, calcium, vitamin D, and other stuff tailored to my specific needs.
6. sleep - got plenty of that, 9-10 hours a day consistently to aid in my recovery, with 3 mg melatonin to help the sleep cycle
7. testosterone supplements - tongkat ali is listed here, and it's the only one I took (1 pill, 3x/day)
8. follow a healthy lifestyle and avoid estrogenic compounds - I use a brita filter but once it's filtered I transfer the water to a stainless steel gallon container that I drink out of all day. No soy. stretching, praying, reading the bible, sharing time with loving family daily on the phone, keeping in contact with friends despite covid lockdowns, playing video games, working and not stressing out, I definitely am living a good balanced healthy life at the moment as I recover.

I wrote this in hopes of showing people that they too can improve their testosterone levels without TRT. If I can do it while recovering from catastrophic illness, so can you.
 

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get2choppaaa

Ostrich
Good post from your anecdotal experience. Dont take this as a personal attack as it takes testicular fortitude to post the above and clearly indicates you're educated/educating yourself on it.

One thing to note is that your daily T will fluctuate significantly (can be up to 100 points total T). The difference between 350 total T and 420 total T is really minuscule. The Free T is much more a sign that whatever you're doing is an increase in how you feel. Addionally, the main focus is IF YOU FEEL BETTER then the numbers are proof something is going in the right way....However I don't get wrapped into the numbers off of 2 separate tests. The Free T is the more important number, but both are good markers. I get mine checked every 4 to 6 months and have noticed significant changes based off of time of draws ect... less so once starting TRT, but still there is a variance. Also, knowing your age would significantly help provide context. If you are 30 for instance, with a total T level in the 300's you should be on TRT. If you were 70 with a total T level of 300, i'd say you're the man. I am not saying do what I did, but I got on T at age 30 with a total level in the low 500's, (which is arguable on whether or not I should have done so, but I had a doc that complied since I paid out of pocket for the drugs and didn't pursue the insurance...) There is a lot more nuance such as SHBG management, Estradiol/E2.

Also considerations to reiterate your comment with some additional info:

-Poor/little Sleep. 7-8 hours is great and a good metric to have the anabolic cascade. but also if you have sleep apnea, getting a CPAP will help massively in this regard.
-Being fat. Fat tissue leads to aromitization. the less fat cells you have, the less testosterone is converted to estrogen.
-Eating enough meat with saturated fat. Look into Cholesterol and its importance to ensuring T production. There's a reason why the Steak and Eggs diet is something red blooded men naturally gravitate to.
-Brain Injury (concussions/Military this is really common) If you have a history of brain damage from sports concussions, you should get your levels checked.
-Weight training will positively affect T. excess cardio will negatively affect T through cortisol.
-As far as T supplements go, they all have minor and negligible effects, but if they help you to embrace healthy habits, that will help.
- You are spot on regarding the Estrogenic Compounds....Alcohol (my main crutch as I love IPA's), and even more so Marijuana (not my thing) are terrible for estrogen. Everyone has a fat pothead friend with gynocomastia (bitch tits)

Bottom line, glad you had positive increases on your 2 blood tests (the increase in free T is good) and you're overall advice is pretty on point, but I would also reiterate that there is a lot more to the subject and your previous baseline is significant for us to gauge the effects of your above regime.
 
I went from 475 to 625 ish. I did extensive blood panels to find out where my bottleneck was, turned out it was my e2 that was high making my body turn down production of LH/FSH. Estrogeneration gave me some advice. Not tested my levels since, but feels like my T is even higher now.

Doing most of the things you listed. Would add that adding some extra dietary saturated fat and cholesterol probably is good and cutting down on that oatmeal and rice might be good if you like me suffer from high e2. For T boosters, consider ashwagandha.

Learning about T is a lot of work, so many tests to do and so many bad doctors, labs, and bad information on youtube.
 

GWYW2015

Woodpecker
Orthodox
about 1 year ago, I was in exceedingly poor health and dealing with a myriad of serious and complicated health problems. Not surprisingly, my testosterone levels were extremely low - my total testosterone levels were 324 ng/dL. This is in the range for men aged 85-100. Free testosterone was also very low at 56.4 pg/mL. For both, I was at the low end of the entire reference range. My primary care physician would have given me TRT if I wanted it, but I didn't, believing that I could improve it naturally.
View attachment 24947

View attachment 24948

For those who remember the Buzzfeed article about the 4 soyboys, only 1 of the 4 guys had slightly higher free testosterone than I did, and that was when I was catastrophically ill at the time. For me to be seriously ill and still have significantly higher T than 3 of those dudes who were presumably healthy is mind boggling.


Low testosterone is a serious problem. I'm assuming that for a their entire adult lives, those 4 men had low testosterone and never approached normal testosterone, so they never had a reference to compare with what normal testosterone feels like. I believe that their condition feels totally normal to them because it's all that they have ever known. I on the other hand had "normal" T at one time so I understand what both normal and low T feels like, and I can recognize that I have a problem when I have low T.

I decided against TRT because I believe in a holistic approach to overall health and expected to improve my levels slowly over time as my health improved. I am a big fan of Chinese herbs and nutritional supplements and I know they work because I've used myself as a guinea pig over the years. As I recovered over the past year with the help of my open minded primary care physician (MD) and nutritionist, one thing that I've been taking only since March of this year, is a supplement called Tongkat Ali - 1 pill, 3 times a day. I can't say exactly how much it contributed to my increase in testosterone, but along with weighlifting and putting on 15-20 pounds of muscle as I recovered from illness, you can see the huge improvement relative to my original results 1 year ago. 30% increase in total testosterone, and a 53% increase in free testosterone.

View attachment 24949

Also, as part of my yearlong recovery while I worked with my healthcare providers, coincidentally I followed every recommendation in this article:


1. lifted weights and went from extremely skinny and underweight (from illness) to regaining nearly 10% of my entire body mass as muscle
2. ate plenty of chicken drumsticks, rice, oatmeal, yuca daily, drank a gallon of water a day
3. minimized stress - only worked a part time job and didn't work to the point of burnout, taking time to take daily walks and meditate and exercise and stretch
4. sun and vitamin D - this was not so simple. as explained to my by my nutritionist, vitamin D needs to get into the digestive tract and that doesn't really happen when you get vitamin D through the sun. I was taking my shirt off during daily walks. In order to get even more Vitamin D, I tried supplements but was allergic to all of them since Vitamin D is derived from lanolin from sheep's wool which I am allergic to. Same goes for lichen-based vegan vitamin D. I am also allergic to cod and fish, so fish-based vitamin D was out of the question. Finally, we found something that did work, which I only started taking recently so I have a feeling the results haven't fully kicked in yet. It's the prescription calcitriol, which is the already converted form of Vitamin D used by your body. The other Vitamin D supplements I listed have to be converted twice by the body to get to the active form. Sometimes the conversion doesn't happen well so for a shortcut, I think that calcitriol might be greatly beneficial to many people who are low in Vitamin D.
5. Take vitamin supplements - while working with an expert nutritionist, we developed a good base of supplementation to help me recover based on what I needed as per various test results. These include: fiber, glutamine, adrenal support, thyroid support, vitamin C, copper, B12, calcium, vitamin D, and other stuff tailored to my specific needs.
6. sleep - got plenty of that, 9-10 hours a day consistently to aid in my recovery, with 3 mg melatonin to help the sleep cycle
7. testosterone supplements - tongkat ali is listed here, and it's the only one I took (1 pill, 3x/day)
8. follow a healthy lifestyle and avoid estrogenic compounds - I use a brita filter but once it's filtered I transfer the water to a stainless steel gallon container that I drink out of all day. No soy. stretching, praying, reading the bible, sharing time with loving family daily on the phone, keeping in contact with friends despite covid lockdowns, playing video games, working and not stressing out, I definitely am living a good balanced healthy life at the moment as I recover.

I wrote this in hopes of showing people that they too can improve their testosterone levels without TRT. If I can do it while recovering from catastrophic illness, so can you.
I didn't notice how old you are. I have gotten tested at Labcorp and THEY say for their test that 264 to 916 is their range for healthy males between 19 and 39, which I find a little hard to believe. To me it looks more like 19 to 60. I don't believe many men in their 20s are going to test anywhere near 264.

Stress can do a number on your testosterone levels. During a stressful time when I was late 30s I tested at something like 190, and after realizing I was burning the candle at both ends, cut back on some things and it came up to 852. Stress can dump your levels into the 100s but your body is able to recover if it has been mistreated up to that point.

One time I encourged an older guy, had to be close to 80, get a testosterone test at the VA and he told me it came back at 500 (wouldn't that be great?). He didn't tell me the range but he was a very sharp guy still so it was probable the usual range.

I have talked to multiple doctors about this. Some think the total rarely changes during our life but the free levels continue to lower. I don't believe that, I think they both lower over the years.
 

Dr Mantis Toboggan

Kingfisher
Gold Member
I didn't notice how old you are. I have gotten tested at Labcorp and THEY say for their test that 264 to 916 is their range for healthy males between 19 and 39, which I find a little hard to believe. To me it looks more like 19 to 60. I don't believe many men in their 20s are going to test anywhere near 264.

It can absolutely happen, I tested 3 times in the high 200s/low 300s over the span of about a year in my mid 30s. Started on clomid and was in the 600s a month or two later. That was over a year ago and haven't been tested since (I need to get on that) so not sure about long-term help but I feel better and luckily haven't experienced many of the side effects that others report with clomid. I'll probably switch to TRT when I'm done having kids, though.
 

Hell_Is_Like_Newark

Kingfisher
Gold Member
I raised mine this way (in brief):
  • Went low carb / high fat and lost 40+ lbs.
  • Supplementation (most critical ones):
    Magnesium Malate
    Zinc (with copper)
    Boron
    Vitamin D (5,400 IU per day).
Positive effects from taking supplements was immediate, even before significant weight loss. I discovered my body needed more of the above than I was getting from my diet.
 

Laner

Hummingbird
Gold Member
My testosterone surged from the following:

- Business went tits up so I started welding again.
- Stopped drinking beer and switched to only whiskey.
- Got a mistress and banged hard 7 - 14 times a week.
- Slept 8 hours.
- Gym routine didn't really change, still mostly lifting iron. But added in box jumps and worked on my quickness too. Should have added in heavy bag work too.
- Dirt biked

Having a baby around dropped my T levels for a while, but they are back up again now as the importance of fatherhood on a boy become more important.
 

estraudi

Pelican
Gold Member
I have just barely started taking an herbal supplement(9days today) called Tongkat Ali(AKA Malaysian Ginseng AKA Longjack AKA Eurycoma longifolia ) that is supposed to help with shrinking cortisol/stress hormones and helping with low testosterone and male infertility.
So far my daily energy is sustained until at least 8-9 pm from the usual of crashing around 3-4pm.
I wake up before my alarm which is set at 6:15am every morning so far. I still sleep 8 1/4 hrs but falling asleep happens so much faster as I'm not lying in bed being a worrywort of what tomorrow may bring.
My positivity has also increased and my tone of speaking seems more upbeat than I can remember.
Dosage is 1,020mg spread out over 2 pills(1 in the am and 1 in the pm) and I don't think I need to take more or less. It seems just right for my size and weight, 6'2" 230lbs.
Overall after 1.2 weeks of use I think it is effecting change in the positive for me. Anybody else taken or is taking this supplement I would like to hear your opinion on this herbal supplement.
 

GWYW2015

Woodpecker
Orthodox
I have just barely started taking an herbal supplement(9days today) called Tongkat Ali(AKA Malaysian Ginseng AKA Longjack AKA Eurycoma longifolia ) that is supposed to help with shrinking cortisol/stress hormones and helping with low testosterone and male infertility.
So far my daily energy is sustained until at least 8-9 pm from the usual of crashing around 3-4pm.
I wake up before my alarm which is set at 6:15am every morning so far. I still sleep 8 1/4 hrs but falling asleep happens so much faster as I'm not lying in bed being a worrywort of what tomorrow may bring.
My positivity has also increased and my tone of speaking seems more upbeat than I can remember.
Dosage is 1,020mg spread out over 2 pills(1 in the am and 1 in the pm) and I don't think I need to take more or less. It seems just right for my size and weight, 6'2" 230lbs.
Overall after 1.2 weeks of use I think it is effecting change in the positive for me. Anybody else taken or is taking this supplement I would like to hear your opinion on this herbal supplement.
There are labs you can order online and see what your testosterone levels are. I won't mention the one I have used because I don't know if that is against the rules. They send the requisition to Quest Labs and you make an appointment and they draw the blood. The price went up this year to about 50 dollars for total and free testosterone. Testing is the only way to know if supplements are making a difference. Testing at the same exact time each time. Even so, depending on when your body pulses the T out (there are only so many times a day it does that if I understand right) so that can make your results vary.

You can also make yourself crazy by testing too much. It is great if you are doing better. I just wish everyone had blood labs to verify it, just to be sure. For example, I know which DHEA supplement takes me to 3/4 of the top of the range with 25 mg taken twice a day or all at once. I know that if I take 75 mg I will be over the top of the range, and that was verified with multiple tests.

Similar to D3. The powder capsule supplements don't raise my D3 at all but those small gel caps get me to near the top of the range if I take 14,000 ius and over the top of the range if I take 21,000 ius, so I take 14,000.
 
Various supplements claim to boost testosterone levels, and some people opt to use them in hopes of increasing their levels of this hormone. There are many pills available on the market but the real like vimaxgulf really works.
 

GWYW2015

Woodpecker
Orthodox
What range would you all say is reasonable T level once you get to age 50 or 60? Over 500?
My last doctor told me what he sees is under 500 mg/ml for those at age 50.

If you are 60 then being in the 400s would be pretty fair. Not what we'd probably want but it does drop after age 30.

A guy at work who was maybe low 30s in age said he had less than 200 ng/dl and was considering treatment if it didn't go up.

It varies throught the day depending on when the pulse was and is certainly higher in the morning if you are under 40. At some point it doesn't rise and fall that much, which is likely the case with me at 59.
 

PUA_Rachacha

Woodpecker
My testosterone surged from the following:

- Business went tits up so I started welding again.
- Stopped drinking beer and switched to only whiskey.
- Got a mistress and banged hard 7 - 14 times a week.
- Slept 8 hours.
- Gym routine didn't really change, still mostly lifting iron. But added in box jumps and worked on my quickness too. Should have added in heavy bag work too.
- Dirt biked

Having a baby around dropped my T levels for a while, but they are back up again now as the importance of fatherhood on a boy become more important.
Still got that mistress? I'm missing the sex thing, and the wife is not interested given we have two kids under the age of 3.
 

Bolly

Pelican
Has anyone tried nugenix? I think that counts as a supplement. I heard good things about it from a buddy. It's like 75 bucks a bottle...
 

Laner

Hummingbird
Gold Member
Still got that mistress? I'm missing the sex thing, and the wife is not interested given we have two kids under the age of 3.

No. She was the last one and we ended it in April 2019. She was engaged about 8 months later, which was a big part of why we ended it. We had a great relationship and she was a amazing woman who was getting into her late 20's. I wanted her to be married and have a family, and I knew she had a few good men waiting for her and I to split, so it was time.

It was a real struggle at first but I was pretty determined to be a devoted husband and father so that helped. I live in a small but dense neighborhood and one day towards the end I was with my son and we ran into two women who I had been with quite recently. It made me look at how people might begin to treat my own son by way of judging me as someone who takes mistresses.

Some days the pull is strong to get another woman. A big part of it is the sex and then the ability to just relax after. Walk around naked, enjoy the quiet of a childless post coitus drink. Sex in marriage can often be too rushed. But most of the time I just devote the extra attention to my wife no matter her response.
 

Ranhansha

Pigeon
Gold Member
Me and several friends are now taking Pine Pollen Tincture. It hits hard and fast so it takes some trial and error to get the dosage right.
Caught one of your livestreams recently where people started joining the Pine Pollen Gang, so I got some of that Lost Empire brand tincture you were repping and have been using over the past couple of weeks. Strangely enough, the effect I've appreciated the most is the faster recovery from workouts. Feels like I'm a bit more resilient somehow, and that alone made it worth trying. I'll probably cycle through it for a while and see how things go.

Not a fan of the sublingual dosing and aftertaste (alcohol extraction), but if it works it works.
 
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