Zinc has gained increasing attention over the past few years for its testosterone producing qualities. Many men have begun taking zinc for not only low testosterone levels, but as a supplement for building muscle mass as well.
What Is Zinc and How Does It Boost Testosterone?
Zinc is natural mineral that can be found naturally in food, added to food, and is marketed as a dietary supplement. Zinc plays a role in producing approximately 100 enzymes, protein synthesis, DNA synthesis, cell division, wound healing, and immune function. Zinc also plays a large role in testosterone production.
In fact, having too little zinc in the blood stream can have adverse effects on testosterone levels such as:
- Increasing estrogen (the female hormone) receptors and decreasing androgen (the male hormone) receptors
- Problems with the prostate may also arise, as a healthy prostate requires 10 times the amount of zinc than any other part of the body. Zinc deficiencies create a significantly higher risk of developing prostate cancer.
- Aromatizing (converting) testosterone into estrogen
- Prevention of converting androstenedione into testosterone
It is not fully understood why zinc plays such a large part in testosterone production. Recent zinc research studies have shown that the mineral may affect cells found in the testes that primarily produce testosterone. It has been shown that zinc frees higher amounts of testosterone and the anabolic hormones responsible for producing testosterone.
Using Zinc for Sexual Dysfunction and Deficiencies
Low Testosterone Levels Due to Aging:
With age, men’s testosterone levels will begin to decrease naturally. However, when testosterone levels drop below approximately 300ng/dL, it is known as a condition called hypogonadism. Hypogonadism can cause sexual dysfunctions such as:
- Diminished erectile quality (most commonly at night)
- Lowering of libido (sex drive)
- Inability to maintain erections
Many men have experienced this problem, and it is becoming a commonly reported occurrence. There are many testosterone replacement therapies such as:
- Oral pills
These methods are commonly used; however, they are anabolic steroids. This means that they are chemically made, and not natural. Being chemically made, these methods have serious, sometimes irreversible side effects. Zinc is a natural mineral, and it naturally drives your body to produce testosterone by natural means.
For many men, zinc has been proven to:
- Boost testosterone levels
- Extend the duration of intercourse
- Enhance quality of erections
- Increase libido
Low Testosterone Levels Due to Zinc Deficiency
Along with aging, zinc deficiencies are the most common causes of low testosterone levels. If you are suffering the side effects of low testosterone, especially if you are under the age of 30, it is a good idea to get tested for a zinc deficiency. However, zinc tests are often tricky, and do not have the most reliable results. It is recommended to get tested by a professional doctor. However, there is a commonly used 10 second test that can be used at home known as the “zinc taste test”. It involves purchasing liquid zinc sulfate heptahydrate, which can be purchased in health food stores and pharmacies. You put the directed amount of liquid into your mouth and hold it for ten seconds before swallowing.
Your response will be of the following:
- 1- If it does not have a taste, or tastes like water, you have a major deficiency.
- 2- No immediate taste is noticeable, but by the end of the ten seconds, you experience a ‘metallic’ or ‘dry’ taste. This signals a moderate deficiency.
- 3- An immediate, slight unpleasant taste is experienced, and builds over the remaining ten second period. This means you have a minor deficiency.
- 4- An immediate, overwhelming unpleasant taste is experienced. This means you have no deficiency.
Treatment for zinc deficiencies is relatively simple. Most people begin taking zinc supplements, as well as eating foods high in zinc, such as beef. In most cases, once the levels of zinc are properly restored in the body, testosterone levels go back to normal. Additionally, when the testosterone levels return to normal, the sexual dysfunctions and deficiencies caused by low testosterone will revert.
Using Zinc to Build Muscle Mass
Zinc naturally creates more testosterone. This extra burst of testosterone helps promote muscle mass, and will help your muscles to grow quicker. Zinc also reduces the amount of estrogen produced in your body. This decrease in estrogen helps to reduce fat build up. Zinc gives your body more energy. Extra energy created by zinc helps to endure longer workouts and quickens the recovery period after your workout.
Side Effects of Zinc
Being a natural mineral found in the environment, zinc does not have many side effects within itself. The most common side effects associated with taking zinc are:
However, it is highly recommended consulting with your doctor before taking zinc supplements, as overuse can cause:
- Stomach pain
How Do I Use Zinc?
Zinc is most commonly purchased in oral capsule form. However most men suffer with a copper/zinc imbalance. This imbalance can make raising testosterone levels somewhat challenging. For this reason, it is usually a good idea to choose a zinc supplement that will also lower copper levels within the body.
What’s the Bottom Line?
If monitored carefully, zinc is a very effective, natural supplement to boost testosterone levels. Zinc has a positive, increasing effect on testosterone, and is definitely worth trying out. If you need a supplement with a little more power, try out a natural testosterone booster here.