Testosterone boosters have become incredibly popular among men of all ages. Younger men use them to increase their athletic performance, while older men use them in a bid to regain their youth, but are testosterone boosters safe?
Well, the answer to that depends on the type of testosterone booster that you’re thinking of taking – some ‘all natural’ testosterone boosters may be OK, others could be potentially dangerous – you really do need to be careful about who you buy from, where it comes from, and what the ingredients are.
The question you need to be asking yourself is, “are the ingredients in this product all safe?” because there have been some concerns about certain supplement ingredients, and if you are taking prescription medications or other supplements you could end up with some strange interactions and side effects.
Most natural testosterone boosters that you can buy over the counter do not contain any hormones at all – rather, they are made up of herbs, roots and other ingredients that will help to increase your natural testosterone production. These supplements are usually well tolerated by most people, but it’s unclear how effective they really are.
Things like Tribulus Terrestris, for example, are popular in testosterone boosters. Tribulus is a herb that has long been recognized for its usefulness in treating female infertility. It helps to increase your body’s hormone production and as a result, a lot of athletes use it.
Not all supplements are as ‘well respected’ as Tribulus, however. There are others that have not had extensive testing, and there are some supplements that aren’t even claiming that they will ‘promote testosterone production’ at all, but rather that they contain essential micronutrients that the body uses to make testosterone. The idea with these supplements is that if you are not getting the nutrition that you need from your day-to-day diet, they will help you to get back on track and that your body will produce more testosterone of its own accord when it is properly fed.
Now, if you were to go to a doctor most of them would say that yes, natural testosterone boosters are safe and that most of the over the counter test boosters should not cause problems for a generally healthy adult male. However, safe and effective are two different things. Testosterone boosters will improve your testosterone levels assuming that you are generally healthy – but if you are suffering from a pituitary gland condition, or have other underlying medical problems, then you’re better off getting professional medical help.
Other Approaches to Boosting Testosterone
Conventional testosterone boosters aren’t the only treatment that you might want to look at. Another option is to look at ways of reducing stress. Cortisol production relies on DHEA, and this is a hormone that is also used to make testosterone. If you are stressed, your body’s cortisol levels become elevated, and while you’re making cortisol you can’t make quite as much testosterone. So, reducing stress can help, indirectly, to increase testosterone.
In addition, supplementing DHEA can help to increase your levels of free testosterone – especially if you’re a middle-aged and generally healthy man. There are some safety concerns with DHEA though – unlike other supplements, which are considered broadly safe, DHEA has more side effects – which can range from hair loss to an upset stomach, or more dangerous things such as increased blood pressure. DHEA is also known to interact with other supplements and with prescription medications. Therefore, you shouldn’t take DHEA without talking to your doctor first.
Testosterone boosters will often contain a number of other ingredients such as hydroxymethyl butyrate and creatine, which are useful supplements in their own right, but it’s unclear whether they actually have an impact on your testosterone level or whether they just improve your overall feeling of wellbeing. Since most people who take testosterone boosters do so to just ‘make themselves feel better’, anything that boosts energy levels, improves sleep quality or generally makes you feel happier and healthier is worth trying. If taking supplements and getting more exercise doesn’t work for you, be sure to talk to a doctor.