As a teenager, my friend was convinced that eating peanuts would make him more masculine. He would often grab a handful of peanuts before hitting the gym, believing that they held the key to building muscle and increasing his testosterone levels.
Admittedly, his logic was most certainly misguided, since peanuts actually reduce testosterone. But, it turns out he wasn't entirely wrong. Nuts, in fact, can play a significant role in regulating testosterone levels in the body. Some can give you that extra boost of manliness you've been looking for, while others can have the opposite effect.
So, which nuts should you be reaching for, and which ones should you leave on the shelf? Let's find out!
Key things you need to know
Let’s start with three types of nuts that we know provide a significant enough testosterone boost. These are:
1. Macadamia nuts
First up we have the delightfully delicious Macadamia nuts you’ll often find in deserts and cookies for their sweet buttery taste. Consuming these on a regular basis can increase your testosterone levels.
This is because Macadamia nuts are filled to the brim with monounsaturated fats. While the term “fat” might give the impression that it’s bad for your health, it cannot be further from the truth.
Monounsaturated fats are actually good for your health as they reduce the concentration of LDL (bad) cholesterol. And, since testosterone is inversely proportional to LDL cholesterol, reducing LDL can result in higher T levels.
Macadamia nuts also contain a decent concentration of Magnesium, which has a direct correlation with testosterone. Regular consumption of Magnesium can even increase T levels in both sedentary and athletic men.
2. Tiger nuts
During my research on Tiger nuts, I learned that these nuts have had a “superfood” status since ancient Egypt. So, do these ancient nuts increase testosterone in the modern day? From the looks of things, yes, they do.
A 2015 study tested the impact of Tiger nuts on testosterone production in male rats and the results were surprising. According to this study, regular Tiger nut supplementation increased led to a significant increase in the serum testosterone levels of the test subjects.
I'd still like to see more human-focused research on these nuts. But, it won’t be a bad idea for you to give them a try and see what happens. Just make sure you don’t eat too much of them or they might lead to stomach issues — like gas and bloating.
3. Brazil nuts
The subtle bitter-sweet taste and woody undertones of Brazil nuts make them an excellent snack. Even if you don’t like their taste, it’d be a good idea to consume a few grams of these nuts daily. Doing so can reduce your LDL cholesterol and improve your health as a whole.
Brazil nuts are also loaded with key nutrients. One of the most notable of these nutrients is selenium which is gaining steam as a testosterone-boosting supplement and it is easy to see why. Research shows how regular intake of this mineral can cause a noticeable increase in your testosterone levels.
Not only that but selenium supplementation can also boost men’s fertility by improving sperm motility (sperm’s ability to move on its own).
After a careful overview of the most popular nuts, I found four that can actually reduce your T levels. These are:
Here’s why they lead to low testosterone:
Almonds & Walnuts
Both Almonds and Walnuts increase the concentration of Sex-Hormone Binding Globulin; a protein that reduces testosterone availability by binding itself to free testosterone. While this protein is a natural part of our metabolic processes, increasing its concentration with Almonds or Walnuts can lead to reduced testosterone levels.
Peanuts & Pistachios
Should you consume nuts to achieve a higher T level?
Let’s take this one step at a time.
Should you consume nuts?
Yes, almost all of them are highly nutritious and filled with essential minerals.
Should you consume nuts for the sole purpose of raising T levels? No, I’d recommend against that. While nuts like Macadamia and Brazil do have T-boosting properties, they are not as effective as you might think.
You’d likely have to eat a large amount of these nuts to see any major changes. But, by then, an upset stomach would probably be a bigger concern for you.
To summarize, nuts do have an impact on your testosterone levels. Some — like the Macadamia and Tiger nuts — can lead to higher T levels, while others such as almonds and walnuts can lower free testosterone connection in your system.
However, none of these nuts are an actual cure for low testosterone or a major threat to your testosterone levels. So, don’t be afraid to be like my friend and grab a handful of peanuts if you like them as a snack.