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Nutrition is the key to properly increasing your levels of testosterone.
One food group that quickly becomes a concern for most testosterone-focused men is nuts.
While most nuts contain healthy fats and micronutrients, not all nuts are made the same, especially when it comes to supporting healthy t-levels.
What are Brazil Nuts?
Brazil nuts are high-fat, micro nutrient powerhouses that may help to support healthy testosterone levels due to their impressive nutrient profile.
Nutritional Profile of Brazil Nuts
According to Dr Axe., one ounce of dried and unblanched Brazil nuts contains the following highlighted nutrients:
- Total Fat: 18.6g
- Saturated Fat: 4.2g
- Monounsaturated Fat: 6.9g
- Polyunsaturated Fat: 5.8g
- Total Carbohydrate: 3.4g
- Dietary Fiber: 2.1g
- Protein: 4.0g
- Calcium: 44.8mg
- Iron: 0.7mg
- Magnesium: 105mg
- Phosphorus: 203mg
- Potassium: 184mg
- Sodium: 0.8mg
- Zinc: 1.1mg
- Copper: 0.5mg
- Manganese: 0.3mg
- Selenium: 537mcg
Benefits of Brazil Nuts
Before I jump into the question of whether or not Brazil nuts can increase testosterone levels, I want to explore other reported benefits.
According to a variety of studies, adding a moderate amount of Brazil nuts to your diet may provide the following benefits:
- Powerful antioxidant that destroys free radicals (Source)
- May support cognitive health (Source)
- May reduce risk of cardiovascular disease (Source)
- May promote heart health (so long as they are not eaten in excess – more on this below)
- May improve overall mood and mindset
Even if testosterone isn’t your main concern, making Brazil nuts a part of your daily diet has been shown to promote a variety of benefits.
Do Brazil Nuts Increase Testosterone?
From a scientific standpoint, there have been no studies conducted that take a group of guys, feed them Brazil nuts for 90 days, and measure their testosterone and luteinizing hormone levels before and after.
Asking whether or not Brazil nuts specifically increase your testosterone levels is not a simple yes or no answer.
However, what we can do is look at the nutritional profile of these nuts to see if they are theoretically able to support healthy testosterone production.
Brazil nuts are abundant in the following highlighted nutrients: selenium, zinc, magnesium, and ellagic acid.
- The amount of selenium in Brazil nuts is incredible.
One ounce of Brazil nuts contains over 700% of the selenium that you need each day.
Selenium has its hands in many roles throughout the body but when it comes to testosterone, the science suggests that it is a key nutrient in supporting testosterone levels and fighting against infertility. One study published in the Journal of Urology demonstrated that selenium helped to increase circulating levels of testosterone while reversing male infertility.
- Zinc has long been a respected and effective testosterone boosting mineral.
Several studies including one published in Nutrition confirmed that zinc may be a powerful and natural tool to naturally increase testosterone levels in men. Zinc is often combined with magnesium to amplify these testosterone boosting effects.
- Commonly found alongside zinc in recovery supplements such as ZMA, magnesium is another mineral that is essential for optimal health, especially testosterone levels.
Magnesium, like zinc, supports healthy sleep cycles and it directly supports hormone production and release.
A study published in Biological Trace Element Research demonstrated that magnesium supplementation was able to increase testosterone levels in both athletes and sedentary individuals!
It’s worth noting that the athletes saw a greater increase in testosterone so make sure that you are engaging in a resistance training program.
- Finally, we have ellagic acid, which is a naturally occurring and important phenol antioxidant.
Antioxidants actively seek out disease-causing free radicals and destroy them, thereby decreasing your risk for age and stress-related complications.
While ellagic acid may not directly increase testosterone levels, it may support healthy testosterone levels by eliminating free radicals that may work against normal t-levels.
How Many Brazil Nuts are Safe to Eat?
When it comes to Brazil nuts, more is not necessarily better.
I mentioned above how one ounce delivers over 700% of your daily recommended selenium intake.
Coming from a whole food and not a supplement, this is above and beyond what you want or need.
Let’s not forget that Brazil nuts also contain polyunsaturated fats, which are good for you up to a point.
Americans in particular are already consuming too many of these.
The monounsaturated fats are what you want to focus on.
You don’t want to trash your health by trying to consume as much selenium as possible in order to boost testosterone as this may have unintended consequences.
With that said, my recommendation, which reflects that of other fitness experts out there, is to consume no more than one to two Brazil nuts per day.
What Other Nuts Boost Testosterone?
There is a lot of debate about what other nuts can be beneficial for your testosterone levels.
Does that mean you need to cut out all other types of nuts from your diet if you want surging high t-levels?
No, of course not.
Below, I’m going to include nuts that have been almost universally agreed upon to be great for testosterone then I’ll include a list of nuts that may work against your testosterone levels.
Again, you don’t want to throw these nuts out of your diet; just be sure to eat them sparingly.
Eat These for Testosterone:
- Brazil nuts
- Macadamia nuts
- And all of these
Eat These Sparingly:
- Or any of these, for that matter
If you’re wondering why peanuts aren’t on either list, it’s because peanuts aren’t a nut.
They are legumes and you should limit your intake of them as much as possible due to high levels of polyunsaturated fats and concerns over mold in mass production peanut butter.
Do you regularly eat Brazil nuts? How many do you eat per day?
What benefits have you noticed since you started incorporating them into your diet?
Let me know in the comments below!
- Maryam Zahin, Iqbal Ahmad, Ramesh C. Gupta, and Farrukh Aqil, “Punicalagin and Ellagic Acid Demonstrate Antimutagenic Activity and Inhibition of Benzopyrene Induced DNA Adducts,” BioMed Research International, vol. 2014, Article ID 467465, 10 pages, 2014. doi:10.1155/2014/467465.
- Benton D, Cook R.
The impact of selenium supplementation on mood.
Biol Psychiatry. 1991 Jun 1;29(11):1092-8.
- Safarinejad MR, Safarinejad S.
Efficacy of selenium and/or N-acetyl-cysteine for improving semen parameters in infertile men: a double-blind, placebo controlled, randomized study.
J Urol. 2009 Feb;181(2):741-51. doi: 10.1016/j.juro.2008.10.015. Epub 2008 Dec 16.
- Netter A, Hartoma R, Nahoul K.
Effect of zinc administration on plasma testosterone, dihydrotestosterone, and sperm count.
Arch Androl. 1981 Aug;7(1):69-73.
- Prasad AS, Mantzoros CS, Beck FW, Hess JW, Brewer GJ.
Zinc status and serum testosterone levels of healthy adults.
Nutrition. 1996 May;12(5):344-8.
- Cinar V, Polat Y, Baltaci AK, Mogulkoc R.Biol.
Effects of magnesium supplementation on testosterone levels of athletes and sedentary subjects at rest and after exhaustion.
Trace Elem Res. 2011 Apr;140(1):18-23. doi: 10.1007/s12011-010-8676-3. Epub 2010 Mar 30.
- Zhang H-M, Zhao L, Li H, Xu H, Chen W-W, Tao L.
Research progress on the anticarcinogenic actions and mechanisms of ellagic acid.
Cancer Biology & Medicine. 2014;11(2):92-100. doi:10.7497/j.issn.2095-3941.2014.02.004.
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