Chia seeds are small but pack a mighty punch! They are loaded with testosterone boosting minerals, fatty acids and so rich in antioxidants they can last for nearly 2 years without refrigeration.
Prized by Aztec warriors, who thought that a mere tablespoon would give them the energy to last all day in fierce battles.
The chia seed has been credited with dozens of health benefits like decreasing the aging process, improving heart health, reversing diabetes, forging stronger bones, increasing strength, promoting healthier skin, improving digestion and so much more.
But what you want to know about is if chia seeds can increase your testosterone and we take a look at the science in this article to answer that question.
5 Ways Chia Seeds Increase Testosterone
- Provides Minerals and Plant Compounds Crucial to Testosterone Production
- High in Omega 3 Fatty Acids
- Fights Insulin Resistance
- Prolongs Healthy Hydration
- Reduces Inflammation
Chia Seeds Deliver Crucial Testosterone Boosting Minerals and Plant Compounds
Testosterone boosting minerals include:
Calcium has been directly implemented in increased T levels in males when accompanied with an active training routine. (1)
Iodine is one of the most underrated minerals in testosterone production and having a healthy amount of it in your system is absolutely imperative on multiple levels. Read up on how iodine boots testosterone and health here.
Magnesium and Zinc are of course part of the ZMA complex and critical to maximizing your testosterone levels.
Plant Compounds Which May Aid in T Production Include:
Kaempferol – Helps protect cellular health, fight inflammation, provides antiestrogenic properties. (2, 3)
You can also get kaempferol in several fruits and vegetables including broccoli, cabbage, kale, spinach, onions, beans, tomatoes, strawberries, grapes, blackberries and many others.
Quercetin – Possibly inhibits an enzyme called UGT2B17 which converts testosterone into a molecule known as testosterone glucuronide.
Chia Seeds are High in Testosterone Boosting Omega 3 Fatty Acids
Just 2 tablespoons of chia seeds provide 9 grams of total fat, nearly 1 gram of saturated fat and 4.9 grams of omega 3 fatty acids. That’s more omega 3’s than salmon!
When I started writing on omega 3’s for this article, despite my best efforts to stick to bullet points, there is just a lot to be said and I ended up going on a long tangent.
Therefore, I created a separate article on omega 3 fatty acids.
The bottom line, however, is omega 3 fatty acids provide a lot of great health benefits which play a role in increasing testosterone levels. This includes lowering inflammation, decreasing LDL (bad cholesterol) and triglycerides (a type of fat found in your blood), increasing HDL (good cholesterol) and more.
Chia Seeds Fight Insulin Resistance
Chia seeds are extremely high in fiber, something which upwards of 97% of Americans are believed to be deficient in. (4)
Fiber plays a key role in combating insulin resistance and as we pointed out in our article on turmeric, insulin resistance decreases Leydig Cell testosterone production.
Chia Seeds Promote Healthy Hydration
An adult male’s body is made up of roughly 60% water and your body cannot function at 100%, on any level, without adequate hydration. Your testosterone production, is no different.
Some things are just flat out common sense but it’s still important to have scientific validation.
A recent study on runners showed a decrease in testosterone and an increase in cortisol (a T killer!) when the runners were dehydrated. (5)
Another study showed a decrease in growth hormone (GH) when humans are not properly hydrated during exercise. Growth hormone also sometime referred to as human growth hormone or HGH, is anabolic much like testosterone and important to increasing both size and strength.
To that point, testosterone actually enhances the effect of GH to produce Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), which is anabolic in nature. (6)
So, if you are dehydrated you are potentially taking a triple anti-anabolic hit with decreased testosterone, decreased GH and decreased IGF-1.
Chia seeds are unique in the fact they can absorb up to 10x their weight in water. (7)
Soak a tablespoon in a glass of water for 10 minutes and you’ll see a gel like substance form around them absorbing every drop they can.
I often make a drink called Chia Fresca in which the seeds are soaked in water and fresh lime juice for 15 – 20 minutes before consumption and I can tell you first hand I have more energy and can go harder in my workouts after that.
It’s also believed unsoaked chia’s can absorb water in the stomach pre-digestion though so as long as you are drinking water along with your chia consumption whether or not they have been soaked first, you should be good.
Chia Seeds Reduce Inflammation
We’ve already discussed how inflammation can negatively affect the Leydig cells which hurts testosterone production. And we have talked about how omega 3’s in chia help reduce inflammation.
But with chia you get a big of a bonus here because it’s not just the omega 3’s going to work for you but also the unbelievable amount of hardcore antioxidants packed in chia seeds which lower inflammation.
In fact, a recent study on chia seeds “radical assay showed 68.83% inhibition” which basically means that chia seeds were able to stop roughly 70% of free radical activity dead in its tracks! (8)
Different ways to Consume
- Try them in our testosterone boosting smoothie recipe.
- Sprinkle them on an almond butter sandwich with banana and raw honey.
- Mix in a couple tablespoons in a bowl of oatmeal or quinoa poridge
- Add some to your salad for an extra crunch
- Make a glass of Chia Fresca
- Add to yogurt or this tofu chia pudding recipe
Chia seeds are fantastic for your overall health and great to help increase your testosterone. They are easy to find now in most grocery stores but you can also order them online. Just make sure you get organic.
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- Testosterone levels in athletes at rest and exhaustion: effects of calcium supplementation. Cinar V, Baltaci AK, Mogulkoc R, Kilic M. – Link
- A review of the dietary flavonoid, kaempferol on human health and cancer chemoprevention. Allen Y. Chen and Yi Charlie Chen. – Link
- A review on the dietary flavonoid kaempferol. Calderón-Montaño JM, Burgos-Morón E, Pérez-Guerrero C, López-Lázaro M. – Link
- 97% of People are Deficient in this Nutrient. Dr. Carney – Link
- Effect of hydration state on testosterone and cortisol responses to training-intensity exercise in collegiate runners. Maresh CM, Whittlesey MJ, Armstrong LE, Yamamoto LM, Judelson DA, Fish KE, Casa DJ, Kavouras SA, Castracane VD. – Link
- Effect of hydration on exercise-induced growth hormone response. Peyreigne C, Bouix D, Fédou C, Mercier J. – Link
- Cleveland Clinic Wellness – Chia Seeds – Link
- Phytochemical profile and nutraceutical potential of chia seeds (Salvia hispanica L.) by ultra high performance liquid chromatography. Martínez-Cruz O, Paredes-López O. – Link