What is D-Aspartic Acid?
A non-essential amino acid, D-Aspartic Acid does not need to be consumed through food sources as the body can create its own. D-Aspartic Acid has been shown to be present in the nervous and endocrine systems of humans. While the nervous system supports brain and cellular function, the endocrine system plays an important role with hormone production. As you can imagine, this relationship quickly became a hot topic for those researchers looking for a way to naturally stimulate testosterone production.
What are the Benefits of D-Aspartic Acid?
Before we discuss the benefits of D-Aspartic Acid as they relate to testosterone, let’s take a look at other things that DAA may have a positive influence on.
May Support a Cognitive Boost
- While no credible human studies have been performed regarding D-Aspartic Acid and cognitive health, some nootropic supplements have begun to use it in their brain boosting blends. Theoretically, D-Aspartic Acid may have a positive influence on brain health and cellular energy as it is found concentrated within the nervous and endocrine systems. One thing to note is that if you begin to use DAA for cognitive boosting, be sure to limit your dosage to no more than three grams as many users have complained about headaches with dosages beyond this.
May Increase Sperm Quality
- One study found that men with fertility issues experienced a boost in sperm quality, which increased the number of pregnancies that occurred when trying to conceive with their partners. It’s important to understand that these men had severe fertility issues. In other words, these men were not a part of a normal sample; rather, they were patients with extreme cases. What’s more, the study was quite small, only using 30 subjects. No study has shown sperm quality improvements for men with healthy levels of testosterone and sperm quality.
Does D-Aspartic Acid Increase Testosterone?
Infertile Men May See a Temporary Boost
- In the study mentioned above, infertile men were said to have demonstrated a boost in testosterone levels but it was short-lived. The infertile men experienced an increase of testosterone between 30% and 60% within the first two weeks but after this, their levels dropped again.
Resistance Training and Hormone Levels
- For men who are already engaged in a resistance training program, D-Aspartic Acid was shown to have no effect of hormonal levels, including testosterone. I suspect many of you reading this are already engaged in a weightlifting program, which makes this especially applicable. Men trained four times per week while supplementing with DAA for a month. At the conclusion of the study, testosterone levels remained the same. Science has demonstrated that resistance training plays an important role in maintaining healthy testosterone levels, which is most likely the reason that DAA had no effect on these men. In any case, this study proved that DAA is useless for increasing testosterone levels if you’re actively trying to naturally increase them on your own through diet and exercise.
D-Aspartic Acid: The Bottom Line
Although it has become a staple of the testosterone-boosting supplement market, there is no hard evidence that D-Aspartic Acid can be a safe or effective way to naturally support testosterone levels for men. It may be of use for those of you who want to support cognitive health or if you want to forego expensive medical procedures to increase sperm quality while trying to have a child. If you want more testosterone, skip over this one.
- Gemma D’Aniello, Salvatore Ronsini, Tiziana Notari, Natascia Grieco, Vincenzo Infante, Nicola D’Angel, Fara Mascia, Maria Maddalena Di Fiore, George Fisher, Antimo D’Aniello. D-Aspartate, a Key Element for the Improvement of Sperm Quality. Advances in Sexual Medicine, Vol.2 No.4, 2012. – Link
- Willoughby DS, Leutholtz B. D-aspartic acid supplementation combined with 28 days of heavy resistance training has no effect on body composition, muscle strength, and serum hormones associated with the hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadal axis in resistance-trained men. Nutr Res. 2013 Oct;33(10):803-10. doi: 10.1016/j.nutres.2013.07.010. Epub 2013 Aug 15. – Link