Pumpkin Seeds and Testosterone – Superfood for Super Gains?
Many men are eager to increase their testosterone levels, and they are seeking drastic alternatives to do so. But not everyone needs to start using steroids and testosterone injections to boost their T levels – things like pumpkin seeds can be useful for helping to restore imbalanced testosterone production.
In this article, we’re going to discuss the details about the pumpkin seed benefits for testosterone, and for health in general. After reading this article you’ll know much more about the potential for using pumpkin seeds to boost testosterone.
Table of Contents
- What are the pumpkin seed benefits for men?
- What are the nutrients in pumpkin seed extract?
- What’s the best way to get pumpkin seeds into your diet?
- How long do pumpkin seeds last?
There are quite a few pumpkin seed benefits that men might experience. Pumpkin seeds should be a part of a healthy diet, and eating them can help to correct a number of nutritional deficiencies leading to improvement in the following areas:
Oxidation is one of the leading causes of diseases and discomfort in the world. Oxidation caused by free radicals can lead to the development of problems like chronic inflammation or even cancer.
Fortunately, there is a simple preventative measure for avoiding some of these conditions: foods rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants help to reduce oxidative stress and can slow down or outright prevent the development of some of these diseases.
Pumpkin seeds contain a wide variety of different nutrients that function as antioxidants, such as carotenoids and vitamin E.
Inflammation has been found to be at the root cause of many diseases, and can contribute to painful conditions like arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease. Inflammation can be a healthy response, but when it goes out of control it can lead to issues.
Foods like pumpkin seeds are rich in inflammation fight compounds that can help to reduce inflammatory conditions. In fact, one study compared the effects of some of the inflammatory compounds found in pumpkin seeds to those of actual anti-inflammatory medication in rats and found that the pumpkin seeds provided comparable relief without any of the side effects
Improved Prostate Health
One pumpkin seed benefit that men might be interested in is the possibility of improved prostate health. Pumpkin seeds have been shown to be particularly useful for fighting symptoms of a particular condition known as benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH).
When you have BPH, the prostate grows large and problems urinating can occur. Pumpkin seeds have been shown to be fairly effective at fighting some of these symptoms.
Improve Heart Health
Another thing that pumpkin seeds can be useful for is helping to improve the health of your heart. By reducing blood pressure levels and cholesterol levels, pumpkin seeds can significantly reduce the chances of developing heart-related illnesses later in life.
If you’re hoping to use pumpkin seeds for testosterone, don’t fret – even though cholesterol is necessary for the synthesis of testosterone, pumpkin seeds don’t impede this. They lower levels of LDL, or low-density cholesterol – the bad stuff that builds up in your arteries and can cause disease.
HDL cholesterol, involved in the production of testosterone and in other facets of health, is either improved by pumpkin seeds or untouched.
Reduce Blood Sugar
Your body puts a great deal of effort into regulating blood sugar levels. The hormone responsible for this is known as insulin, and people who don’t produce enough insulin develop blood sugar problems that can lead to the development of diseases like diabetes.
Fortunately, pumpkin seeds – as well as pumpkin seeds, pumpkin seed powder, and other forms of pumpkin – can actually be useful for helping manage blood sugar. This makes them ideal for men who are struggling with diabetes.
One of the reasons that many men believe that pumpkin seeds are great for boosting testosterone is because they can be useful for boosting fertility and sperm quality.
This is because pumpkin seeds are a great source of zinc. Low levels of zinc have been associated with lower quality of sperm and thus decreased fertility.
One natural way that men can improve their sleep is by consuming an amino acid known as tryptophan. Tryptophan, which can be found in pumpkin seeds (among other foods like chicken and milk) is known to help promote relaxation and sleep.
Pumpkin seeds don’t contain a lot of tryptophan – you’d need to eat about 200 grams of them to get the suggested 1,000 mg of tryptophan needed to improve sleep. However, zinc – which pumpkin seeds contain in abundance – is involved in converting tryptophan into serotonin and then to melatonin, a hormone that’s highly involved in promoting relaxation and sleep.
Pumpkin seeds and testosterone
Because of their high zinc content, many people believe that pumpkin seeds can be great for boosting testosterone levels. In some cases, this may be true – especially in men who struggle with hypogonadism.
Hypogonadism is a condition in which the gonads (testes) don’t produce enough testosterone. Symptoms can include:
- Reduced muscle mass, hard time gaining muscle
- Decreased sex drive and libido
- Erectile dysfunction
- Hot flashes, sweats
- Difficulty focusing
Hypogonadism can be caused by a number of different things, ranging from diseases to lifestyle choices to heredity. In some cases, hypogonadism can be caused by something as simple as zinc deficiency.
In this case, zinc can be useful for helping to restore testosterone to a healthy level. Unfortunately, the science isn’t exactly certain as to why this happens. What is clear is that zinc won’t do much if you already have a healthy amount of testosterone circulating in your blood.
That said, at least one study revealed that men who take zinc might experience an improvement in T levels if they struggle with hypogonadism. In this study, men taking 30 mg of zinc daily in conjunction with magnesium saw a marked increase.
There are many nutrients that can be found in the pumpkin seed that are beneficial to your health. The nutrients found in the most significant quantities are:
- Essential fatty acids. Pumpkin seeds contain a number of important essential fatty acids that are necessary for improving the health of your heart and arteries, your brain, and your nervous system.
- Manganese. A serving of pumpkin seeds provides 42% of your daily required dose of manganese, a nutrient that’s important for fighting inflammation and improving the health of your bones.
- Magnesium. Similar sounding to manganese but quite different, magnesium is important for managing blood flow throughout the body, reducing anxiety, and performing a number of important functions in our nervous system. An ounce of pumpkin seeds provides 37% of your daily required dose.
- Phosphorus. Phosphorus is an important nutrient that’s needed by your kidneys to help filter stuff out of your blood. It’s also needed to produce your DNA and to help the growth of your cells and bones. Pumpkin seeds provide 33% of your daily dose per ounce.
- Iron. Pumpkin seeds provide 23% of your RDI of iron per ounce, which is important for producing red blood cells and maintaining the health of your blood.
- Copper. An ounce of pumpkin seeds provides 19% of your daily intake of copper, which is beneficial for helping your body produce red blood cells and for maintaining the health of blood vessels, nerves, and your immune system.
- Zinc. The granddaddy of nutrients that are important for sexual health, zinc is essential for the production of testosterone and the healthy maintenance of libido. An ounce of pumpkin seeds provides 14% of your daily recommended intake of zinc.
There are lots of ways that you can include pumpkin seeds in your diet. Most of them involve processing or cooking them in some way, but if you’re not a whiz in the kitchen, there are other alternatives.
Pumpkin seeds can be found all over the place: they’re available in grocery stores and online retailers. If it’s the season for pumpkins, you can also harvest quite a few from the center of these delightful orange gourds.
If you’re going to the store, try to avoid buying pre-made snacks including roasted pumpkin seeds unless you absolutely have to. It’s more fun and likely more healthy to make your own: this way, you know exactly what’s going into them.
Roasting your own pumpkin seeds is pretty easy. If you’re getting your own from a pumpkin, you’ll have to clean them first – make sure you get all the orange flesh off of them first, then rinse them in a colander and let them dry. The latter part should be done even for store-bought seeds.
Roasting them in the oven is very simple – you can do it plain, but this is no fun. My favorite recipe is to mix them in a bowl with a few tablespoons of olive oil and some powdered rock salt. Spices like cumin and paprika can make them even more delicious and nutritious.
After this, bake them for about 45 minutes at 300 degrees F. Some prefer to bake them before putting the olive oil and spices on – in this case, bake them for half an hour, take them out and season them, then return them to the oven for 20 minutes or so until they’re crisp.
There are lots of foods that you can easily mix pumpkin seeds into, they add some great flavor and nutrition to salads, and can pack some extra protein and zinc into your morning oatmeal.
A number of supplements contain pumpkin seed extract, including TestoGen. The TestoGen formula is developed to help people maximize their hormonal production so that they can produce testosterone and boost their libido and energy levels.
In combination with other nutrients like vitamin D and herbal T-boosting supplements like Panax ginseng and fenugreek, TestoGen is a great way to naturally enhance your T levels.
Depending on the way you got them and how you prepared them, pumpkin seeds can last a different amount of time.
If you bought them pre-roasted or pre-cooked, you don’t really have to worry. They’ll last quite a long time after being opened – most sources say about 3 months, but they can certainly kick around for longer – they just won’t taste very good.
If you’ll be storing them for this long, it’s a good idea to keep them in the refrigerator since high temperatures can adversely affect them. If you’ll be storing them for longer than that, throw them in the freezer and they’ll maintain their integrity.
In regards to fresh seeds pulled straight out of a pumpkin, it’s best to deal with these right away. If you don’t roast them or prepare them, they won’t last more than a couple weeks.