Are you ready to feel ultimate vitality? Are you ready to increase energy and become a productive, lively, youthful man once again?
As age starts to rise, everything else seems to decrease (except for maybe the number on the scale). Energy drops, testosterone levels decline, muscle mass is lost, metabolism slows, and even sexual drive lowers. In fact, these health issues are all related in a vicious cycle of sluggish living.
For example, low testosterone is linked to chronic fatigue, weight gain, muscle loss, and diminished libido. The reverse is also true as well’ a low level of energy can create low T levels, a bigger belly, and a decreased interest in living vigorously. When one part of health starts to decline with age, often the others do as well.
Energy is at the core of wellness. If you feel more energetic and vivacious, you’re more likely to make the necessary changes to get the rest of your health back in shape.
But how can you boost your vitality after age 50, when energy levels start to naturally and rapidly decline?
1. Sleep more
It sounds obvious, but inadequate sleep is the number one cause for low energy and low hormone production (like testosterone). With age, insomnia and restless nights become more common. This is especially true as other age-related health issues pop up, like arthritis pain or urinary incontinence from poor prostate health. These pains and symptoms can keep us up all night, forcing us to watch the sunrise despite our baggy eyes.
You should try to sleep six to seven hours per night. If you have trouble falling asleep, try one of the following options:
- Magnesium pills (a natural insomniac)
- Meditation and relaxation
- No electronics 30 minutes prior to bed
- Avoid caffeine and alcohol after 2pm
- Ensure your sleeping environment is dark and cool
Napping has also been shown to boost brainpower and prevent energy burnout. This is especially true if you find your nights aren’t restful.
Furthermore, a study by the University of Chicago found that “obtaining adequate sleep may enhance the beneficial effects of a diet. Not getting enough sleep could defeat the desired effects.” Not sleeping enough can limit fat loss and make you gain weight. Your body needs more energy to stay awake, so you have to eat more to make up for it. Long periods of poor sleep will also put your body into a state of shock, which could cause it to preserve fat cells in order to protect itself.
2. Lose weight, get lean
Excess belly fat can foster the production of estrogen, and more floating estrogen causes a decline in testosterone, libido, and energy levels. Estrogen can also make you gain weight, pushing you into an endless cycle of fat-estrogen-fat.
In addition, muscle mass starts to decline after age 30. Lean muscle keeps testosterone and metabolism high.
Losing weight and instead gaining muscle has been shown to decrease estrogen and increase testosterone. More testosterone means higher libido and more energy.
The best way to quickly lose weight, gain muscle, and boost your T levels is with HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) or PRIME (Peak Repetition Intervals at Maximum Effort). This uses repeated intervals of high-intensity followed by periods of rest to burn more calories and grow your muscles quickly.
3. Reduce alcohol intake
Alcohol can reduce testosterone production by inhibiting your body’s natural metabolic processes. Beer is especially estrogenic, which reduces T levels and can cause weight gain (aka the beer belly). This weight gain in turn reduces testosterone, which causes even more weight gain—the same cycle we saw above.
Reducing your alcohol intake will cut the number of calories contributing to your belly, and it will also help lower the amount of estrogen your body produces. If you’re going out for a social drink with friends, stick to vodka, which has the least effect on testosterone levels.
4. Eat healthy fats
Healthy fats support strong testosterone and energy levels (and they have a lot of other healthy benefits as well). These fats are monounsaturated, polyunsaturated, and omega-3 fatty acids, and they can be found primarily in avocados, nuts, olive oil, and coconut oil.
They can also be found in certain types of fish and green leafy vegetables. Healthy fat nuts like almonds are another great healthy-fat snack!
Supplement your diet with at least two servings of healthy fats each day. This can help you maintain a healthy weight while also bringing your energy up.
Healthy fats can be high in calories, though, so it’s important to not overdo it. Instead, balance healthy fats with proteins to best increase muscle and shed pounds—and boost your overall energy levels.
5. Have berries as a snack
Your body produces energy directly from food fuel. Keep your energy up throughout the day with occasional healthy snacks. Berries are an ideal snack because they deliciously quench sweet cravings and they’re high in anthocyanins, which power-up energy and weight loss. A handful of blueberries is packed with energy, antioxidants, and hormone-regulating goodness!
If you don’t like berries, try high-fibrous veggies like broccoli, artichokes, or black beans. Some studies have found that a diet in high-fiber causes less fatigue than low-fiber diets. This is likely because fiber can help regulate the gut and detox the colon, removing pollutants that slow down the body.
6. Try intermittent fasting
Abstain from food for 24 hours a few times per week. An alternative approach to intermittent fasting is to fast for 16 hours and limit yourself to 3 meals over the remaining 8 hours. If a workout is planned, it should be just prior to your first meal of the day. This process helps your body reset, and it will confuse your body into shedding extra pounds and detoxing energy-killing toxins. It can also boost your testosterone levels, regulate hormones, and reduce inflammation. While scientific evidence of intermittent fasting varies, overall it seems to help with regulating the body’s natural processes.
Fasting can initially make you feel tired and irritable, but this generally only lasts in the short-term. After you’ve finished fasting, you’ll likely feel more energized and “clean.” This can help put you on a good track of living a healthy, energy-filled lifestyle.
Please note that fasting (and bingeing) should not be used for extreme weight loss or health goals. It should only be used occasionally as a detox. You should also not fast from all food—your body still needs fuel! Instead, stick to small meals of steamed vegetables, green vegetables, fresh fruits, and brown rice. During the fast, drink only water and avoid sugar, salt, and processed foods.
7. Get in the sun
Sun exposure has been shown to increase mood and energy, and it may even help with anxiety and depression. Sunlight can help increase the production of serotonin, otherwise known as the “happy chemical.” It also regulates the nocturnal melatonin production, so individuals fall asleep and stay asleep easier (see number 1 on this list). Additionally, the vitamin D in sunlight is crucial for immune health, bone density, and hormone regulation.
8. Drink more water
Water is needed to keep your body running at its peak. Dehydration can cause poor physical and cognitive performance, diminished GI and kidney function, poor heart function, headaches, and even delirium.
Water and energy are directly and complexly linked. If you don’t drink enough water, your energy levels will diminish—as will other functions in your body.
Drink at least 8 cups of water per day. This will feed your blood and organs with the necessary oxygen to keep them running properly. If your body is working efficiently, you’ll feel more energetic and healthy overall.
9. Stop using fragranced cosmetics
Shaving creams, soaps, body lotions, deodorants, and even laundry detergents can all have chemicals that rapidly and drastically decline T levels. If “fragrance” is an ingredient on the bottle, this means that the product is filled with chemicals that could be linked to allergic reactions, carcinogens, and hormone disruption (like stopping testosterone production). Even non-fragranced products that have certain chemicals could decline testosterone and unbalance hormones.
Additionally, these toxins can make you even more tired. The chemicals seep into the pores of your skin and get into your bloodstream, making you feel sluggish and fatigued. This is especially true after age 50, when your body is not as capable of fighting off toxins on its own.
Use natural products instead. Look for fragrance-free or naturally scented products to stay fresh and clean while also keeping your energy and testosterone high.
10. Let the guys roam free
Your testicles like to be free. Confining them in tight briefs can cause them to hamper testosterone production. This tight confinement against your body also raises the temperature of testicles. Testicles prefer to be cold; so if they’re warm against your body, it can actually lower testosterone production further.
Because it also likes the freeing feeling of the cold, you should also treat your little man to a cold shower or ice bath once per week. This “treatment” will help reduce inflammation, boost the human growth hormone levels, and support testosterone production.
Cold water has also been shown to increase energy levels; a cold shower in the morning gets you ready to take on the day! Plus, cold water has a ton of other benefits for your health, like pain management and improved immunity.
11. Have sex
This is always my favorite recommendation. Get in bed! Having sex releases endorphins and serotonin, which make you happier, less anxious, and more energized. Sex also helps burn calories and increase oxygenation, which helps to shed those extra pounds and regain your vigor. Plus, if you have sex before bedtime, it can help you have a more restful sleep—and we know sleep is good for energy.
If you’re struggling to get in the mood, you may have low testosterone levels. (See how it’s all linked?) Visit a doctor to check your T levels while you use the above 12 ways to naturally boost T and energy!
Energy and testosterone levels are intricately linked after age 50. Low T means low energy, and low energy often means falling T levels. But there are natural ways to healthily regain the youth and vitality inside you!