In This Article
Why You Should Care About Low Testosterone
It’s hard to listen to the radio and not hear ads for testosterone-boosting products. The problem is real: 5% of males aged 40–50 and as many as 70% over 70 may have low testosterone, or what is officially called hypogonadism.
Testosterone starts to decline in most men after 30, but accelerates after 50.1 Low testosterone has been associated with libido decline, erectile dysfunction, lack of energy, less physical strength and endurance, loss of height, decreased enjoyment in life, low mood, grumpiness, falling asleep after dinner, and decreased work performance.2,3 Some studies suggest low testosterone may also contribute to cognitive decline and increased risk of type 2 diabetes.4-6
The Potential Risks of Testosterone Replacement Therapy
With any medical treatment or drug, it is important to evaluate benefit versus risk, including potential side effects. Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) has been linked to a host of side effects, including cardiovascular, prostate, sleep, breathing, and urinary tract concerns.8 While larger studies are needed to confirm these risks, many are turning to alternative solutions to boost testosterone levels.
But how do you know which pill or powder is the real thing? Of course, this is when I turn to the combination of modern science and ancient wisdom. Two Ayurvedic herbs have recently been exhaustively studied and found, in combination, to significantly boost testosterone levels. These herbs are shilajit and Malaysian ginseng—both used for thousands of years in Ayurveda.
The Best Herbs for Balancing Testosterone
Shilajit is a naturally occurring, mineral-rich botanical with many bioactive components, including fulvic acids. It comprises rock humus, rock minerals, and organic substances that have been compressed by layers of rock mixed with marine organisms and microbial metabolites.9
Shilajit has a rich history of use in Indian Ayurvedic and siddha medicine as a health and wellness optimizer. It is known as a rasayana because of its rejuvenating qualities, which include heightening physical performance and relieving fatigue.10
According to an article in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, weightlifters use shilajit to promote better strength, recovery, and muscular hypertrophy, and also to combat physical stress, but human data on these uses are lacking.11
50 studies on shilajit suggest it has positive effects on testosterone levels and adaptogenic, antioxidant, and immune supportive benefits.12
The proprietary preparation of shilajit in LifeSpa’s Testosterone Boost, called PrimaVie, has been well-studied. In one study, the equivalent of 2 capsules of LifeSpa’s Testosterone Boost daily for 90 days was evaluated in 75 healthy male volunteers aged 45–55 for testosterone secretion efficacy and stimulation effects.
This double-blind, placebo-controlled study revealed PrimaVie shilajit, compared to placebo, significantly increases total testosterone, free testosterone, and dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). Levels of testosterone were well-maintained.9
Shilajit Boosts Testosterone + Sperm Count
Another study evaluated 35 infertile males who took the equivalent of 1 capsule of LifeSpa’s Testosterone Boost for 90 days. At completion, 28 subjects had significant improvement in sperm count and testosterone levels rose by an average of 23%.
The sperm was found to have less oxidative stress and contained small amounts of shilajit, suggesting shilajit played an active role in these reproductive changes.13
The studies also show liver and kidney profiles were unchanged and there were no adverse side effects during the 12 weeks.13,14
Eurycoma longifolia root (Malaysian ginseng) is considered a tonic and adaptogen for supporting healthy libido, energy, sports performance, and weight management by promoting healthy testosterone levels and freeing testosterone from SHBG.
Most testosterone is bound to a protein called the sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG). This bound form of testosterone is inactive, as it is already bound up and occupied. Both shilajit and Malaysian ginseng have been found to boost free testosterone.
The LJ100 patented form of Eurycoma longifolia in LifeSpa’s Testosterone Boost is a root extract whose safety and efficacy is backed by at least 12 human clinical studies.
A randomized, placebo-controlled, two-month study with 20 volunteers age 38–58 who consumed LJ100 showed improvement in sexual desire and performance. Also, testosterone and DHEA levels were high-normal when compared to placebo.15
In this study, HDL cholesterol improved, those with type 2 diabetes showed improvement in blood glucose levels, and insulin-like growth factors (IGF-1) were balanced to a high-normal level,15 compared to TRT, which has been shown to boost IGF-1 levels, linked to weight gain and prostate health concerns.18
In summary, it appears the combination of shilajit and Malaysian ginseng (such as found in Testosterone Boost) supports healthy free testosterone levels in men and women, which, in turn, supports vitality, virility, and vigor.
- Tambi MI, Kadir AB. LJ100, a potent adaptogen, maintains healthy aging in men. Int J Androl. 2005;28(suppl 1): 25-44.
- Sarina MY. Effects of strength training and LJ100 supplementation on strength and muscle size in middle-aged women. Presented at: 4th Asia-Pacific Conference on Exercise and Sport Science & 8th International Sports Science Conference; July 15-17, 2009; Malaysia.