A love for spicy food may help improve sex drive in men, latest research shows.
In a study conducted by researchers from the University of Grenoble in France, men who ate more spicy food had higher levels of testosterone levels than others, The Telegraph reported.
Testosterone, a hormone produced by the testicles, plays a huge role in a man's life. It is needed for building his bone density, muscle strength, producing sperm and improving sex drive. Testosterone also plays a huge role in fat distribution and production of red blood cells in men. Testosterone levels normally start declining with ageing, normally after age 30.
A decline in testosterone levels, according to Mayo Clinic in US, may lead to reduced sexual desire; sleep problems including insomnia; hot flashes; decreased bone density; body hair loss; problems in concentration, memory and low self-esteem.
Nearly 114 French men aged between 18 and 44 were included in the new study. Saliva samples of the men were used to determine their testosterone levels.
During the trail, the men were invited to eat mashed potatoes along with chili sauce. Men who consumed the highest amount of the chili sauce also had higher levels of testosterone.
Researchers assumed that the risk- taking feature of the hormone may have led to this occurrence.
"In this case, it applies to risk-taking in taste," one of the study authors Laurent Begue, told The Telegraph. "It is also possible that the regular consumption of spicy food contributes to increasing testosterone levels, although so far this has only been demonstrated on rodents."
The study has been reported in the journal Physiology and Behavior.
How to Improve Testosterone Levels Naturally: Some Tips
Following are some methods that help improve testosterone levels in men naturally as provided by Mercola.com:
Eat foods rich in Zinc and healthy fats: Consuming more foods rich with zinc can improve testosterone levels within six weeks as zinc is an important mineral needed for its production. Cashew nuts, seafood, chocolate, mushrooms, beef, lamb, spinach and wheat germ are some natural sources of zinc.
Similarly, eating nuts, avocados- foods high in mono and polyunsaturated fats and restricting sugar intake can also provide equal benefits.
Shed Excess Fat: Research shows that putting on excess weight decreases testosterone levels in men.
Exercise Regularly: Performing short, but high- intense exercises with intermittent fasting and strength training is good to improve testosterone levels. However, aerobics and long- moderate exercises can do more harm than good.
Manage Stress: Being stressed can lead to a decline in testosterone levels as the stress hormone cortisol affects the proper functioning of the sex hormone.
Maintain adequate levels of Vitamin D: The vitamin helps in the development of nucleus of sperm cell, improves semen quality, sperm count and testosterone levels.
Apart from these, sipping a glass of wine, getting a goodnight's sleep and watching the performance of your favourite football team can also help, according to a latest report from The Telegraph.