I'm taking a testosterone test via blood on Monday for free and total testosterone. I'm wondering, is there anything I should do or not do prior to taking the test to get the best and clearest reading? I already know taking it in the morning is the best time to take it, since that's when it will be at it's highest, but what else should I do or not do? Will not eating prior to taking the test help? Thank you.

  • Eating will not affect your result
  • Getting inadequate sleep might give a lower result since testo is synthesized more during sleep
  • Refrain from heavy exercise in the days before since that might increase cortisol and give an unfavorable testosterone/cortisol ratio and a lower reading; in overtraining syndrome, one of the worst signs is a lowered testosterone
  • Research has shown that testosterone increases acutely following a bout of strength training, and from my own experience I can say that doing a few sets of push ups and squats before getting tested increases the result more often than not
  • Sexual abstinence increases testosterone (however, the effect is reversed and after about 10-14 days its starts decreasing). Also, physically being away from your partner increases testosterone. Being surrounded by other women also. But beware, research has shown that testosterone falls when we are with our friend's partner
  • Eat 2-3 Brazilian walnuts and eggs before going to bed (they contain many nutrients necessary for testosterone production, many of which a large proportion of the population is deficient)
  • Zinc supplements, 25-50mg/day, can help due to the same reason as above. Athletes and sexually active men are especially likely to be zinc deficient.

These are some factors that alter the magnitude of the reading. However, there is nothing you can do to get a "clearer" reading. Just be yourself :) If you are interested in any particular reference, I might be able to dig it up, however, googling testosterone will give you plenty more ideas about what affects testosterone levels.

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  • I do 5x5 compounds and 3x8 isolations, full body workout 3x a week, with 3 mins rest between compounds and 2 mins rest between isos. All of this lasts about 1 hour and 40 mins. Would you consider this heavy exercise and/or overtraining? Would my training load be the reason why I feel as if my testosterone levels are low? I used to overtrain and do body splits for 1.5 hour a day for like 9 months prior to starting this full body workout about 3 months ago. – Abdul May 10 '14 at 17:10
  • When i mention overtraining, i am refering to the overtraining syndrome which results in physiological decompensation due to an overly stressing training regime for a long period of time. Everyone reacts differently to stress, some are more stress tolerant than others. However, I do not think that the volume or intensity of your training are the reasons. One tip is to try to keep your training sessions shorter; testosterone increases during the first 45 minutes, and falls drastically after 1-1.5h. That gives a less than favorable anabolic milieu for fitness progression. – Darko Sarovic May 10 '14 at 17:17
  • ok thank you. I have a tendency to add extra reps or sets because I have a "just in case" attitude. This probably adds to the time. I do think since I overtrained for like 9 months, that my body has adapted a bit to training because it seems to take much more to make me tired than my friends. However, since I overtrained for that long before, coupled with dieting without refeeds or diet breaks, I think it might have hurt my testosterone levels because I am such a hard gainer. But I guess I'll find out for sure after my blood test. – Abdul May 10 '14 at 17:25

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