By: Tim Rigby (courtesy of Inside Fitness)
First there were the fat burners, then came protein blends and weight gainers, followed by creatine and a host of other fitness-related sports supplements, but very few natural anabolic products can match the effectiveness of ZMA (zinc, magnesium and vitamin B-6) for boosting your testosterone levels, particularly if you have inherently low levels or train with extreme intensity. Researchers Brilla and Conte reported in a study in the Journal of Exercise Physiology that ZMA supplementation during off-season football resistance training promoted significant increases in testosterone, the growth hormone IGF-1, and muscle strength. Since the mid-1990s, ZMA has been scrutinized ad nauseam but has proven to be a safe and effective winner, time and time again. Successful elite athletes, all the way down to the average gym rat, have benefited from consuming ZMA before bed and helping their test levels spike.
Standard Composition: 30 mg zinc monomethionine or zinc aspartate, 450 mg magnesium aspartate and 11 mg pyridoxine hydrochloride (vitamin B-6).
The powerful immune-boosting mineral zinc is an essential trace element that participates in the activity of more than 300 enzymes. These zinc-containing enzymes are involved in many components of macronutrient metabolism, particularly cell replication. Your sperm, in fact, contains a whopping amount of zinc; this should give you an appreciation of its relationship to testosterone. Additionally, zinc is essential for enhancing exercise metabolism while protecting against free radical damage. Zinc deficiencies have been shown to be higher in athletes and individuals who work out regularly. Such a hormone depletion can be quite significant and zinc deficiencies in competitive athletes have been suggested to flat out contribute to impaired immune function and decreased performance. It’s therefore critical to keep your zinc reserves full.
The ion magnesium is widely known for its great muscle-relaxing properties, in addition to being a mood stabilizer and “calming” mineral, but its benefits reach far beyond this. Sufficient levels of magnesium are vital for the proper functioning of cells, nerves, bones, muscles and your heart. Like zinc, people who work out (particularly with intensity) are at greater risk of deficiency of magnesium due to sweating it out. For the purpose of boosting your testosterone, the latest studies reveal great promise and encouragement toward magnesium. There’s abundant evidence suggesting that magnesium exerts a positive influence on anabolic hormonal status including testosterone, particularly when an individual experiences lower-than-average levels which need elevating.
Many natural athletes consume vitamin B-6 in conjunction with their protein shakes, due to the role of this vitamin in metabolizing and assimilating protein. In a similar way, research has drawn two other conclusions about B-6 with regard to your hormonal system: supplementing with additional B-6 can promote androgens, which in turn raise your testosterone levels and conversely, a deficiency in B-6 is often related to lower “T” levels, since it causes your brain to regulate estrogen. Combined with zinc and magnesium, you’ve got a real winner when it comes to naturally supporting your levels of the anabolic hormone testosterone. Furthermore, users report a significant increase in the frequency of the vivid and pleasant dreams they experience.
See for yourself why the combination supplement ZMA has been a proven anabolic winner for well over 20 years!