Boron and Testosterone – A Scientific Review of Effects & Benefits

Boron and Testosterone – A Scientific Review of Effects & Benefits

Does boron have an impact on test levels and muscle gain?

If you’re looking for a way to bump up your natural testosterone levels and support your training efforts, consider boron.

LAST UPDATED: March 2019 by Ben.

Author: Nicola Joyce has been won two world amateur bodybuilding titles and has swam the English Channel twice.

What Is Boron?

Boron is a chemical element that is naturally found in plenty of foods, but can also be taken as a supplement.

There are various types of boron which can be taken as a test boost supplement.

Let’s look at the evidence available to understand how and why this mineral could help you reach your physique goals.

Testosterone Booster And Mass Builder

Boron helps regulate how our bodies metabolize minerals – including calcium and other minerals which are crucial for skeletal health. [1]

This study – although carried out on post-menopausal women – is useful to understand how boron could increase testosterone.

The study came to the conclusion that;

“…supplementation of a low-boron diet with an amount of boron commonly found in diets high in fruits and vegetables induces changes…consistent with the prevention of calcium loss and bone demineralisation”. [2]

If we think about building a physique from the ground up – starting with strong bones and a healthy frame – then we can see how it is important to the entire body.

It helps promote healthier bones and joints, so you can work hard to build the muscle mass you want.

female mixed race weight training - boron can help

So that’s bones, but what about muscles?

This 1993 study is more relevant to you guys.

The randomized, double-blind, and placebo-controlled study looked at plasma free and total testosterone, plasma boron, lean body mass, and strength in healthy males who weight train.

No clear relationship was noted between additional dietary boron and testosterone production. [3]

However, it is not just as clear cut as that…

A much later study from 2011 concluded a decrease in SHBG (sex hormone binding globulin) at just 10 mg/day of supplemental Boron – and this lead to increased free testosterone.

At the time, this study noted;

“…this must be the first human study report to show an increase level of free testosterone after boron consumption”. [4]

Regarding hormones, it is not just testosterone we need to consider.

Your estrogen levels also have an impact on your ability to increase muscle mass and lose excess body fat.

This study gave healthy men 10 mg every day for a week.

A dose of 10mg had a significant positive impact on the levels of serum estradiol (an oestrogen).

The study concluded:

“…after one week (in samples taken at 8.00am only), the mean plasma free testosterone increased and the mean plasma estradiol decreased significantly”. [5]

As you can see, this demonstrates some interesting results all round, and definitely putting this mineral on the map regarding nutrients that should be considered to optimize hormone production.

However, just to level the playing field slightly, there’s another study that I came across which suggests that boron had no effect on muscle or strength improvements when tested on 19 male bodybuilders. [6]

Health support?

Let us just quickly run through a few pointers:

– boosts free testosterone

– inhibits sex hormone binding globulin

– reduces estrogen levels

– supports bone and joint healthy (so you can train longer and harder)

This is starting to become a ‘go to’ ingredient that you need to look out for when choosing a supplement.

Foods Sources

Boron is a dietary mineral but is not technically an essential vitamin or mineral.

You can get it from your diet, mainly via fruits, nuts, and vegetables.

Boron is then absorbed through the intestines.

Nuts and dried fruit are particularly high in boron.

Here’s a food list – as mg of boron per 100g food.

(Good news – red wine counts too, but weigh up the negative effects on your training, calorie intake, and food choices!)

As you can see, dried fruits are one of the most potent sources of dietary boron because they are a concentrated form of the original fresh fruit.

Great news if you like to make your own granola or home made trail mix as a healthy snack.

Grapes (red) 0.50

Peach 0.52

Lentils 0.74

Red kidney beans 1.4

Cashew nuts 1.15

Pistachio nuts 1.20

Walnuts 1.63

Brazil nuts 1.72

Currants 1.74

Prunes 1.88

Peanut butter 1.92

Avocado 2.06

Apricots (dried) 2.11

Almonds 2.82

Hazelnuts 2.77

Raisins 4.51

Other Names

When you are looking for a quality supplement, don’t forget that it is often listed under different names.

Try Sodium borate and Boric acid (most commonly in medicines), Sodium tetraborate, Boric oxide, Decaborane, Tetraborate, Atomic number 5, Borate, Boron citrate/aspartate/glycinate, Supplemental Boron, Calcium Borogluconate, Calcium fructopyranose borate, or sometimes Calcium fructoborate.

man lifting weights in a gym - can boron benefit?

Supplements

There is no prescribed daily allowance for boron since we don’t yet know what its essential roles are in the body.

However, what has been established is that a diet high in boron would have about 3.25 mg of boron per 2000 calories, and diets particularly low in boron have around 0.25 mg per 2000 calories.

Studies (including the ones mentioned in this article) administered the boron in doses ranging from 2.5 mg to 6 mg.

You could reasonably look for a boron supplement giving you between 2 mg to 4 mg.

Conclusion

The research does suggest that boron could improving androgen levels in men, as a result you may find it in some supplements that are formulated for the older man in mind.

As things stand, we can confidently say that boron supplementation has health benefits and could support your general well-being as well as your bone health.


References

[1] The role of boron in nutrition and metabolism. Naghii MR, Samman S. Prog Food Nutr Sci. 1993 Oct-Dec;17(4):331-49. Review. PMID: 8140253

[2] https://www.fasebj.org/doi/abs/10.1096/fasebj.1.5.3678698

[3] The effect of boron supplementation on lean body mass, plasma testosterone levels, and strength in male bodybuilders. Ferrando AA, Green NR. Int J Sport Nutr. 1993 Jun;3(2):140-9. PMID: 8508192

[4] https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0946672X10001148

[5] Comparative effects of daily and weekly boron supplementation on plasma steroid hormones and proinflammatory cytokines. Naghii MR, Mofid M, Asgari AR, Hedayati M, Daneshpour MS. J Trace Elem Med Biol. 2011 Jan;25(1):54-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jtemb.2010.10.001. Epub 2010 Dec 3. PMID: 21129941

[6] https://journals.humankinetics.com/doi/abs/10.1123/ijsn.3.2.140?journalCode=ijsn


Article by:

Nicola Joyce (aka “the fit writer”) is a fitness industry copywriter who has been writing for and about sport and fitness since 2004. Nicola is a competitive drug-free bodybuilder (with two World titles at amateur level) and has also competed in powerlifting and a couple of strongman comps. Prior to her strength training days, Nicola was an endurance athlete and has even swum the English Channel twice. She can be found on all social media at: thefitwriter.

 

 

Summary
Boron and testosterone
Article Name
Boron and testosterone
Description
This article looks at the evidence to see whether it can have a positive effect on testosterone production.
Author

Ben [BA(Hons)]

Ben established this site to be a free resource in 2015. Since then it has gained over half a million visits. He has always been interested in sport and he started playing rugby at the age of 6 represented his town, county and school. Ben also enjoys cycling, has started skiing and is in the Army Reserve representing his Regiment as part of the 150 Regimental Shooting Team.

5 thoughts on “Boron and Testosterone – A Scientific Review of Effects & Benefits

  1. The evidence sounds flimsy at very best. Single studies no details on validity of research methods or other factors. Small samplings.
    Additionally there are numerous studies indicsting that boron has zero effect on hormonal levels but these do not get equal weight in the arguments presented

    Sounds to me that this is another case of wanting to believe and therefore inflating anything that even remotley supports the desired belief while downplaying or ignoring anything that dos not.

    In short its not evidence based or impartial nor is it in the real of science.

    1. Hi Karl,

      This is merely a review at some of the studies available to answer the initial question whether Boron can increase testosterone.

      Some studies point us towards that it can reduce inflammation and it can increase testosterone.

      Thanks for you feedback.

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