Man lifting a barbell shaped like boron supplement tablets
Health

Boron Is the Testosterone-Boosting Supplement You Didn’t Know You Needed

If Huberman takes it, it’s gotta be good.

30-Second Takeaway

Research shows that boron may boost testosterone and lower estradiol levels in men, which could treat hormone-related erectile dysfunction. Boron may also boost the effectiveness of other T-boosting nutrients, like vitamin D.

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euroscientist Andrew Huberman, Ph.D. takes boron as part of his stack of 27 longevity-focused supplements for good reason. The micronutrient found in plants has been shown to support bone health and cognitive function, and reduce inflammation—health factors that become more important as you age (1, 2). 

Growing research suggests that men who supplement with boron may also reap hormone balancing benefits, like increased free testosterone levels and lowered estradiol levels, says  Laurence Levine, M.D., a board-certified urologist and Chief Medical Officer at Promescent. Free T is the bioavailable testosterone that your body can use to build muscle, support erectile function, and maintain energy levels.

When your testosterone levels are low, you may experience symptoms like fatigue, weight gain, muscle loss, and low libido. Healthy adult men should have estradiol levels between 10-40 picograms per milliliter (pg/mL), according to the Endocrine Society. Too much can cause low testosterone, breast tissue development, and infertility.

ABOUT THE EXPERT:

Dr. Laurence Levine is a board-certified urologist and Chief Medical Officer at Promescent with 25 years of medical experience with a focus on andrology and reconstructive urology. He also serves as Professor of Urology and is in clinical practice and performing research at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.

Can Boron Increase Testosterone?

Levine points to a 2015 review that found that taking boron can increase free testosterone levels, reduce estradiol levels, and lower inflammation in men (3). Free testosterone levels rose from an average of 11.83 pg/mL to 15.18 pg/mL and estradiol levels dropped from 42.33 pg/mL to 25.81 pg/mL in men who took 6 mg of boron for a week, according to a 2011 study examined in the review (4). 

Participants’ estradiol levels lowered from over the healthy range (10-40 picograms pg/mL) to an optimized level. Free testosterone levels rose, but remained under the healthy range (50-200 pg/mL) outlined by the Endocrine Society. 

Boron also improves the bioavailability of vitamin D3—another nutrient that boosts testosterone—by increasing its half-life, which slows how fast vitamin D breaks down so it stays in your body, longer (3). Vitamin D deficient people who supplemented with boron during winter months had a 20 percent increase in vitamin D levels, according to a 2004 study (5). 

Erectile function

“Whether boron is an effective erectile dysfunction treatment comes down to the root cause of ED,” Levine says.

“If a patient is experiencing ED because of low testosterone and/or high estradiol levels, then they may benefit from adding a boron supplement to their routine in addition to practicing key healthy lifestyle habits that support optimal hormone health,” he adds. 

Boron may also reduce inflammatory biomarkers, which research has linked to higher erectile dysfunction risk (3, 6). 

“If a patient is experiencing ED due to other health conditions—like diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, or poor circulation—other health/medical interventions are likely to be more effective than taking a boron supplement,” Levine says. 

To understand what’s causing your ED, speak to your urologist. Or, take an at-home hormone test to rule out low T.

How to Increase Your Boron Levels

Ready to reap the health benefits of a little extra boron in your blood? Levine has a few suggestions: 

Supplements

“The recommended daily dose of boron to boost testosterone levels in adult men is 6 to 10 mg per day, and should not exceed 20 mg per day,” Levine says. 

And as with anything else you might take, you’ll want to check for adverse interactions. “It’s important to consult with your doctor to make sure it doesn’t interfere with other medications you’re taking,” Levine adds, noting that you’ll also want to look for supplements that have undergone third-party testing.

This includes “verifying their potency, purity, and adherence to quality standards,” Levine says. 

Foods high in boron

If you don’t think you can squeeze another supplement into your stack, these boron-rich foods can also boost your levels (7):

  • Prune juice – 1.43 mg per cup
  • Raisins – 0.95 mg per 1.5 oz
  • Avocado – 1.07 mg per half cup
  • Peaches – 0.8 mg per medium peach

 

There isn’t a clear cut recommendation for how much boron you should try to consume everyday, but the World Health Organization (WHO) notes that an ‘acceptable safe range’ for healthy adults is 1 to 13 mg per day (8). 

Potential Side Effects

Taking too much boron can result in a buildup of the element in your bloodstream, according to Levine, “which can have toxic effects on your health.” 

“Some side effects from taking too much boron include nausea, indigestion, headaches, diarrhea, vomiting, and in more serious cases, seizures, and damage to your blood vessels,” he says.

And be aware that boron in doses of over 20 grams can be fatal for adults.

If you’re experiencing symptoms of low testosterone—like fatigue, weight gain, muscle loss, or irritability—and your optimized supplement stack isn’t doing the trick, it’s time to check your hormones.

Hone’s at-home assessment kit tests eight biomarkers—including free and total testosterone. 

Other Reasons for Men to Take Boron

Boron doesn’t just boost testosterone. Taking the supplement may also have the following benefits for men:

  • Boron may increase the effectiveness of your vitamin D supplement, which also plays a role in maintaining healthy testosterone levels (3).
  • Boron has been linked to better cognitive performance, hand-eye coordination, and memory (3).

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