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Do Testosterone Boosters Help Build Muscle?

Updated: Aug 15

Evidence-Based. Scientifically Reviewed by Michael Sharpe, MSc and Dr. Michael Tamber, MD.

Testosterone is an anabolic hormone found in high levels in men. It helps to build muscle, improve strength, and increase endurance.

Some supplements that claim to be testosterone boosters do actually work, such as how cordyceps increases testosterone, or how vitamin D can boost your levels.

But does this increase in testosterone actually help build muscle? In this article, I will explore the different possibilities and answer this question.

There is no research to show if testosterone boosters increase muscle growth, but increased testosterone has been proven to build muscle. Therefore, theory would suggest that testosterone boosters would increase muscle growth too.

How They Work

Testosterone boosters are natural substances that help your body produce more testosterone and related hormones, like DHT. They work in multiple ways, as listed below.

  • Directly stimulate testosterone production

  • Mimic the actions of LH and FSH

  • Reduce the conversion of testosterone to oestrogen, DHT, and other derivatives

  • Reduce the effects of SHBG

  • Prevents deficiencies resulting in low testosterone

Some examples of supplements that can boost testosterone or DHT include cordyceps, creatine, ashwagandha, vitamin D, and zinc.

Do They Actually Help Build Muscle?

Testosterone boosting supplements have the ability to increase testosterone levels, which, in theory, can increase muscle growth due to enhanced anabolic processes. (1)

That's because testosterone is essential for muscular development and increased levels result in increased muscle protein synthesis and anabolism. (2, 3)

However, there are no studies that prove the effect of testosterone boosters on muscle growth, therefore nothing can be concluded for definite.

It's crucial to remember that if you have naturally low testosterone levels, boosters may not be as effective or may be more effective, depending on many factors.


Below are definitions and short explanations of what some of the terms in this article mean.

  • LH (luteinising hormone): LH is a gonadotrophin hormone secreted by anterior pituitary cells. It regulates the function of the testes in men and ovaries in women. It's important for hormone regulation.

  • FSH (follicle stimulating hormone): FSH is a gonadotropin secreted by the anterior pituitary, it affects bodily development, growth, pubertal maturation, and reproduction.

  • DHT (Dihydrotestosterone): DHT is a male sex hormone produced when particular enzymes in the testes and prostate of men and the ovaries of women convert testosterone.

  • SHBG (sex hormone binding globulin): SHBG is a protein produced by the liver that binds to and inactivates sex hormones like testosterone in both men and women.


This section contains links to research, studies, and sources of information for this article, as well as authors, contributors, etc. All sources, along with the article and facts, are subjected to a series of quality, reliability, and relevance checks.

Real Muscle primarily uses high-quality sources, such as peer-reviewed publications, to back up the information in our articles. To understand more about how we fact-check and keep our information accurate, dependable, and trustworthy, read more about us.

This evidence based analysis of testosterone boosting supplements effect on muscle growth features 3 references, listed below.

1. Almaiman AA. Effect of testosterone boosters on body functions: Case report. Int J Health Sci (Qassim). (2018, Mar-Apr) ✔

2. Griggs RC, Kingston W, Jozefowicz RF, Herr BE, Forbes G, Halliday D. Effect of testosterone on muscle mass and muscle protein synthesis. J Appl Physiol (1985). (1989, Jan)

3. Upendram Srinivas-Shankar, Stephen A. Roberts, Martin J. Connolly, Matthew D. L. O'Connell, Judith E. Adams, Jackie A. Oldham, Frederick C. W. Wu, Effects of Testosterone on Muscle Strength, Physical Function, Body Composition, and Quality of Life in Intermediate-Frail and Frail Elderly Men: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study. J of Clin Endo & Met. (2010, Feb)

Citations with a tick indicate the information is from a trusted source.


The information provided in this article is not intended to replace professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the guidance of a physician or other competent professional before following advice or taking any supplement. See our terms and conditions.

Real Muscle leads the way in terms of transparency and privacy, which is why we want to let you know that some of the outbound links in this article may be affiliate links in which we may earn a small commission through. Despite this, our product recommendations are completely unbiased.

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