Fenugreek seems to be the latest fad among the natural remedies to boost testosterone. It is considered safe to use and has many more health benefits too, which can lead to a healthier lifestyle. So why not include fenugreek one’s daily diet? This seems to be the perfect solution to low testosterone levels.
Yes, consuming fenugreek in small amounts does have a lot health benefits. But the same cannot be said for testosterone levels of the body. It is true that fenugreek does actually increase blood testosterone levels. But what it does along with that is suppress the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone.
What is dihydrotestosterone (DHT)?
Dihydrotestosterone is an androgen, just like testosterone. It is the more active form amongst the two compounds and has greater and faster biological activity. In fact, some of the blood testosterone is converted to dihydrotestosterone. This is done by the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase.
It is believed that DHT is responsible for male pattern baldness and certain other conditions such as enlargement of the prostate gland.
How does fenugreek affect DHT?
Fenugreek is known to act upon the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase, thus prevent the conversion of testosterone to DHT. If fact, the testosterone boosting properties of testosterone can be attributed to the fact that fenugreek merely stops this conversion and thus gives as illusion of augmenting testosterone.
This may be considered a plus point for certain medical conditions, but there does not seem to be any reason for a healthy individual resorting to lower his DHT levels. It is more potent than testosterone after all!
Does fenugreek have other side effects?
Although fenugreek is quite safe in recommended levels, adverse effects may include allergic reactions, diarrhea, decreased blood sugar levels and dizziness.
The final thoughts
The health benefits (despite the occasional side effects) of fenugreek cannot be denied. But it is not really suitable as a testosterone booster. The body needs sufficient amounts of DHT and healthy males do not need to reduce its production.