HGH or growth hormone has rightly been called a master hormone because of its ability to affect all the other hormones and organs throughout the body. It helps liver to produce Insulin Growth Factor IGF1 which triggers tissue and bone growth throughout the body.
But as you get older, your HGH production begins declining and this is what is supposed to the be the main cause of aging.
Another reason why bodybuilders, athletes, and fitness enthusiasts in general are looking to enhance their HGH levels naturally, is that it helps them look & perform better.
Restoring HGH levels can help you build lean muscle mass, help in cutting fat, overcome age effects, perform better and rejuvenate all the faculties of your body so that it not only looks younger but also functions younger.
How to Increase Your HGH Levels Naturally – 5 Tips
Though hormone replacement therapy can help increase HGH levels, it is likely to bring about a lot of side effects. It is quite obvious that anything synthetic being injected into your body can created complications. It is no different when it comes to synthetic HGH.
However, there are some easy ways to boost HGH levels naturally.
1. Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is perhaps one of the best kept secrets of high performing bodybuilders and athletes.
Intermittent fasting, or so-called scheduled eating, can be performed in a number of different ways. Typical fast times vary from 14 to 18 hours. The lengthiest duration for any one of these plans would require you to abstain from solid food would be about 32-36 hours.
Studies have revealed that fasting can provide a number of health advantages, which include normalizing your insulin sensitivity and ghrelin levels; boosting human growth hormone (by as much as 1,300-2,000 percent); lowering triglyceride levels; reducing inflammation, and minimizing free radical damage.
Not only intermittent fasting has monumental success in elevating growth hormone levels, it’s one of the best strategies to lose body-fat while preserving muscles – perfect recipe for that chiselled, ripped look.
According to PeakFitness by mercola.com, if you don’t have sufficient fuel in your system when you exercise, you’re going to break down other tissues but not the active muscle, i.e. the muscle being exercised.
So, essentially your body will be cutting off fat, and building and preserving muscle at the same time.
The Yale/Copenhagen group also released more than a few papers featuring that one of the key mechanisms in fasting-induced fat loss has to do with an upsurge in the activity of genes that boost the number of calories the body uses and the amount of fat it burns.
During fasting, your system turns on genes that encode for certain uncoupling proteins and enzymes that increase fat oxidation—which is to say it activates the fat-burning mechanisms of the body.
Intermittent fasting enables you to be relatively lenient with your eating compared with other diets, but that doesn’t change the fact that high protein intake is essential, together with healthy fats and complex carbs.
Coming off of a fast, experts recommend a high-protein meal as opposed to one loaded with carbs, which takes us to second point.
2. Cut Your Carb Intake
Carbohydrate cutting nutrition affects losing body fat and most experts now agree that cutting carbohydrates is better than low fat diets.
Speaking from a perspective of bodybuilding and fitness, low carb nutrition surpasses low fat nutrition. Just about every professional bodybuilder or expert who wants flawlessly carved out muscles might want to follow restrictive carbohydrate diets.
What exactly is going on with our body when following low carb diets?
Lowering the level of carbohydrates in body contributes to glucose deficit in blood (carbohydrates are transformed into glucose – final product). This causes decrease in insulin formation and encourages production of growth hormone.
Insulin and Growth hormone have an inverse relation. So, it’s a good idea to cut down on carbs, follow a diet like Keto or avoid excess sugar, in general.
In simple words, excess sugar simply implies low HGH levels. Along with directly affecting insulin levels, excess sugar intake is a key factor in weight gain, obesity (which also affects HGH levels) and even aging itself.
When you cut your sugar intake, in order to sustain necessary energy levels, body is forced to burn fat as an additional energy source.
And this is alright. But there is a thin line that should not be crossed. When level of carbohydrates drops under a certain point, body starts to drain proteins stored in muscles. To prevent that happening, carbohydrates should be cut step by step.
More importantly, try to have comprehensive knowledge which carbohydrates we need to cut and when to cut them.
Not all carbs are equal!
3. Take a Supplement
Most people looking into HGH know a thing or two about supplements like Arginine, amino acids etc. and how they are proven to increase HGH levels. But, most don’t know that the study on amino acids used them via intravenous injections to increase hGH and that too in ridiculously huge doses. (3)
Such huge doses when taken in oral pill form will produce some nasty side effects like nausea, upset stomach, dizziness etc.
Besides, the growth hormone levels peaked and then fell down quickly after the injections, according to the study, primarily because of the body’s homeostasis system.
This system of the body ensures that the effect of these amino acids is minimized. Following a surge in growth hormone after taking in these amino acids, the human body produces “somatostatin”, a hormone that signals the pituitary gland to stop producing more growth hormone and also instructs the intestines to stop absorption of amino acids.
So, unless ingredients like Arginine, Glutamine and other amino acids are taken in combination with anti-somatostatin compounds like Alpha GPC, the supplement can’t do much.
As with other supplements, proper research is required before investing your money into them.
Related Reading: The Best Supplements for Weight Loss and Muscle Gain
4. Don’t Eat a lot Before Bedtime
HGH is produced in pulses, and the intensity of these pulses are strong during deep-sleep state, and if the insulin levels in the body aren’t very high, the amplitude of those pulses would be high.
In particular, a high-carb or high-protein meal may spike your insulin and potentially block some of the HGH released at night. (4)
So, avoiding a heavy meal before bed time, you are helping to enhance HGH naturally in the body during sleep, which as said earlier cuts body fat and induces muscle growth.
Some bodybuilders sometimes even avoid a post-workout supplement, if they workout at night, would nullify the effect of high HGH enhancement that you naturally achieve during sleep without side effects.
Just like exercising on an empty stomach, triggers a cascade of hormonal changes throughout the body that are surprisingly conducive to both building muscle and burning fat, avoiding a heavy meal before bed time helps maintain those hormonal changes.
5. Sleep Well
Adequate sleep in extremely important for optimum HGH secretion. You must have noticed that people who are sleep deprived often look tired and older than their years. The reason behind this is that lack of sleep results in low HGH levels.
HGH is released in pulses during the first few phases of deep sleep. Hence, lack of sleep is likely to disturb your HGH secretion.
One reason why quite a few HGH supplements have GABA as an ingredient. As a well-known calming agent for your brain and central nervous system, it’s often used to aid sleep. What’s interesting is, it may also help increase your HGH levels (5).
One study found that taking a GABA supplement led to a 400% increase in HGH at rest and a 200% enhancement after exercise (6). Experts theorize that GABA’s ability to induce deep sleep is one major reason for this.