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How To Stimulate Growth Hormone Naturally

Growth hormone (GH) is naturally produced in the pituitary gland but the production of this hormone decreases as we age, especially in men over the age of 40. This decrease leads to loss of both muscle mass, increased fat, and loss of energy and mental acuity. Research on synthetic growth hormone has been inconclusive, as side effects vary. To experience these wonderful benefits, there is no need to take dangerous or expensive supplements. There are a few things that you can do to boost your growth hormone levels naturally.

10 Ways To Increase Natural Growth Hormone Production


1)Get your shut-eye. Get at least 8 hours of sleep a night!

It's simple math really. Add eight hours to the time you went to bed, then look at your alarm clock before peeling yourself from the sheets. "Not getting enough sleep regularly can lower the amount of growth hormone your body produces daily," says Walter Thompson, Ph.D., director of the Center for Sports Medicine, Science and Technology at Georgia State University in Atlanta.  Getting more sleep is a great way to speed up your muscle gain/fat loss progress. A lack of sleep not only results in a decrease in growth hormone production, it increases a muscle wasting hormone called cortisol. This hormone actually destroys our muscle!

Even though excess sleep won't necessarily increase the amount of growth hormone your body secretes, constantly staying up late could be suppressing how efficiently your body releases growth hormone during the course of the day. Keeping normal sleeping habits may let you tap into a certain percentage of growth hormone that your bones never get a chance to utilize when they are sleep-deprived.

2. Strength Train


Strength training is proven to be more efficient at stimulating the release of growth hormone more than any other form of exercise.  This can be any type of training that works against some form of resistance. Bodyweight training/Gymnastics, swimming (water resistance), weights, heck lifting rocks, shoveling are all forms of working against a form of resistance. Strength training doesn’t just mean going to the gym. I do most of my training outside of the gym, kettlebells, rocks, tractor tires, pushing cars, etc. 



3. Utilize Compound Lifts 


When you’re strength training, it is best to focus on compound lifts. These exercises are often referred to as multi-joint lifts because they involve a couple of joints working together to perform a movement. Some examples of compound lifts include squats, lunges, deadlifts, push ups, chin ups and dips. These movements are the most efficient at boosting our growth hormone levels due to the amount of muscles being used.


4. Include Intense Intervals


Doing brief, intense cardio sessions are a great way to increase your growth hormone levels. They are far superior to longer, lower intensity exercises such as jogging. My favorites include sprints, jumping rope and kettlebell swinging. I’ll sprint 100 yds., rest 30-60 sec. for 10 intervals/sets. Jumping rope I’ll jump for 1 min., rest 20-30 sec. for 20-30 min., with KB swings, I’ll swing for 30 sec. w/a 53-62 lb. KB, rest 30 sec. for 10 min. Do what you’re capable of and interested in to foster consistency.


5. Don’t Limit Your Challenges, Challenge Your Limits


Whether it is your strength training or your cardio, push yourself to the point where you are gasping for air. The build up of lactic acid and the out of breath feeling, indicate your training will boost your growth hormone levels. Find the pleasure in the pain. But remember, PRACTICE GOOD TECHNIQUE and GOOD FORM!


6. Hold Off On Eating After Training


Wait an hour or 2 before eating anything after a workout. This is because our growth hormone levels are elevated after a workout. I know you’ve probably read somewhere that “Eat immediately after working out”, this is where you prioritize your goals. Do you want to build mass, or shed body-fat. If it’s the former, by all means eat, if your primary goal is decrease body-fat and increase your definition, adhere to the 2 hour rule. If necessary I sometimes drink a protein shake mixed with water. It’s low or no sugar with only water. Try that.


The reason why you should wait the 2 hours is if we eat during this time, we risk increasing our insulin levels. This will automatically decrease our growth hormone levels. This is because growth hormone and insulin are like sworn enemies. If one is high, the other will be low.


7. Eliminate Alcohol


Alcohol interferes with the production of two important hormones needed for muscle growth: testosterone and human growth hormone or HGH. During the first few hours of sleep when HGH is normally secreted, alcohol messes with your natural sleep rhythm and can decrease HGH production. In the process of breaking down alcohol, the liver releases cortisol, which actively inhibits testosterone production. 


8. Eat A Low Glycemic Diet


Refer to #6, eating a low glycemic diet will keep your blood sugar levels stable thus decreasing your insulin and allowing growth hormone to flourish. Eating a low glycemic diet is very easy, just think of eating “bitter” foods such as broccoli, kale, spinach, etc. Not only are these foods low in sugar, but they’re high in fiber, essential vitamins and minerals.


9. Increase Protein Intake


One of the many benefits of a high protein intake is that it stimulates production of growth hormone. I’m not a vegetarian so I get my protein from clean sources such wild caught fish, never farmed, grass-fed beef, wild game meats such as buffalo, venison, elk, ostrich, and sometimes moose, bear, and goat. The last three have to be cooked a certain way in order to avoid too much of a gamey flavor, but when cooked right they’re delicious. 


10. Control Your Stress Levels


They are two types of stress, 1) Eutress, meaning “good” stress and 2) Distress, meaning “bad” stress. Stress is also relative, try to turn a potential distressful situation into a good one by viewing it as a challenge. Challenge yourself to overcome the situation in a positive manner. By looking at potential bad stressors a way to learn you limit the production of cortisol. Also, give Yoga a try, some people find it to be relaxing and good way to relieve stress. 


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