Why would you want to increase growth hormone? Well, HGH is one of the most influential hormones with wide range of benefits.
It can improve heart function, lipid levels, immune system function, energy levels and all-round health. Actually, GH deficiency is associated with the weakened cardiac function and heart failure.
Besides treating heart disease and increasing height in children and adolescents, growth hormone has shown to be effective for burning fat, building muscle, slowing down the aging process as well as for lowering LDL cholesterol.
HOW TO INCREASE GROWTH HORMONE
There are three main ways to naturally raise growth hormone which includes diet, sleep and exercise. However, diet consist of two parts. First one is refers to which kind of food you eat. Fruits, vegetables, nuts and complex carb sources provide vitamins, minerals, flavonoids, slow releasing carbohydrates and fiber.
Fiber helps decrease insulin and blood glucose levels which has positive influence on GH, while other phytochemicals in these healthy foods help improve the function of hypothalamus and pituitary gland. These two glands, located in the brain, regulate secretion of growth hormone, during day and night.
The other part of the diet, is fasting. Fasting longer than 12 hours can increase growth hormone. Although you can go to extreme, by staying away from food and calories for a few days, fasting from 14 to 20 hours per day is quite enough. This way you get all the nutrients, every single day, while preventing prolonged cortisol levels and muscle loss which occurs after avoiding food and protein, for more than 48 hours.
Although fasting can be a little bit difficult for the first couple of days, as your body gets use to it, you will start to feel better and more energetic. Organize your fasting period around sleeping schedule and your daily activities.
When it comes to sleep, there is nothing complicated about it. Deep, refreshing night of sleep, during which you experience four REM sleep stages, will maximize your growth hormone production.
Short, intense, explosive exercises such as weight-lifting, plyometric jumps and especially sprinting can increase growth hormone, significantly. On the other hand, long bouts of low intensity cardio don't offer this kind of benefits. It is about quality, not quantity.
GROWTH HORMONE SUPPLEMENTS
Although supplements aren't nearly effective as sleep, diet, fasting and exercise, when it comes to boosting growth hormone, they too can help, by improving function of endocrine system as well as through other mechanisms.
Adaptogens improve function of your endocrine glands, while Maca, Astragalus and Ginseng are able to boost natural production of GH.
Mucuna Pruriens contains L-Dopa which may inhibit prolactin and it is a precursor to neurotransmitter dopamine which helps raise growth hormone.
Forskolin increases cyclic AMP and improves production of hormones.
Amino acids are building blocks of hormones. If you don't get enough protein, the body won't be able to produce them. Although all proteins are important, some of them such as L-arginine and glutamine, seem to have more significant role in boosting growth hormone.
Shilajit or Mumijo is not that well known adaptogen which contains humic acid and fulvic acid. It is supposedly able to increase growth hormone. However, while taking it, I didn't experience any significant effects.
GABA is considered an amino acid but, in reality, it is much more than that. It is a neurotransmitter which has great effect on the brain function and hormonal production. However, it can't pass the blood-brain barrier which makes GABA supplements useless. You have to increase production of GABA in the brain, by improving its function.
Alpha GPC and Citicoline are two growth hormone supplements which should increase its production. I have tried them both but I didn't experienced any significant difference.
5-HTP is amino acid as well as a neurotransmitter which may actually work since it is able to pass the blood-brain barrier. It can also help you fall a sleep and achieve deep REM sleep stage and thereby increase growth hormone.
Horny Goat Weed may work well with ginseng by raising testosterone and growth hormone. This effects are attributed to icariin which usually makes 10 % of the herb. For better results, look out for supplements with higher icariin content.
Vitex raises progesterone but any increase in progesterone, also raises growth hormone. It suppresses prolactin and increases dopamine as well as LH which helps, too.
Ginkgo improves blood flow through the brain which includes the endocrine glands.
Bacopa improves brain function. Healthy brain function is associated with healthy hormone production.
Huperzine A works synergically with bacopa.
GROWTH HORMONE SIDE EFFECTS
When you increase growth hormone naturally, through sleep, diet, exercise and growth hormone supplements, the risk of side effects is nonexistent. Side effects are possible only if you take it as a drug or if you have a tumor on your pituitary gland which is responsible for excessive growth hormone production.
Growth hormone side effects may include:
TIP - "CORTISOL TO HGH RATIO"
By lowering cortisol you can maximize beneficial effect of GH. Cortisol is catabolic, body breaking hormone, while HGH is anabolic or tissue building and regenerating hormone. However, these two are often increased at the same time thereby limiting the effect of each other. However, through short, high intensity exercise you can increase growth hormone and limit cortisol spikes.
Also, cortisol lowering technniques, improve cortisol-HGH ratio, even more, thereby boosting beneficial effect and preventing growth hormone side effects. This only applies when GH production is increased naturally.
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