T Nation

Red Light Therapy to Increase Testosterone

What are your thoughts on Red Light Therapy for increasing testosterone? I found some promising information when I researched this further, even though nothing of it is what you would necessarily call clear evidence.

There is one study, but it’s almost ancient. In 1939 men’s testosterone was raised by 120% exposing their chest to UV light. It was increased by even 200% when exposing men’s testicles to the light. There are also some rat studies that show significant increases in serum testosterone levels.

The red light supposedly stimulates the production of ATP in the leydig cells which provides them more energy to produce testosterone. It possibly also works by activating certain photoreceptors that lead to increased testosterone production.

Red Light Therapy has some other benefits as well, such as reducing winkles, acne, and age spots, increased wound healing.

I ordered a red light to experiment with. I have only used it a couple of times, so it’s too early too tell if it has any noticable effect. If you decide to try this as well make sure you get a device/bulb with the correct wavelength of red light.

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I wandered through Amsterdam once and the red light district raised more than my testosterone.

Seriously though, I have not heard anything like that but hey, why not? If you are eating grass fed organic, lifting heavy and reducing the harmful chemicals you ingest then this might be worth a try also if you fancy it.

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Haha! Yes, THIS kind of red light therapy works for sure.

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I have no experience with Red Light therapy … but I will say that it was suggested to me that I expose my balls to the sun for an hour or two whenever possible as direct sunlight on the testicles is (supposedly) very good for testosterone.

Tons of google searching, I could never find a topic on this in T-Nation, until I started to create a new post about Red Light Therapy for testosterone.
Doesn’t seem to be discussed here yet.
I wanted to drop this link to a video of Ben Greenfield talking about it.

This guy is full of all kinds of biohacking information and self testing, but he also sells or promotes a lot of products he makes money off of, including the JOOVV brand lights. So take that into account as well.

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Here is an article from biohackersummit . Red light topic is about halfway through article.

Red light, near infra-red light (NIR) or low-lever laser therapy has been used to treat various conditions from pain and muscle aches to wound healing, skin conditions, osteoarthritis and even depression. These effects are usually local, but near-infrared light has also systemic effects via circulation of blood. You might want to read this super comprehensive article on red light and NIR by a Finnish medical student Vladimir Heiskanen He has been a key source of information for me regarding the healing effects of red light.

The basis for stimulating testosterone production by shooting red light and near-infra red light especially on your testicles lies on the mechanism how red (or infrared) wavelengths work inside the cell. The key is that they stimulate ATP production in Leydig cells thus increasing the energy available for the cells. This means more testosterone production.

There might be also other mechanisms, which are speculated in ”Red Light Man” site:

”Another potential mechanism involves a separate class of photoreceptive proteins, known as ‘opsin proteins’. The human testes are especially abundant with various of these highly specific photoreceptors including OPN3, which are ‘activated’, much like cytochrome, specifically by wavelengths of light. Stimulation of these testicular proteins by red light induces cellular responses that may ultimately lead to increased testosterone production, amongst other things, although research is still in the preliminary stages regarding these proteins and metabolic pathways. These type of photoreceptive proteins are also found in the eyes and also, interestingly, the brain.”(83)

I haven’t found any human studies on the subject, but according to a few studies done on rats the positive effects on testosterone production are enormous. For example a Korean study found out that low level laser therapy (LLLT) with wavelength of 670nm (which is in border of visible red light and infra-red light) 30 mins per day showed significant increase in serum testosterone by fourth day of the treatment without any harmful tissue penetration.(84) In that study, a wavelength of 808 nm didn’t have any effect on T production. Another study done with rams didn’t show any positive effects on T production with 808 nm wavelength.(85)

Still, that wavelength (800 nm+) might work on humans on the basis of other LLLT studies on different tissues (such as thyroid).

  • Overall, red or infrared light from LED source is generally thought to be a safe therapeutic method
  • Avoid heating the testicles, since the heat will destroy sperm cells and have a negative effect on the Leydig cells
  • Avoid blue light and UV light exposure on testicles (blue light inhibits ATP production in mitochondria)

He mentions sunlight as well … but the JOOVV is supposed to be easier as you do not have to go outside in the sun.

Interesting, because, as I wrote previously, one of my doctors suggested getting my balls out in the sun around noon for a few minutes.

:slight_smile:

Interesting though, that the JOOVV actual site does NOT mention testosterone in the video – only “balanced hormones” and “increased bloodflow”. There is a second video that features testosterone and says “red-light therapy MIGHT be the answer to improving testosterone”.