If you want to be your strongest, get some sun on your boys. And by boys, I mean your testicles.
Baseball players are continually trying to mine every (legal) advantage they can. Any pro athlete is working to get stronger, faster, more powerful, and they’re looking to their nutrition, supplements, even superstitions to do so.
There’s a running joke in baseball clubhouses about eating bananas.
Player A (eating a banana): Know why I like to eat bananas?
Player B: Why?
Player A: Ever see a weak gorilla?
Maybe it isn’t about the bananas. Rather, perhaps the gorillas have elevated testosterone because they don’t wear clothes. Fine, this may be a stretch, but hear me out.
We’ve often mused on the value of vitamin D and getting it through some carefully calculated exposure to the sun. Even a baseball player, out in the sun daily, is usually mostly covered in long pants, a shirt, a hat and slathered in sunscreen. We get less vitamin D than we think.
There are links between testosterone production and an ample supply of vitamin D.
Although other nutrients are just as important as vitamin D for testosterone production, optimizing vitamin D levels is a first priority because the relationship between this nutrient and T has just been identified.
A study that came out at the end of last year found that men who were deficient in vitamin D (a level below 20 ng/ml) had much lower free T and higher estrogen. Those same men had more body fat, less lean mass, greater chance of depression, higher rates of cardiovascular disease, and poorer fertility than men with higher vitamin D levels. The men with adequate vitamin D (above 30 ng/ml) had the leanest body composition, higher free T, and better overall health.
Okay, so we are fairly confident that a deficiency in vitamin D would be shitty for athletes aiming to be their strongest. However, we might be able to accelerate or amplify the benefit of sun exposure and ultimately vitamin D. How? Through being in the sun in our most natural form, sans clothing. Revealing your balls to nature will be freeing, and it might just help you be your strongest and fastest.
A1939 study exposed men to UV radiation over the course of 5 days. The study noted that it was sufficient to turn the skin red. When the UV radiation was aimed at the chest, testosterone levels increased by 120%. When the genitals were exposed, testosterone increased by more than 200%.
Granted, this was strictly an observational study and conducted nearly 80 years ago. Part of the reason we’re looking at a somewhat antiquated study is because the scientific community could turn their nose up at the idea of exposing our testicles to large amounts of UV radiation. That’s understandable. But what if we eased into it? Maybe we don’t need a 200% increase, but a few minutes spent in the sun the way we evolved to be might make enough of a difference to get that extra inch on your live drives.