Testosterone is important in health, sexual function, body composition, and athletic performance. However, hormonal levels decrease with metabolic syndrome. Moringa oleifera, traditionally used as an aphrodisiac, has been shown to improve testosterone levels in metabolic syndrome. However, there is a dearth of studies on humans, and the mechanisms involved remain to be elucidated. This randomized, repeated measures study aims to determine if four-week supplementation of Moringa leaf powder in the form of a protein drink can improve resting levels of testosterone and related hormones, and whether any improvement translates to improved anabolic status during hypertrophy weight training. Relationships between hormonal levels and lipid profile were also explored. Three young men (28.33 ± 2.08) with hypercholesterolemia but normal testosterone levels were blood tested for hormonal levels and lipid profile at three time points: baseline, after Moringa supplementation, and after placebo supplementation. Pre-exercise and post-exercise testosterone and cortisol levels were measured on each testing day. Significant differences were found between Moringa and placebo in resting testosterone, anabolic status, and acute exercise-induced anabolic response. No significant difference was observed in any of the markers of lipid profile. Four-week supplementation of Moringa leaf powder in the form of a protein drink significantly increased resting testosterone and anabolic status in men with hyperlipidemia but with normal testosterone levels. Men with hyperlipidemia showed blunted anabolic response to a hypertrophy weight training protocol, which was attenuated by Moringa supplementation. Mechanisms may be independent of improvements in lipid profile.
anabolic status, cortisol, exercise, moringa, testosterone, weight training