Human growth hormone (HGH) is released from the pituitary gland, fueling the growth of connective tissue, bones, and muscles. It helps prevent brittle bones, cartilage breakdown, muscle atrophy, and heart disease—enhancing our overall sense of vitality. It even plays a role in maintaining skin health and elasticity!

It reaches its peak at age 20 and declines from there. By the time we are 40, this hormone is 50% of what it used to be. By 60 years of age, the average person has about 5% of the HGH they did at 20. 

Why is this important? As growth hormone decreases, the rate at which decay happens accelerates. Therefore, increasing and preserving your HGH is well worth doing. So, how can you (naturally) ensure your growth hormone levels don’t dip too low? Here are a few tips.

Human Growth Hormone (HGH): What You Need To Know

Tip #1: Prioritize Your Sleep

This is one of the best things you can do for your overall health; including your growth hormone levels.

Generally, you want to ensure you go to bed and wake up at the same time each day. Within the first two hours of sleeping, during non-REM sleep, our bodies experience the biggest surge in the growth hormone. This is why going to bed late can destroy your muscle gains and recovery. Never underestimate the importance of sleep!

Tip #2: Strength Train

Research shows how strength training can stimulate the growth hormone, driving muscle gains and increasing exercise capacity. For optimal progress, it’s best to aim to strength train two to four times a week, incorporating progressive overload to adequately stimulate the muscles.

And strength training isn’t the only exercise that can enhance growth hormone levels in the body. Walking has further been shown to increase growth hormone levels, as well as decrease cholesterol and overall body mass.

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Strength training can enhance growth hormone levels in your body.

Tip #3: Try Fasting

No, this doesn’t mean going the whole day without eating! Everyone automatically fasts at night; if you can extend that window to12-14 hours overnight, with the majority of this time sleeping, then you are actually doing your body tons of good, including increasing the growth hormone

Tip #4: Limit Sugar and Alcohol

Sugar and alcohol decrease the release of the growth hormone. Additionally, alcohol has various repercussions on your liver health—and even overall health. While not all sugar is bad (definitely eat those fruits!), added sugar in various processed food items can take a serious swipe at your health and longevity. Partially, this is due to its impact on the growth hormone.

Looking for help getting your health and fitness on track? Our virtual personal training and personal training in Toronto can help you reach your goals and more! At Nielsen Fitness, we can hold you accountable and get you to where you want to be. Get in touch with us today.

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Nielsen Fitness can help with your fitness and health goals.