Testosterone in Males as Enhanced by Onion (Allium Cepa L.)

Biomolecules. 2019 Feb 21;9(2):75. doi: 10.3390/biom9020075.


Testosterone (17β-Hydroxyandrost-4-en-3-one) is the main sex hormone in males. Maintaining and enhancing testosterone level in men is an incessant target for many researchers. Examples of such research approaches is to utilize specific types of food or dietary supplements as a safe and easily reached means. Here, specifically, since 1967 until now, many research studies have revealed the effect of onion on testosterone; however, this link has yet to be collectively reviewed or summarized. To accomplish this contribution, we searched the Scopus, Web of Science, and PubMed databases for full articles or abstracts (published in English language) from April 1967 through December 2018 using the keywords "onion" versus "testosterone". In addition, a number of related published articles from the same databases were included to improve the integrity of the discussion, and hence the edge of the future directions. In summary, there is an evidence that onions enhance testosterone level in males. The mechanisms by which this occurs is mainly by increasing the production of luteinizing hormone, enhancing the antioxidant defense mechanism in the tests, neutralizing the damaging effects of the generated free radicals, ameliorating insulin resistance, promoting nitric oxide production, and altering the activity of adenosine 5'-monophosphate -activated protein kinase. However, this effect requires further approval in humans, mainly by conducting clinical trials.

Keywords: antioxidants; luteinizing hormone; onion; oxidative stress; testosterone.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / chemistry
  • Antioxidants / isolation & purification
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Onions / chemistry*
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry
  • Plant Extracts / isolation & purification
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Testosterone / metabolism*


  • Antioxidants
  • Plant Extracts
  • Testosterone