1. Do HIIT (high-intensity interval training) sprint exercise
In some studies scientists have shown that levels of hGH in the blood increase after sprint-interval exercise (Wideman, et al. 2002). In one study, sprint exercise caused hGH to increase 10 times over pre-exercise levels (Nevill, et al. 1996). In a more recent study, using the Sprint 8® protocol, hGH levels increased almost six times ("Sprint 8®: Reduced Body Fat in 8 Weeks Without Dieting | Research" 2018) Try out our HIIT class here
2. Get Sleep
It is well known hGH release increases during sleep. Studies show hGH levels are significantly lower after sleep deprivation (Beck, et al. 1976). To improve natural levels of beneficial hormones, it is important to get an adequate amount of sleep. The National Institute of Aging suggests several ways to get more sleep here.
3. Lose body fat
Several studies show growth hormone levels are significantly decreased in obese patients (Scacchi, et al. 1999). People who have a higher amount of belly fat have lower levels of hGH. The good news is that normalizing weight reverses low levels. Although it can be a challenging task to lose and control body fat, proper diet and exercise is a good place to start.
4. Try amino acid supplements
Taking supplements of arginine and lysine increase circulating growth hormone (Suminski, et al. 1997). Subjects who ingested 1,500 mg of arginine in combination with 1,500 mg of lysine saw an acute increase of GH within 60 minutes of ingestion.
5. Reduce sugar
High levels of insulin cause many health problems. With respect to hGH, obese patients with high levels of insulin have reduced levels of hGH (Lanzi, et al. 1999). To control insulin and avoid decreasing hGH, limit sugar intake. Follow a moderately-low carbohydrate diet and eat foods with a low-glycemic index.
Taken together, exercise, sleep, and a diet can increase hGH levels naturally. Additionally, following these tips will not only increase hGH, but will also provide overall health benefits.
Beck, Ulrich, et al. “Effects of Selective Sleep Deprivation on Sleep-Linked Prolactin and Growth Hormone Secretion.” Archiv for Psychiatrie Und Nervenkrankheiten, vol. 223, no. 1, 1976, pp. 35–44., doi: https://doi.org/10.1007/bf00367451
Lanzi, Roberto, et al. “Elevated Insulin Levels Contribute to the Reduced Growth Hormone (GH) Response to GH-Releasing Hormone in Obese Subjects.” Metabolism, vol. 48, no. 9, 1999, pp. 1152–1156., doi: https://doi.org/10.1016/s0026-0495(99)90130-0
Nevill, M.e., et al. “Growth Hormone Responses to Treadmill Sprinting in Sprint- and Endurance-Trained Athletes.” European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology, vol. 72-72, no. 5-6, 1996, pp. 460–467., doi: https://doi.org/10.1007/bf00242276.
Suminski, Richard R., et al. “Acute Effect of Amino Acid Ingestion and Resistance Exercise on Plasma Growth Hormone Concentration in Young Men.” International Journal of Sport Nutrition, vol. 7, no. 1, 1997, pp. 48–60., doi: https://doi.org/10.1123/ijsn.7.1.48