Human growth hormone, or HGH, is an important hormone produced by the body which affects a range of functions. Produced in the pituitary gland, HGH is most well known for the role it plays in muscle growth, strength, and repair.
Since HGH plays such an important role in cell function and growth, low HGH levels can, therefore, be detrimental and may increase disease risk, fat gain, muscle atrophy and decrease one’s overall quality of life.
Growth hormone replacement therapy can provide many health benefits to those who need it, however, human growth hormone must be carefully injected into muscles, with this requiring a prescription and also a risk of serious side effects. Instead of using HGH directly, you can help your body increase HGH levels naturally through supplementing correctly.
If you’re interested in increasing your HGH levels naturally, then this article should help you find the right supplement for your needs. We’ve analyzed the research and have compiled a list of the 10 best HGH supplements currently available.
Top 10 HGH supplements
The GenF20 Plus supplement tops our list thanks to its 16 ingredients which can help to stimulate HGH levels and improve metabolic health.
GenF20 Plus’ impressive ingredient list includes L-Arginine, L-Glutamine, L-Glycine, L-Lysine, L-Tyrosine, Astragalus Root Extract, Deer Antler Velvet, GABA, Colostrum, L-Valine, Pituitary (Anterior) Powder, Phosphatidyl Choline, L-Ornithine, and GTF Chromium.
With such a variety of ingredients that may naturally stimulate your human growth hormone levels, and at relatively high concentrations, GenF20 is particularly impressive.
GenF20 is taken as two tablets daily for over a three week period.
The HGH-X2 supplement by CrazyBulk aims to help you lose fat, gain lean muscle mass and recover faster by stimulating the release of human growth hormone through the body’s pituitary gland.
HGH-X2 contains Maca Root, Mucuna Pruriens extract 4:1, Hawthorne Berry extract, and L-Arginine, which are all compounds known to help increase HGH levels.
HGH-X2’s recommended dosing is 2 supplement capsules daily alongside a suitable diet and exercise regime.
HyperGH14x contains 15 ingredients that may increase HGH levels, increase fat loss, improve metabolic health and trigger muscle growth.
HyperGH14x contains many similar ingredients to GenF20 although in different concentrations and with variations.
The 15 active ingredients in HyperGH14x are L-Arginine, L-Glutamine, L-Glycine, L-Lysine, L-Tyrosine, Tribulus Terrestris Extract, Astragalus Root Extract, Deer Antler Velvet, GABA, Colostrum, L-Valine, Pituitary (Anterior) Powder, Phosphatidyl Choline, L-Ornithine, and GTF Chromium.
HyperGH14x’s recommended dose is 2 capsules taken twice a day.
The supplement Provacyl may be able to both induce HGH production and improve overall health by strengthening the immune system and reducing stress. Provacyl may also be able to reduce the symptoms of sexual dysfunction thanks to its potential testosterone-increasing ingredients and aphrodisiac herbs.
Provacyl contains a range of HGH-inducing amino acids such as L-Glutamine and L-Arginine which may contribute to cell growth and repair.
Provacyl also contains D-Aspartic acid, which may help to enhance hormones related to HGH production such as testosterone.
Dosing of Provacyl is recommended at 2 capsules per day for 3 to 6 months to achieve optimal results.
is thought to increase lean muscle mass, fight aging, improve memory, reduce body fat, and improve sexual function through its naturally occurring ingredients.
Through a range of amino acids, plant-derived ingredients, GenFX may be able to improve overall health and increase human growth hormone levels.
The amino acids present in GenFX include L-Lysine, L-Arginine, L-Ornithine, L-Glycine, L-Glutamine, and the lesser well-known L-Pyroglutamate.
GenFX is recommended to be taken once a day.
The GH Max supplements by Universal Nutrition has been featured on this list thanks to its ability to increase muscle strength and human growth hormone.
GH Max contains both L-Arginine and L-Ornithine to increase your naturally occurring HGH levels. GH Max also contains vitamin B6, L-Carnitine, Phytosterols and L-Glutamine to help fuel, grow and repair muscles.
GH Max is further down the list due to its smaller line up of HGH-inducing ingredients, although it does contain some promising active ingredients.
Dosing for GH Max is recommended as 6 tablets daily, taken either just prior to working out or at bedtime depending on if you work out that day.
Instead of just focusing on increasing HGH, the ingredients in Goliath may also increase testosterone levels.
Goliath supplements include high concentrations of Tribulus Terrestris as well as herbal extracts like Horny Goat Weed, Longjack, Chrysin and Hawthorn and minerals including zinc and magnesium.
Goliath slips away from the top of this list due to its lack of HGH-inducing amino acids, however, it still offers a strong list of extracts and minerals well-known to increase HGH levels.
The G-Test Goliath supplement is recommended to be taken as 3 capsules daily.
GF-9 contains amino acids and herbal extracts which may help to stimulate muscle growth, improving energy and helping one reduce body fat.
The ingredients in GF-9 include L-Lysine, L-Arginine, L-Glutamine, and the extract Schizonepeta powder.
While many of these ingredients are strong potential HGH increasers, GF-9 does not reveal the concentration of active ingredients present in the supplement, meaning it is very hard to analyze just how effective GF-9 might be.
Serovital claims to reduce physiological signs of aging by improving pituitary function, leading to increased energy levels, improved skin tightness and a decreased appearance of wrinkles.
SeroVital contains L-Lysine, L-Arginine, and L-Glutamine, much like GF-9. Also similar to GF-9 is the proprietary formula, meaning ingredient concentrations aren’t known and so the supplement cannot be properly evaluated.
SeroVital’s limited ingredient list at unknown levels is responsible for its place near the bottom of this list.
SeroVital supplements are recommended to be taken as 4 capsules on an empty stomach daily.
Vigor Muscle supplements claim to increase strength, energy, and recovery through its muscle supporting ingredients.
GABA is one of the key HGH boosting ingredients in Vigor Muscle, although it is lacking in other HGH enhancers.
Vigor Muscle’s low ranking in this list comes down to its lack of significant HGH inducing ingredients, with no key amino acids or minerals seen.
This supplement is recommended to be taken as one capsule daily.
What To Look For When Buying HGH Supplements
When it comes to analyzing HGH supplements for yourself, these are some of the ingredients to look out for, as some ingredients have more high-quality scientific research backing their effectiveness for increasing HGH.
L-Arginine is an amino acid and when ingested there is evidence that it may increase HGH levels.
One study found that 1,500 mg of L-Arginine supplementation significantly increased HGH levels 60 minutes after ingestion. Although this HGH increase was only seen when taken during a non-exercise period. When L-Arginine was consumed alongside exercise, no HGH increase was seen, indicating that it is likely best to take L-Arginine supplements during a rest period of the day to achieve optimum results.
Another amino acid called L-Glutamin may also increase the production of HGH in the body, therefore affecting muscle growth, repair, fat loss, etc.
One study found that two grams of L-Glutamine ingested over a 20 minute period caused an increase in HGH levels by up to 78% 90 minutes after consumption. These results indicate that even a small amount of L-Glutamine may be sufficient enough to significantly increase HGH levels.
L-Glycine was found in one study to significantly increase serum HGH levels in patients, indicating that this amino acid is able to stimulate the pituitary gland to secrete HGH.
As well as short term HGH spikes, L-Glycine may also be able to improve gym performance.
A study examining 10 healthy young males who don’t work out regularly found that ingesting the amino acid L-Ornithine resulted in a significant increase in HGH levels.
These results indicate that L-Ornithine supplementation may significantly affect HGH levels and therefore muscle growth and repair, among other things.
It is, therefore, possible that L-Tyrosine supplementation may increase these thyroid hormone levels and their actions. Patients with thyroid conditions, however, should take extra care and seek medical advice before supplementing with L-Tyrosine.
L-Lysine is an essential amino acid that plays a key role in growth, muscle development, and the transportation of fats for energy use.
L-Lysine has been reported to stimulate HGH release after consumption and may also improve bone health thanks to its potential to increase calcium absorption in the gut.
Further possible benefits of L-Lysine supplementation may include improved wound healing, reduced stress levels, and reduced blood pressure.
GABA or gamma-aminobutyric acid is an amino acid and neurotransmitter that may help to increase HGH levels.
A 2008 study looked into the effects of GABA supplements on 11 men and found that 3 gms of GABA managed to increase HGH levels by around 400% when not combined with exercise and by 200% when combined with exercise.
These results are significant, although increased HGH levels from GABA are largely short-lived.
GABA also plays a key role in improving sleep quality and reducing stress.
Astragalus Root Extract
Commonly used in traditional Chinese medicine, astragalus root extract may be able to improve a range of functions.
Although the limited research into astragalus is promising, it should be avoided by pregnant women and patients with autoimmune diseases, blood pressure issues, diabetes, or those on immunosuppressant medication.
Tribulus Terrestris Extract
Another plant extract, Tribulus Terrestris Extract is known for its ability to increase libido.
As a common ingredient in HGH supplements called Tribulus Terrestris Extract may also be able to increase testosterone levels, although some of the research is contradictory. One review found that the extract was able to significantly increase testosterone levels in animal studies, although other studies have found that Tribulus Terrestris Extract did not increase testosterone levels in humans.
Deer Antler Velvet
Deer antler velvet supplements are often found in HGH supplements thanks to the fact that they often contain IGF-1, or insulin growth factor-1.
IGF-1 plays a key role in controlling the pituitary’s production of HGH and so helps to increase muscle growth and improve metabolism.
While IGF-1 does increase HGH levels, it’s important to remember that it is found on the World Anti-Doping Agency Prohibited List due to its potential to enhance and harm athletic performance.
Colostrum is a rich form of milk produced by mammals immediately after birth.
One study found that bovine colostrum consumption caused significant increases to the IGF-1 levels of male and female athletes during training.
IGF, or insulin-like growth factor, can increase HGH levels.
Chromium is a mineral that plays a key role in insulin signalling and therefore, helps to reduce glucose levels. Chromium supplements have been found to improve blood glucose control which is important for HGH supplements as dysfunctional glucose levels have been linked to lower HGH levels.
HGH Side Effects
While increased HGH levels might sound desirable, it’s important to keep in mind that as with any medications that interfere with hormone levels, care should be taken.
While the side effects of HGH enhancing supplements are not as severe as injecting with HGH, side effects may include:
- Stomach pain
- Low blood pressure
Be sure to take particular care with HGH enhancing supplements if you have preexisting conditions and be sure to consult a doctor before use.
As an ex-personal trainer, science graduate, best-selling author, and freelance writer, Philip has helped educate millions of curious people around the world about science-based health, nutrition, and fitness.