Some simple ways to enhance male fertility

A recent article on Express.co.uk compiled the results from several studies to provide advice for men wanting to boost their fertility. The article highlights a number of diet and lifestyle factors could boost a man’s fertility and increase a couple’s chances of becoming pregnant: weight, diet, exercise, and a reduction in alcohol intake and smoking.

Weight.  A recent study conducted in France found that compared with men of healthy weight, overweight and obese men were more likely to have a low sperm count. Of those who were overweight, 26% had a low sperm count, and 5% had no viable sperm, while of those who were obese, 32% had low sperm count and 7% had no viable sperm. The lead researcher of this study, Dr. Sebastien Czernichow, says that “The data strongly suggests excess body weight affects sperm production.”

Dr. Dawn Harper, who treats men with infertility, suggests that men should aim for a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 18.5-24.9 as a BMI of over 25 could reduce a man’s sperm count. She also cautions that it may take several weeks for a man’s sperm count to improve after he loses weight.

Diet and Nutrition. A recent study by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine found that 83% of infertile men consumed less than 5 servings of fruit and vegetables a day, versus 60% of fertile men. A study of 200 men conducted at Harvard University found that eating yellow and orange-coloured fruit and vegetables made sperm stronger. Carrots were particularly successful in improving sperm performance. Read more about the study here.

Research shows that the amount and type of fat that men consume could also have an impact on their fertility. A study conducted at Harvard of 99 men found that high total fat intake was linked with lower total sperm count. Those who had a higher consumption of omega-3 fats (found in fish and plant oils) produced better-formed sperm (morphology) than those who consumed lower levels of these fats. Read more about the relationship between male fertility and fat intake here.

On a similar note, bacon and other processed meats have been found to have a negative impact on the shape and quality of sperm. Read more here.

Exercise.  A study at Harvard School of Public Health found that men who lifted weights, had a vigorous workout, and exercised outdoors had a higher than average sperm concentration. Weight-lifting appeared to be the most effective type of exercise for improving sperm concentration.

Smoking and Alcohol. Smoking and alcohol consumption have been found to have an adverse impact on sperm. Read more here, here, and here.

Read more about the article here.

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