Here at ManorIVF we see many, many patients from all over of the globe. Regardless of where someone is from, their background or their ethnicity, up to 1 in 3 couples who are having trouble conceiving find that the culprit is the male partner’s insufficient sperm quality.
Time and time again we are asked, what can I take to improve the quality of my sperm? Am I not doing enough exercise? What food is the best to eat? Is it our lifestyle? Should my husband not rest the laptop on his lap? And so on.
Unfortunately, we don’t always have the answers to all these questions. Neither does science. But we have collated nine interesting facts about sperm quality and performance. We are not claiming these are 100% scientific, or that they are proven medical facts, but this is something to consider. If anything, they are just interesting:
- A recent Israeli study found that sperm quality is highest in winter and early spring. The same study also suggests that low stress weekends increase your chances of pregnancy.
- It is believed that consuming foods rich in antioxidants (such as lycopene) is one solution that assists in increasing sperm morphology. These are generally found in red foods, with concentration being highest in tomatoes and, strangely enough, watermelons.
- Recent Harvard research found that sperm counts of men who worked out were 44% higher than of those who didn’t engage in physical activity. This is because time in the gym burns fat while boosting testosterone.
- Preliminary research indicates that men who use their phones more have decreased sperm motility. This might be due to impact of electromagnetic waves. However, this is a very recent observation that’s not yet fully verified.
- Using lubricants can undoubtedly have a major impact on your chance to conceive. Some brands contain chemicals that are acidic or contain alkaline agents and can kill up to 72% of your spermatozoa.
- Soy products are believed to affect sperm production as they contain a natural compound that mimics the female hormone estrogen. Your body can in turn respond to this rise in estrogen levels by producing less testosterone.
- Again, there’s correlation between regular exercise and healthy sperm. Outdoor exercise may have an even greater effect with Vitamin D playing a role in increased sperm production.
- Not rocket science, but consuming less high-fat products leads to better sperm production. A good balanced diet that includes plenty of vegetables and meat is advised for everyone, and certainly has a positive effect on sperm quality.
- Testicles are located on the outside of a man’s body, and surprise, surprise for good reason. They need to be kept a few degrees cooler than your body temperature. There’s evidence to suggest that warm baths/spas and saunas can have a negative impact on sperm quality and might even cause short-term impotence.