Did you know that sperm production takes about three months, so any changes a man makes today won’t show up in the semen for at least that long? If you and your partner are planning or trying to conceive, there are some lifestyle changes the man should consider making in order to improve his sperm quality.
- Check medications – Any prescriptions, over-the-counter drugs, vitamins or herbal supplements can affect the quality or quantity of a man’s sperm. If you are taking any medication that could possibly interfere with getting pregnant, your doctor should be able to recommend a more fertility-friendly alternative.
- Stop smoking – Smoking cigarettes can cause low sperm counts and slow-moving sperm.
- Cut back on drinking – Alcohol has been shown to reduce sperm production and cause sperm abnormalities.
- Monitor the amount of caffeine you consume – Studies have shown that sperm count and sperm concentration were slightly reduced in men who had a high soda and/or caffeine intake.
- Control the temperatures – Heat can reduce sperm production. Hot baths, sitting for long periods of time, laptop on lap for extended period of time and tight-fitting underwear that constricts the testes can all raise the temperature long enough to suppress sperm production.
- Eat Healthy – Consume foods high in vitamins, like green leafy vegetables, kale, carrots, citrus, broccoli, cauliflower and yams. Fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains can help boost fertility.
- Watch your weight – When men don’t eat enough they tend to have a loss of sex drive and structural changes to reproductive tissue leading to infertility. Obesity, on the other hand, can be associated with a low sperm count and impotence, possibly because of higher temperatures caused by excess fat near the testes.
- Get active – According to the American Society of Reproductive Medicine, routine exercise (five times a week for at least 45 minutes) and a healthy diet enhance fertility by keeping body weight at normal levels and relieving stress and anxiety.
- Take a nutritional supplement – Vitamin C and Zinc increase a man’s fertility. Vitamin C (2,000 to 6,000 milligrams daily) helps prevent sperm from clumping or sticking together, thus improving the chances for fertility. Zinc supplementation (100 to 200 mg daily) has been shown to increase testosterone levels, sperm count and sperm motility.
10 to 20% of all men have low sperm counts. A healthy lifestyle can make a significant impact on a man’s fertility. Men, take care of yourself! Eat well, exercise regularly, have some fun yet be sure to get a good night’s rest.
If you and your partner have been trying to conceive for over a year with no success, consider getting your sperm tested. You can learn more by visiting: http://www.fertilityinstitutesandiego.com/our-services/fertility-testing