Men, you have the ability to positively impact your fertility health, and whether you have fertility issues or not. So, today I would like to share with you several easy ways to help you on your fertility journey, including ways you can protect your DNA; after all, 50% of your child’s DNA comes from you!
1. Male Fertility Cleansing
Are you wondering about the best ways to prepare for conception and support sperm health? Probably not; most men don’t think about preparing their body prior to getting their partner pregnant, but remember what I said before about sperm health and DNA? Research shows that toxins from diet, lifestyle, and the environment have an impact on sperm health, sperm quality and count, the number of males being born, and the number of male genital birth defects. Whether you are dealing with a fertility issue, wanting to detoxify, create a clean slate from which to support your reproductive health, or improve your vitality, consider starting off with a male fertility cleanse. Fertility cleansing is one of the most important first steps to implement prior to trying for a baby.
2. Protect Sperm Health
I once read, “… sperm are basically ‘DNA torpedoes’ with one simple mission (swim fast and fertilize the egg) …” Without the proper fuel, many are not able to do this to the best of their ability.
Sperm are cells that have to traverse a rather hostile environment in order to fertilize an egg. They are surrounded by a cell membrane that has a high polyunsaturated fat content, which makes them easily susceptible to oxidative stress from environment and lifestyle, including STIs, pollution from vehicles and workplace environment, carrying a cell phone in your front pocket, surfing the web with a laptop computer on your lap, wearing underwear that is too tight, smoking, consuming alcohol, and even poor diet. Avoiding these known sperm “enemies” is going to help you protect your sperm health.
3. Eat Well – Nourish Yourself!
You are what you eat and so is your child! We know the nutrients we receive from food impact overall health, specifically men and their sperm health and libido. One of the main ways to support sperm health is through diet. Make sure you are getting the following nutrients in your diet, as these are shown to be most important to improving male fertility:
- Antioxidants – CoQ10 Ubiquinol, Vitamin C
- Amino acids – L-Carnitine
- B Vitamins – Folic Acid and B12
- Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids – Cod Liver Oil
Not only can dietary changes help a man get the nutrients he needs, so can taking a male specific multivitamin, which will help to ensure he is definitely getting these nutrients daily. Are you wondering what foods contain these nutrients? Learn what foods men should be eating at our Male Fertility Diet page.
Quick Reference – Important Foods for Sperm Health
Eat carrots and walnuts to help boost sperm quality and motility. One study out of UCLA found that men who added 75 grams of whole-shelled raw walnuts to their daily diet – a natural plant source of omega-3 which is high in linolenic acid – boosted their sperm quality. The journal Fertility and Sterility published a study reporting that around 200 healthy men were able to boost sperm quality and quantity up to 8% just by adding yellow and orange fruits and vegetables to their diets, specifically carrots.
4. Encourage Healthy Hormone Levels
What are the basics for maintaining hormone balance? It is simple; we covered the first one – eat well, but there is another one that is really important – sleep. Recent studies conducted in Asia and Denmark have found that many men who reported a lack of sleep or sleep disturbances suffered from low testosterone levels, obesity, sleep apnea, and low sperm count, more so than men who reported that they had healthy amounts of sleep and were of average weight.
A 2012 review of studies focusing on lack of sleep and male infertility conducted by the University of Southern Denmark in Odense, Denmark, reported that testosterone production is affected by the quality of sleep a man gets each night.
5. Maintain a Healthy Libido
A diet filled with unhealthy fats, low in essential nutrients shown important for men, and inadequate hydration, can cause low libido and hormonal issues. On top of that, scheduled sexual intercourse during your partner’s fertile window can take the fun out of baby making. So, what can you do to encourage that healthy virility you once had as a younger man while you are trying to conceive?
- Remember, sex is not by appointment only. Be spontaneous, create intimacy, evaluate habits that may contribute to low libido, go on a date, or take a vacation.
- Consider libido boosting herbs to like Maca, Yohimbe, American Ginseng, or Tribulus.
- De-stress. Exercise, foster a hobby you truly enjoy, make time for activities you love.
We find that it is just as important for men to prepare for conception as it is for women. To make an impact on your health, start today with simple diet changes, get more sleep at night, and consider taking time to cleanse the body prior to trying for a baby. The health of your child is the most important thing in the world. What you do today for your health is not only going to impact your chance of conception, it is going to impact the health of your child.
- Agarwal A1, Desai NR and Makker K, et al. (2009, Oct) Effects of radiofrequency electromagnetic waves (RFEMW) from cellular phones on human ejaculated semen: an in vitro pilot study. Fertility and Sterility. 92(4):131825. doi:10.1016/j.fertnstert.2008.08.022. Retrieved from: https://www.fertstert.org/article/S0015-0282(08)03356-6/fulltext
- Hammoud, A.O., Carrell, D.T., Gibson, M., et al. Updates on the relation of weight excess and reproductive function in men: sleep apnea as a new area of interest. Asian Journal of Andrology (2012) 14, 77–81; doi:10.1038/aja.2011.64; Retrieved from: http://www.asiaandro.com/Abstract.asp?doi=10.1038/aja.2011.64
- American Society of Reproductive Medicine. Optimizing Male Fertility fact sheet. Retrieved from: https://www.reproductivefacts.org/news-and-publications/patient-fact-sheets-and-booklets/documents/fact-sheets-and-info-booklets/optimizing-male-fertility/
- Caba. J., (Oct 30, 2014) Vitality: Avoid Male Infertility: 5 Ways To Boost The Health Of Your Sperm. Retrieved from: https://www.medicaldaily.com/avoid-male-infertility-5-ways-boost-health-your-sperm-308414
- Mendiola, J., Torres-Cantero, A.M. and MorenoGrau, J.M. et al. Food intake and its relationship with semen quality: a casecontrol study. Fertility and Sterility, Volume 91, Issue 3, 812 818. Retrieved from: https://www.fertstert.org/article/S0015-0282(08)00014-9/fulltext
- Robbins, W. A., Xun, L., Fitzgerald, L. Z., Esguerra, S., Henning, S. M., & Carpenter, C. L. (2012). Walnuts Improve Semen Quality in Men Consuming a Western-Style Diet: Randomized Control Dietary Intervention Trial1. Biology of Reproduction, 87(4). doi:10.1095/biolreprod.112.101634 Retrieved from: https://academic.oup.com/biolreprod/article/87/4/101,%201-8/2514205
- Jensen, T.K., Andersson, A.M., Skakkebæk, N.E., et al. (April 7, 2013) Association of Sleep Disturbances With Reduced Semen Quality: A Crosssectional Study Among 953 Healthy Young Danish Men. Am. J. Epidemiol. doi:10.1093/aje/kws420. Retrieved from: https://academic.oup.com/aje/article/177/10/1027/101677