Many young men have poor sperm quality and often the underlying cause is unknown. Sperm health is highly dependent on omega-3but a large number of men lack these essential fatty acids. According to a large Danish study published in the journal JAMA, fish oil supplements have been shown to improve several sperm parameters. The scientists behind the study suggest that men may benefit from taking fish oil supplements to improve their fertility and increase the woman’s chances of successfully conceiving. However, they also point out that it usually takes a month or two to see the optimal effect and that the fish oil supplement needs to be continued to see the results.
The male reproductive system consists of the testicles, epididymis, vas deferens, seminal vesicles, prostate and penis. The testicles produce the sperm that are ejaculated. A normal ejaculation yields about 3-5 ml of semen with about 20-250 million sperm per milliliter of semen. The number, structure, motility and lifespan of sperm cells are the key factors in male fertility. Hormones released by the pituitary gland control the male sex hormone testosterone, which is mainly produced in the testicles. Like nerve cells and eye cells, sperm membranes contain relatively large amounts of omega-3 in the form of DHA. DHA influences the structure and motility of sperm and their ability to enter the egg during the fertilization process. DHA is so important for sperm that animals become infertile if they lack this essential fatty acid. Fish oil contains large amounts of DHA and EPA, making it a better source than vegetable oils, from which you get omega-3 in the form of ALA, which needs to be converted.
Fish oil improves sperm and fertility
Involuntary infertility affects around 15 percent of all couples. In 40-50 percent of cases, the problem is caused by poor sperm quality.
1,679 young Danish men took part in the study, which was conducted by scientists from Rigshospitalet in Copenhagen. The scientists examined the men’s diets, use of stimulants and use of dietary supplements. It found that 98 of the participants (5.8%) had taken fish oil supplements in the previous three months. Fifty-three (54.1%) of the 98 participants had taken fish oil for 60 days or more. Blood tests were performed and used to analyze her hormone levels, and the volume of her testicles was also measured. After masturbating in a small room near the sperm lab, the men’s sperm quality was analyzed using various parameters. The men received payment for participating.
The study results showed:
- The men who took fish oil had higher sperm volume compared to the control group, especially if they had taken fish oil for more than 60 days.
- Those who took fish oil had larger testicles than those in the control group, especially if they had been taking fish oil for more than 60 days.
- Those taking fish oil had higher levels of free testosterone relative to LH (luteinizing hormone).
- Men who took fish oil produced more sperm per milliliter of semen.
The Danish scientists also point to other studies showing how fish oil supplements can increase sperm motility. Fish oil also has the ability to prevent DNA fragmentation, which damages a sperm cell’s DNA so severely that the fertilized egg cell cannot develop. In other words, a man can easily be able to produce sufficient numbers of sperm that appear healthy. However, if they have DNA damage, it can be one of the hidden reasons behind his involuntary infertility.
The scientists concluded that fish oil had a positive impact on testicle size, testicular function and sperm quality, especially when the men had been taking the fish oil for more than 60 days.
In contrast, the scientists did not find that multivitamins, vitamin C, and vitamin D had a significant impact on sperm quality.
However, other studies have shown that supplementation with selenium and zinc improves sperm health and boosts the antioxidant function that protects their DNA. It’s a good idea to take selenium yeast and zinc glaciates or zinc acetate, which are easy for the body to absorb and use.
Diet and lifestyle
The Danish researchers, as well as other scientists, say that diet and lifestyle in general are important for fertility. Here is some good advice for optimizing sperm quality:
Eat a healthy and balanced diet and keep your blood sugar stable
A diet high in sugar and fast carbohydrates increases your insulin production. If you become insulin resistant and have chronically elevated insulin levels, it can inhibit your testosterone production. Don’t be afraid of fat as such, but avoid consuming too much omega-6 and Tran’s fats from margarine, fries, junk food, etc.
Maintain a normal body weight
Statistically, men who are overweight or underweight are more likely to have poorer sperm quality than men of normal body weight. Fat cells release estrogen precursors, and excess fat in the groin increases the temperature in the testicles, which can lower fertility rates.
Avoid smoking – including passive smoking
Smoking affects fertility in both men and women. Sperm from smokers show higher levels of DNA damage. Smoking also reduces the sperm’s ability to attach to the egg. Smoking, and even smoke from hookahs and campfires, creates floods of free radicals that can damage sensitive sperm and other cells by exposing them to oxidative stress.
Avoid unnecessary chemical effects and electro smog
There are dozens of toxins in the environment that affect our hormonal balance and affect sperm quality. Some of the culprits are mercury, phthalates and certain pesticides. Stick to organic products and buy groceries with organic seals. Electro smog from mobile phone radiation, power poles, etc. can also cause problems. Having your laptop on your lap can have a negative effect on sperm due to the increased temperature in the scrotum area.
Avoid unnecessary medication
Some medications have side effects that can negatively affect fertility. This is the case with certain types of pain relievers, drugs used to treat erectile dysfunction, and antidepressants. Note that acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and acetylsalicylic acid taken during the first six months of pregnancy may increase the risk of testicular malformation and impaired fertility later in life in male infants.