How Lifestyle Choices can Impact Male Fertility

photo courtesy of theatlantic.com

photo courtesy of theatlantic.com

If you to ask a random individual, chances are they would know at least a few of the things women should avoid when they are trying to conceive, such as alcohol and caffeine.  However, it is not as commonly known that certain everyday choices can have an impact on male fertility.  Men, read on to learn more about items which can impact male virility.

First, the temperature of your testicles has a great impact on your fertility.  The ideal temperature for testicles is slightly below normal body temperature at 94 degrees Fahrenheit.  Higher temperatures impact the sperm’s ability to mature, which leads to a temporary drop in sperm production and lower overall sperm quality.  Testicle temperature can be raised by working in hot conditions, sitting for long periods of time, electric blankets, heated waterbeds, setting a laptop on your lap, and wearing tight underwear.  Relatedly, mean who are serious cyclists have been found to have lower sperm counts, due to the length of time spent sitting on the bike saddle.

Next, it is important for men who are trying to conceive to keep their bodies in the best shape possible.  Having a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 25 or higher is correlated with a reduction in quantity and quality of sperm, and that is magnified with a BMI of 30 or higher.  Additionally, heavy drinking on a regular basis can lower your testosterone levels as well as your sperm count.  Furthermore, heavy smoking has been linked to damaged sperm quality.  While this should not be shocking, it is worth noting that heavy use of any illegal drugs, steroids, and/or marijuana lowers sperm quality as well.

Finally, you should know that if you are under severe stress, your sperm count can be affected.  Stress lowers your levels of a hormone needed for sperm production, known as gonadotrophin-releasing hormone.  Even though it can sometimes be stressful when you are trying to conceive, it’s important to take time for yourself to relax during the process.

 

 

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