Male fertility – New Year resolutions that are conceivable
As the year draws to an end, many of us think about the year ahead and promise ourselves that we will do our best to improve our fitness and health, resulting in increased productivity and overall happiness. Sometimes, it is difficult to keep to our New Year resolutions, mainly due to the fact that the targets we set are too high and become unattainable. It is wiser to set goals within reach, even though we will still have to work at them!
When it comes to male infertility, many of the reasons may be medical or genetical. However, our lifestyles can also play a large part in improving fertility. Perhaps it’s time to take a look at what can be improved upon to result in more positive outcomes. Listed below are some pointers to pave the way.
Keep hydrated: Drinking more water will help the body produce the maximum amount of semen. It can also increase sperm motility which can help with conception. However, drinking more water will not increase the quantity of sperm in the seminal fluid. So it is wise to drink the right amount of water. A glass of water with every meal or snack or after a walk or exercise is helpful. Taking a sip of water at regular intervals will keep the body hydrated.
Avoid high temperatures: Keeping the groin area cool will help sperm health. Just warm or lukewarm showers/baths should be taken and hot tubs or saunas are best avoided. While using your laptop, do not rest it on your thighs or near the groin. The effect of heat on sperm can be negative. While exercising is good, intense exercise like cycling for a long time can generate heat in the testes, which work best at making healthy sperm at temperatures lower than the body.
Exercise/walking: Exercise is essential for good health. Sitting for long periods of time will not help sperm. If you have a desk job, ensure that you take intermittent breaks (every half hour or so) for a walk around the office. This will not only help the sperm quality and motility, but increase mental focus and raise energy levels too. Some form of exercise or yoga for at least 30 minutes each day is beneficial to overall health.
Stay clear of toxic chemicals: Exposure to pollutants has a negative effect on sperm health, resulting in decreased sperm motility, increased DNA fragmentation, abnormal sperm morphology and sometimes impaired spermatogenesis. If possible, it is best to stay away from industrial chemicals and pesticides. If your work involves dealing with chemicals, ensure that you wear protective clothing and avoid, as much as possible, inhaling or touching toxins.
Diet: Adding some antioxidant foods to your diet, such as nuts, citrus fruits, green leafy vegetables and red meat can improve sperm health. Antioxidant supplements (vitamins C and E, zinc) can also be taken, but first get the permission of your physician.
Quitting bad habits: Reducing or foregoing certain attractive habits is the most difficult, but it can be done. Everyone knows that smoking, alcohol and caffeinated energy drinks are damaging to one’s health. By using mind over matter, one can control and give up these practices which will, in addition to general health, improve sperm quality as well.
Conclusion: The old misconception that infertility on the male side is negligible has now been overruled with proof that at least 40% of infertility cases are due to the male factor. If you are facing problems with infertility, try and follow the above resolutions for 2023. If you have doubts about your reproductive or fertility health, the best way to assuage your doubt is to consult an Andrologist and have some basic investigations such as a semen analysis and blood tests done.
We, at Andrology Center, carry out the semen analysis and Sperm DFI (DNA fragmentation index) tests. We use the SCSA (sperm chromatin structure assay) method. We are the only laboratory in India authorized to carry out this authentic test. Accurate results are guaranteed, due to our state of the art laser equipment and high technology. Such results will assist your physician in offering the best treatment possible.