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 Fertility tips for Men

Here are some fertility tips for men that can help you increase the chances of getting your partner pregnant, before considering medical treatments. I like simple explanations as well as simple and natural remedies, based on what I've learned.

You'll find them here with links to other pages if you want to read more.

There are more and more cases of young men who have difficulties in conceiving, it's not only a women's problem.

  • 30% of problems are found in men

The official UK National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) estimates that infertility affects 1 in 7 (over 14%) heterosexual couples in the UK and these number are increasing. Source

Why?

Study published on the University of Oxford Journals

Man's semen quality is not affected by his parents' age

They studied about 11.000 men born from 1960 who had poor semen quality, to find out whether a man's semen quality is affected by his parents' age. Here's their conclusion:

"There were no convincing effect of either mother's or father's age on a man's semen quality"

"The current study found no link between parental age and a son's semen quality, suggesting other factors may explain recent impairments in men's reproductive health."

(pollution and other toxic substances?)

Main problems

The main problems with men are sperm quantity and quality.

  • low sperm count: the number of sperms per ml has been constantly decreasing
  • poor sperm motility: the sperms don't move, or don't move forward or are too slow
  • malformed sperm: sperms with two heads, two tails, or otherwise abnormal shapes, like in the picture below.

All this doesn't help fetilize the egg.

abnormal, malformed sperm

Abnormal sperm (click to enlarge)

Attribution: Xenzo at English Wikipedia

Male fertility has been declining dramatically

I was shocked when I read that in the last 20 years there have been studies that show how men's fertility has been steadily declining in Western industrialized countries, with lower sperm count and more deformed sperms. One study shows a decrease from 100 million sperms per ml in 1950 to 50 million sperms per ml in 1990.

Men with poor sperm quality are often told that he only way to have children is through another man's sperm donation.

It seems that this decline in men's fertility is caused by our environment, which includes toxic substances we are exposed to, such as medications, radiations (nuclear, TV, radio, mobile phones, computers, ...), the food we eat, the air we breath and the water we drink, just to mention a few, but the list of harmful substances is much longer.

In particular, it seems that men are negatively affected by being exposed to oestrogen (the female hormone) and other chemicals from many sources, that act like oestrogen. Milk and other dairy products are an important souce of oestrogen, because milk is produced by pregnant cows that produce relatively high levels of oestrogens. Oestrogens are also given to cows to produce more milk, or how could they produce milk all year round?

Fancy reading the whole scientific article? The sperm count has been decreasing steadily for many years in Western industrialised countries: Is there an endocrine basis for this decrease?

Studies reveal that many factors affect fertility, both in men and women, the most often cited ones are:

  • Smoking: reduces semen quality and REDUCES FERTILITY in both women and men. Also passive smoking is likely to affect chances of conceiving
  • Drinking alcohol affects semen quality and can harm the developing fetus
  • Use of drugs, including medicinal drugs and so-called recreational drugs or illegal drugs

Source

Those are only the substances that people introduce voluntarily in their bodies, without mentioning all poisons from polluted air, water, soil, pesticides and other chemicals in food and many more.

All these substances damage our bodies in general, therefore making it more difficult to conceive, but it's even more important to realise that they can damage the future baby who is forming and who is in a very delicate stage of development.

Avoid poisons

I'm a strong believer in natural solutions so, before giving up your hopes or hurrying to find a sperm donor for artificial insemination, try to improve your diet and lifestyle.

  • Avoid smoke and alcohol, at least for 3 months when you are trying to conceive a baby
  • Avoid processed foods, that is, anything that "doesn't have a mum or come from a plant": they contain a lot of artificial chemical ingredients, most of which have unknown side-effects
  • Avoid or reduce dairy products, they contain oestrogen hormones that can interfer with male hormone (testosterone) levels
  • Eat fresh fruit and vegetables, preferably raw
  • Eat organic products, to avoid pesticides
  • Eat organic meat and dairy products, that is grass-fed beef, sheep, free-range chicken and eggs, etc. They do not contain hormones and antibiotics fed to livestock to "promote growth".

Read more on the fertility diet. A more in depth article on how you can support your fertility with food. They have many more articles and supplements to help getting your partner pregnat naturally.

Start with little things, simple fertility tips for men

In addition to avoiding toxic substances there are other things that you can do. Many times simple things can make a big difference, so before starting to think there is a serious problem, let's start with these, based on what I've learned.

High temperature around testicles reduces sperm quality. That's why testicles are outside a man's body: this way the temperature is slightly lower. Some men may create this situation of high temperature without realizing it. Here are a few example of situations to avoid: 

  • avoid sitting for long time; this can happen to men who drive for many hours, and it's even worse if sitting on heated seats like some cars have
  • avoid placing a computer on your lap for long time
  • avoid taking sauna or hot baths

It seems that wearing loose underwear and trousers helps with sperm production.

When to have sex

Did you know? There is also something as the right time to have sex for a woman to have the best chances of getting pregnant, as a woman is fertile only for a few days every month. This is maybe the simplest of the fertility tips you can apply with your partner, if you've tried and are wondering about how to get pregnant.

Read more on this website

Useful links for more fertility tips for men

Read more on some good websites about natural remedies and treatments to improve your fertility, both for women and men.

Foresight Preconception - Low sperm count Boosting fertility naturally, through nutrition, lifestyle changes and avoidance of toxins. They do hair analysis to find out what toxic metals and deficiencies you have and then suggest what to do.

Fertility diet An article on how you can support your fertility with food. Many more articles to help getting pregnat naturally and supplements

› Fertility tips for Men

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