In cases where low sperm count is a permanent reproductive problem, there isn’t a way to improve the quality of sperm count. Medical techniques aim to increase chances of conception and include IVF, hormone therapy and artificial insemination.
In cases in which there is temporary low sperm count caused by factors such as stress, emotional trauma, insomnia and exposure to heat, there are things that can be done to improve sperm count. These include:
Diet: Although more conclusive evidence is still required, some studies suggest that eating junk food diets causes poorer sperm quality while eating a diet high in omega-3 fatty acids (fish/plant oils) result in a higher sperm count. In general though, it’s suggested you follow a diet that high in protein, rich in vegetables and whole grains and low in fat. Foods high in folate, vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium and zinc, are particularly beneficial to producing healthy sperm.
Maintaining a healthy weight: Obesity has been linked to low sperm count as being overweight affects the production of reproductive hormones. This can reduce sperm count and increase the number of abnormal sperm.
Don’t overheat the testicles: This can impair sperm production. Avoid wearing tight underwear, jeans or pants, hot baths or resting a laptop on your lap for long periods.
Promote good health: Quit smoking and avoid drinking alcohol (both reduce sperm count and quality) and taking illicit drugs. Marijuana, for example, can decrease sperm motility and increase the number of abnormal sperm.
Ejaculate less often: Ejaculating more than every 48 hours may reduce semen density.
Exercise regularly: This helps reduce stress hormones that may damage sperm. (At the same time avoid over-exercising as high levels of adrenal steroid hormones can decrease testosterone.)
Manage stress: Meditate, learn relaxation techniques or try yoga to relieve tension.
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