Did you know that in Western countries like the United States, sperm count is on the decline? Studies showed that due to pollution and Western-style diet consumption, sperm quantity and quality has been consistently declining for men living in industrialized countries.
According to the results of a recent study, eating a nut-rich diet can greatly improve your fertility. Nuts are rich in various nutrients that can help you produce healthier and more motile sperm. Read on to learn more about how eating more nuts can lead to better sperm quality.
If you feel like your fertility is declining, instead of opening that bag of potato chips, try snacking on almonds. Potato chips and junk foods aren’t just unhealthy, they’re also known to damage your fertility. Almonds, on the other hand, are packed with so many nutrients that are good for your sperm health.
Almonds are great sources of vitamin E, folate, manganese, magnesium, iron, selenium, potassium, and zinc. These nutrients all play important roles in maintaining your fertility. For instance, folic acid can help protect your sperm from developing genetic abnormalities.
Since your sperm carries your DNA material, you wouldn’t want your sperm to contain abnormal DNA. In addition, having a low folate level is associated with low sperm counts. Eating a lot of almonds and other nuts that are rich in folate can help increase your folate levels and improve your sperm count.
Almonds are also rich in vitamin E, which also serves as an antioxidant for your sperm cells. Your sperm cells contain lipids and vitamin E protects these lipid structures from being damaged by free radicals. Hence, vitamin E makes it possible for your sperm to swim properly. When you increase your vitamin E intake, you can improve your sperm motility.
Almonds are great natural sources of zinc, a mineral that is essential for normal sperm production. The tail of sperm cells actually contain a lot of zinc, but if you are zinc deficient, your sperm cells could develop abnormal tails. This can lead to poor sperm motility, which means that your sperm can’t swim forward well enough to reach your partner’s egg cell.
You can also improve your sperm production by eating foods that are rich in selenium, just like almonds. Selenium is essential for sperm formation as well as for testosterone production. Selenium also acts as an antioxidant that helps protect the health of your sperm.
Just like almonds, hazelnuts also contain various vitamins and minerals that are important for normal sperm production as well as for keeping your sperm cells healthy. For instance, hazelnuts are excellent sources of vitamins E, K, C, B6, folate, and other B vitamins.
Hazelnuts also contain a lot of manganese, magnesium, iron, calcium, potassium, phosphorus and many other nutrients. A hundred gram serving of hazelnuts can give you almost 300% of the recommended daily value for manganese. And you need manganese if you want to produce sufficient numbers of motile sperm.
What’s interesting about hazelnuts is that they contain various antioxidants that are necessary for keeping your sperm cells healthy. For instance, hazelnuts contain arginine, which is an amino acid that also acts as an antioxidant. Hazelnuts also contain Q10, a vitamin-like compound that also acts as an antioxidant having beneficial effects on sperm motility.
Walnuts may not give you as much as vitamin E than almonds or hazelnuts, but walnuts contain omega-3 fatty acids more than any other nut. Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for proper sperm maturation. These healthy fats are also needed for proper sperm membrane functions.
This means that if you want to produce sperm cells that are normal in size and shape, you’ll need to increase your intake of foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids such as walnuts. Of course, enhancing your sperm morphology isn’t the only benefit you get from eating walnuts.
Walnuts are also known to be great for keeping your blood vessels healthy. Walnuts help your good cholesterol get rid of the bad cholesterol in your body more efficiently. And when your blood vessels are healthy, it means that your body can pump the right amount of blood to your penis whenever you need an erection.
Another benefit you get from regularly snacking on walnuts is that it can help reduce your risks of developing prostate cancer. And if you do have prostate cancer already, walnuts and walnut oil can help slow down the growth of the tumor and even reduce its size.
Better Semen Parameters
According to research, eating at least sixty grams of mixed walnuts, almonds, and hazelnuts every day can greatly improve your sperm parameters. Your sperm count, sperm vitality, sperm motility, and sperm morphology will significantly improve.
The World Health Organization uses four benchmarks for semen quality. These are sperm concentration, progressive motility, vitality, and morphology. Your sperm concentration should not be lower than fifteen million sperm cells for every milliliter of semen.
Progressive motility, which is your sperm cells’ ability to move forward, should be at least 32%. Your sperm vitality should be at least 58% and the percentage of sperm having normal morphology should be at least 4%. When your numbers are lower than these, you could be at risk of becoming infertile.
Prevent Your Sperm Count From Decreasing
While you’re working on improving your sperm count, you should also take steps to avoid things that are known to reduce your sperm count. For instance, smoking is known to significantly reduce sperm count. Moreover, smoking is also known to adversely affect a man’s ability to achieve erections.
Excessive alcohol intake is another thing that you should avoid if you want to stay fertile. Alcohol causes a lot of damage to the body and has a lot of negative effects on your sexual health.
Consuming great amounts of alcohol is known to reduce your sex drive. It can also lead to impotence or erectile dysfunction. Alcohol can also adversely affect your sperm quantity and quality.
Heavy alcohol intake over a span of several years can even lead to testicular atrophy, which can greatly reduce your sperm production. The liver damage associated with alcohol intake can also lead to hormonal imbalances and low testosterone levels.