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Lower sperm counts linked to higher saturated fat intake

Lower Sperm Counts Linked to Higher Saturated Fat Intake
Lower Sperm Counts Linked to Higher Saturated Fat Intake

For as long as men can remember their masculinity has been closely tied to their sexual virility, or their ability to procreate. A man's ability to father children can be influenced by a number of different factors, and the most common problem men report is a low sperm count. What is surprising many men is the recent studies that are reporting that lower sperm counts are linked to higher saturated fat intake. This means that the foods you eat can have a negative effect on your sperm count.

Lower Sperm Counts Linked to Higher Saturated Fat Intake
In a study conducted by researchers at Rigshospitalet Copenhagen University National Hospital a link was discovered between lower sperm counts and diets that contained large servings of cheese and meat. For two years, researchers conducted a controlled experiment on 701 Danish men, all in their 20's and receiving regular military physical checkups. The study showed that men who eat foods high in saturated fat saw a 38 percent decrease in their sperm counts, while men whose diets contained a high amount of total fat experienced a 41 percent decrease in sperm levels in their semen. These findings were compared to men whose diets contained low amounts of saturated fat.

The Danish study went even further and divided the men into four groups. The men were placed into the separate groups based on the amount of calories they consumed from saturated fat and their current sperm counts. The study clearly showed that as men consumed more foods containing saturated fat, their sperm levels subsequently decreased. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published the study's findings including a chart documenting saturated fat's effect on a man's sperm count.

What the published findings reported was that men who only received 11 percent of their daily calories from saturated fat measured a sperm concentration average of 50 million per milliliter of sperm, and their total sperm count was estimated at 163 million. On the other hand, the findings also showed that men whose daily calories from saturated fat were at 15 percent only had a sperm count of 128 million. To make the numbers clearer for men, the World Health Organization counts a man's sperm count as normal when it is either at or above 15 million. In the recent study only 13 percent of the men who ate a low amount of saturated fat in their diet were below normal sperm count numbers, while 18 percent of men with a diet high in fat were below the count recommended by the World Health Organization.

While researchers cannot definitively say that saturated fat does cause lower sperm counts, the results of the study are indicating that it does. It is already common knowledge that men who enjoy a diet high in saturated fat are at risk for other health problems, and now it seems that a man's virility can be affected by his diet as well.

Other Contributing Factors to Low Sperm Counts
A healthy diet can improve a man's sperm count, and a study published by Brazilian scientists also discovered a connection between including whole grains and fresh fruit and a man's sperm count. Not only were the sperm counts higher in these men, but their sperm were more active and stronger than men with a poor diet.

Excessive alcohol consumption, illegal drugs, and smoking can also cause a decrease in a man's sperm count. Along with a lack of physical exercise and obesity.

While a man's masculinity should not be based on his sperm count, lower levels can indicate a potential health problem. While many men do not think about their ability to father children, until they need to, it is easier to improve sperm count them if a man is already used to eating healthy.

Not only will removing a lot of the fatty foods from your diet help to improve your sperm count, it can also improve your physical health. Certain cancers, obesity, and heart disease are linked to this bad fat. Another thing for men to remember is that when they feel healthy, their sex lives are usually more satisfying as well.

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