Male fertility is decided by both sperm quality and sperm quantity. These two factors are decided by a wide variety of factors. While genetics may be the prime reason for male infertility, man-made factors also play important roles. Factors which promote an increase in blood cholesterol may depress male fertility. Strangely, low cholesterol levels also may affect male fertility. Obesity also antagonizes male fertility.
The sperm is the male reproductive cell. The word sperm is derived from the Greek word ‘sperma’ meaning ‘seed’. Sperm cells are produced within the testicles. They are ejected out of the male body in the semen. The sperm count in a single ejaculation runs into several millions and only a very few are fortunate in winning the race to reach the egg. Even among these, only a single sperm gets to penetrate the egg and merge with it. A sperm cell can survive in the female reproductive tract for nearly five days. Fertility depends on sperm quality as well as sperm quantity. Several factors can contribute to male infertility. The commonest causes are low sperm counts, the presence of abnormal sperms and sperms which are not motile. Total absence of sperms is also frequently encountered. In addition, other factors may also contribute.
High Cholesterol Levels Reduce Sperm Counts
Cholesterol is a double edged sword. High blood cholesterol levels are risky as are reduced levels as recent research indicates that low blood cholesterol levels may increase the risk for the onset of cancer. Cholesterol may be able to impact male fertility. Increased intake of saturated fat boosts blood cholesterol levels. Such conditions cause a reduction in the sperm counts. Conditions promoting an increase in LDL levels in the circulation can also produce a decrease in the number of sperms produced and therefore, in male fertility.
Low Cholesterol Levels Affect fertility
While elevated cholesterol levels are bad, reduced levels can also create problems for male fertility. Cholesterol is the precursor of steroid hormones including the sex hormones. Testosterone is a male sex hormone and a steroid hormone. As cholesterol levels fall, testosterone synthesis would also be depressed. Testosterone has several functions. The most important consequence of testosterone deficiency is a decrease in libido which is the most important factor for maintaining male fertility. Testosterone also promotes sperm production in the testicles. Thus, reduced testosterone levels reduce the sperm counts. Testosterone deficiency can also have other deleterious consequences like inability to produce erections and the inability to maintain firm erections. The ejaculate volume may also be reduced which can decrease the sperm counts.
Vitamin D3 promotes Male Fertility
Thus, red meat, processed meats, ice creams and cheeseburgers can reduce your sperm count. On the other hand, walnuts and fish can increase your sperm count. Both these foods are rich in omega-3-fatty acids. Saturated fats reduce sperm count by nearly 38%. Sperm motility is also affected. Vegetables and fruits improve the overall quality of life by keeping many diseases away. They also promote an increase in sperm quality and quantity. Testosterone was previously thought to function only as a sex hormone. However, it has shown up as a multifunctional substance. Vitamin D3 is following suit. Vitamin D3 and zinc supplementation can elevate sperm counts and improve sperm quality. It is important not to wear inner wear which are too tight. Such innerwear, tend to raise the temperature around the testicles and this pushes the sperm counts down. Increased frequency of sex plays a positive role. While this may slightly reduce the sperm count per ejaculate, this activity keeps the sperms in a healthy state. Obesity also pushes the sperm counts down. Hence, maintaining normal weight is beneficial for healthy male fertility.
Vitamin D3 is by far the best form of vitamin D that we can take, since it is more absorbable for us.
Other Reasons for Low Sperm Count
While cholesterol does help the sperm count, there are two types of cholesterol, HDL and LDL. HDL is the good kind of cholesterol and this is important to know. Raising the levels of HDL and lowering the levels of LDL can really help the sperm levels in men.
A diet high in saturated fat will increase the levels of LDL, which is bad for the heart, the blood vessels and the sperm count. A recent 2014 study, called the LIFE study found that couples with a high LDL cholesterol level took longer to conceive than those with a higher HDL level.
High Cholesterol and Erectile Dysfunction
Another problem with have a high LDL high cholesterol level can also cause erectile dysfunction which can also inhibit sex and sperm count. High LDL levels can cause a limited blood flow in the body, including to the penis and the testicles where sperm forms.
Foods to avoid include red meat, whole fat dairy, eggs, certain vegetable oils like palm oils, and coconut oil. Always read the ingredients. Soy oil can also cause a bad LDL level. Other bad foods are white processed flour products, like donuts, cookies and sweets. Processed foods, microwave foods and fast foods are also a major problem because of all the chemicals and bad fats in those foods.
Medication and Sperm Count
Statin medications, like Lipitor, that men take for high cholesterol can also have a negative impact on the sperm count. This is why it is best to lower bad cholesterol naturally without having to take statin medications.
How to Naturally Lower Bad Cholesterol
Eating a better diet is without question the best way to lower your cholesterol and increase your sperm count. While eating a healthier diet, increasing your exercise and lowering your body fat will help you sperm count. A healthier diet means more vegetables and fish, and limiting all other animal products like pork, red meat and chicken. For protein use Quinoa, beans, lentils and legumes.
As you can see, a healthy diet plays an important role in the formation of sperm, and in getting pregnant, not to mention lowering the bad LDL cholesterol and raising the good HDL cholesterol. Medication is not the answer, but a healthy diet is the answer.