Men Should Eat Like Women for More Productive Sex
While much attention has focused on the diet, weight and age of moms-to-be, it is now known that 40 to 50% of infertility is linked to the father-to-be. As a result, repro endos and urology specialists are focusing on what wannabe dads can do to improve the odds of achieving a healthy pregnancy.
Animal and human studies are showing that eating more like a woman may be just what the doctor ordered to help his swimmers’ make it to the finish line.
Where Have All the Good Sperm Gone?
A growing number of American men are what docs call sub-fertile, meaning they have low sperm counts, slow-swimmers or a higher percentage of DNA-damaged sperm.
The decline in sperm quality and quantity is one of the factors associated with increased infertility and miscarriage, and DNA-compromised sperm is associated with certain birth defects. Erectile dysfunction is also on the rise: It’s estimated that 40% of men aged 40 and 70% of those aged 70 experience ED.
Size Matters…Just Not There: Common Contributors to Male Subfertility
Many factors are contributing to the decline of men’s reproductive health, and several are linked to oxidative stress—something that diet and lifestyle can help manage.
- A waist circumference at or above 40 inches doubles the risk for ED.
- As body mass index rises, sperm count declines.
- Men who are overweight or obese have more circulating estrogen levels.
- Medications used to treat depression, CVD and other medical issues can have a negative impact on sexual health.
- High-fat diets and high blood cholesterol levels decrease sperm motility in animal studies.
- Environmental exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) phthalates are linked to abnormal sperm and increased risk for infertility.
- Men living in rural areas who eat a more vegetarian diet have lower levels of environmental endocrine disruptors in their body compared to guys living in urban areas who eat a more meats and fish.
Eating More Like A Woman May Improve Virility
Too many “dude” foods like fatty meats, refined grains, and full-fat cheese (and too many beers!) may make it harder for your man to produce potent “man jam.” (Not my expression and it’s sure to offend someone, but I find it a fairly accurate metaphor.)
[sws_blockquote_transparent align=”right” source=”Reproductive Biomedicine Online, 2010 Jun;20(6):711-23” quotestyle=”sws_transparent02″] Researchers analyzed data from 17 human clinical studies including data on 1,665 infertile men. Some 82% of the trials showed an improvement in either sperm quality or pregnancy rate after antioxidant therapy. The antioxidants most studied among men with poor sperm quality or quantity include vitamins C and E, zinc, selenium, folate, carnitine and carotenoids. All act as antioxidants but several of these nutrients, like zinc and folate, have been shown to have numerous roles in sperm development, stability and motility. Reproductive Biomedicine Online, 2010 Jun;20(6):711-23 [/sws_blockquote_transparent]
A more vegetarian type diet that includes at least seven servings a day of fruits and vegetables; plenty of vitamin E from vegetable oils, nuts and seeds; and more whole grains is a good approach for better odds of fertility. Reducing foods that trigger unhealthy insulin responses and those that are known to have saturated fat (butter, fatty meats and full-fat dairy foods) should be minimized. Losing weight and getting fit will also help–both mentally and physically.