According to the U.S Department of Health and Human Services, around 12% to 13% of couples have difficulty conceiving. In many cases, the underlying cause is male fertility problems like low sperm quality, low sperm count and/or blockages that hinder the transfer of sperm.
Moreover, clinical research and studies have discovered that sperm count has plummeted by as much as 50% in the last 4 decades owing to lifestyle factors like diet, alcohol, smoking, and lack of exercise.
Normal sperm count is anywhere between 15 million sperm to 200 million, or more, per milliliter of semen. Anything below 15 million sperm per milliliter is considered a low sperm count. A low sperm count is also referred to as “oligospermia”. A total absence of sperm is known as “azoospermia”.
If you’re wondering how to increase your sperm count naturally, you’re in the right place. This blog post is a complete guide on the natural ways of increasing your sperm count and volume.
The relation between sperm count and male fertility
What you can do to increase your sperm count
Food that can help increase your sperm count
Natural supplements that may help you increase sperm count
Prescribed medication you could take
While a low sperm count can have a negative impact on a man’s fertility, it doesn’t mean that conceiving is impossible. An egg can be fertilized if even a single sperm is injected directly into it. In other words, while sperm count is a significant determinant of fertility, it’s certainly not the only one.
Other factors, such as the sperm’s motility and morphology, also play an important role in a man’s ability to conceive.
For instance, if you have a sperm count of 20 million sperm per milliliter, it’s a low count, but if your sperm quality, shape, and motility are great, your doctor may consider your sperm count levels as normal.
However, the bottom line is that sperm count is a vital factor in determining male fertility and a low sperm count can make it difficult to conceive.
So, how to increase your sperm count? Well, it’s important to understand that sperm requires a specific environment to develop properly. How active you are, what you eat, your overall health – all have a huge impact on your sperm count and volume.
Fortunately, there are certain lifestyle changes that can help increase sperm volume and count and improve morphology and motility – even if your sperm production is hindered by medical conditions like hormonal imbalances or varicocele. Here are a few examples of these:
Exercising regularly is one of the best ways to increases your sperm count fast. Multiple clinical studies on male fertility have discovered that there’s a significant difference in the hormonal and seminological profiles of men who’re physically active and those who’re not.
A clinical study assessed qualitative semen parameters such as volume, sperm count and sperm motility. Researchers found that men who were sedentary had inferior semen values compared to men who were physically active.
Furthermore, physically inactive men also face a higher risk of developing weight problems such as obesity, which have a direct correlation with sexual dysfunctions like low sperm count and volume. The takeaway is that regular exercise can help you maintain optimal sexual health and performance.
However, intense workout sessions and overexertion can also cause your sperm count to plummet. Various clinical studies have discovered that the sperm values of elite sportsmen are inferior compared to men who exercise moderately.
Relax & Minimize Stress
When you’re stressed out, your body’s defense mechanisms are activated and start conserving energy. Your body becomes less concerned with sexual function and starts focusing more on survival. According to a study conducted at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, psychological stress has a massive impact on sperm quality, appearance, count and motility.
The key to reducing stress lies in addressing the underlying cause. Lifestyle factors such as maintaining a healthy diet and exercising are known to alleviate stress. Anti-depressant and anti-anxiety medications can also be prescribed to individuals who experience severe stress.
Weight issues and obesity not only impact sperm count and volume but can also lead to ED and other sexual dysfunctions. Furthermore, obesity is also linked with hormonal imbalances in the body that can have an adverse effect on sperm molecular composition and function.
Obesity also increases the likelihood that someone develops health problems like diabetes, which in turn can have detrimental effects on your ejaculation volume. A clinical study looked at the link between fertility and BMI among males and it found out that men who have a better BMI have a greater sperm count and more sperm motility than men who suffer from obesity.
The harmful chemicals and toxic metals contained in tobacco products have a major adverse impact on testicular function. Whether smoking is the underlying cause of your low sperm count and volume or not, quitting the destructive habit will make a positive impact on your sexual and general health in any case.
Consuming excessive amounts of alcohol can be highly damaging to the male reproductive system. In addition to affecting the function of the testicles, alcohol impacts the cells that are responsible for producing sperm and the all-important hormone testosterone. It also has a negative impact on the secretion of hormones in the pituitary gland and the hypothalamus.
So, alcohol not only has a deteriorating effect on the testicles, but it also disturbs the intricate hormonal balance required for a healthy sperm count and volume.
Prescription Drugs That Can Reduce Sperm Count
There are certain prescription drugs that can negatively impact sperm count and overall male fertility. For instance, antidepressants, particularly SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Re-uptake Inhibitors), are known to reduce sperm production and suppress the libido.
Other prescription drugs that can potentially reduce sperm count include:
- Blood pressure medication
- Chemotherapy medication
- Testosterone replacement drugs/steroids
If you’re taking any of these prescription drugs, consult with your doctor to determine the effects they can have on your sperm count and volume.
Cool Your Testicles
If you work in extremely hot environments or regularly wear tight clothes, it can lead to high scrotal temperatures and thus, a decreased sperm count. Sitting, using a laptop, riding a bike, driving, and excessive weight; all of these increase the temperature in your nether regions and causes sperm counts to fall.
Clinical studies and research have revealed that cooling your testicles can lead to a drastic improvement in the production of sperm and testosterone.
Have Regular Sex
Numerous scientific studies have suggested that daily sex can increase the chances of conception. In addition to increasing sperm count, regular intercourse also increases sperm motility, thereby improving overall fertility.
When sperm is kept in the body for prolonged periods, its DNA is damaged by the destructive oxygen molecules that are naturally produced by cells.
Is it possible to increase your sperm count with food? Of course, there is. Getting a good supply of nutrients such as vitamins and minerals is essential to a healthy sperm count.
Antioxidant Rich Foods
When it comes to natural ways of improving sperm count, antioxidant-rich foods can be particularly beneficial. Antioxidants actually mitigate the damage caused on the reproductive system by bad habits like drugs, alcohol, and smoking by protecting your cells from so-called free radicals.
Here are some foods that are a good source of antioxidants:
- Certain types of fish like salmon and cod
- Dark chocolate
- Red wine
- Citrus fruit like lemons
Eat More Healthy Fat
The results of a medical study conducted at Harvard University highlighted the relationship between sperm quality and dietary fat. It revealed that consuming foods that contain healthy polyunsaturated fats such as fatty acids, omega-3 and omega-6 can significantly improve sperm quality.
Avoid Soy Products
Medical research has suggested that the isoflavones contained in soy products can potentially lower sperm count. The isoflavones interfere with hormonal signals that initiate the production of sperm in the testes. However, further research is needed to determine the extent of the impact of soy products on male fertility.
List of Foods High in Sperm Count-Boosting Nutrients
If you want to know which foods are a good way to increase sperm count and volume, the only thing you have to do? Look at the list above!
The antioxidant-rich foods listed above are in fact the very foods that are high in sperm count boosting nutrients, so you might want to stock up on those.
Certain herbal supplements are also known to have a positive effect on male fertility. For instance, L-arginine is an amino acid that transforms into nitric oxide by the body. Nitric oxide is a chemical that’s essential for sperm quality and function.
Here are some other natural supplements that can help you increase sperm count:
D-Aspartic Acid Supplements
D-aspartic acid, or D-AA for short, is an amino acid known for its excellent testosterone boosting abilities. D-AA enhances sperm-production in the testicles by alleviating a rate-limiting step of testosterone synthesis. This can lead to a minor increase in testosterone levels.
Another antioxidant, vitamin C is essential for male fertility, and having healthy vitamin C levels really improves your sperm count and morphology. Here are some vitamin C-rich foods:
- Citrus fruits
- Green peppers
- Other vegetables like tomatoes, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts.
Adding vitamin D to your diet can greatly improve sperm motility and increase your semen volume and testosterone levels. You can boost your vitamin D levels by eating the following foods:
- Oily fish like salmon, tuna, and mackerel
- Egg yolk
A herb that is indigenous to Southern Asia, Africa, Australia and Southern Europe, Tribulus Terrestris is often used to treat low libido, infertility and erectile dysfunction. A clinical study conducted in Brazil highlighted Tribulus Terrestris efficacy as a testosterone-boosting supplement and aphrodisiac.
Fenugreek’s effectiveness as an all-natural remedy for poor sperm count and quality has been well-documented. A scientific study conducted in 2017 discovered that Furosap, a compound developed with fenugreek seeds, can significantly improve semen count and quality.
The importance of zinc for male fertility cannot be overstated. In addition to being an excellent antioxidant, zinc boosts testosterone production in the body.
A traditional herbal supplement that’s deeply rooted in Indian Ayurvedic medicine, Ashwagandha’s benefits include improving male fertility. Medical studies have revealed that just a 5 mg dose of ashwagandha can significantly improve sperm count and motility.
Medical research conducted in Peru examined Maca Roots efficacy as a male fertility-boosting supplement. It consisted of a 12-week double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trial in which varying doses of Maca were compared with a placebo. The results of the study revealed that taking just 3 mg of Maca daily for a period of 3 weeks significantly improved sperm count and libido.
In some cases, a doctor can also prescribe drugs for improving a low sperm count. The commonly prescribed drugs include:
- Anastrozole or letrozole
- Antibiotics if the low sperm is caused by an infection in the urinary or reproductive tract
- Exogenous androgens
We hope that this blog post has provided a comprehensive answer to the question “how to increase sperm count”. While there are synthetic drugs available to increase sperm count and volume, the problem can be rectified by a combination of healthy lifestyle changes and all-natural supplements in most cases.
All-natural supplements such as Male Extra are made from herbal ingredients that are proven to have male sexual health benefits. These include L-arginine, pomegranate juice, L-methionine, and Zinc. Combining all-natural supplements with healthy lifestyle adjustments is an excellent way of improving your sperm count.