Infertility affects 1 out of 7 couples. Among this, every third case of infertility is attributed to male infertility.
Male infertility is when a man’s health interferes and lowers chances of conceiving. Though there are several factors that can reduce male fertility, a big contributing factor is the sperm count.
When the sperm count in the semen is low, it decreases the odds of that one champion fertilizing your partner’s egg. At the end of the day, it’s all about probability right? The chances of 20 million sperm fertilizing the egg are much higher than 7 million sperm per millimeter of ejaculation, right?
It’s simple, to be healthy and produce healthy babies, your sperm needs to be available so that it can champion through and fertilize the female egg.
Let’s walk you down how to improve your sperm count volume through natural methods, through the food you eat, habits you form and some medicines you can take to increase them.
Natural ways to increase your sperm count
1. Bid goodbye to excessive drinking and smoking to increase your sperm
- Drinking occasionally isn’t going to lower your sperm count, but heavy drinking will. Heavy drinking reduces testosterone production in your body and increases estrogen levels. This directly affects your sperm count. You can choose to abstain from alcohol or drink moderately.
- The disclaimer on cigarette packets is real. ‘Smoking kills’ it reads and smoking is definitely killing your sperm count. A study that surveyed over 1000 men concluded that smoking decreases sperm by 17.5%. Cigarette smoking not only lowers your sperm count but also worsens your sperm’s swimming patterns.
- You might call yourself a ‘light smoker’ because you only smoke ONE cigarette every hour. Like the hours add up to a day, one cigarette adds up especially if you look at it on a weekly, monthly, and yearly basis.
2. Exercising daily can increase your sperm count in a matter of a few weeks
- Whether you want to lose weight or not, exercising is a must if you want to improve your sperm count. Studies show that increased activity and exercising increases the primary male hormone testosterone in your body which contributes to increased sperm count.
- Exercising daily for 20 minutes in the form of a walk, run or floor exercises can help you increase your sperm count in weeks. Intense physical activity and exercising more than your body can take can adversely impact your sperm and reduce the count once again. So, be sure not to overdo it.
- Yoga asanas can help increase your sperm count too! It is not an overnight infertility cure but when you practise it over a period of time, it stimulates the testosterone production in your body that will increase your sperm count.
3. Sleep more to increase your sperm count
- We mean sleeping on time. Yes, we mean 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep.
- Are you sleeping for less than 6 hours every night? This one’s for you. Since testosterone releases take place when you are asleep, continued sleep deprivation reduces the testosterone levels in your body which lowers your sperm count.
- Science says that sleeping for less than 8 hours a night can further damage your sperm by increasing anti-sperm antibodies.
- The immune system mistakes sperm for an invader and therefore targets and kills the sperm.
- This means that a lack of sleep confuses your immune system to kill your own sperm!
4. Your tight underwear is killing your sperm
- Boxers or briefs have always been a dilemma for men. Let us break through this age-old dilemma and tell you why it must be boxers.
- Boxers are breezy and thus keep the sperm count high. A study from Harvard suggests that men who wear boxers have a 17% higher sperm count.
- This could be because tight underwear causes higher temperatures and keeps the penis and testicles warm.
- This interferes with the testicles’ ability to produce sperm thereby lowering sperm count.
5. The radiation from your gadgets is reducing your sperm
- Studies show that radiation from phones, laptops, and other electronic devices can reduce your sperm count.
- With the number of gadgets we use, we are exposed to a large amount of harmful radiation making this radiation from electronic devices a popular cause for male infertility.
- Long-term exposure to harmful radiation leads to a decrease in testosterone levels.
- So, if you are exposed to the radiation from your phone, Bluetooth earphones, laptop, and even wifi for 30 min per day, 5 days a week for 4 weeks it causes a significant decrease in the total testosterone level.
- Keeping your phone in your pant’s pocket and sleeping in the same room where the wifi is a bad idea since it affects the health of your sperm.
6. Alter your diet to increase sperm count motility
The rule of thumb to keeping your body healthy is to reduce processed and sugary foods. The same goes with keeping your sperm healthy and in a good quantity.
Here are some of the best Indian foods to incorporate in your diet to increase your sperm count:
- Vitamin B 12: Meat, fish, and dairy is rich in Vitamin B 12. Vitamin B 12 protects your sperm from inflammation and harmful free radicals in your body.
- Vitamin C: Fruits like orange, kiwi, banana, lemon, guava, and vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and spinach are rich in Vitamin C that helps to protect the sperm from damage. Vitamin C also helps the body in counter-attacking harmful antibodies that block the body from producing sperm.
- Vitamin D: Studies show that Vitamin D increases the motility and quantity of sperm. Spending some time in the sun, consuming mushrooms, salmon, egg yolks, and milk can help you increase your sperm count.
- Healthy Fats: Healthy fats like avocado, olive oil, and walnuts have essential Omega 3s and Omega 6s which are important for the healthy development of the sperm membrane and contribute to the sperm structure.
- Figs: Figs are a rich source of calcium, potassium, manganese, zinc, vitamin B6 and fibre. Figs can increase your sperm count so be sure to throw in a dash of figs with any part of your meal. Figs can be eaten with salads, desserts, and meat.
- Dark Chocolate: Be sure to pop in some dark chocolate for dessert to reward yourself and because it has essential amino acid L. This ingredient makes dark chocolate a go-to for increased sperm count.
7. Ashwagandha and increasing sperm count
- Ashwagandha is an ayurvedic herb that can be consumed to increase testosterone levels in the body. Increasing testosterone levels in your body mean increasing your sperm count.
- This ayurvedic treatment can increase your sperm count, reduce stress and the radical oxygen species that damages your sperm.
8. Fenugreek supplements are powerful & can increase your sperm count
- Fenugreek or methi is proven to help with oligospermia or a low sperm count as it is a natural antioxidant that has antioxidants that boost the production of male hormones like testosterone and luteinizing hormones that contribute to sperm production.
- It has spermatogenic properties that treat a low sperm count.
- Fenugreek is available in the form of essential oil, seeds, supplements, and tea.
9. Steaming hot showers and saunas reduce sperm
- The temperature of the testes affects the quality and quantity of sperm i.e. sperm count.
- Exposing yourself to such hot temperatures adversely affects your sperm production and lowers sperm count.
- Replacing extremely hot showers with warm water showers and reducing the frequency and time you spend in the sauna can significantly switch the temperature your testes are put through. This increases your sperm count.
Medication and treatments that will increase your sperm count
If your sperm counts are too low and the simple lifestyle shifts nor the foods been able to raise your sperm count, you must consult a doctor. Here are some of the procedures and medicines that will increase your sperm count.
1. Semen Analysis
- Here, a sample of your semen is collected and looked at under a microscope to determine if you have a low sperm count and how low it is.
- The thought of ejaculating in a container might make you uncomfortable but remember that this test will help you in the long run. It helps diagnose why you have low sperm.
2. Surgery to increase your sperm count
- Varicoceles are similar to a varicose vein in your leg. It is the enlargement of veins that create a loose bag holding your testicles. Here, the veins swell up and drain the testicles.
- This is a large cause of low sperm count and affects male fertility and can be corrected through surgery.
3. Medication to increase your sperm count
- An infection in your reproductive or urinary tract can lower your your sperm count. These can be treated with antibiotic medication.
Though the infection may be corrected, your sperm count may not increase drastically since the tissue in that region has been damaged.
- The sooner you see a doctor and start taking medication for this, the better. Delaying treatment will only damage your tissues further.
4. Regulating Testosterone
- Testosterone that is too high or low reduces sperm count significantly. Hence, it is important to consult a doctor to ensure that testosterone is regulated and doesn’t adversely impact your health.
- If you have low testosterone, you can always try natural and ayurvedic treatments to boost your testosterone levels.
5. Supplements to aid your diet
- Your nutritional deficiency could be so extreme that a diet may not solve the issue.
- In this case, it is important to consult your doctor, take a blood test, and other required tests. Taking these supplements promptly in order to get rid of these deficiencies.
In a Nutshell:
Act promptly to increase your sperm count
As soon as signs such as low sex drive, erectile dysfunction, or pain and swelling around the testicles occur, you must understand that this is caused due to a low sperm count. Taking prompt action is key as it reduces the damage of male infertility.
Ayurvedic treatments for increasing sperm count and making healthy lifestyle shifts will help you increase your sperm count.
Avoiding parabens is also a huge step and you are sure to see increased sperm. Parabens affect male fertility by altering the shape of the sperm and reducing sperm count.
At the same time, giving all of these tips some time to show an increase in sperm count is important too.