by Kristen Magnacca
My focus has been on the emotional side of fertility challenges for both men and women and I feel sperm production is directly tied to the emotional process of creation.
A recent, study was published addressing the link between low sperm counts and men who consumed a high saturated fat diet. From Dec. '06 to August '10, researchers at Mass General Hospital Fertility Ctr looked at the sperm of 99 American men. That’s a lot of sperm!
The researchers said that 71 percent of the men in their study were overweight or obese, much like 74 percent of men in the U.S. population, which suggests lots of men around the country may not have strong sperm counts. The World Health Organization says a "normal" total sperm count should be at least 39 million, and a normal sperm concentration should be at least 15 million per milliliter.
"The magnitude of the association is quite dramatic and provides further support for the health efforts to limit consumption of saturated fat given their relation with other health outcomes such as cardiovascular disease," study author Dr. Jill Attaman, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Dartmouth Medical School, said in a written statement (healthpop http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504763_162-57397164-10391704/mens-sperm-count-cut-by-fatty-food-diet-which-foods-can-boost-it/)
So what should the man in your life do to increase his sperm count and mobility?
Improving his diet to include omega-3 fatty acids is a good step. Diets high in omega-3 fatty acids have been linked to protective benefits to the brain, including the reduced likelihood for Alzheimer's and dementia, CBS This Morning reported. Omega-3's are found in cold water fish such as mackerel, salmon, sardines and tuna, and also in flaxseeds, walnuts and soybeans.
Make sure that sperm count and mobility are one of the first issues discussed and tested on the fertility journey. This testing is less invasive than what the female needs to endure.
Way back when, knee deep in our journey to create our family, my husband at the time, Mark, had a male factor that resulted in a low count and mobility. Mark had a varicocele, which is a set of enlarged blood vessels to the scrotum that bring too much blood and heat to the area. Too much heat in the kitchen lowers sperm production.
We learned about the condition through a post-coital test, which was very uncomfortable. What a godsend an at home male fertility test would have been so he could have initially done the test in the privacy of our own home and then sought help.
But both men and women should be leading a healthier lifestyle by eating a diet low in saturated fat , whether or not they are trying to conceive!
More sperm talk next time!!