Having a low sperm count is very common these days. The recent studies on it explain that men’s reproductive health is at risk. How do you think it can be improved? Eating a healthy diet, rich in nuts may help you, as this new research suggests. Here is everything you need to know about it.
In last year, a large meta-analysis on men’s reproductive health found that sperm count and sperm concentration has seen a decline in the last 30 years or more. (Read the complete research here)
The results show that male fertility has been dropped to a much lower level, which needs necessary health measures to counteract this situation. Another recent research in the same area was conducted at the Human Nutrition Unit of the Universitat Rovira i Virgil in Reus, Spain.
It suggested that insufficient nutrition might lead to the quality of sperm. And if someone wants to improve it, the first thing to do is to change the diet.
The investigators of this research tell that various environmental factor for example pollution, smoking, and trends toward a Western-style diet independently or altogether may cause the male fertility problem.
This research project was a randomized controlled study that particularly studied the effects of eating nuts on sperm health. The research findings were presented at the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology’s annual meeting, which was held in Barcelona, Spain. The study author Dr. Albert Salas-Huetos presented it.
How eating nuts improves sperm quality?
The project leader Dr. Salas-Huertos along with his colleagues worked with 119 healthy male participants. All of these belonged to the age group 18–35. All these participants were volunteers and were randomly split into two groups.
One of the two groups was asked to add a handful of nuts (roughly making 60 grams per day). It included hazelnuts, almonds, and walnuts, or any combination of these into their regular Western-style diet. Participants in the second group were asked to follow their usual Western-style diet, without worrying about consuming nuts.
To compare both these groups, sperm and blood samples were collected from all participants at the start and end of this experimental study. When the trial period was over, the researchers noticed that the group which followed the nut-enriched diet had a better sperm quality than before.
More specifically, the experimental group’s participants showed a 16% higher sperm count, a 4% higher sperm vitality, 6% of improved sperm motility and 1% improvement in morphology. Sperm vitality indicates the quantity of healthy sperm, sperm motility means sperm cells’ ability to move and sperm morphology tells if the cells are normal in terms of size and shape or not.
All the men who were eating a handful of mixed nuts daily had a lesser sperm DNA fragmentation at the end of the trial. It suggests that genetic integrity follows a better preservation in this group as compared to the second group.
Sperm DNA fragmentation is a problem which reduces the fertility. It may also risk the pregnancy caused by the person. All these study findings are important to know the beneficial role of nut consumption in improving sperm health.
Following a healthy diet aid in conception
The study also explains that all these improvements are due to the addition of nuts in the diet that are rich in proteins, vitamins and omega 3. The researchers also explain that at this point, it is hard to say if the nuts alone are a fix for lower male fertility or not.
However, on the basis of research, the evidence suggests that healthy lifestyle changes along with a healthy diet may help in conception. Nuts are a part of a healthy diet so naturally, eating nuts has definite health benefits for any person.
They also explain that this experiment was conducted in young, healthy male participants. In this case, any generalized opinion should be avoided until there is further research studying a diverse population.
The International Nut and Dried Food Council funded this research. So it didn’t much focus on the impact of other healthy food items in improving male fertility. There is more research needed to know the exact benefit of nuts on fertility.