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List of Foods/habits that could lead to smaller sperm count

 A recent study conducted by the Harvard Medical School in Boston suggests that diet plays a prominent role in sperm count and quality. A previous study also indicated a direct correlation between male infertility and unhealthy diets. Researchers discovered that junk food not only raises the potential for developing cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity, but that diets consisting of high amounts of saturated fats also affect sperm production. Scientists obtained the results by studying the health habits and sperm of volunteers at fertility clinics.

The World Health Organization states that normal ejaculate averages around 20 milliliters and that 75 percent of the content contains live sperm. Approximately 30 percent of the sperm in normal specimens exhibit healthy form and shape. Men participating in the study produced anywhere from 15 milliliters to 39 milliliters of sperm. Men consuming diets high in saturated fats produced the lowest ejaculate levels and the lowest sperm counts. On the other hand, men having diets rich in omega-3 fatty acids consistently produced the highest amounts of ejaculate. The men also had the highest sperm counts and healthier sperm.

Fertility experts advise that healthy diets in men and women promote healthier reproduction. Studies also suggest that up to 20 percent of young males suffer from poor semen quality. As 30 to 50 percent of couple infertility resides in the male partner, the study results offer a glimmer of hope. By altering dietary intake, couples may not require medical intervention that often includes invitro fertilization.

Other lifestyle factors also play a part in semen amounts and healthy sperm counts. Men suffering from obesity, along with a higher than normal body mass index, typically have increased levels of estrogen, which diminishes sperm levels. The accumulation of fat cells in the genital area also increases internal temperatures and thus affects sperm development and health.

Drinking any amount of alcohol reduces sperm count temporarily. Men consuming large quantities of alcohol on a regular basis eventually experience permanent vasa deferentia damage. Sexually transmitted diseases, if left untreated, create sperm duct inflammation, which may lead to permanent blockage and subsequent infertility. Heavy alcohol consumption also increases sperm abnormality.

Frequent cycling, indulging in hot tubs or saunas, or wearing tight clothing all increase internal testicular temperature and reduce sperm counts. A number of different medications that include anabolic steroids, antifungal and antiulcer formulations also contribute to male infertility. Steroids and street drugs also diminish testicle size. In the workplace, heavy metal or industrial chemical exposure also causes decreased sperm counts.

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