- A new research study on men with obesity found that weight loss increased sperm count by close to 40 percent.
- Research has linked obesity to both reduced sperm count and sperm quality.
- The new research study implies that the effects of obesity on sperm count are reversible with weight loss.
- Healthy lifestyle changes, like a balanced diet and exercise regimen, are linked to a higher sperm count.
- Get started with safe and effective weight loss methods, like Plenity, with eDrugstore.
New research suggests that the impact of obesity on sperm count may be reversible. Losing and maintaining a healthy weight can improve your sperm count and your overall health. Reaching your target weight is easier with a balanced diet, regular exercise routine, and products like the Plenity weight-loss device.
New Study Findings
A study newly published in Human Reproduction, found that participants who lost weight improved their sperm count and sperm concentration. Men who kept the weight off long-term also kept a higher sperm count and concentration.
The study followed 47 men with obesity between the ages of 20 and 63. Following an eight-week low-calorie diet, the participants lost an average of 36 pounds. The participants also increased their sperm count by an average of 41 percent and improved their sperm concentration by 49 percent.
After the eight-week assessment, participants were randomly placed in one of four total groups to monitor one year of maintenance. Participants were split between an exercise-only group, a group taking a weight loss drug, a group exercising and taking medication, and a group who neither exercised nor took medication.
After one year of maintenance, they found that about half the participants had maintained their weight loss.
The men who exercised, took medication, or did both were most likely to have kept off the weight. The researchers also found that these men had kept their higher sperm count and concentration. The men who regained weight did not maintain the higher sperm count and concentration.
The study reflected improved sperm count and concentration, but semen volume, motility, and motile sperm count did not improve. The researchers didn’t assess whether the participants had fertility issues before entering the study.
Additional research is needed to explore the mechanisms behind the impact of weight loss on sperm count and concentration, but the evidence is strong that there’s a connection.
How Weight Affects Sperm Count
Research has linked obesity to decreased sperm concentration, sperm count, sperm motility, and sperm morphology. This means that as BMI goes up, sperm count and quality are more likely to go down. In reverse, as BMI goes down, sperm count and quality are more likely to go up.
A variety of weight loss methods have been studied for their role in improving sperm count and quality. For example, a study following men who participated in a weight loss program involving both diet and exercise changes found that those who lost weight also improved their sperm count and semen volume.
The researchers did not confirm if weight loss alone led to the improvements, or if it was the combination of weight loss with healthy lifestyle changes.
Implications for Men with Obesity
Men who are overweight or obese are more likely to have an abnormal or low sperm count. Excess body weight can affect sperm production and fertility. The new study shows that these effects may be reversible with weight loss.
Having an increased sperm count and concentration may help couples to conceive faster. Men who are obese and having difficulty conceiving with a partner may want to explore semen analysis to determine their sperm count and quality.
Is There Anything Else Men Can Do to Increase Sperm Count?
If you’re hoping to conceive with a partner, you may be able to improve your sperm count and quality through weight loss. In addition to weight loss, several lifestyle factors have been linked to sperm count and quality.
You may be able to increase your sperm count and improve sperm quality by:
- Adopting an exercise routine. Regular exercise has been shown to improve sperm concentration, sperm motility, and sperm morphology on its own.
- Taking vitamins. One study showed taking 1,000 milligrams of vitamin C each day resulted in improved sperm concentration and motility. Additional research has linked antioxidant supplements to improved semen parameters in infertile men.
- Quitting smoking. Smoking cigarettes is linked to a number of adverse health effects, including a reduced sperm count. A meta-analysis including 20 studies with close to 6,000 participants found that smoking significantly lowered sperm count.
- Cutting back on drug or alcohol use. Research has consistently linked heavy drinking and illicit drug use to poorer health outcomes. Research has not clearly established the relationship between drug and alcohol use and sperm count. However, research does link smoking, alcohol, and drug use to impaired fertility in men.
- Checking your current prescriptions. Certain prescription medications can affect sperm production and fertility. This includes a variety of medications, such as certain antidepressants, opiates, steroids, and anti-inflammatories. Speak to your provider about your current prescriptions to identify medications that might reduce your sperm count and quality.
- Watching your cycling habits. Research has linked bicycling more than five hours per week to having a lower sperm concentration. Finding the correct fit for your bike may help to reduce the effects of cycling on sperm concentration.
Speak to your provider about the best lifestyle changes for your health and fertility.
Lose Weight and Increase Sperm Count with Plenity
Many people struggle with losing weight and keeping it off for the long run. Finding the right diet, exercise routine, and support system can go a long way in improving your health and fertility. Take your lifestyle changes to the next level with the support of Plenity.
Plenity is a safe and effective weight-loss aid. It’s an oral capsule that works by promoting satiety, which means you feel fuller longer. Plenity is derived from two natural ingredients, cellulose and citric acid, which work in the gastrointestinal tract to reduce the amount of food you can comfortably eat.
Plenity is FDA-approved for people with a BMI of 25 or higher. It works best when combined with a well-balanced diet and exercise routine. If you’re ready to try a new way to lose weight, check out the Plenity welcome kit today.
Shelby is a public health professional with research and field experience in sexual and reproductive health. She holds a Master of Public Health (MPH) and is a Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES).