Obesity, Diabetes, and Male Fertility. What’s the Connection?
Obesity has been linked to various health conditions like diabetes, osteoarthritis, hypertension, and coronary heart disease. Research now indicates that it can negatively impact sperm health in men.
The quality of sperm is influenced by various lifestyle and environmental factors. Among these, researchers have established a link between poor sperm quality and obesity and resulting-diseases like diabetes.
Emerging research has also established a link between the male diet and sperm motility. These studies also indicate that diets have an epigenetic effect on male fertility and this epigenetic phenomenon can be passed on to the offspring through the sperm.
This indicates an interplay between obesity, diets, and male fertility. Dietary interventions with proper supplementation can be used as a remedial response to reverse the adverse effects on sperm quality.
How does our Diet Impact Sperm Quality?
A study conducted at Linköping University observed the sperm motility in men and how a diet can epigenetically influence sperm health. The male sperm is made up of motile cells. Motility is the ability of any fluid to move and sperm motility refers to the movement of sperm.
In healthy males, the sperm has motility of 25+ micrometers per second. Motility helps the semen make its way up the vaginal canal into the cervix. Discernibly, poor motility is one of the leading causes of infertility, making it more difficult for men to conceive.
Your diet influences the motility of the sperm and these changes can be traced to certain molecules in your food. This study published in PLOS Biology concludes that the male diet can promptly influence sperm health and quality. In fact, it only takes one or two weeks for the dietary effects to become evident.
Epigenetic Changes of Diet on Sperm Health
Men have a unique architecture of chromatin germ cells that play an important role in spermatogenesis – the production/growth of the motile male sex cell that fertilizes the ovum. RNA plays a crucial role in controlling chromatin germ cells to prevent them from affecting gene expression.
These short-term effects can be noticed in the relationship between RNA and cell functions. RNA is a critical gauge to observe the changes in the human body because it acts as an indicator of cellular function.
There are large amounts of RNA fragments found in human sperm. Studies have shown that a high-sugar diet can drastically increase the rate of tsRNA in the sperm. The increased level of tsRNA directly affects various pathways and has a substantial impact on metabolic health at a cellular level.
Scientists suggest that this epigenetic phenomenon may be related to the RNA fragments in sperm. Additionally, once these epigenetic changes occur, they affect several generations because they are passed on to the offspring via the sperm.
It is important to thus understand that the consequences of a poor diet are not only substantial, but also persistent.
Diabetes, Obesity and Male Fertility
Researchers have established a strong bidirectional link between diabetes and low testosterone. On the other hand, the global rise in obesity parallels a decline in male fertility and the data strongly indicates a link between excess body weight and sperm quality.
A 2015 study reveals that glucose metabolism is vital for sperm health and diabetes adversely affects male fertility, especially sperm motility and sperm DNA integrity. It further states that diabetes can influence the epigenetic regulation during spermatogenesis.
Similarly, a meta-analysis of 14 studies of sperm count in men concluded that obese men are more likely to have low sperm count and approx. 39 percent are likely to have none when they ejaculate. Similar studies have also linked obesity with reduced sperm concentration.
Using Diet & Supplements to Improve Male Fertility
Most factors that negatively affect sperm motility are reversible. Research suggests that dietary interventions can lead to a rapid response on sperm health. A healthy diet and lifestyle can lead to better sperm health in a matter of a few weeks or months.
You can start by implementing these simple evidence-based changes in your life:
- Regular moderate-intensity exercise
- Avoid “bad fat” and estrogen-rich foods
- Eat antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables
- Reduce and manage stress levels
- Get 7-8 hours of high-quality sleep
- Avoid tight clothing and exposure to heat
- Quitting smoking and alcohol
Additionally, the use of herbal dietary supplements can counteract the ill effects of diabetes and obesity on testosterone and sperm health. A polyherbal supplement like A1Care and Super Juice Blend can vastly improve blood sugar levels, G.I. tract health and supports the body’s ability to cleanse, detoxify and rejuvenate.
These proprietary blends are formulated after meticulous research and contain several plant-derived bioactive compounds that help with obesity and inflammation. Moreover, these nutrients improve digestive health, energy levels, and help the genes communicate better.
Zinc supplementation also plays a crucial role in testosterone levels and sperm production. Research has linked low zinc levels to poor sperm quality and an increased risk of male fertility. Zinc plays a vital role in enzyme production, immune function, and DNA synthesis.
- Obese men have low sperm motility, which is a risk factor leading to unwanted non-conception or subfertility (poor fertility).
- Type 1 and 2 diabetes negatively impacts sperm motility and sperm DNA integrity
- The male diet has a significant effect on sperm health and motility. These changes are noticeable within a short period of one to two weeks.
- Supplements rich in phytonutrients and bioactive compounds can help with inflammation, obesity, fertility, and better gene communication.
- A1Care, Super Juice Blend, and HB Zinc can help people suffering from diabetes, obesity, and poor sperm quality.