Do Male Fertility Supplements Work?
Infertility is a complex and emotionally-charged issue. If you and your partner struggle to conceive a child, it’s important to discover possible changes you can make to increase fertility. Several male fertility supplements are on the market, but do they work?
Many factors influence a man’s fertility, affecting the number, quality, and motility of sperm. Low sperm count can cause infertility if fewer than 15 million sperm per milliliter of semen. Infertility is defined by the inability of a sexually active couple to conceive following six months to a year (depending on the age of each partner). Once you have been trying to conceive for a while, finding out why it’s not working can take time. Multiple causes could affect both partners, so it’s important to be patient and have an open mind.
Drastic measures are not always necessary, whereas sometimes nutritional changes can help get things moving. Studies have shown that some ingredients contained in supplements can increase sperm number and health. If you are a man with fertility problems, read on for information on supplements that can make a real difference.
An amino acid found in the body, L-carnitine is an antioxidant that protects cells from particles called free radicals that can cause damage and disease. L-carnitine helps “energize” cells by transporting fatty acids into the cell’s mitochondria. In the case of sperm cells, L-carnitine has been shown in limited studies to increase sperm count and motility. The amount of the supplement is important, however. More than 2g per day decreases the body’s ability to absorb it, and there has been some evidence that high doses of L-carnitine can contribute to heart disease. Make sure your supplement contains around 1.5g for optimal benefit.
Zinc and Folate
Most potential parents are familiar with the benefits of a woman taking folate (folic acid) in early pregnancy to prevent certain congenital disabilities, but when taken with zinc, it can improve fertility in men. One study showed a significant increase in sperm count for men taking the two together. No one knows exactly why, but zinc and folate are both involved in producing the DNA contained in sperm.
Vitamin deficiency will undoubtedly affect a man’s health on some level, so it shouldn’t be discounted when exploring the reasons for infertility. However, some vitamins added to supplement those obtained through healthy eating may increase sperm count. Vitamins A, C, and E are antioxidants that protect cells and provide other benefits. Coenzyme Q-10 is an amino acid antioxidant that is also associated with an increase in male fertility.
There are many possible causes of male infertility. The best place to start is with a men’s health expert who can advise you on changes you can make and which supplement is right for you. Men in the Charlotte, North Carolina, area trust Dr. Richard Natale of Carolina Urology Partners for expert diagnosis and treatment of men’s health issues, including male infertility. Call (704) 786-5131 for an appointment today in our two convenient locations in Concord or Charlotte, North Carolina.