Recent studies have established that high reactive oxygen species (ROS) concentrations in men can cause infertility. High ROS levels can adversely affect the structure and functional integrity of your sperm, thereby causing poor sperm morphology as well as decreased sperm count, motility, and viability. It can also cause sperm dysfunction and death.
A deficiency in seminal antioxidants often leads to increased seminal oxidative stress. Hence, urologists often recommend oral antioxidant therapy for infertile or subfertile men. Antioxidant supplements can help reduce seminal ROS levels and increase your antioxidant capacity.
Here are 6 antioxidants that can greatly improve your sperm health.
When you eat red, orange, yellow, and pink vegetables like carrots and red bell peppers, your body takes the carotenoids from these vegetables and converts them into vitamin A. These phytochemicals are natural antioxidants that help protect your sperm.
Carotenoids are actually involved in your body’s regulation of spermatogenesis. In addition, these natural antioxidants provide protection for your cell membrane integrity. They also help regulate the proliferation of your epithelial cells.
If you’re not eating enough carotenoid-containing foods, you might suffer from carotenoid deficiency, which can then result in reduced sperm motility and poor sperm quality.
For maintaining normal sperm health, Vitamin C is one of the most important antioxidants you will need. In fact, the concentration of vitamin C in your seminal plasma is actually several times higher than in your serum.
Vitamin C is able to reduce concentrations of compounds that cause oxidative stress in the semen, thereby increasing sperm count while reducing the number of sperm with abnormal morphology.
Hence, keeping your vitamin C levels high is crucial for you to have high numbers of morphologically normal sperm. Vitamin C is also important for preventing sperm DNA fragmentation. Taking 1,000 milligrams of vitamin C supplement daily can help increase your sperm count, concentration, and motility.
Vitamin E gives your cell membranes protection against damage caused by oxidative stress. This fat-soluble antioxidant prevents lipid peroxidation and scavenges superoxide and free hydroxyl radicals.
Vitamin E not only helps protect your sperm from oxidative stress, but it also helps improve your sperm motility as well as your sperm function. In animal studies, daily supplementation with vitamin E for at least three months resulted in the increased ability of sperm cells to bind with the egg cell.
When lipid peroxidation occurs, MDA or malondialdehyde is produced. When the concentration of free radicals increases, it also leads to the overproduction of MDA. High levels of MDA are considered a marker of oxidative stress.
Infertile men often have high levels of MDA. Vitamin E can help reduce your MDA levels by preventing lipid peroxidation. In fact, vitamin E supplementation is often recommended for men who have low fertilization rates. High dietary consumption of vitamin E has also been linked to higher sperm motility.
Coenzyme Q10, more popularly referred to as CoQ10, is a lipid-soluble antioxidant that’s naturally produced by the body. CoQ10 is important for sperm health because it prevents lipid peroxidation, DNA oxidation, as well as protein oxidation.
Ubiquinone, one of the forms of CoQ10 in the body, has been shown to help improve sperm concentration, sperm motility, as well as sperm morphology in men with unexplained oligoasthenoteratozoospermia (OAT).
Considered as the most common cause of subfertility in men, OAT is a condition wherein you have a low sperm count (oligozoospermia), poor sperm movement (asthenozoospermia), and high numbers of sperm with abnormal shape (teratozoospermia).
In short, when you have OAT, your sperm quantity and quality are extremely poor. CoQ10 can help improve your sperm quality by protecting against sperm DNA damage and oxidative stress.
Ubiquinol, another form of CoQ10, actually has stronger antioxidant actions than ubiquinone. Moreover, ubiquinol can help your body recycle other antioxidants like vitamins C and E. When your ubiquinol sperm concentration is high, it can improve your sperm count, motility, as well as morphology.
Whether in the form of L-acetyl-carnitine or L-carnitine, carnitine is widely recognized as an important seminal antioxidant. In men, carnitine is typically found in high concentrations in the reproductive tract, especially in the epididymis. If you have epididymitis or inflammation of the epididymis, it can cause a reduction in your seminal L-carnitine levels.
Carnitine supplementation can help increase your sperm motility and viability, especially if you have high concentrations of reactive oxygen species your testicles. When L-carnitine is added to sperm samples for cryopreservation, it can also help improve sperm quality.
Lycopene is a carotenoid found in red vegetables and fruits such as tomatoes and watermelon. Lycopene supplementation has been shown to help improve sperm motility and concentration in men with idiopathic or unexplained infertility.
Lycopene has also been shown to protect sperm against cryopreservation injury. When lycopene is added to cryo-protectant agents, it reduces oxidative damage to the sperm during the freeze-thawing process.
Lycopene supplementation has also been shown to have promising results in reducing lipid peroxidation and DNA damage, thereby increasing sperm count and overall viability. Initial research shows that taking 4 to 8 milligrams of lycopene every day for three months or more may help improve pregnancy rates.
Enhancing Your Fertility Naturally
Men who are struggling with fertility problems also often suffer from some form of sexual dysfunction such as reduced libido or erectile dysfunction. If you’re also concerned about your fertility, you may want to consider an all-natural male enhancement supplement that can enhance both your sexual function and fertility.
It is a male sex enhancement supplement that contains several herbal ingredients, all of which are scientifically known to have positive effects on male fertility and sexual health.
For instance, Tribulus terrestris, which is one of the main active ingredients of it, has been repeatedly shown to improve erectile function and increase sperm motility. Tribulus terrestris helps improve your testosterone levels and restores your sexual drive.
It also contains Tongkat Ali, another herbal ingredient that has been shown to increase sperm production and improve sperm quality. Tongkat Ali also has adaptogenic and ergogenic properties. It can help reduce your stress levels while reenergizing you. More importantly, Tongkat Ali can reawaken your sexual drive and improve your erectile function.