Nutritional supplements may be an important part of your reproductive treatment plan to help maximize the quality of your sperm. Read on for more information.
Oxygen is critical to support life as we know it. When we use oxygen to nourish our bodies, oxygen is modified into certain metabolites (“reactive oxygen species” or ROS) that are actually very volatile and can cause damage or “oxidative stress”. When left alone, ROS can modify how cells function and may even harm cells such as sperm. High ROS levels are associated with decreased sperm counts, sperm motility and increased sperm DNA damage. Research suggests that up to 50% of infertile men may have high levels of ROS in their semen. Fortunately our bodies naturally protect our cells or sperm from ROS by generating a balanced amount of protective anti-oxidants.
Carnitine is an amino acid that is seen in high levels in the epididymis (the small organ behind the testicle that serves as a “refinery” for the sperm where last minute tune-ups and touch-ups are done on the sperm before they head out to your ejaculate). It has been suggested that it helps sperm move better by helping the sperm engines (mitochondrias) run more efficiently. This is an area of continuing research since preliminary studies have had conflicting preliminary results (Sigman et al. Fertility and Sterility 85:1409, 2006 and Lenzl et al. Fertility and Sterility 2003).
Whether you are having a vasectomy reversal or are looking for ways to improve the quality of your sperm, anti-oxidant and L-carnitine therapy may be a key component to your reproductive treatment plan. Certain vitamins, minerals and nutrients may help minimize sperm damage caused by ROS:
- Vitamin C and E
- Lycopenes (a nutrient found in foods such as tomatoes)
- Folic Acid ( a vitamin that helps with DNA synthesis)
- Minerals: Selenium & Zinc
- L-Carnitine (an amino acid that may help with sperm motility)
Ask Dr. K about nutritional supplements that may help. Often you can buy these supplements individually. The advantage is decreased cost. The disadvantage is that most guys can barely motivate themselves to take a single multi-vitamin a day. If having to open more than one vitamin bottle a day is going to be a challenge, ask us about Fertility for Men supplements by www.Theralogix.com. Theralogix’s Fertility for Men puts all of these nutritional supplements into one simple pill that may be a better option for you. This supplement is specifically designed based on the advice from male fertilty experts for male infertility patients.