Fertility can be affected by a variety of factors. About 200 chemicals affect sperm quality, including industrially manufactured substances, plasticizers in plastics, active ingredients in cosmetics, hormonal ingredients in prescription drugs and pesticides used in agriculture. They are hardly degradable in the environment, so that up to 80 per cent of all food contains telltale traces.
In addition, the longer the interval between sexual intercourse or sexual activity, the older and less mobile the sperm contained in the semen.
For successful fertilization, those criteria that influence sperm transport are of crucial importance. The most important prerequisite is the introduction of a sufficient quantity of sperm into the uterus. The second prerequisite: these sperm must be vital.
There are two main principles when it comes to male fertility: Since sperm need a lot of energy, they also produce a high degree of oxidation. Cell membranes and genetic components must be protected from this.
Phytonutrients that promote male fertility can help to support the sperm in this process and at the same time stimulate the sex drive, which, if absent, often also reduces fertility.
Since reduced fertility in men can have several causes, a variety of plant extracts, amino acids, vitamins, trace elements and minerals should be taken specifically through the diet for the best possible effect.
The following substances, among others, can help to increase male fertility:
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that is an indispensable factor in the production of many essential substances in the body. The sperm cell transports 50 per cent of the DNA involved in conception, so normal seminal fluid should naturally have a high content of vitamin C to protect it from environmental damage. Last but not least, vitamin C can contribute to the regeneration of the reduced form of vitamin E and thus support the positive function of this vitamin. Citrus fruits are considered the classic main suppliers of vitamin C. But many vegetables such as peppers, broccoli and cabbage are also rich in vitamin C.
Vitamin E: This fat-soluble substance is found mainly in cell membranes, where it supports the active properties of vitamin C. Foods that contain a lot of vitamin E include various oils, nuts, seeds as well as green vegetables.
Natural carotenoids are another class of fat-soluble nutrients with cell-protective properties. These substances are found in many fruits and vegetables.
As co-enzymes, the various water-soluble substances of the vitamin B complex – B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B6, B12, folic acid, pantothenic acid, biotin and niacinamide – can contribute to the maintenance of normal cognition. At the same time, they regulate a variety of cellular processes that are essential for normal spermatogenesis. B vitamins are found in many animal and plant foods such as fish, meat, eggs, nuts and legumes.
Pyrroloquinoline quinone disodium salt – PQQ: PQQ is found in many foods, such as some fruits and vegetables, soy products and tea. In fact, the highest amounts of the substance are found in natto (fermented soybeans). The importance of PQQ for humans was only discovered in 2003. Besides regulating effects on the general metabolism and thus also on mental fitness, it can also enhance many effects of other vitamins.
Calcium: Certain calcium-containing mineral mixtures have numerous properties. They not only supply the organism with minerals, but can also help regulate the body’s pH value.
Calcium is found in foods such as dairy products, certain fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds, fish and eggs. It is essential for bone metabolism and bone strength. Calcium levels in sperm must be relatively high for sperm-egg fusion to occur. Without this calcium pool – e.g. in the case of calcium deficiency or a defect in the delivery system – the sperm often lack the strength to unite with the egg.
L-carnitine: this amino acid can support the delivery of fatty acids to the sperm mitochondria, where they are metabolized into energy. A high-fat diet or a lack of certain co-factors leads to a deficiency of this amino acid with negative consequences for fertility. L-carnitine has also been associated with better results in terms of physical endurance. The main dietary source of L-carnitine is meat and, to a lesser extent, milk and dairy products.
L-arginine can support the effect of L-carnitine. L-arginine is a precursor of nitric oxide, the substance needed to maintain an erection. It is found in foods such as meat, nuts and legumes. Pumpkin seeds are particularly rich in this substance.
Choline is found primarily in eggs. By protecting nerve cells from environmental toxins, choline can support neurotransmitter function and normal cognitive function.
Important minerals and trace elements such as magnesium, copper, zinc, iodine, iron, selenium, manganese, boron, potassium, chromium and molybdenum can support the effectiveness of amino acids in the body. Selenium deficiency in particular is a widespread problem today due to depleted arable soils.
MACA: The Peruvian root maca (Lepidium Meyenii) has been used for centuries by the indigenous peoples of South America to increase sexual energy and desire. After the Spanish conquest of Peru, the tuber was also exported to Europe to take advantage of its potency-enhancing effects. Maca contains a variety of minerals, essential amino acids and trace elements. This natural substance can not only increase libido, but also support a normal hormonal balance overall and thus create the conditions necessary for the maturation of a sufficient number of sperm. In addition, maca can improve physical and mental energy while supporting the immune system.
Tribulus terrestris contains several substances that can have a regulating influence on hormone balance. Its components include water-soluble saponins that regulate the testosterone balance. The right level of free testosterone in men leads, among other things, to normal sperm maturation. Other positive effects of tribulus are that it can promote general well-being and positively influence cholesterol levels.
Muira puama is a tree from the sandalwood family with stone-like fruits, which is also called “potency wood” in Brazil. Nutrients from muira puama can normalize testosterone levels and increase sexual desire at the same time.
Ginger: The body produces certain enzymes to both eliminate toxins and regulate cell growth including sperm maturation. It turns out that the phenols gingerol and 6-shogaol are very helpful in increasing this enzyme activity. Both phenols are found in ginger and give it its pungency.
Ginseng: With its various ingredients, the ginseng plant can support testosterone levels and the normalizing effect of stress hormones from the adrenal glands. The aphrodisiac properties of ginseng can also help support male fertility.
Damiana is more than an herbal aphrodisiac from South America. It can not only promote desire, but also increase energy levels, with benefits that go beyond sexuality.
Resveratrol is a natural, highly efficient nutrient. It was originally extracted from the skin of grapes. Cocoa, peanuts, pistachios and berries also contain this substance. The highest content of resveratrol, on the other hand, is found in Japanese knotweed. Like L-glutathione, this polyphenol can support a normal erection.
Co-enzyme Q10 is mainly found in beef, chicken, sheep and lamb meat, fish and eggs. It is an important component of the cellular power plants mitochondria with multiple positive effects. Co-enzyme Q10 can also promote oxygen transport and endurance in people with sedentary lifestyles. With regard to male sexuality, this fat-soluble nutrient has been shown to help support sperm motility and vitality.
Sarsaparilla (Smilax officinalis) is a genus of plant from the datura family. It can help maintain energy levels thanks to the plant saponins it contains. Traditionally, sarsaparilla has also been used to support the immune system.
Omega-3 fatty acids are found in many types of fish such as tuna, mackerel, salmon and trout, as well as in certain edible oils, nuts and seeds. They are essential for the formation of all cells and an important component of cell walls. In addition, they can help maintain normal blood flow and help keep blood pressure in the normal range. They help maintain normal blood lipid levels when these are already within the normal range. The most important essential fatty acids include DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid). They cannot be produced by the body itself and must therefore be obtained from an external source such as food or supplements.
Citrus bioflavonoids have cell-protective properties. In addition, they promote energy production in the sperm as well, which can lead to better sperm motility.
Perrins are substances found in black pepper that can increase the bioavailability of various micronutrients.
If the absorption of these nutrients through the diet is not sufficient or there is an increased need, these substances can be supplemented through special food supplements. Some of these substances are better absorbed in the morning and activate the body, while others are better absorbed in the evening and support regeneration. Chronobiologically oriented products take this into account accordingly.