Understanding Male Fertility
Male infertility appears to be a rising problem in today’s society, with more more than 2.5 million men in the UK reported to be suffering from the condition, and roughly one in six couples unable to conceive a pregnancy easily. In the past, it was commonly perceived to be more of a female problem, but statistics show that almost half of infertility cases are due to issues with the male, and more and more couples are seeking medical help to combat this problem.
Reasons of Low Male Fertility
The Three Key Amino Acids for Male Fertility
Studies show that a lack of arginine can cause abnormal shaping of the sperm head, as well as less than optimal numbers of sperm. This can impede fertilisation. Supplementation of this amino acid, especially in combination with Vitman E, has been shown to dramatically increase the number of properly developed sperm cells1.
Carnitine is a quaternary ammonium compound which is biosynthesised from the two amino acids methionine and lysine. In human body cells, it is used to shuttle fatty acids from the cytoplasm into the mitochondria, in order to use lipids to generate ATP for use as energy. When supplemented in men with low fertility levels, it was shown to improve semen quality, sperm count and concentration as well as sperm motility2.
Glutathione is an important antioxidant in the body, which proves important in protection of sperm cells. Sperm are subject to oxidative attack by free radicals, which are highly unstable, reactive elements produced during various chemical reactions in the body. Serving as an antioxidant, glutathione prevents free radicals from damaging the DNA carried in the sperm. Supplementation of glutathione and other similar antioxidants have been shown to reduce the stress on sperm cells from oxidative attack.
Although male infertility is a highly complex condition with a range of causes, there are supplements available that can significantly help sufferers, or prevent the condition from arising in men who are currently fertile.
- “Effects of L-Arginine, Vitamin E and Their Combinations on Sperms Morphology in Albino Male Mice. Journal of Al-Nahrain University, Vol.14 (2), June, 2011, pp.137-143” ↩
- “Lenzi A, Lombardo F, Sgro P, Salacone P, Caponecchia L, Dondero F, Gandini L (2003). Use of carnitine therapy in selected cases of male factor infertility: a double-blind crossover trial. Fertility and Sterility 79 (2): 292–300. PMID 12568837” ↩