Infertility in males is an ever growing topic of concern as couples nowadays are finding it difficult to conceive. So what is male infertility? It is a medical condition when a male is less likely to make his female partner pregnant. It depends on various aspects of a man’s reproductive health like semen quality (sperm count and motility), sex drive, erectile dysfunction, and levels of male sex hormone, testosterone; together these aspects govern fertility in males.
As it is a condition rather than a disease, and depends on genetics, lifestyle or unidentifiable factors, it can be significantly improved. Like it is for any condition, it is important to know what might be the underlying reasons behind the condition, and then only we can define and follow as a course of action to gain some benefits.
What causes infertility in males?
The following are a number of factors responsible for low fertility in men:
- Exposure to environmental pollution and toxic chemicals.
- Long term exposure to excessive heat.
- Genetic causes and hormonal imbalances.
- Use of certain prescription drugs, steroids, antibiotics, etc.
- Excessive smoking (tobacco).
- Over consumption of Alcohol.
- Oxidative stress.
- Some chronic diseases and nutrient deficiencies.
- Excessive mental stress.
- Physical stress caused by excess heavy exercise.
- Medical conditions related to reproductive organs.
Apart from these there can be some unidentifiable causes which contribute to infertility in both men and women.
How can you improve or boost fertility?
Most of the known reasons causing infertility can be dealt with by making certain lifestyle and dietary choices. The following are some ways in which you can boost fertility:
- Avoiding prolonged exposure to environmental conditions that negatively affect male fertility like excess heat, toxic chemicals, pollutants, etc.
- Exercising regularly helps increase testosterone levels and boosts confidence.
- Practicing meditation, breathing exercises and yoga to reduce stress and keep the body in a relaxed state.
- Reduce weight and keep your body fit and active. This can also help in treatment and prevention of many other medical conditions.
- Taking antioxidants from plant based sources. This helps in reducing oxidative stress.
- Having a nutrient rich diet (eating fresh fruits and vegetables that have rich colour). Vitamin C functions as an antioxidant, so make sure you take plenty of citrus fruits. Include food items rich in zinc.
- Consider taking alternative medicinal supplements like Ashwagandha, Gokharu, Methi extracts, as they are traditionally used to improve fertility and are plant based, hence have no side effects.
Ways in which Ashwagandha promotes male fertility
Ashwagandha is one of the most important medicinal herbs that are used in Ayurveda, the traditional system of healing of India. It is generally used to improve overall as well as reproductive health. Ashwagandha promotes fertility in males in many different ways.
The root of Ashwagandha is traditionally regarded as tonic, aphrodisiac, narcotic, diuretic, anthelmintic, astringent, thermogenic and stimulant. The biologically active chemical constituents of Ashwagandha include alkaloids (isopelletierine, anaferine, cuscohygrine, anahygrine, etc.), steroidal lactones (withanolides, withaferin) and saponins. Sitoindosides and acyl steryl glucosides in Ashwagandha are anti-stress agents.
- It is known to be a potent adaptogenic (anti-stress) agent. It helps in combating stress, anxiety and depression. Increased stress increases the cortisol levels in blood, which in turn affects the production of sperms. Ashwagandha, by reducing stress, helps in controlling cortisol levels in blood, and thus, promotes production of healthy sperms. According to a study, consumption of Ashwagandha root extracts significantly improves overall semen quality in stress-related male infertility.
- Ashwagandha extract is found to increase testosterone (male sex hormone) levels in bloodstream and as a result helps in maintaining semen quality and sperm health. Testosterone, being the primary sex hormone in males, governs the reproductive health and production of healthy sperms.
- It also increases stamina and promotes physical strength, and acts as an aphrodisiac as well. A study suggests that Ashwagandha supplementation is associated with significant increase in muscle mass, strength and recovery.
Botanical Name: Withania somnifera
Other Names: Asgandh (Hindi), Ashwagandha (Sanskrit), Winter Cherry, Indian Ginseng.
Altveda provides the best quality 100% natural Ashwagandha root extracts in the form of vegan capsules. As it has no side effects, unlike many other chemical drugs based infertility treatments out there, and provides many other health benefits apart from promoting reproductive, one should definitely consider using it.
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