There a re c erta i n n utr i ents th at a re e sp ec i a I ly i mportant fo r th e h ea I th of s pe rm. See pages 134-7 for food sources.
Vitamin C Protects sperm from oxidative damage and i mproves sperm quality in men who smoke. Men who have a condition known a s a gglutination, i n which sperm clump together, may benefit from vitamin C supplements.
Zinc An insufficiency of zinc, often called the "fertility mineral',' is believed to lead to a reduced sperm count and erectile dysfunction. Needed to make the outer layer and tail of sperm, i t i s I ost with each ejaculation, so an active sex life a nd a I ow-zinc d ¡et p lace a man at risk of reduced fertility.
Vitamin B12 This is necessary to maintain fertility. Studies have shown an improvement in sperm count a fte r i nj ec ti o n s o f vi ta min Bi2, and in sperm motility when vitamin B12 is taken orally.
Selenium This is an essential trace mineral that has a nti oxi da nt p ro perti es a n d may improve sperm motility.
Arginine This amino acid is needed for sperm production. Supplements may increase sperm count and quality as well as enhancing the immune system, stimulating g rowth h ormones, and maintaining circulation (and hence s exu a I fu ncti on ) .
DHA DHA is highly concentrated in the testes and may r eg u I a te en zymes in the process of making sperm. Semen con ta i n s h i g h I eve I s of DHA, which appears to be needed to en erg i ze sp er m and increase their motility.
Coenzyme Q10 This nutrient is used by the cells to p rod uc e en ergy a nd may have a role in sperm production. There i s evi d en ce tha t su pp I e ments improve both sperm cou nt a nd motility.
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