Lifestyle changes in men and women to increase fertility

10:11 AM Jan 22, 2020 | Team Udayavani |
Infertility is the inability to conceive even after one year of unprotected intercourse. It affects approximately 15% of all reproductive-age couples. The malefactor represents 25% of all infertile couples. Before treating, evaluation, examination, investigations of both male and female partners is required. In addition to all of the above, lifestyle changes are equally important. The main factors include modification in diet, maintaining appropriate weight and exercising regularly.
  1. Weight Management
Obese women who lose weight improve their fertility by getting their hormones to normal levels. This is more so in a condition called a polycystic ovarian syndrome. Obese men have low sperm count and less viable normal sperms. Hence maintaining BMI is very important
  1. Alcohol
In males, alcohol lowers the hormone “Testosterone” and thereby lowers the sperm count. It also leads to loss of libido and erectile dysfunction. In females, Alcohol affects ovulation and thereby fertility is reduced
  1. Smoking
Smoking damages the reproductive system .Nicotine blocks the production of sperms. In females, tobacco alters the nature of cervical mucus thus affects the passage or mobility of the sperms to migrate upwards to the uterus
  1. Drugs
Drugs like Opioid, Cocaine, Heroin, antidepressants affect fertility and also causes birth defects
  1. Food Rich antioxidants like Zinc, Folate, walnuts, nuts, grains and vegetables, fibre rich foods and Vitamin supplement especially Vitamin C and Vitamin E should be consumed to improve fertility.
  2. Investigations
All infertile couples should go ahead with routine investigations like CBC, Hormone profile, Lipid profile, Sugars, Ultrasound, Renal profile, Thyroid profile etc. and get treated for the same.
  1. Lifestyle
One should reduce alcohol, smoking, drugs and stress levels by practising yoga, meditation, massages and exercising regularly. And Males should avoid wearing tight pants and undergarments as it reduces sperm concentration. Must practise safe sex and avoid multiple partners as it can lead to many sexually transmitted diseases like HIV and Gonorrhoea. Decrease few habits like placing laptops on your laps as it can raise the scrotal temperature leading to the loss of sperms. Good nutrition, healthy body, lifestyle changes definitely boosts fertility rate in both the partners.   Dr Shyla Raghuram MBBS, DGO Obstetrician and Gynaecologist Medall Clumax, Bangalore            

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