5 Habits for HIM to Break When Trying to Conceive
It’s a classic scenario for those of us in the fertility world: A couple comes into visit us because they’re not getting pregnant within the typical 6- to 12-month timeframe. SHE’s transformed her life in an effort to prepare her body for pregnancy. In the meantime, HE’s not done much – other than worry about producing a sperm sample for a stranger in a lab.
5 Habits HE Needs to Break Right Now to Help You Get Pregnant
What many people don’t realize is that male infertility factors are equally as likely to contribute to infertility as female infertility factors. Therefore, the onus to improve physical and emotional wellbeing is just as much on HIM as it is on HER.
Here are 5 habits the MALE-half of the equation should break right now when trying to conceive (TTC).
It’s time to quit smoking once and for all. Both cigarettes and marijuana are undeniably tied to things like low sperm count, poor sperm motility and morphology as well as diminished libido. None of those are optimal when trying to conceive.
Plus, they’re not healthy for baby on a second- or third-hand basis. Quitting the habit now can improve his health and it’s better for your future child, too.
2) Lose weight
We’ve known obesity and excess weight were an issue for female fertility. Now, recent data shows overweight males also have lower fertility rates. Overweight men are prone to lower sperm counts –likely a result of lower testosterone levels. Libido is also more of an issue for overweight males than their more active, healthy BMI’d counterparts.
3) Cut back the drinking
Excessive drinking isn’t good for male fertility either. Studies show that binge drinking deforms sperm. In fact, the Danish researchers noted that men who drank 40-unites of alcohol per week or more (roughly 12 or more pints of beer per week) were more prone to low-testosterone or sperm that were deformed and unable to swim correctly.
4) Stop losing sleep
A study out of Boston University found that adequate sleep matters for both men and women. The ideal amount of sleep is more than six-hours and less than 9-hours per night. The study also found men who reported having trouble sleeping had more difficulty getting their wives pregnant.
5) Stop watching so much TV (and get up off the couch!)
A Harvard University study found men who exercise regularly and/or watch less TV have higher fertility rates. Moderate- to vigorous exercise promotes healthy hormone balance, not to mention healthier BMIs (see #2). In the researchers’ words, “men who watched more than 20 hours of TV weekly had a 44% lower sperm count than those who watched almost no TV. Men who exercised for 15 or more hours weekly at a moderate to vigorous rate had a 73% higher sperm count than those who exercised less than 5 hours per week. Mild exercise did not affect sperm quality.”
Has it taken you longer than 6- to 12-months to get pregnant? Contact RRC and schedule a consultation. We’ll evaluate your lifestyle and give you a full fertility check-up to get you on the fertility track.
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RRC has over 200 years of combined experience. As a leading reproductive health, infertility, and in-vitro fertilization (or IVF) center based in Kansas City, we're proud to have the highest level of expertise available to our patients.