Sperms’ quality and quantity plays an important role in deciding the possibility of reproduction and also the future offspring. However, according to a recent study, the sperm counts among men have dropped to nearly 52 percent in the past 40 years. The study comes after a sharp decline in sperm counts among men in the Western world. Researchers and health experts have linked it to pollution, smoking and Western-style diets.
However, researchers in Spain have some good news, according to their study, adding nuts to the diet can not only improve the sperm count but also play a key role to provide men with a much-needed fertility boost. Researchers at the Rovira i Vrigil University in Spain say that a mix of tree-based nuts like almonds, walnuts and hazelnuts can have a big effect on sperm DNA methylation.
The research team led by Monica Bullo and Albert Salas-Huetos studied 72 healthy, non-smoking men between the age groups of 18 and 35, and divided them into two groups for the study. The first group of 48 men were asked not to make any amends to their western-style diet and lifestyle for 14 weeks, while the second group were asked to include 60 grams of nuts to their western-style diets.
It was noticed that the group that consumed nuts in their diet not only saw a 16 percent increase in the sperm count but also notable improvements in its vitality, motility and morphology – its size and shape. The research team also noted that the second group showed less fragmented sperm DNA, which means the sperm was better equipped to swim upstream. Additionally, the team also noted that the methylation in 36 genomic regions linked to the sperm DNA were significantly altered in the group which consumed nuts during the experiment.
This is one of the first instances of a study that examined the effect of diet has on the health and function of sperm DNA. It was also noticed how nuts can be incorporated into Western-style diets to improve sperm quality and DNA methylation.