Optimizing Male Fertility

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Boxers vs. briefs — choose boxers for optimizing male fertility

It’s hard to buy Valentine’s Day gifts for men, so why not buy your guy something fun this year that actually has a purpose? You have probably heard the debate about boxers vs. briefs and optimizing male fertility. At our Virginia fertility center, Dr. Fady Sharara recommends boxers, so go pick out a nice silky pair with hearts or cupids all over them—Valentine’s Day dilemma solved!

Why boxers vs. briefs is a real concern when it comes to optimizing male fertility

According to some studies, wearing briefs appears to raise the temperature of the scrotum, and high scrotal temperatures have been proven to decrease the quality of a man’s sperm. Until further studies prove or disprove this boxers vs. briefs theory, we recommend that men wear boxer-style underwear when they’re trying to conceive.

Dr. Sharara also recommends optimizing male fertility by avoiding these situations that can raise scrotal temperatures.

  • Using hot tubs or saunas
  • Putting your laptop computer directly on your lap (instead use a lap desk)
  • Keeping your cell phone away from your pant pockets

Dr. Sharara’s tips for optimizing male fertility

There are several other tips we recommend for those interested in optimizing male fertility.

  • Get help so that you can quit smoking.
  • Ideally stop all alcohol consumption
  • Do not take anabolic steroids or use marijuana.
  • Eat a healthful diet of fruits, vegetables, lean protein and whole grains.
  • Take a multi-vitamin.
  • Try to get chronic health conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure under control with a physician’s help.
  • Reduce your stress as much as possible.
  • Discuss your medications and any chronic health conditions with us.

Getting to a healthy weight is particularly important

When you’re buying those silky boxers, consider treating your special someone to a gift certificate for exercise apparel or an exercise video if he is not at a healthy weight. A healthy body mass index, or BMI, is important for optimizing male fertility. A healthy BMI for a man is 18.5 to 24.9.

Studies have shown that when a male is obese, his sperm quality not only decreases, but it also changes the molecular and physical structure of germ cells (the cells that make sperm) in the testes. Ultimately, this affects mature sperm.¹

Dr. Sharara and the staff at our Virginia fertility center are here to help with optimizing male fertility, as well as the diagnosis and treatment of male infertility issues. Contact us for an appointment.

¹ https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3521747/

Male Infertility Virginia Center for Reproductive Medicine Washington DC Fertility Center

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