Antioxidant supplements boost male fertility

In my book, Alternative Medicine: The options, the claims, the evidence, how to choose wisely, in my chapter on antioxidants, I conclude, “The best advice is to meet most of your antioxidant needs through a healthy diet supplemented by a single multivitamin.”

Alternative Medicine - 2009

However, there are some cases where taking antioxidant supplements may be helpful.

For example, a new report has found that men who take antioxidants while trying to get their partner pregnant are four times more likely to succeed than men who do not. And, the type doesn’t matter — vitamin E, zinc, magnesium all work. The researchers say they “just don’t understand why.”

MedPage Today reported that “antioxidant supplements may boost fertility for men,” according to the study published in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews.

After pooling “the results from 34 randomized controlled trials that included a total of 2,876 couples with male factor subfertility or unexplained subfertility who were undergoing assisted reproductive technology using their own sperm and eggs,” researchers found that “men taking antioxidants were over fourfold more likely than controls to get their partner pregnant and see a successful live birth.”

So, if you and your spouse are wrestling with infertility, talking to your doctor about the husband taking antioxidants may be worthwhile.

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