Yoga has many health benefits. From increased muscle strength and tone, to lowered blood pressure and cholesterol, the effects of yoga on health have long been studied and found effective. But, what impact does yoga have on male fertility? Is yoga something you should add to your daily routine as you try to conceive? Read on to find out.
What is the effect of yoga on sperm?
There aren’t many studies on the connection between sperm health and practicing yoga. However, the few there are conclude that yoga may be associated with reduced sperm DNA damage, increased sperm count and improved pregnancy outcomes, due to a reduction in oxidative stress.
Oxidative stress is the result of an excess of free radicals (known as reactive oxygen species [ROS]) in the body. Your lifestyle, diet, and environmental factors, such as pollution and radiation, all contribute to it. Too much ROS causes damage to DNA, including a negative effect on the quality of your sperm.
One particular study monitored yoga practice in men whose partners had three or more consecutive miscarriages. Adding two hours of yoga daily for three weeks led to reduced oxidative stress, and improved sperm motility, count, and DNA fragmentation.
Yoga, psychological well-being and infertility
Dealing with infertility is hard. Many couples experience depression and anxiety when building a family takes much longer than expected. A 2017 review of existing studies found that yoga reduces pain, provides stress management and has beneficial effects on both male and female fertility for couples undergoing infertility treatment. Practicing yoga improved both their physiological and psychological state, leading to higher IVF success rates.
Other benefits of yoga on male fertility
Apart from helping you destress, yoga improves blood circulation which is necessary for sperm health. Yoga also helps the release of testosterone, a hormone that is essential for fertility. And with testosterone, comes increased libido, another important element on your journey to baby!
Monitoring the effect of yoga on sperm health
Yoga isn’t an overnight cure for infertility. Rather, it takes commitment and consistency to start noticing changes to your general well-being – and your sperm health. You can check where your sperm stands with an at-home Yo Sperm Test. The test measures your motile sperm concentration and records a video which you can keep for yourself or share with your doctor, if you’re worried about your results.
TTC: Is Yoga a Good Idea?
It is! Just don’t overdo it and stay away from hot yoga. It’s widely proven that heat exposure to the scrotal area can temporarily reduce sperm count and cause chromosomal abnormalities. Overall though, yoga can help you destress, improves blood circulation, and generally makes you feel better, all important elements as you try to conceive!