Do Vitamins Truly Work When Trying to Conceive?
Many of us forget to take our daily vitamins, but when you’re trying to conceive, should you make more of an effort to pop your daily wellness pill? The short answer is yes! A new study has shown that vitamins C and E could be beneficial for men who are trying to conceive, without causing any unwanted side effects.
Which Vitamins Make a Difference?
In May 2022, a group of researchers reviewed 11 scientific studies, and 832 patients, to see if men who took vitamins were more likely to have a higher pregnancy rate with their partner when compared to men who didn’t take supplements. In particular, they focused on vitamin C and vitamin E.
Both vitamins C and E are types of antioxidants, a special substance that helps to promote overall cell health. As part of the natural processes in the body, cells can become damaged by waste products that are produced each day. Antioxidants work to neutralize the waste products, helping to protect the cells so that they continue to function normally. The researchers tried to evaluate whether taking antioxidants could help to improve the health and function of sperm cells to increase the chance of conception occurring.
After reviewing the studies, the researchers concluded that taking vitamin E led to a higher pregnancy rate than for men who did not take the vitamin. Taking both vitamin C and E also had a positive impact on the health of sperm cells. The scientists noticed that men who took the supplements had significantly improved sperm motility (movement), an increase in the total sperm number and sperm concentration, and improved sperm morphology (the size and shape of the sperm). They concluded that taking the vitamins could improve the quality of a man’s semen sample, without causing any side effects.
Boosting Your Vitamin Intake
You can boost your intake of vitamins C and E by making dietary changes that prioritize healthy antioxidants, many of which can be found in fresh fruit and vegetables.
For vitamin C, try to eat plenty of:
- Citrus fruits including oranges, kiwi, or lemon juice
- Bell peppers (also great for vitamin E!)
For vitamin E, increase your intake of:
- Plant-based oils such as sunflower, wheat germ, or soybean
- Nuts including peanuts or peanut butter, and almonds
- Seeds including sunflower seeds
If you don’t fancy making dietary changes, you may find it easier to take the vitamins in pill form. Set a reminder alarm for each day, leave the pills on your desk at work, or keep them with the breakfast cereal to make it easier to remember.
The great thing about taking vitamins C and E is that these antioxidants will not only give your fertility a helping hand, but will also work to protect cells everywhere in the body. This health kick could therefore have multiple benefits.
An easy way to support your swimmers is to include vitamins C and E in your diet, or by investing in a supplement. Studies have shown that these antioxidants improve semen parameters and may increase the chance of conception, too.
To learn more about your fertility, you can check your motile sperm concentration at home using a YO Home Sperm Test.