Is your man taking a multivitamin? Men who take supplements containing antioxidants (including vitamins C and E), may fare better when it comes to getting their partners pregnant, according to a study published in the January 2011 issue of the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews.
As reported by ABC News, researchers from the University of Auckland in New Zealand reviewed prior research that involved more than 2,500 couples undergoing fertility treatments, including in-vitro fertilization and sperm injections. Researchers found that men taking antioxidant supplements were more than four times more likely to get their partners pregnant than men who did not take antioxidants. Over all, antioxidants were associated with more than a five-fold higher rate of live births.
While researchers admit that more research should be done to see how well specific types of antioxidant supplements work to boost male fertility, "when trying to conceive as part of an assisted reproductive program, it may be advisable to encourage men to take oral antioxidant supplements to improve their partners' chances of becoming pregnant," says lead researcher Marian Showell, who works in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Auckland in Auckland, New Zealand.
What's the connection between vitamins and virility? Oxidative stress brought on smoking, poor diet, and other lifestyle factors is often damaging to cells, including sensitive sperm-producing cells. Taking an antioxidant supplement, some experts believe, can support the body's own natural antioxidant defenses. And don't forget to eat your veggies! The easiest way to get a heaping serving of antioxidants at every meal is to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, foods that are rich in vitamins C and E and other naturally-occurring antioxidant compounds.