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Sunday, June 17, 2012

According to the study, men with an unhealthy lifestyle produce just as many swimming sperm as those who live more healthily.

That is contrary to current UK guidelines, which advise doctors to warn men experiencing fertility problems to avoid tobacco, alcohol, recreational drugs and overeating in a bid to increase sperm quality and quantity.

Scientists at northern England's University of Manchester and University of Sheffield conducted a study of 2,249 men from around the UK and asked them to answer a detailed questionnaire about their lifestyle.

The questionnaire results of the 939 men who produced low numbers of swimming sperm were compared to the 1,310 men who produced higher numbers.


The study found that the men with low swimming sperm were 2.5 times more likely to have undergone testicular surgery, twice as likely to be of black ethnicity and 1.3 times more likely to be employed in manual work.

The group also was 1.3 times more likely to wear briefs rather than boxers, according to the report published in the Human Reproduction journal.

Study leader Dr. Andrew Povey, of the University of Manchester, said of the results, "This potentially overturns much of the current advice given to men about how they might improve their fertility and suggests that many common lifestyle risks may not be as important as we previously thought."

Prof Nicola Cherry, who also worked on the study, said the higher risk found in manual workers was "consistent with earlier findings that chemicals at work could affect sperm and that men should continue to keep work exposures as low as possible."


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