Fruits to Increase Sperm Count and Motility
Sperm count and motility are two of the most significant semen parameters that affect a man’s fertility. There are many different ways to increase these important sperm metrics, and consuming Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Folate, and other antioxidants found in fruit has been shown to improve sperm count and motility.
As such, this article will discuss a number of fruit that have the potential to increase sperm count and motility along the nutrients inside them doing the heavy lifting.
That said, we must issue a small word of caution and recommend that fruits be consumed in moderation due to the high levels of sugar they contain. Excessive amounts of sugar, as you might expect, have been shown to negatively impact sperm. This is one of the main reasons men are often recommended to eat a predominantly ketogenic diet to improve fertility and fill their antioxidants gaps via a male preconception vitamin.
Cautions noted, let’s learn about some fruit to add to your diet that can help increase sperm count and motility!
Guava – Vitamin C Overdrive
Guava is a tropical fruit that could be hard to find in some places within the US, though it’s popularity is growing for obvious reasons – it’s yummy and has the highest vitamin C content of all fruits.
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and has been shown to significantly improve sperm motility, count, and morphology. In one study, researchers treated infertile men with Vitamin C supplementation. Vitamin C caused the mean sperm motility for these men to increase all the way from 31.2% to 60.1%. For reference, sperm motility is considered normal if at least 50% of sperm are moving at the time of semen analysis testing.
In the same study, vitamin C caused the mean sperm count to increase from 14.3 x 10^6 to 32.8 X 10^6.
Those are some good reasons to add guava to your fertility diet.
Avocados – Folate Forever with E to Excite
One whole avocado contains a whopping approximately 41% of your Folate, 28% of your Vitamin E, 23% of your B6, 22% of your Vitamin C, and 12% of your zinc. . That makes avocadoes the fruit with the highest level of folate, vitamin E, and Zinc.
Due to the importance of these nutrients in sperm health avocado is one of if not the most well-rounded fruits that can help increase sperm count and motility.
Folate is essential for sperm health because it plays a vital role in spermatogenesis, the development of sperm cells . Folate is required for DNA to synthesize properly during DNA replication. Sperm DNA undergoes many replications during development and proper folate levels are necessary to ensure sperm DNA synthesizes correctly.
Vitamin E is known to support your overall health and to protect your body against reactive oxygen species (ROS) that can cause chronic diseases and inflammation.
As mentioned above (and in more detail below), antioxidants like vitamin E can help counteract the effects of reactive oxygen species and improve semen quality. Fertility specialists advocate for vitamin E supplementation for general male infertility treatment and idiopathic male infertility, which is when men have an unexplained reduction of semen quality. Recent studies have shown that vitamin E can specifically improve sperm motility and quantity .
Now, on to zinc. Fruits are a food group that generally have low levels of zinc so the fact that a single Avocado provides more than 10% of your recommended daily value is a pretty big deal.
By now, you should see why it’s recommended to add this powerful fruit to your diet for its sperm motility and count boosting potential.
Bell Peppers – A Sneakily Well Rounded Sperm Supercharger
You may not think of Bell Peppers as being as healthy as other fruit, or as fruit as all, but think again. Bell peppers have seeds, which makes them fruit, and are actually one of the most nutrient-dense fruits out there ranking in the top 10 in Vitamin C, B6, and Folate Content.
We already know what Vitamin C can do so let’s get on over to Vitamin B6.
Evidence continues to grow around vitamin B6 and its role in supporting healthy sperm parameters like count and motility. Research published in May of 2020 showed that vitamin B6 levels are higher in the seminal plasma of men with normal sperm motility when compared to men with azoospermia (absence of motile sperm) .
Blueberries – A Magical Antioxidant Packed Fruit To Increase Sperm Count and Motility
Low in calories and packed with antioxidants, blueberries are a fruit you should certainly consider adding to your diet to help increase sperm count and motility.
Antioxidants protect your body from free radicals, otherwise known as reactive oxygen species.
Free radicals are unstable molecules that can damage cells and contribute to various diseases including male factor infertility.
Antioxidants like those found in blueberries have been shown to significantly increase sperm count and motility . This is likely due to their ability to target and reduce reactive oxygen species that would otherwise impair sperm development.
Bananas – Vitamin B6, Bromelain and More
Bananas are packed with different nutrients known to increase the body’s ability to produce healthy sperm like vitamins A, B6, and C, potassium, and antioxidants.
Pomegranates – Folic Acid, Vitamin C, and Antioxidants
Pomegranates have been long linked to fertility and birth due to their many seeds. Although this is not the most scientific of reasons to eat pomegranates, there is evidence to support their ability to increase sperm count and motility due to their high levels of antioxidants.
Oranges – More Vitamin C to Increase Sperm Count and Motility
Whether they’re sweet or sour, peeled or juiced, oranges are high extremely high in vitamin C. As mentioned, Vitamin C has numerous health benefits including boosting the immune system, protecting our cells from damage, and improving male fertility. One cup of oranges contains about 160% of the recommended daily value for vitamin C.
Given what we know about vitamin C, oranges could be a great fruit to add to your super sperm diet.
Kiwis – Antioxidant Combo
Kiwis are tasty little fruits that are excellent in smoothies. Kiwis contain relatively high levels of vitamin E and C when compared to commonly consumed fruits. One cup contains approximately 20% of your Vitamin E and over 200% of the recommended daily value for vitamin C.
Vitamins C and E have both been shown to increase sperm motility and count on their own, but when they are consumed together their benefits are amplified. Both vitamins are dietary antioxidants, but they don’t function in the exact same way. They each target and reduce separate harmful free radicals which causes them to reduce inflammation in different and complementary ways .
Tomatoes – Lycopene
Whether they are sun-dried, fresh, or canned, tomatoes contain high levels of lycopene. Lycopene is a naturally occurring chemical that gives fruits their red color. Tomatoes are the richest known source of lycopene.
In addition to making tomatoes red, lycopene may produce several different health benefits . Specific to male fertility, lycopene has been shown to decrease sperm DNA damage and to improve count, motility, viability, and immunity . Researchers believe that lycopene’s ability to improve these parameters indicates that it also causes a reduction of oxidative stress. This makes spermatozoa less vulnerable to oxidative damage, which increases the chances of a normal sperm fertilizing the egg.
During studies that produced improvement in sperm parameters and pregnancy rates, participants were given 4-8 mg of lycopene supplements daily . A regular tomato contains anywhere from 0.88mg to 7.4mg of lycopene. Tomato puree contains 21.8 mg of lycopene and a serving of sundried tomatoes contains 45.9mg of lycopene!
Goji Berries – Another Natural Antioxidant
Goji berries are definitely the least well-known fruit on this list. They are native to Asia and have been used in traditional medicines for thousands of years. In China, Goji berries can be found in soups and as herbal tea. In the United States, the popularity of Goji berries is on the rise. They are now commonly found in different supplements and superfood blends.
Goji berries are another high antioxidant fruit with protective benefits such as preventing free radicals from damaging DNA . Goji berries are beneficial for male reproduction because their antioxidants may help protect the testis from harmful free radicals thus increasing the quality, quantity, and motility of sperm .
Nutritional Chart of Fruits to Increase Sperm Count and Motility
Check out the chart below for nutritional information on the fruits mentioned in this article and a few bonus fruits. As you can see, many of these fruits contain high levels of vitamin C and other antioxidants that can help increase your sperm count and motility. All values in this chart are given as percentages based on the nutrient’s recommended daily allowances (RDAs) determined by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and based on 1 cup servings unless otherwise noted.
|Fruit Name||Vitamin C||Other Notable Antioxidants or Nutrients|
|627%||10%, Folate = 20%|
|Avocados (1 whole)||22%||B6 = 23%, Vitamin E = 28%, Folate = 41%, Zinc = 12%|
|Bell Peppers||317%||B6 = 22% Folate = 17%|
|Blueberries||24%||B6 = 5%|
|Bananas (medium size)||17%||B6 = 20%|
|Pomegranates||30%||Folate = 16%|
|Oranges||159%||B6 = 5%, Folate 14%|
|Kiwis||278%||Vitamin E = 18%|
|Tomatoes||41%||Lycopene = 10mg (no RDA)|
|Gogi Berries (100g)||54%|
|Strawberries||141%||B6 = 5%|
|100%||B6 = 10%, Folate = 18%|
Other Tips to Improve Sperm Quality and Male Fertility
While fruits do pack a nice punch of antioxidants that have been shown to increase sperm count, motility, and more, they are lacking in some key nutrients for male fertility. Here are some other nutrients to try and get in your diet, some helpful tips to ensure you’re getting enough, and some other things to consider on your journey to improve your count and motility.
- Get some selenium: Selenium is a micronutrient that is found in many keto-friendly foods like meat, eggs, poultry, and seafood. Selenium supports healthy sperm, so it is important to ensure you’re getting adequate amounts in your diet .
- Get some vitamin B12: Vitamin B-12 plays an important role in the development of all cells, including sperm but is found mostly in animal-based foods. Research has shown that vitamin B-12 can help improve semen quality, particularly sperm count and sperm motility
- Acetyl L-Carnitine (ALC): ALC helps to drive sperm metabolism by providing readily available energy that is used for motility and maturation. While it can be found in meats at some level, research has shown that supplementing ACL in higher doses can help to improve sperm motility, morphology, and improve overall male fertility .
- Zinc: Studies have shown that men with low zinc levels or deficiency are more likely to suffer from low testosterone and poor sperm quality resulting in reduced male fertility . While zinc exists in avocado and quite readily in animal-based products, research has shown that taking zinc supplements can help to increase testosterone levels and the sperm quality of men with low zinc
- Quit Smoking: Smoking is bad for nearly every aspect of health, including fertility. Numerous studies have sown that smoking negatively affects sperm’s motility, count, density, and other parameters .
- Get enough sleep: Everybody needs sleep and good sleep supports healthy sperm. Research has shown that poor sleep quality is correlated with lower total motility, progressive motility, concentration, total sperm count, and normal sperm morphology .
- Avoid Soy: Soy products contain phytoestrogens which are known to damage sperm concentration .
- Consider a Male Fertility Supplement: Supplements like Molecular Fertility’s Male Preconception+ are loaded with antioxidants and other nutrients that are difficult to obtain from diet alone. They contain appropriate levels of zinc, ALC, and all of the other nutrients included in this article to support healthy sperm.
The Bottom Line
Fruits contain many powerful antioxidants that have been shown to increase sperm count and motility. That said, they are lacking in many key nutrients and contain a boatload of sugar which can be counterproductive to your sperm-enhancing goals.
Good swimming folks!