When optimizing male or female fertility, general health and wellness play a big role in our reproductive function. Everyone knows the importance of eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and not consuming toxic substances (e.g., smoking, excessive alcohol, etc.) when trying to conceive, but one often overlooked aspect of fertility wellness is antioxidants and their potentially profound influence on reproductive health. This blog post takes a closer look at antioxidants, unraveling their scientific significance in protecting reproductive cells from oxidative stress.
How Antioxidants Protect Eggs and Sperm Are Impacted
Our bodies contain unstable molecules called free radicals or reactive oxygen species (ROS), which can cause higher levels of oxidative damage and inflammation. This can harm cellular function and reproductive organs, while also contributing to chronic conditions. Antioxidants defend against free radicals by giving up their electrons, thereby preventing cellular damage and reducing inflammation.
CoEnzyme Q10 (CoQ10)
CoQ10, or Ubiquinone, is vital for energy production and essential for eggs, which require very high energy for cell division during early embryo development. If too low, egg quality may suffer, impacting the chances of conceiving. Sperm also require extensive energy to reach or penetrate eggs, and CoQ10 may promote overall sperm health and quality, including motility (movement), concentration, and count.
CoQ10 may reduce oxidative stress levels in follicles – fluid-filled sacs in the ovaries that release eggs. It also lowers oxidative stress associated with diminished ovarian reserve (poor egg quality or low egg count). CoQ10 may support in vitro fertilization (IVF) by boosting egg quality.
A powerful carotenoid (i.e., a plant-based pigment), lycopene may improve fertility in healthy young men. It’s beneficial for sperm health and function, including motility, morphology (shape), concentration, and viability (i.e., the percentage of live sperm in semen). Lycopene may also support idiopathic oligoasthenosperinia (low sperm count), a leading cause of male infertility, by improving sperm count and concentration.
Vitamin C, or L-ascorbic acid, has been shown to regenerate other antioxidants. Together with another, vitamin E, it may improve egg and embryo health and quality, fertilization rates, and ovarian function. This combination has been found to benefit sperm health, specifically quality, count, and motility. Vitamin C may stop sperm from clumping together and protect against DNA fragmentation, reducing miscarriage and chromosomal risks.
Vital for cellular energy production, increased vitamin D, especially in its natural vitamin D3 form (cholecalciferol), may support egg quality and ovarian follicle function. Higher levels may promote the development of better-quality embryos and implantation in women undergoing IVF. It may support egg quality by helping produce the anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH), a common biomarker of ovarian reserve. Vitamin D3 supports semen health and quality, including spermatogenesis (sperm development) and motility.
Discover Antioxidant Benefits for Egg and Sperm Health
NutraBloom®’s Ovarian Support Kit and Male Fertility Formula, containing optimal levels of these nutrients, are formulated to support egg and sperm health and quality. Additional support is provided by our Couple’s Preconception Kit or Couple’s Preconception + PCOS Kit. You can visit Nutrabloom’s website for more information.