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Lifestyle Factors Effect on Fertility

Bicycling

Studies have shown that pressure from the bike seat may damage blood vessels and nerves that are responsible for erections, causing impotence and decreasing fertility. In addition, a study in Austria found that men who mountain bike are far more likely to have scrotal abnormalities, including calcium deposits, cysts, and twisted veins due to the extreme shocks and vibrations associated with such off-road biking. Men who cycle can reduce their risk of damage by taking frequent breaks, wearing padded bike shorts, and using a padded or specially contoured bike seat set at the proper height and angle.

Stress

Stress may interfere with the hormone GnRH (gonadotropin releasing hormone), which stimulates the development and maturation of the testes, and reduce sperm counts. In studies, many men experienced temporary impotence when diagnosed with azoospermia (the inability to produce sperm) and often (falsely) believe that having normal sperm function is related to virility and being a "real man." A diagnosis of infertility can also strain a relationship and decrease sex drive. If at all possible, limit the amount of stress in your life while you are trying to conceive.

Eating a healthy diet, exercising moderately, and limiting your consumption of alcohol and exposure to cigarette smoke and other environmental toxins, can increase your chances of conceiving. Talk to your doctor before taking any supplements or medication to ensure they won't affect your fertility.

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