What is the relationship between soft drink consumption and testicular function in young men?


Sugary Drinks May Affect Semen Quality, Study Finds | Photo credit: iStock images


  • Hormones are the body’s chemical messengers that play a vital role in libido, mood, health, fertility, and sperm quality.
  • Scientists have already shown that sugary drinks can add unwanted inches to the waistline, according to a report published in Live Science.
  • Studies have shown how sugary drinks such as soda can also reduce semen quality.

We all know that sugary foods and drinks affect health by increasing our chances of becoming obese and putting us at risk of co-morbidities and conditions like high blood pressure, diabetes etc. But are there other repercussions on health, in particular the sexual health of individuals? Does drinking sugary and sugary drinks affect male sex hormones?

In a 2014 study that was published in the journal Human Reproduction (cited by Live Science), the researchers analyzed the semen of 189 men aged 18 to 22 from Rochester, New York and made the surprising findings.

Live Science reports a shocking anomaly here. “The researchers expected weight to influence the results because high sugar intake is often associated with a high body mass index or BMI.
“Researchers found that high consumption of sugary drinks was associated with low sperm motility or movement – but surprisingly, this was only true for thin, healthy men.
However, the results showed an association between the consumption of sugary drinks and sperm motility only in lean men. Sperm motility in overweight or obese men was not affected.
“Researchers have found no relationship between the consumption of sugary drinks and sperm motility in overweight or obese men, reports Live Science.

Studies have shown that excess body weight can negatively affect sperm production. Too much fat around the waist and testicles can cause scrotal temperature to rise, resulting in lower semen quality.

In the last and largest study to date, carried out by the Department of Environmental Health, Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA with the University of Copenhagen, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark and other research institutes, it has been reported that Sugar consumption – Sugary drinks (SSB) or artificially sweetened drinks (ABS) were associated with a lower sperm concentration.

SSBs also appeared to affect total sperm count and serum inhibin-B / FSH ratio, consistent with a direct suppressive effect of SSB intake on testicular function in otherwise healthy males, potentially affecting blood pressure. fertility, notes the study report.

However, the observed association between a higher intake of SSB and a lower quality of semen does not necessarily imply a decrease in fertility.

A total of 2,935 young men (median age: 19) participated in the study. Consumption of sugary drinks, BSA, fruit juice, and energy drinks was assessed using a validated food frequency questionnaire.

Testicular function was assessed by conventional semen quality parameters (semen volume, sperm concentration, total number, motility and morphology), testicular volume assessed by ultrasound and serum concentrations of reproductive hormones (total testosterone, free testosterone, E2, inhibin-B, LH, FSH, sex hormone binding globulin) were measured.

But the study published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology also cites some limitations. The authors caution that the observed association between higher SSB intake and lower sperm quality does not necessarily imply decreased fertility.

Disclaimer: The tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purposes only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Always consult your doctor or healthcare professional if you have specific questions about a medical problem.


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