How is Drinking Alcohol Related to Male Fertility?
Most men go for a few pints after a stressful day at work. For some, it’s an easy way to socialize at parties and gatherings. It helps them to unwind in a pleasurable way. Though drinking moderately may not cause significant harm, regular consumption of alcohol even in moderate amounts has seen to have a negative impact on a man’s fertility.
How is Drinking Related to Fertility?
Studies have shown that alcohol and male fertility are mortal enemies. It hampers one’s fertility in many ways. Let’s discuss below the effects of alcohol on a man’s fertility:
Lower Testosterone Levels
Ethanol, the major ingredient of alcohol, lowers the testosterone levels by dropping the amount of coenzyme NAD+, which is required for testosterone production. Alcohol consumption can increase the amount of aromatase enzyme that converts testosterone into estrogen. This rise in estrogen levels can even lead to shrinkage of testicles.
Poor Sperm Quality
Sensitive cells like sperm are adversely affected by the toxicity of alcohol. This, in turn, slows down the production of sperm. The Sertoli cells found in one’s testicles produce a protein that is required for the nourishment and proper growth of sperm cells. Alcohol consumption can deteriorate these Sertoli cells and cause the production of malformed sperm cells, low sperm concentration and in some case even Azoospermia (complete loss of sperm production).
Alcohol acts as a depressant that slows down the body’s response system. Usually, the blood rushes into the penis and gets trapped there until orgasm. But due to alcohol consumption, the blood vessels dilate causing all the blood to flow back out of the penis that leads to a short-term and weak erection. Too much alcohol consumption can also lead to high blood pressure which makes it difficult for the blood to reach the penis to cause an erection.