Maintaining your reproductive health is about more than just going forth and multiplying. There are plenty of reasons why supporting reproductive health is important for your overall wellbeing. According to reproductive epidemiologist Shanna Swan, Ph.D., lifestyle factors such as what you consume every day are major influences on your reproductive health. Keep reading for her professional opinion on the best diet to bolster your reproductive health.
How to use diet to support reproductive health.
The Mediterranean diet, a BlueZone favorite, is one that is already touted for its many health benefits. Many are familiar with what this diet entails: “Lower in meat, higher in fruit and vegetables, olive oil instead of butter, and so on and so forth,” she says.
One study found that individuals who have “Mediterranean-type” eating patterns demonstrated better reproductive health in comparison with individuals with “Western-type” eating patterns.
According to one study, men who achieved high MedDietScores (a tool that measures how closely the Mediterranean diet is followed) were more likely to have a higher sperm concentration, total sperm count, and sperm motility.
Organic fruits and veggies.
According to Swan, “eating more fruits and vegetables that are organic is helpful,” because they tend to be free of pesticides and hormone-disrupting chemicals. One study found that men who ate fruits and vegetables with low to moderate pesticide residues were likely to have a higher total sperm count and sperm concentration compared to men who ate fruits with high pesticide residues. There is also a lot of anecdotal evidence that suggests that organic produce supports hormonal health, though there is still more research to be done to back this claim up with hard data.
In the meantime, eating more fruits and veggies can only elevate your overall health, so go ahead and pile your plate with a rainbow of fresh produce.