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Aurora magazine

Discovered because obesity causes male infertility

A Chinese study could explain why obese men have infertility problems. Researchers have shown that obese people have higher levels of inflammatory markers in the seminal fluid. It also has less sperm and less quality. The cause of all this could be chronic inflammation of the reproductive system.

Obesity causes a large number of disorders, including a marked reduction in fertility. The phenomenon could be linked to another typical disorder: inflammation. Fat cells produce pro-inflammatory proteins. It follows that those who are obese often suffer from chronic inflammations that touch various tissues.

The Chinese researchers compared the levels of inflammatory markers in the genitals of normal and obese guinea pigs. They found that obese guinea pigs showed structural changes in the testes and hormone production. Obese mice had lower levels of testosterone and higher levels of pro-inflammatory proteins. All these elements affected the quality of the sperm and the ability to reproduce the guinea pigs.

The second phase of the study analyzed samples of 272 human volunteers, 82 normal weight, 150 overweight and 40 obese. Obese volunteers showed high levels of pro-inflammatory proteins. Their samples also had less sperm and less motile. This means that in those conditions the only hope for reproducing lay in assisted procreation. Unless you change your lifestyle.

The study went beyond trying a link between obesity and infertility. He also hypothesized that weight loss could be a good strategy to recover at least part of the fertility. In some cases, this could prevent permanent damage and avoid recourse to PMA.