Human Exposure to Aluminum May Impact Male Infertility
Over the last 50 years or so, there has been an alarming, world-wide decline in sperm parameters. One of the most likely reasons for this phenomenon is thought to be the increase in environmental toxins that we are all exposed to in our routine modern lives.
Semen analysis measures three primary parameters of sperm, which reflect the sperm’s ability to naturally fertilize the egg:
- How much – Sperm concentration
- How they are moving – Sperm motility
- If they have normal shapes – Sperm morphology
A recent study of male fertility patients in France found that men with high aluminum content in their semen had significantly lower sperm counts. Aluminum exposure has increased exponentially over the past 125 years. Interestingly, while most of us think of ingesting aluminum from cook-ware or aluminum foil, it can also be absorbed directly through the skin and can be inhaled. It is found in polluted air as well as an array of products from antiperspirants to antacids. Aluminum it seems may be just another example how our modern environment impacts us in ways we never imagined.
Reference: Klein, J. P., Mold, M., Mery, L., Cottier, M., and Exley, C. Aluminum content of human semen: Implications for semen quality. Reproductive Toxicology 50(0), 43-48. 2014
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