Wednesday, 12 December, 2018

Boxers vs briefs: Men who wear boxers have higher sperm count

Switching to roomier smalls could improve sperm quality a new study suggests Switching to roomier smalls could improve sperm quality a new study suggests Credit Sebastian Kaulitzki Alamy Stock
Melissa Porter | 12 August, 2018, 01:59

A new study from the Harvard's T.H. Chan School of Public Health has shown that loose underwear such as boxers may be better for sperm counts in men when compared to tight ones such as briefs.

The researchers said this likely shows FSH levels increase when it needs to compensate for testicular damage indicated by increasing scrotal temperatures, and decreasing sperm counts and concentration.

Harvard University researchers have done the most comprehensive study to date into the effect of underwear on sperm quality and found that the tighter the garment the lower the sperm count and concentration.

"These results point to a relatively easy change that men can make", Lidia Minguez-Alarcon, lead author of the study said in the press release. Could modern living really be threatening the survival of our species?

The groundbreaking study is the largest of its kind to look into the truth of a long-held suspicion that tighter trousers such as Y-fronts or briefs affect a man's ability to father children. The hormone is produced by the brain to tell the testes to make more sperm, Chavarro said. The men provided information on their underwear choice and a sperm sample and blood work for analysis. While the locker-room debate among men - boxers vs briefs - is more aesthetic than medical, the question has always been raised: do tight-fitting shorts overheat the family jewels? It was published Wednesday in the journal Human Reproduction.

The men, between the ages of 32 and 39, were surveyed about the style of underwear they had been wearing for the past three months.

Although this study was not created to directly measure fertility, these results do suggest an easy way for men to help their chances of improving their fertility.

The findings suggest that the lowered sperm concentrations and total sperm count associated with tighter underwear triggers physiological mechanisms that lead to an increase in the FSH levels.

"This hypothesis requires confirmation by further research", she added.

"I have to say, though, that had I been working on male factor infertility when my wife and I were trying for a baby, I would have probably bought a few boxers".

According to experts, the reasons for this trend are mostly external: it can be both environmental factors (e.g., poor environment), and peculiarities of lifestyle (reduced physical activity, Smoking or obesity).

"Since men can modify the type of underwear they choose to wear, these results may be useful to improve men's testicular function".

A number of small-scale studies previously have linked tighter underwear to lower sperm counts, Chavarro said.