Does Cannabis Impact Men’s Fertility and Sexual Health?
What’s the relationship between high CBD pot seeds and sexual health? As marijuana use grows due to legalization in some states, researchers are conducting more trials to explore its effects on our well-being. One aspect, in particular, is using cannabis for men’s fertility.
Studies claim weed has medicinal properties that may benefit people with chronic pain, inflammation, anxiety, and depression. Does consuming the herb affect male virility?
Estimates indicate that infertility affects 48 million couples and 186 million people worldwide, half of them male. As many factors contribute to this problem, let’s explore what medical professionals say about the association between marijuana and fertility in men.
How Does Cannabis Affect the Male Reproductive System?
Thanks to widespread decriminalization, many marijuana enthusiasts grow and use the herb in the United States. Statistics show that in 2019, about 18%, or 48.2 million Americans, consumed cannabis at least once.
The plant has more than 100 cannabinoids, including delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), responsible for the psychoactive effects users seek.
These exogenous compounds compete for cannabinoid receptors, interrupting the endocannabinoid system (ECS). This potential imbalance could affect fertility, as the ECS controls aspects of male reproductive processes and spermatozoa function.
Human and animal weed and infertility trials produced substantial evidence indicating marijuana use adversely affects sperm count and concentration, motility, and viability.
Sperm Volume and Density
Researchers in Denmark studied subjects participating in a military service fitness examination. The trial compared men who used marijuana more than once a week to those who didn’t consume the herb.
The results showed that the former group had a 29% reduced sperm count and 28% lower concentration than the latter.
The researchers also discovered that dosage affects spermatozoa density. Males who smoke cannabis ten or more times a week had a considerably lower average sperm count than those who used less.
Another study involving 16 habitual weed users revealed decreased spermatozoa numbers after 5–6 weeks of high doses of cannabis. These findings show marijuana does affect sperm count.
Also Read: How Vaping Can Help You Quit Smoking
According to research, THC inhibits fructose metabolism, mitochondrial activity, and respiration, starving spermatozoa of energy. These findings show the psychoactive compound may impede sperm motility.
A 2012 Nigerian study assessed long-term and habitual weed users in urology clinics. The researchers found reduced testosterone levels and decreased testicular size in males.
The findings also showed that cannabis could be responsible for the high number of men seeking erectile dysfunction (ED) treatments. Regular use may also increase the risk of developing testicular cancer.
Another trial showed the inverse relation between marijuana and testosterone levels. Hormone amounts were reduced with frequent weed consumption and returned to normal after abstinence. Regular smokers also showed lower levels compared to intermittent users.
Reduced Testicular Size
Animal studies on marijuana and infertility reveal testicular atrophy due to exposure to the plant. Researchers theorize that cannabis causes oxidative stress that damages the seminiferous tubules.
Only one human trial supports this finding to date, with regular weed users showing reduced testis sizes. As the study involved few subjects, more evaluations are necessary to validate the result.
In tests on rhesus monkeys, chronic exposure to THC caused dose-response testicular reduction, decreased serum sex steroids, and raised serum gonadotropin levels. Human studies could confirm these results and determine if stopping tetrahydrocannabinol use would reverse these effects.
Further Research Findings
Oregon Health and Science University scientists conducted trials to determine if weed could make a man infertile.
The researchers exposed male non-human primates to THC by giving them an edible daily for seven months. They increased the dose every 70 days until it matched a heavy human intake of medical marijuana.
Scientists associated THC use with considerable adverse effects on the monkeys’ reproductive systems, including testicular shrinkage and lowered testosterone levels.
The researchers also found that when they increased the cannabinoid, the results worsened, suggesting that the dose impacted the outcome.
Does smoking weed affect your sperm? Jason C. Hedges, M.D., Ph.D., who led the study, said, “These early findings are concerning from a clinical standpoint.” He added that as edible marijuana use grows, it could profoundly impact male fertility.
With many suggested ways to increase your sexual energy, including products containing cannabis for men, exercise due diligence before trying them.
More Research Is Necessary
Studies show weed use could cause a reduction in sperm count, concentration, motility, lower testosterone levels, and testicular atrophy.
Further research is necessary to confirm these findings. Clinical trials involving more subjects could provide evidence to support claims that cannabis adversely affects male reproductive health.
If you’re concerned about your fertility, it’s best to abstain from frequent high-dose marijuana use until more scientific evidence is available.
Also Read: 5 Importance of Being Disciplined In Life