The Nursing Times magazine looked at a study that was done by researchers from several US medical schools, the University of Murcia, Spain and the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. The study was trying to conclude that lazy men who spend hours watching TV could be halving their sperm count. The researchers recruited 222 men (aged 18 to 22 years) who answered anonymous questionnaire asking men to select the category of TV watching time per workday that corresponded to their average habits over the past three months. The TV watching time was categorized as none/almost none, one to three hours daily, four to six hours daily, seven to nine hours daily, and over ten hours daily. Upon collecting semen samples at a clinic, researchers were able to classify the men into four groups (quartile) according to their average moderate – to – vigorous physical activity and their TV watching per week. They found that men in the highest quartile of moderate-to-vigorous activity, 15 hours a week or more, had a 73% higher sperm concentration than men in the lowest quartile, less than five hours a week. Also, that men in the highest quartile of TV watching, more than 20 hours a week, had 44% lower sperm concentration than men in the lowest quartile, zero hours per week. The researchers pointed out that it was unclear if the differences in sperm count could translate to differences in fertility, and that this study relied on men self-reporting both TV watching and exercise levels which could be unreliable. Also, since the sample size was really small, the confidence levels given in the results are very wide.
If this study wasn’t just speculation, I think it would be a great read for all young men out there, especially because obesity is a problem in America. Since there are still so many who are unaware of that problem, a study like this could shed some light to those who are sexually active and trying to make a family of their own or planning to in the future. I think the study was geared towards college students because the study was done at Universities and the sample that was used were of young men from the age of 18 to 22 years.
I definitely thought it was an interesting read and the study is something worth following up or completing. It was helpful of the magazine to put “While the reports are based on proper medical research, the link between exercise and sperm count I not definitively proven”, so the reader doesn’t automatically come to their own conclusion before they finish reading the whole article.