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Minerva Endocrinologica 2020 December;45(4):280-7

DOI: 10.23736/S0391-1977.20.03362-3

Copyright © 2020 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Effects of Mediterranean diet on semen parameters in healthy young adults: a randomized controlled trial

Paola CARUSO 1, Mariangela CAPUTO 2, Paolo CIRILLO 1, Lorenzo SCAPPATICCIO 1, Miriam LONGO 1, 2, Maria Ida MAIORINO 1, 3 , Giuseppe BELLASTELLA 1, 2, Katherine ESPOSITO 1, 3

1 Department of Advanced Medical and Surgical Sciences, University of Campania Luigi Vanvitelli, Naples, Italy; 2 Division of Endocrinology and Metabolic Diseases, University of Campania Luigi Vanvitelli, Naples, Italy; 3 Unit of Diabetes, University of Campania Luigi Vanvitelli, Naples, Italy



BACKGROUND: Dietary regimens have so far been studied as possible determinants of semen quality and fertility. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of a Mediterranean diet, as compared with a low-fat diet, on seminal parameters of young healthy adults from southern Italy.
METHODS: In a randomized controlled trial, 160 young adults aged 18-30 years were assigned to Mediterranean diet (N.=80) or a low-fat diet (N.=80). The primary outcome measures were changes in semen parameters after six months.
RESULTS: Mean age of participants in the study was 24.7 years. There was no difference in baseline semen parameters of men randomized to Mediterranean diet or low-fat diet. After the entire follow-up, participants in both groups showed a significant increase in sperm concentration and sperm total count, with significant differences favoring the Mediterranean diet group (sperm concentration, 1.93 M/mL 95% CI [1.22 to 3.64], P=0.027; total sperm count 8.02 M 95% CI [1.51 to 15.45], P=0.035). No differences in other semen parameters were found between groups.
CONCLUSIONS: In healthy young adults, the consumption of Mediterranean diet was associated with an improvement of both sperm concentration and total count, as compared with a low-fat diet.


KEY WORDS: Diet, Mediterranean; Diet, fat-restricted; Semen analysis; Randomized controlled trial; Young adult

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