November 03, 2019

Everything you need to know about semen and sperm quality


What is semen?

Each ml of semen typically contains millions of sperm. Semen is a white or gray fluid that flows out of the urethra (a tube located in the penis) at the time of ejaculation.  Each milliliter of semen typically contains millions of sperm, but most of it is secreted by the glands in the male genital tract.

The purpose of semen is only for reproduction, as a means of transporting sperm to the female reproductive system.  Although ejaculatory semen is associated with orgasm and sexual pleasure, erection and orgasm are controlled by different mechanisms, and semen does not need to come out to have a pleasurable sex.


Semen is made up of various glandular secretions, of which only 5% come from the testicles.

The testicles and the epididymis

Each sperm is made up of a cell called spermatogonia inside the testis. 

Spermatogonia proliferate to produce spermatocytes, which later become spermatids.  The spermatid makes its famous tail, and the cell gradually becomes able to move by shaking its tail.  The spermatid eventually becomes a spermatozoid. 


This process takes 3 days and then takes 2 to 4 days before the sperm can pass through the semen and pass through the tubes of each testis and its adult sperm tube, the epididymis. 

The fluid made by the testicles contains many chemicals but is high in testosterone.

Minus bags
Semen bags usually make up more than half the volume of semen.  Their secretion is rich in sugars called fructose, which is an important nutrient for spermatozoids. 

They also produce another material that causes semen to clot (sticky or jelly-like) after ejaculation, which is useful for reproducing and keeping semen in the womb.


The secretions of these glands make the male genitalia greasy and lubricated but may also contain antibodies that affect fertility.  These anti-sperm antibodies can prevent spermatozoids from moving properly and fertilizing the egg.

It is quite natural for semen to form jelly like cells, and this is not a sign of any health or fertility problems.  

If the semen fails to clot and then becomes fluid again, it can be a sign of a problem with fertility. 

The average volume of semen produced in the ejaculate is 1 to 2 ml. 

Volumes below 1.5 ml and above 5.5 ml are abnormal. 

Low semen volume can be due to repeated ejaculations and high semen is usually seen long after no ejaculation.

The World Health Organization defines a normal natural count:

 1. The total semen volume should be at least 1 ml.
 2.  At least 2% of spermatozoids must move forward.
 3. The spermatozoid concentration should be at least 2 million per milliliter.
 4. At least 2% of spermatozoids must be alive (it is normal that up to 2% of them are dead)
 5. The total number of spermatozoids in the ejaculate should be at least 1 million.
6. At least 2% of spermatozoids should have a normal shape and shape.
7. At least 2% of spermatozoids should be floating in a fast-moving manner.

It is surprising to know the number of dead and abnormal sperm that can be found in a natural sample. 

Sperm count is highly technical and results can be influenced by various factors such as the time between ejaculation and semen sampling as well as how the semen was stored during transport to the laboratory.

Read: Low Sperm Count: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment


Sperm count in a particular person can vary even over a few days.  It is very important that at least two, preferably three or more, samples be provided for evaluation that are two to three weeks apart.

A single sample is not enough to evaluate semen quality. 
Sperm count is only an indication of fertility capacity and a normal count will not guarantee success.

In addition, the higher the number of sperm, the better it is, as too much sperm can cause fertility problems.

In humans, the sperm begins to build up in the testis and, after evolving in the uterus, exits with the semen. 

Failure to build or release sperm can cause male infertility.  In fact, sperm production is one of the most complex and longest-running processes in the body that begins with the specialization of the primary germ cells in the embryo and then continues with spermatogenesis and sperm differentiation in the testes during adolescence.

According to some studies, sperm production in all living creatures goes back about 5 million years.  Sperm production in all animals is affected by a gene called Boule. 

This gene has remained unchanged throughout human evolution since its inception and is present in all living things.

Production of sperm

In humans, with the onset of puberty, the permanent production of sperm in the testes begins at a rate of about 2 million sperm per day (about 2 sperm per second).  The sperms develop around the walls of the semifinal tubes, and their tails, which enable them to swim, move toward the center of the tubes.  Adult sperm are held in a winding tube called the epididymis behind each testis.  Eventually sperm either ejaculate during sexual activity or are reabsorbed into the body.


Reduced Sperm production 

Causes of reduced sperm production in men include smoking, overweight, nutrition and whatever causes the testicles to warm up, which can be attributed to prolonged sitting. 

Exercise also has a profound effect on sperm production, with males having more than 4 hours of movement per day producing about 2 percent more sperm than in sedentary men. 

Decreased sperm production in males does not necessarily lead to poor reproductive power.


For years, researchers have been trying to determine the relationship between apparent attractiveness and male fertility.  But the results have always been mixed. 

A recent study from the Journal of Evolutionary Biology has taken an important step in this direction and has come to two important findings: 

1. Yes, generally attractive males have more healthy sperm,

2. The more masculine a person has, the less lively sperm. 

The main achievement of this study was that they were able to draw a comparison between the ability of sperm and the masculinity of faces. 

More precisely, the more prominent and wider the face and face of men, the lazier and farther the sperms are.

The study did not provide any clear and precise reasons for this relationship, but it was hypothesized that people with more masculine faces would have more sex, and therefore no need for fast, energetic sperm to become pregnant. 

Whereas people without masculine faces and awe (and more muscular bodies) were less likely to have sex and adjusted for adolescence to maximize their chance of survival, so the survival condition provided them with a chance of fertility sperm.  Produce (volume, number, and speed).


Impact of Men's Health on Sperm Quality

Usually, men's sperm are less than forty years old.  Of course, smoking, avoiding heat, avoiding stress, drinking less caffeinated drinks (carbonated drinks, coffee, etc.), consuming folate (vitamin B2 or folic acid), adhering to a low-fat diet and avoiding environmental toxins all has a serious impact on sperm health.

Remember Health Is Wealth


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Founder/CEO Isikadi Precious Media Inc. Africa's leading Media Tech company with digital media Superbrand focused on Health, Nursing Updates, News, Entertainment, and Inspiration.

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