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LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Couples having trouble starting a family might want to add walnuts to the prospective daddy’s diet.
A new study from researchers at the UCLA School of Nursing published Wednesday in the “papers in the press” section of the journal Biology of Reproduction found that eating about two handfuls of walnuts a day, a plant source of omega-3, can improve the quality of a man’s sperm.
The study involved 117 men between 21 and 35 over 12 weeks. Half of the men added 75 grams of whole-shelled walnuts to their daily diet, and the other half avoided eating tree nuts.
“We found a significant improvement in sperm parameters in the group that consumed the walnuts,” said Wendie Robbins, a UCLA professor and lead author of the study, in a statement. “The men who ate no tree nuts saw no change.”
Researchers say this is the first study to look at the effects of a plant source of omega-3 on sperm.
The next step for researchers is to work with couples who are attending infertility clinics to determine if putting men on a walnut diet leads to success in conceiving.
The study was funded through a grant from the California Walnut Commission and UCLA Fielding School of Public Health’s Center for Occupational and Environmental Health.