New research has revealed that men who smoke or have ever smoked cannabis have a higher concentration of sperm when compared to those who have never smoked marijuana. This study was conducted at Massachusetts General Hospital.
The team of researchers, led by a group based at Harvard Chan School of Public Health, based their work on a hypothesis that smoking marijuana would have an adverse effect (poor quality sperm) on the reproductive health of men.
They selected that hypothesis because some previous research seemed to suggest that smoking marijuana was detrimental to male reproductive health. However, those previous studies may have been flawed because they focused on men with drug abuse problems or the research was conducted on mice.
Nevertheless, this research sought to dig deeper into the link between smoking cannabis and sperm health.
To this end, the researchers obtained semen samples from 662 men. These samples (totaling 1,143) were collected for nearly two decades from 2000 to 2017. The men were approximately 36 years old and they were largely white with college degrees.
317 men from that group of participants also provided blood samples to the researchers. These blood samples were analyzed to check for the presence of reproductive hormones.
Additionally, the study participants were asked to fill a questionnaire about their use of marijuana. The questions included whether those men had ever smoked a total of two or more marijuana joints in their lives, and whether they were current cannabis smokers.
55 percent (a total of 365 of that group) of the study subjects admitted that they had ever smoked cannabis. From this number, 11 percent said they still smoked cannabis while 44 percent said they no longer did.
The researchers discovered that the men who smoked or had ever smoked cannabis had approximately 62.7 million sperms in each milliliter of ejaculate. The average sperm concentration for those who said they had never smoked cannabis was 45.4 million in each milliliter of ejaculate.
The World Health Organization puts the threshold for normal sperm concentration at 15million/mL of ejaculate. Interestingly, only 5 percent of the men who smoked cannabis had concentrations lower than this threshold while those who had never smoked had 12 percent of their members registering sperm concentrations that were below this threshold.
Serum testosterone was also higher among men who smoked or had ever smoked cannabis when compared to those who had never done so.
Feiby Nassan, the lead author of this research, warned that their findings should be taken with some caution because the researchers were aware that there is so much that may be going in the bodies of the study participants to explain why the results came out the way they did.
For example, the compounds in cannabis may work with the endocannabinoid system, thereby boosting male fertility.
On the other hand, one can also claim that men who have higher testosterone may be more likely to smoke cannabis since this hormone makes them more likely to indulge in risky behavior.
All in all, the researchers appealed for more research to be conducted on how marijuana affects the reproductive system and the entire body. This is exactly why cannabis industry players like Redfund Capital Corp. (CSE: LOAN) (OTC: PNNRF) (Frankfurt: O3X4) and SinglePoint, Inc. (OTCQB: SING) have been hoping that the U.S. federal government eases its restrictions on cannabis so that American researchers can add onto what researchers elsewhere are doing to increase the available knowledge about cannabis.
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