Sperm Quality – The New Frontier of Men’s Health

Boost Sperm Quality Naturally

It has been said, we must accept something before we can change it. This is definitely the case when discussing male sperm health.  When it comes to infertility, the focus is placed on women. Men are usually not included when we look at “conception” issues.

Maybe it’s a denial issue, or it feels “UN-manly” for men to seek treatment options when conception issues arise.  What most people have yet to understand is that about 40 to 60 percent of infertility problems today are linked to male-related factors.  What this means is for a couple to conceive, both the male and female have to be healthy. But, we need to come to grips with this new “normal” because compromised sperm health is more common than previously known.

Sperm health is determined by the quantity of sperm a man produces, the structure or morphology and the mobility of the sperm. Problems such as abnormal sperm size and shape, low sperm count, abnormal liquefaction and low motility are all categorized under male infertility. Research varies but some shows a 40% decrease in sperm quantity and quality in the past 50 years. The reasons for the decline are conjecture, but most researchers agree sperm are sensitive to environmental toxins, stress, diet and technology we are using daily. Male infertility and low sperm production can also be effected by genetics, age, testosterone production and testicular pathologies and emotions.

Reliable, long term research on male sperm counts do not exist, unfortunately.  However, in a recent study of British dogs, yes canine, over the last 26 years showed a drop of 1-2% of sperm motility yearly.  Why should we care about a study done on dogs? Declining canine fertility may shed light on human fertility. The importance of this study, is not just the 50% decline in canine sperm but researchers saw a clear connection between environmental chemicals affecting both humans and dogs. Even though male fertility research over the past few decades has shown a downward trend, “there has always been argument about the consistency and accuracy of the findings,” says Richard Lea of Nottingham University School of Veterinary Medicine and Science. Dr. Lea confirmed the presence of chemicals, ubiquitous to both humans and dogs as the link to the decline in sperm quality. Dogs live in our homes and are exposed to many of the same chemicals as humans.  “If you think about it, we are exposed to a [chemical] cocktail. Who knows how many chemicals are out there and what they are doing? It gets even more complicated when you start to look at the effects of mixtures of chemicals,” Dr. Lea said. Hopefully soon, we will have similar human studies measuring sperm health over several decades.

 male infertility boost sperm

The question you may be asking is; how can we help men improve infertility issues?

There are some excellent options beyond prescription medication.  Options to consider are lifestyle changes, (i.e. smoking) reducing exposure to toxins and incorporating  acupuncture and herbal medicines.  Alternative/Functional Medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) approaches always start by looking at the entire body and considering the root cause of the pathology. The Classic literature from TCM states: The experienced physician, will always consider the source.  (Li Zhongzi, A Primer of Medical Objectives (Yizong Bidu), 1637)  Therefore, when treat infertility one has to treat the whole body because only a healthy body can produce healthy sperm. TCM theory classifies a lack of sperm or a lack of healthy sperm into one or more possible diagnoses. The three primary diagnoses include:

 

Deficiency Syndrome

 In Western medicine terminology this would be dysfunction in the endocrine system. Men with low testosterone and excess estrogen fall under this diagnosis.

 

Stagnation Syndrome

 The sexual organs are functioning, hormone levels are normal but blood flow to the sexual organs is lacking. Men who experience soft erections or cannot maintain an erection or ejaculation would be categorized as having stagnation in TCM terms.

 

Heat Syndrome

This may be associated with an infection or inflammatory process and can produce abnormal semen quality. Enlarged prostates and sexually transmitted diseases are a few of the Western diagnoses that fall under this syndrome. Boxer shorts, not briefs would generally be a good suggestion for men in this category along with avoiding hot tubs and steam and sauna rooms.

 

We are certainly not the first generation to struggle with infertility. Chinese medicine texts tell us ancient cultures as far back as 200 AD. referenced treatments to help men and women conceive. Some TCM documents list treatment for infertility including complex Chinese herbal formulas often using fifteen herbs or more. Many of these formulas are still used today and include everything from the bark, leaves, root, fruits, seeds and flowers of various botanicals. One commonality found in these formulas is they often contain seeds of the plants. Considering sperm is a man’s seed, this makes perfect sense. The use of professionally prepared herbal medicine to treat male infertility is occurring worldwide. In Taiwan, through their National Health Insurance plan, citizens can receive Chinese herbs daily for every type of illness including infertility. While many fertility issues can be resolved through Chinese herbal medicine, often times the patients overall health improvement is the primary goal.

 

Lifestyle modifications should also be considered to keep sperm healthy and happy in our technology driven world. The use of laptop computers are often overlooked in men’s health discussions. Laptops emit radiation and heat and should not be on a man’s lap if he is trying to optimize his sperm health.  Laptops can be used on a table, not a lap. This is especially important for those men who fall under the category of “Heat Syndrome”.  Cell phones are another 21st century hazard. The risk is real for men who carry a phone in their front pant pocket all day, every day.  Dr. Davis, an award-winning scientist discusses the health risks and concerns associated with cell phones and sperm motility in her book Disconnect. According to Dr. Davis, “When using phones, distance is your friend, because radiation exposure falls off dramatically the farther away from the brain or body you use your phone,” Dr. Davis noted. “If you read the fine print warnings that come with all smart phones today they are quite clear, phones should not be used next to the brain or body, or kept in the pocket.”  Leg and arm bands are safer options for carrying cell phones.

Sperm awareness needs to be addressed in men’s health circles today. The number of men seeking treatment options is rising and reproductive issues are no longer just a “woman’s problem”.  Getting the correct diagnosis is critical but more importantly make sure you treat the whole individual. Herbal treatment, acupuncture and life style changes are excellent options and more common throughout Asia than the West.  Hopefully, men everywhere will begin considering these viable treatment options. Whichever type of treatment a man chooses, the journey begins with the acceptance that male infertility exists.

Secrets of the Supplement Industry Revealed

Nature Made Vitamins issued a

NATIONWIDE RECALL on its gummy vitamins!

Chinese herbs

They issued the recall fearing Salmonella and/or Staphylococcus Aureus contamination.

(link to press release here)

Do you know what’s really in your pills and capsules?

Find out at this FREE webinar.

“How To Choose A Quality Supplement” 
I give you the insider secrets the supplement companies will never tell you!

Nothing is taboo – fillers, testing myths –
synthetic vitamins.  I’m letting the cat out of the bag

and it’s completely FREE!

Click HERE to listen

Why You Want To Avoid Magnesium Stearate

Why You Want To Avoid Magnesium Stearate

Not all supplements are created equal!

U.S. adults surveyed in Dec. 2014 said “taking vitamins” was in their top five wellness habit plans for 2015.  Yet, many supplement have flowing agents which suppress your natural killer cells, a key component of your immune system.  As the vitamin and supplement industry grows into one of the fastest growing industries worldwide, it’s time for the big companies to come clean about the ADDITIVES in dietary supplements. (1)

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Healthy Smoothies

Quirky Habits Only Acupuncturists Do

Healthy Smoothies

What is this smoothie fruit doing on the stove, you ask?

Great question.  Let me explain.

As a Licensed Acupuncturists, I have to admit, I have developed some pretty quirky habits. Even after all these years, my family members still give odd stares when I do these things.

For example, I avoid ice water like the plague!

Once while attending a Chinese medicine conference in Austin, on a hot day, a group of us Acupuncturists sat down together to share lunch.  As the waiter arrived to pour freezing cold ice water into our glasses, each of us stopped the gentlemen and said, “Please, no ice!”.

Not the norm, right?

See, Acupuncturists spend a lot of time learning about the digestive system and cold foods and drinks are constricting to the body. Simply put, cold drinks hamper the digestive process. Our internal body temperature is hot by nature, and cooling it off suddenly with cold foods and cold drinks hampers digestion. By the third day of the conference we had trained the staff to bring room temperature water to our lunch table. However, they did give us odd stares as this practice seemed entirely nuts since the outside temperature was 90 degrees.

Besides reducing the cold foods we eat, Acupuncturists have a funny habit of looking at our tongues in a mirror whenever we have the opportunity. We do this because it is the only organ we can actually see (without surgical intervention).  The tongue can tell us a tremendous amount about what is going on inside our bodies. It can tell you if you body is deficient in some area, or excess in another. It can tell us whether we are digesting food well and tell us about various organ systems and even if we are overly stressed.

Another quirky habit I have, (which my family gets a total kick about teasing me about) is my morning smoothie. This reason is, I actually warm up the frozen fruit in a sauce pan rather than use it frozen. As I mentioned cold drinks and foods can damage the digestive system. In the morning, the first thing going into your body should be warm food or a warm drink. This helps jump start your digestive system.  Try it.  You will notice warm foods improve your metabolism and overall digestion. If you’re trying to lose weight, this is one of the most important things you can do to start your day.

Although I like experimenting with a variety of smoothie recipes this is one of my favorites.

Warm fruit in coconut milk (frozen blueberries, raspberries, mango, pineapple or any fruit of your choice)

3 Tbsp. Organic Kelp protein powder

1/3 banana

large handful of organic salad greens

Mix up in a strong blender and you good to go!

Drink at room temperature or even slightly warm.

How Long Can You Last? The Test of Time

Chinese herbs Tong Ren TongIn the business world when economic times get tough a business that weathers the storm is a true survivor. A standout,  that must have incredibly popular products that make people come back for more even when unemployment is high and people are unwilling to spend. A business that survives  must have proven itself worthy of providing  great products at a fair price. Products that people simply can’t do without.  When a business does this for 70  to 100 years  or more we are all impressed. The stamina, the fortitude and adaptability to survive for so many years  must mean this business has some incredible products which we all crave.  Ford Motor Company  and Kodak  come to mind, some of the oldest American businesses.


But what do you think about a business that has survived providing the same products for 341 years?  It is truly unheard of in America. We have only been an independent nation for 240 years and no single business has survived since revolutionary days.  Yet, a Chinese herb pharmacy called Tong Ren Tong is still in business after 341 continuous years. They still sell Chinese herbs, just as they did in the year 1669.  In fact, in Beijing they operate from the same location since 1702 !


They are a household name in China, Hong Kong and much of Asia. They operate pharmacies, drug retailers and various joint ventures throughout 13 countries in  Asia. Wouldn’t you be a household name if you were 345 years old?   The picture above is me standing in front of their Hong Kong store. (No pictures were allowed inside)


Tong Ren Tang was the supplier of medicinal Chinese herbs to the royals of the Qing Dynasty, from 1669 until their collapse  1911. They have succeed in weathering the storms of Chinese government takeovers, communism and now globalization and prescription medications. Tong Ren has been  successful  for hundreds of years because Chinese herbs work, it’s as simple as that.   Chinese herbs worked 300 hundred years ago and they work today for all kinds of illnesses. Whether your buying ginseng or reishi mushrooms Tong Ren has the herbs and they know how to prescribe them for everything from the common cold to cancer. 


When you have incredibly popular products that work well, are needed by the masses and provide real value at a fair price your business will survive regardless of the economic times and government takeovers. Chinese herbs have proven to be that commodity. Chinese herbs are medicine that continues to heal people, even centuries after they were first introduced.  


Are You Eating the Chinese Herb Goji Berries For Energy?

Originally from China, Goji berries have been used in Chinese

Pacific Herbs goji berry

Medicine and are considered one of the best Chinese herbs to boost your energy.  This little red berry is packed with vitamins, minerals and even iron.

Traditional Chinese Medicine uses goji berries for many ailments including back pain, low energy, dizziness and to improve eyesight.  Goji berries can be found at most natural foods grocery stores today but can get a bit pricey.  If you love this little berry like I do you may want to consider buying a goji plant.  I’ve found goji berries can grow in many climates and is a wonderful plant to have in your yard or even a patio container. Add the little red berries to a bowl of cereal or oatmeal or enjoy them as a snack. This Chinese herbs is a healthy addition to any diet and will give you a boost of energy every time you eat a handful. Concentrated granules of goji berries are a great way to use this Chinese herb in shakes and smoothies or as a delicious cup of tea. Goji concentrate is available from Pacific Herbs at www.PacHerbs.com.

Pacific Herbs Chinese Herb Marketing Cards Are In Stock

 I hope you are having a fantastic start to the New Year!

Just a quick note to tell our FREE marketing cards are back in stock.

Pacific Herbs marketing materials are always free.  Corydalis Pain Relief Herb Pack, marketing cards are also back in stock. If you have been waiting or need any more to replenish your supply please call or email and we will send them to you today.

Corydalis skinny flyer final_Page_1Always Free !!      Skinny Marketing cards

Also available, a heavy duty acrylic stand that fits four marketing cards in a small space. Grab it here.

Our goal is to help your acupuncture or holistic wellness practice with professional products that you can trust.

Pacific Herbs
740 NW 3rd Street
Bend OR 97701
877-818-9990
www.PacHerbs.com

Can Cinnamon Help Protect You From Cancer?

University of Arizona College of Pharmacy Researchers and the UA Cancer Center say a compound found in cinnamon is a potent colorectal cancer preventor.

New research suggests eating cinnamon may help prevent colorectal cancer, at least in mice.

Previous research has linked this spice to blood pressure reduction and blood sugar control.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has used both the cinnamon tree bark and cinnamon tree branches for over a thousand years.

The bark of the tree is known as Gui Zhi and used in Chinese herbal formulations as a warming and dispersing herb. It helps protect against catching a cold and it can facilitate at warming the Qi, or energy of the body.

Researchers at Arizona College of Pharmacy found the compound that gives cinnamon its distinctive smell and flavor, cinnamaldehyde, also seems to protect rodents against colorectal cancer.

“This is a significant finding,” UA Cancer Center researcher Dr. Donna Zhang, said in a press release. “The next steps are to see if the spice alone can protect against cancer, and see if results can be replicated in people.”

“Can cinnamon do it, now that we know pure cinnamaldehyde can?” he said. “And can we use cinnamaldehyde or cinnamon as a weapon to go after other major diseases, such as inflammatory dysregulation and diabetes? “

Chinese herbs like cinnamon have always been used in TCM with other herbs in synergistic combinations. Using this Chinese herb or any others as a single herb should only be done under the care of a professional trained in Chinese medicine or herbal medicine.  In TCM, Chinese herbs are most often combined to enhance or create an entourage effect for the desired action and to minimize any potential side effects.  Should you have any questions about cinnamon or other Chinese herbs,   get in touch with Cathy at Pacific Herbs for a free consultation at 877-818-9990.

Nobel Prize for Artemisia The Chinese Herb For Malaria

Chinese herbs win Nobel prize

Congratulations go out to Professor Tu for her 1972 discovery in processing the Chinese herb Artemisia (Qing Hao) now recognized with a Nobel Prize in Medicine.

Her work at the Academy of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Beijing, China has saved thousands from malaria deaths in the last forty plus years.

Before Professor Tu studied an ancient Chinese text regarding the cooking of the root artemisia, the herb was not successful at curing malaria patients.  Maybe she read about the prominent physician and alchemist named Ge Hong (284-364 CE) who wrote a formulary called Zhou Hou Bei Zhi Fang (Prescriptions within Arm”s Reach for Use in Emergencies). Many of the formulas in that book are still in use today. He was the first to mention qing hao, (Artemisia Annua) as a treatment for malaria. Professor Tu’s cooking discovery led to chemical constituents in artemisia to be viable and produce a therapeutic effect against deadly malaria. Quercetin has since been identified as the most therapeutic constituent but there are over 30 chemical constituents in the roots of artemisia. (See below)

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Manuka Honey For Sugar Cravings and Energy

 Best Chinese herbsCould honey be the next natural cure-all? 

I usually only write about Chinese herbs but I’m making an exception today. This is exception is due to the fact that raw manuka honey is derived from a very note worthy medicinal plant.  I’m speaking of course about the Tea Tree plant.  Native to New Zealand, this plant is also the source of Tea Tree Oil, which deserves a blog all its own.  (Although admittedly not a Chinese herb.)

What is so great about Manuka ?

Pure Manuka honey has a thousand uses. An energy boosting and savory sweet treat is usually the first use that comes to mind.

But first, how do we get bees to make honey from only Manuka flowers?

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Health Practitioners, Are We Really “Doing No Harm”?

It has been said, If you’re going to really succeed in your business,
you have to stand for something important. 

And the toughest part of all that?

Well, for me, truthfully all of it is tough.

Have you ever asked yourself, “Who am I to do this?”. . .(I’m still asking!)

“Who am I to help the sick, the aging, the dying and

set them on a path toward wellness?”

If you’ve ever asked this same question then please keep reading.

Continue reading “Health Practitioners, Are We Really “Doing No Harm”?”

Garcina Cambogia is Not Chinese Medicine

fat in pinkThere is no SKINNY PILL!      Sorry if this shocks you.
If you are shocked by the above sentence, you may also be surprised to learn

Garcina Cambogia is NOT Chinese Medicine!

Shocking?

I hope you don’t think Chinese Herbs and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a magic
formula for weight loss. It can certainly help, but there is no magic pill.

Don’t waste your money on Garcinia cambogia.

Continue reading “Garcina Cambogia is Not Chinese Medicine”