No doubt you already know that smoking weed makes you mellow. But did you know that it can make your sperm lazy too? That’s right, stoned sperm is apparently a thing.
Not so long ago, research came out suggesting that smoking pot can lower sperm count by almost a third – and all it takes is a couple of joints a week. It’s not the only study to show that marijuana use can seriously affect male fertility.
But according to Victor Chow, a clinical professor at the University of British Columbia, it’s not just the numbers that change. Marijuana also affects sperm mobility.
“The weight of the evidence is that marijuana probably has a negative impact not only for sperm count but for function,” Chow, who works in the University’s Department of Urological Sciences, told Canada’s National Post last week.
So if they’re not doing what they’re supposed to be doing (i.e. fertilizing eggs), what’s happening? Apparently, the drug makes them “mellow” and causes them to swim in circles.
The occasional joint is unlikely to do much harm (tobacco consumption aside) but, Chow warned, “it will definitely affect the quality of the sperm” in heavy users.
The reason it has such an immediate effect on male fertility, Chow explained, is because “sperm is a very rapidly turning cell”. This basically means that, whereas women are born with all the eggs they’re ever going to get, men make new sperm all day, every day.
However, Dr Armand Zini, associate professor of urology at McGill University and an expert in male fertility, admitted in the same article that “The science is not very strong”. There haven’t been many studies, he said, and most of those that do exist look at the effect of cannabis on sperm in animals.
But he does continue by saying, that “Even though we may not have the strongest data on this, there’s some evidence to support what I am saying.”
So the conclusion seems to be that more research needs to be done. Having said that, if you are looking to conceive, there’s obviously no harm in cutting back (or giving up completely), at least for a while.
[H/T: National Post]