Dietary folate is a major source of methyl groups required for DNA methylation, an epigenetic modification that is actively maintained and remodeled during spermatogenesis. While high-dose folic acid supplementation up to 10 times the daily recommended dose has been shown to improve sperm parameters in infertile men, the effects of supplementation on the sperm epigenome are unknown. To assess the impact of 6 months of high-dose folic acid supplementation on the sperm epigenome, we studied 30 men with idiopathic infertility. Blood folate concentrations increased significantly after supplementation with no significant improvements in sperm parameters. Reduced representation bisulfite sequencing RRBS revealed a significant global loss of methylation across different regions of the sperm genome.
The Importance of Folic Acid in Female and Male Fertility
Being underweight or overweight can have negative effects on a man's sperm, and it can kill a couple's sex life because weight problems can affect a man's libido and performance. Sticking to a healthy diet that contains a good mix of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, grains, and dairy, and fitting in physical activity on most days of the week can help him reach or maintain a healthy weight. Folic acid isn't important just for moms-to-be.
If you've been looking at supplements for fertility, you've likely come across recommendations for folic acid. One of the B-vitamins, folate or folic acid, as it's known in supplement form is needed for the development of red blood cells and DNA production. Folate also plays an important role in cell division. Folic acid is clearly an essential nutrient in the body.