Though more studies are necessary, preliminary research indicates that watermelon may very well increase fertility in men.
More Info: According to a published study in the Journal of International Urology and Nephrology, male subjects were evaluated for the effect of lycopene on idiopathic infertility. Subjects were given an oral dose of 2000 mcg of lycopene twice a day for three months. Sixty-six percent of the study participants experienced an increased sperm count, while fifty-three percent experienced increased sperm motility, concluding that lycopene seems to be beneficial to males suffering from idiopathic infertility.
What Is Lycopene?
Lycopene is an anti-oxidant and has been demonstrated in studies to reduce the incidence of cancer, macular degeneration, and cardiovascular disease.
Lycopene is a carotenoid and can be seen to the human eye as the yellow, red, and orange colors in plants. Though they are present in common plants such as watermelon, guava, and pink grapefruit an estimated eighty-percent of all carotenoids consumed by humans are derived from tomato products.
Why Choose Watermelon?
Watermelon contains on average forty percent more lycopene than raw tomatoes.
Lycopene levels among watermelon cultivars and types vary greatly. According to a study conducted by The United States Department of Agriculture’s Agriculture Research Service, seedless watermelon varieties appear to have the highest lycopene levels.
On average a cup and a half of watermelon contains about 9-13 mg. of lycopene.
Gupta, Narmada P, and Rajeev Kumar. “Lycopene therapy in idiopathic male infertility – a preliminary report .” International Urology and Nephrology 34.3 (2000): 369-372. Print.
“Watermelon Packs a Powerful Lycopene Punch.” ARS : Home. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 Sept. 2010. http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/AR/archive/jun02/lyco0602.htm.
“Lycopene.” Pennington Biomedical Research Center. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 Sept. 2010. www.pbrc.edu/division-of-education/pdf/pns/PNS_Lycopene.pdf.
“The Carotenoid Story.” The University of New Hampshire Carotenoid Project Homepage. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 Sept. 2010. http://luteinlab.unh.edu/carotenoidstory.html.