Antioxidants and infertility: a new theory

Doctors said that oxidative stress is a common link between infertility and circulatory problems, commenting, “If oxidative stress is an underlying factor causing infertility, which we think the evidence points to, we should be able to do something about it.”

Oxidative stress reduces nitric oxide, a naturally occurring chemical that blood vessels need to relax, dilate and allow adequate blood flow. Antioxidants such as vitamins C and E, lipoic acid and the polyphenols in vegetables, chocolate and tea, help control oxidative stress, doctors said, and are calling for more study.

The researchers believe further study is important not only for infertility. Infertility often precedes degenerative diseases such as atherosclerosis, high blood pressure, and congestive heart failure, and nutritional therapies that treat infertility may also alleviate these problems.

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