Information on the association between tea drinking and semen quality is limited. Little is reported on whether tea drinking is benefit to sperm quality. This cross-sectional and longitudinal study was conducted between April 2017 and July 2018. Participants were healthy men who were screened as potential sperm donors recruited at the Hubei Province Human Sperm Bank of China. A structured questionnaires containing sociodemographic information, daily habits, sperm collection-related information was completed for each participant at interview. Repeated semen samples were taken to examine the sperm parameters, including sperm volume, sperm concentration, sperm count, progressive motility, and total motility. A total of 1385 men with 6466 sperm samples were included in this study. Two groups were compared: tea drinking men (389, 28.1%) and non-tea drinking men (996, 71.9%). Compared with subjects who never drink tea, the analyses showed that sperm concentration and total sperm count were higher in tea-consuming subjects. A 10-year period or more duration of tea drinking significantly increased semen concentrations by 16.27% (P < 0.05). Sperm concentration was increased in subjects with a frequency of tea drinking of 3 days or more per week (P < 0.05) or, among men who were occasional alcohol drinkers, when tea concentration was weak (P < 0.05). No evidence of trend effects (P for trend > 0.05) or interaction effects (P for interaction > 0.05) between tea consumption and sperm quality, respectively. Our findings provide evidence that tea drinking may improve male reproductive health. Long-term, frequent, weak tea drinking tends to increase sperm quality among men with low BMI or health-related behaviors like smoking or alcohol intake.
Keywords: Cross-sectional study; Epidemiology; Repeated measurement; Semen quality; Tea consumption.
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