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Sperm and egg cell on microscope.  Scientific background. 3d illustration

Our expert guide to improving sperm

Unlike women who are born with all the eggs they will ever have throughout their life, men are like sperm factories, meaning, once they reach puberty, they continuously manufacture sperm.  The quality of the sperm produced can vary over time and studies have shown how sperm quality declines as men age, as their testosterone levels reduce.

Testosterone is the main hormone which regulates sperm production but it does not necessarily follow that high testosterone levels means high sperm production. Those gym bunnies who supplement their diets with testosterone either by injection or other means, are often  hairy, sweaty and strong but the chances are, they wouldn't make it into the olympic sperm squad. In fact, very high levels of testosterone can stop sperm production. Sperm production is complex and relies on the normal function of the testicles, other glands and a delicate transport system. Conditions need to be optimal for men to produce plenty of high quality, healthy sperm.

And it is not all about the numbers. Count is important but the way the sperm swim and the integrity of the DNA they are transporting, also matter.