10 supplement might boost men's sperm counts AND potency, research claims
Supplements sold for as little as 10 might hold potential in helping men who are struggling to become fathers.
A seed powder derived from a plant used as a snakebite antidote by tribes in India and Africa was found to increase the sperm count of male rats.
Extracts of Mucuna pruriens, nicknamed the velvet bean or cowitch, also boosted motility their ability to swim efficiently, according to the same study.
Although not proven to work in humans, researchers believe it could hold promise.
The findings 'mimic' human studies which suggested the supplement boosts fertility, they said.
Mucuna pruriens flourishes in Africa, India and the Caribbean, but causes extreme irritation if it comes into contact with skin.
But the powdered form of the seed does not. Versions are available online from stores including Amazon and eBay.
Wellness groups and advocates say it can improve mood, relieve stress and boost energy levels.
Some also use it in the belief that it can help couples conceive.
Experts based at theUniversity of Ghanatested the effect of the powder on 28 rats, which were split into four groups of seven.