Male Fertility: Drinking Alcohol and Sperm Quantity

A study of 2,249 men at 14 fertility clinics in the U.K. found that drinking alcohol had no affect on sperm quantity.

Lifestyle information for 939 men who ejaculated low numbers of swimming sperm were compared with 1,310 men who produced higher numbers.

Researchers focused on the number of swimming sperm because it is associated with how fertile a man is and also determines the type of fertility treatment that a couple might need.

The team of scientists said that the lifestyle advice about drinking alcohol, smoking tobacco, and using recreational drugs given to men diagnosed with infertility should be radically overhauled because none of these behaviors are associated with sperm quantity.

The study was funded by the U.K. Health and Safety Executive; the U.K. Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions; the U.K. Department of Health and the European Chemical Industry Council and is published in the peer-reviewed journal Human Reproduction.


Note: This website is informational only. It makes no suggestions or recommendations about fertility, drinking, health or any other matter and none should be inferred.


  • Povey, A.C., et al. Modifiable and non-modifiable risk factors for poor semen quality: a case-referent study. Human Reproduction, June 13, 2012. Abstract available at;
  • Unhealthy lifestyles have little impact on sperm quality. University of Manchester press release.

Readings on Drinking Alcohol and Sperm Quantity

  • Heavy Drinking, Smoking Won't Harm Men's Sperm: Study. HealthDay website.
  • Smoking and Excessive Drinking Unlikely to Damage Sperm, Study Concludes. Join Together website.

Filed Under: Health

This website is informational only. It makes no suggestions or recommendations about any subject.
For more fine print, read the disclaimer.