In Africa where herbal medicine is very predominant, there is a widespread belief that bitter kola has positive effects on sperm. However, from a biochemical point of view, we will be seeing the effect of bitter kola on sperm from a different light. Without further ado, let us delve in.
What Are The Components Of Bitter Kola That Could Potentially Affect Sperm?
How bitter kola affects sperm depends on its active ingredients. The components of bitter kola that affect sperm production include; lipid extract, ash, crude extract, phytate, sodium, calcium, caffeine, and majorly trypsin inhibitor.
How Bitter Kola Affects Sperm Production
Bitter kola negatively affects sperm production because of a specific protein activity of Trypsin inhibitor on the spermatogenesis pathway.
The Trypsin inhibitor binds with a specific protease that forms an inactive complex, disrupting the spermatogenesis pathway. Trypsin inhibitor attacks 17 alpha 20 beta-dihydroxy-4-pregnen-3-one DHP.
In simple non-biochemical terms, the trypsin inhibitor down-regulates an enzyme that helps in sperm production in males. This is why theoretically, excessive consumption of bitter kola can lead to lower sperm count.
Bitter kola has other health benefits that affect the overall well-being of a human. However, to stay on the safe side, you should down-regulate its excessive consumption.