Navigating Your Fertility Journey On Holiday

Navigating your fertility journey

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The advice ‘Just relax and go on holiday and you’ll probably get pregnant!’ is pretty unhelpful, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t conceive whilst on vacation! Here’s our advice on supporting your fertility journey whilst your ‘Out-of-Office’ is on.


Keep an eye on the fertile window

This is an important piece of advice! If you have a female partner and are trying to conceive, you’re probably already familiar with the best time to have sex when trying to conceive. This time is all based around ovulation and travel – especially across different time zones – can sometimes mess with our circadian rhythm and hormone levels. Which in turn, can delay ovulation. This means that if you depend on an algorithm in an app to tell you when the best time to conceive is, you might find their calculations are a little off around your vacation.

Instead, it’s better to keep an eye on fertile signs, like cervical mucus or use an accurate female fertility tracker like the Mira Fertility Plus – these techniques will give you real-time updates on your fertile window, even if it moves due to travel or other factors like stress.


Keep your balls cool where you can

You know when you’re on holiday and your phone gives you that warning sign that it’s getting too hot and might not work properly? It would be pretty handy to have that for testicles! Heat damage is one of the biggest enemies of sperm health and can lead to a whole host of problems including low sperm count and motility and DNA fragmentation. You can read more about heat damage and sperm here.

Obviously, if you are heading to warmer climes for your holiday your body temperature is going to be hotter than usual (and we’re not suggesting you swap the Maldives or Skegness just to keep your balls cool!) However, there are a few things you can do to stop testicle temperatures getting out of control.

Choose swimwear that lets your balls breathe, go for loose short styles rather than speedos. Also, try to avoid things like hot tubs and saunas and if you’re sunbathing keep tech like your mobile phone away from your crotch – the heat they kick out does more damage than you may realize!


Stay hydrated

Staying hydrated on holiday is key – especially if you’re somewhere warm and tropical. When things get sweaty we need to replenish our water stocks more often otherwise we’re in danger of becoming dehydrated.

Drinking enough water is important for all areas of our health, including our fertility. When men are dehydrated it can cause their semen to become thicker and stickier – as well as decreasing the volume. Thick semen makes it harder for sperm cells to swim towards the egg which can make it more difficult for conception to happen. Dehydration can also lead to issues maintaining erections as well as prostate infections! The general rule of thumb is to drink at least 3 liters of water a day – although for men this is sometimes upped to 3.7. However, on holidays there is no harm trying to drink more water – maybe aim for around 4 liters and add in some snacks with high concentrations of water like watermelon and cucumber for an extra hydration boost!


Incorporate Your Healthy Lifestyle

If you’re on a fertility journey and are trying for a baby, there’s a chance that you’re also having a bit of a health kick – and that’s great! Reducing alcohol consumption, quitting smoking, getting regular exercise and eating a nutritious, balanced diet have all been shown to improve your sperm health and your chances of conceiving.

When we’re on holiday it’s time for us to let loose and relax – but that doesn’t mean you have to completely let go of all the great progress you’ve made with your preconception plan. All too often people will regress to unhealthy habits and then find it hard for them to get back on track once they return from vacation. This is because culturally many of us still see being healthy as a chore or a sacrifice and being unhealthy as a treat. If we switch our mindset we can really enjoy our holiday whilst still keeping some of our preconception plans in mind.

Why not mix up days lying on the sun loungers with some afternoon activities like hiking or snorkeling? Or stick to a diet of fresh whole foods but do that by trying all the delicious local cuisine? There are so many ways you can make your holiday healthier without sacrificing a thing.


Enjoy yourself!

Of course, we recommend putting all of the above advice into practice but the most important thing is that you and your partner enjoy yourself! Whilst it’s sometimes unhelpful to say that relaxing on holiday will solve all your fertility problems (in many cases it’s a bit more complicated than that) stress is a contributing factor to fertility issues, so making time to unwind is still a valid part of your preconception journey.

One thing for sure, is that quality time with loved ones is good for your mental well-being – and your relationship. A fertility journey can feel all-consuming and can really take its toll on you and your partner emotionally. Amongst the fertility testing, fertile windows and healthy living, the most important thing is that you nurture your relationship with each other – and a break away is the ideal time to do that.

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Wearing tight pants and underwear

Studies show that men who wear looser underwear have higher sperm concentration and total sperm count compared to men who wear tighter underwear. So, lose the tight clothes and wear something loose to give your testicles some air.

CONCLUSION: learn more about how heat can affect sperm quality here.


Besides higher mortality rate and various diseases, stress is associated with low sperm quality. Stress is known to be associated with lower testosterone levels and oxidative stress with both playing an essential role in producing and maintaining healthy sperm cells.

CONCLUSION: If you feel stressed, we recommend you get some help so you can have a balanced mental health. For a stress management guide, download the ExSeed app for free and start your personalized action plan today.

Physical activity

Scientific studies show that men who are physically active have better semen parameters than men who are inactive. Fertility specialists also state that regular physical activity has beneficial impact on sperm fertility parameters and such a lifestyle can enhance the fertility status of men.

Prioritizing exercise can help improve your overall health and result in healthy, fast swimming sperm cells that have good chances of fertilizing an egg.

CONCLUSION: Try incorporating exercise in your weekly schedule to you ensure exercising at least twice weekly. We recommend a combination of cardio training and strength exercise. Read more about exercise and male fertility on our blog.


Fast Food
Processed foods damage the health of sperm-producing cells and cause oxidative stress, which lead to poorer sperm quality. Heavy consumption of junk food (every week) can increase the likelihood of infertility since men who consume vast amounts of unhealthy food are at risk of having poor sperm quality. Besides harming your fertility, junk food enlarges your waistline, harms your cardiovascular system, kidneys, and more.

Eating more fruit and vegetables can increase your sperm concentration and motility. It’s important that you consume a healthy diet filled with antioxidants and that you eat vegetables every day. Foods such as apricots and red bell peppers are high in vitamin A, which improves male fertility by nurturing healthier sperm. Men who are deficient in this vitamin tend to have slow and sluggish sperm.

Sugary snacks/beverages: several times a week Excessive consumption of high sugar items can lead to oxidative stress, which negatively impacts testosterone levels and sperm motility. Sugary snacks and beverages are also highly associated with obesity and low fertility.
CONCLUSION: To boost sperm quality, stay away from fast food, processed food, and sugary snacks or beverages. You need to implement a healthy prudent diet filled with necessary superfoods needed for good sperm production. Check out our guide to Male Fertility Superfoods. For personalized guidance and support on how you can start improving your sperm health, check out the Bootcamp.


Direct heat can inhibit optimal sperm production and cause Sperm DNA damage. Sperm cells like environments that are a couple of degrees lower than body temperature. Avoid overheating from warm blankets, seat warmers, heat from your laptop, hot showers, and saunas.

Cigarette smoking

The exposure to tobacco smoke has significant negative effects on semen quality. The damage of cigarettes and nicotine of course depends on how many cigarettes you smoke per day and for how long, but even low usage (up to 10 cigarettes / day) can inhibit healthy sperm production.  

CONCLUSION: Stay as far away from cigarette smoking as possible if you care about your general health and your fertility. Read more here.

Cell phone

When you have your cell phone in your front pocket, your testicles are exposed to electromagnetic radiation, which studies have shown to damage the sperm cells. Put your phone in the back pocket of your pants or in your jacket pocket.


There is a clear association between obesity and reduced sperm quality. At least part of the reason for this is that obese men may have abnormal reproductive hormonal profiles, which can impair sperm production and lead to infertility. 

A BMI higher than 30 can lead to several processes in the body (overheating, increase in oxidative stress in the testes, sperm DNA damage, erectile dysfunction) that can have a negative impact on male fertility. This can result in problems when trying to conceive.  

CONCLUSION: BMI is one of the risk factors that influence semen quality and, for example, sperm motility.  


A beer or glass of wine now and then do not really harm sperm quality. But excess alcohol drinking (more than 20 units per week) can reduce the production of normally formed sperm needed for a successful pregnancy.

CONCLUSION: If you want to stay safe, stay under 14 units of alcohol per week. For more information on how alcohol can affect male fertility, take a look at our blog: “Alcohol and Sperm Quality”.


Studies show that women younger than 35 and men younger than 40 have a better chance of getting pregnant. Men can produce sperm cells almost through their entire life, but the sperm cell DNA is more fragile and prone to damage after the age of 40.

As men age, their testes tend to get smaller and softer resulting in a decline in sperm quality and production. These changes are partly because of an age-related decrease in testosterone level, which plays a very important role in sperm

production. Higher male age (>40 years) is not only associated with a decline in sperm production but also with increased sperm DNA fragmentation and worsened morphology (shape) and motility (movement). These negative effects make the sperm cells less qualified for egg fertilization.

CONCLUSION: with an age under 40, you shouldn’t have to worry much about age as a factor in itself. However, studies have shown a slow decline after the age of 30-35 years

and if you are above 40 years of age, your sperm quality can be affected due to increased sperm DNA damage resulting in a decrease of sperm motility and concentration. Remember that you cannot evaluate the quality of a sperm sample by just looking at it – this requires a sperm analysis.