Beli Prenatals are HSA/FSA eligible!

Should Men Take Prenatal Vitamins?

Medically reviewed by Dr. Darren Bryk, MD, Urologist at the University of Virginia Urology Center, specializing in men's health/fertility.

Lots of guys pop a daily multivitamin. It’s a good way to fill in any nutritional gaps, and it fits in nicely with general health goals, like trying to eat well and exercise. And maybe your multivitamin works okay-ish — probably? You think? — but things are different now that you’re ready to start a family. If you’ve heard about prenatal vitamins for men, you probably have questions.

Table of Contents:

Key Takeaways

    • The health of a man before conception affects his partner's pregnancy and the health of their baby.
    • Supplementing with male prenatals helps ensure optimal sperm health to support conception, healthy pregnancy and long term health of your baby.
    • Men need specific nutrients in key amounts to promote healthy sperm, so they shouldn't take a prenatal designed for women.
    • Men should look for specific ingredients in a prenatal designed to optimize fertility health— a multivitamin won't do the trick.
    • If possible, start taking a male prenatal about three months before you hope to conceive and plan to continue through your partner's pregnancy and even shortly after your baby's birth.
    • Prioritize a healthy lifestyle to support your preconception health.

How Do Men's Prenatal Vitamins Support Fertility?

Here’s the thing — when you’re trying for a baby, nutrition matters. Science tells us that a future dad’s health during the three to four months before conception directly impacts his partners ability to conceive, pregnancy and the lifelong health of their baby. Supplementing with key nutrients in the right amounts not only improves men's fertility health— think sperm count and sperm motility — it means optimal sperm health for men in general.  Fertility health is absolutely in your control, so yes, men should take prenatal vitamins (1). But if you’re not entirely sold just yet, let’s see what else the science says.

The Role of Prenatal Vitamins for Men

We all know and accept that women should be taking prenatal vitamins to ensure they’re getting all the nutrients they need to support conception and pregnancy. It makes sense, right? The same is true for men — it’s just not as mainstream an idea for most of us yet (ahem, team Beli excluded).

The difference between men’s and women’s prenatals is in the ingredients themselves. The whole point of men’s prenatals is to underpin male fertility and promote healthy sperm, and that calls for key ingredients in the right amounts. And no, your multivitamin isn’t cutting it (and to be clear, prenatals designed for women aren't doing you any favors either, no matter what those ads say). Actually, most of the multivitamin blends on the market are only kind of aligned with current nutrition research as it is, and more vitamin companies than you think are putting other, less noble concerns before your health.

That means you have two challenges. First, you need to find a men’s prenatal that’s specifically designed to support healthy sperm and men's fertility health. And second, you need to find a men’s prenatal that’s doing things the right way, which means using productive amounts of high-quality, bioavailable ingredients that are scientifically proven to actually do something.

Nutrients to Look for in Men’s Prenatal Vitamins

Understanding that specific nutrients matter is one thing, but knowing precisely what to look for is another. Let’s make this simple. An effective men’s prenatal vitamin should include the following nutrients.

CoQ10

This antioxidant plays an essential role in the function of metabolism, and it has been shown (2) to improve fertilization rates after just a few weeks. It’s also effective for increasing sperm motility (3).

Methylated folate

It’s long been established that folate plays a key role in reproductive health. For men, methylated folate (which is the active and most bioavailable form of folate) has been linked to greater sperm count and health. One study (4) found low folate levels in semen to be associated with poor sperm DNA stability. The takeaway? Men hoping to conceive should be taking folate daily.

Wondering about the difference between folate and folic acid, or how 5-MTHF fits into it all? They're all a form of vitamin B9, but they aren't the same. We've got an entire post explaining it all.

Vitamins C, E, B6 and B12

These antioxidants are key for boosting (5) sperm quantity, motility (6) and morphology. They also help protect sperm from damage from free radicals. Plus, they complement other key antioxidants, including CoQ10 and selenium.

Vitamin D

The sunshine vitamin is technically a hormone, and it affects our body’s absorption of other nutrients (think calcium, phosphate, and magnesium). In the world of male fertility, low vitamin D levels (7) have been associated with poor sperm quality. The reverse is also true — supplementing with vitamin D (8) is linked to better sperm.

It's true that exposure to the sun is the best way to get vitamin D, but most of us can't get enough sun for adequate amounts of this key vitamin. That's where supplementing comes in.

L-Carnitine

This is another compound associated with higher fertilization rates (9) and better quality sperm. And just like CoQ10, it helps support the body's metabolism.

Selenium

Another antioxidant, selenium has been shown to increase multiple sperm parameters (10) for stronger, more effective swimmers, including in infertile men. In combination with vitamins A, E, or C, selenium has been shown to increase sperm quality overall.

N-acetyl-L-Cysteine

NAC has been shown to improve multiple sperm parameters (11), including count, motility, and morphology.

Zinc

This is another important nutrient for male fertility, with multiple studies (12) linking zinc supplementation to improved sperm motility, functional sperm morphology, and increased sperm volume. Low zinc levels (13) are common in some men trying to conceive.

L-Arginine

An amino acid necessary for the production of sperm, L-arginine has been shown to improve sperm quality (14). 

L-Taurine

Recent studies (15) have linked low levels of taurine, another antioxidant, to poor fertility health.

Shilajit

Color us surprised, but Beli is the only men's prenatal that includes Shilajit, the ancient Ayurvedic adaptogen that has been shown to increase sperm count, motility, and serum testosterone. It’s a literal powerhouse with a laundry list of additional benefits, including increased energy and endurance, improved athletic performance, improve concentration and brain health, and more.

The best mens prenatal vitamin

You’ll find all of these nutrients in Beli Vitality for Men, a scientifically-aligned men’s prenatal supplement that uses bioavailable ingredients in effective amounts. It’s simple, really. We based our formula on the latest research regarding men’s fertility nutrition, and in the process, we unearthed several key nutrients noticeably absent from most men’s multivitamins. If the goal is a baby, complete nutrition is important. And for men, just as for women, the right prenatal vitamin shouldn’t be an afterthought.

When should I start taking a men's prenatal vitamin?

Good question! If a baby is a plan, it's time for the both of you to start taking prenatal vitamins. It takes new sperm roughly three months to fully mature, and you want to ensure they've got all of the nutrition they need to be as strong and healthy as possible. Ideally, you should begin taking men's prenatals about three months before you hope to conceive.

How Long Should I Take a Men's Prenatal Supplement?

Wondering when to stop popping that prenatal? Men should plan to continue taking male prenatal supplements through their partner's pregnancy. Many men experience a steep drop in testosterone during the latter stages of their partner's pregnancy and after the baby's birth, which can be detrimental to mood and energy levels and lead to issues like to reduced sex drive, reduced emotional resilience, and even paternal postpartum depression. The same quality men’s prenatal you started taking preconception can help keep tester one levels stable to avoid this scenario.

What else I can do to support my fertility health?

There's more to good health that just a men's prenatal (even if it is from Beli!). From adequate sleep to cleaning up your diet, cutting back on alcohol and caffeine to regular exercise, there's quite a bit you can do to boost male fertility. Check out our tips for stacking the deck.

Article Resources

Scovell J et al. (2014). Should men take prenatal vitamins?https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4352710/

Vishvkarma R et al. (2020). Coenzyme Q10 effect on sperm parameters: profound or meagre? https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/and.13570

Lewin A et al. (1997). The effect of coenzyme Q10 on sperm motility and function. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/9266524/

Boxmeer J et al. (2009). Low folate in seminal plasma is associated with increased sperm DNA damage. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18722602/

Colagar, A et al. (2009). Ascorbic acid in human seminal plasma: determination and its relationship to sperm quality. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2735625

Ahmadi S et al. (2016). Antioxidant supplements and semen parameters: an evidence-based review. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28066832/

Jensen M et al. (2016). Low vitamin D deficiency and low ionized calcium are linked with semen quality and sex steroid levels in infertile men. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27496946/

Angelis C et al. (2017). The role of vitamin D in male fertility: a focus on the testis. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11154-017-9425-0

Wu, Z et al. (2012). Short-term medication of L-carnitine before intracytoplasmic sperm injection for infertile men with oligoasthenozoospermia. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22474993/

Moslemi M et al. (2011). Selenium–vitamin E supplementation in infertile men: effects on semen parameters and pregnancy rate. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3048346/

Jannatifar, R et al. (2019). Selenium–vitamin E supplementation in infertile men: effects on semen parameters and pregnancy rate. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6377938/

Wong W et al. (2002). Effects of folic acid and zinc sulfate on male factor subfertility: a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11872201/

Fallah A et al. (2018). Zinc is an Essential Element for Male Fertility: A Review of Zn Roles in Men’s Health, Germination, Sperm Quality, and Fertilization. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6010824/

Stanislavov R et al. (2014). Sperm quality in men is improved by supplementation with a combination of L-arginine, L-citrullin, roburins and Pycnogenol®. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25531191/

Taurine deficiency in sperm causes male infertility. (2018).  https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/05/180511102357.htm

 

Any statement made on Belibaby.com has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. We recommend consulting with your medical provider before starting any new supplement.

This article is for informational purposes only, even if and regardless of whether it features the advice of physicians and medical practitioners. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice. The views expressed in this article are the views of the expert and do not necessarily represent the views of Beli.

Additional Resources

Men really do benefit from specialized nutrition in the form of a prenatal vitamin that’s formulated to support sperm health. Here’s what that looks like, and how specific nutrients can impact a man’s fertility health before fatherhood.

Read More

Shilajit is finally getting the credit it’s due, and we’re proud to point out that our proprietary formula was the very first to include this powerful Ayurvedic compound. Here’s why shilajit is rapidly becoming the darling of the male fertility world–and what you’re missing if you’re skipping it.

Read More

Ever wondered why men produce so much darn sperm, especially if only one of them will ultimately fertilize the egg? There are millions of sperm in normal ejaculate because it increases the likelihood that one will reach the egg and seal the deal. It begs the question, what exactly happens on the journey to the egg?

Read More

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A shot to the balls may be played for laughs on screen, but testicular impacts really aren’t a joke. Worse case scenario, getting hit in the balls can affect fertility thanks to complications like sexual dysfunction, low testosterone and other issues. Let's discuss.

Read More

With the New Year upon us, there are all kinds of articles and videos making the rounds with predictions of the Zodiac signs most likely to get pregnant in 2024. But here at Beli, we take a much more scientific approach to conception. Here are the top eight things people will do to get pregnant in 2024.

Read More

Research shows that the overall health of both biological parents during the preconception window plays a huge role in everything from conception to pregnancy health to the lifetime health of their baby. Luckily, there are simple steps you can both take to improve your health together.

Read More

When it comes to becoming parents, good habits really will take you where you want to go. Now, new science is giving us insight into exactly how long it takes to form those good habits. We're breaking down all the ways you can build healthy habits to boost your chances of conception. Think of it as life-hacking, but for grown-ups.

Read More

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Read More

Here at Beli, we’re working hard to raise awareness of the important role men play in the baby-making equation, which brings us to today’s topic of men’s preconception health and specifically, sperm health. Knowing what you’re working with can save you a lot of time, but is at-home sperm testing considered an important part of men’s preconception health? Let’s break it down.

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There’s a certain magic to the holiday season, whether you’re all-in on the decorations and the family time or a self-proclaimed Scrooge from mid-November to the New Year. But when you’re trying to conceive, it can be a challenging time.  We’re sharing five tips for managing the holidays when you’re trying to conceive.

Read More

Everyone knows that alcohol and pregnancy don’t mix. But what about before you’re pregnant, during the trying-to-conceive stage? There’s no evidence that the occasional drink—i.e. one or two a week—is going to torpedo your chances of parenthood. But it is true that the more you drink, the greater the likelihood it will have an effect on your health. Here’s what the research says about alcohol and your fertility.

Read More

You’re clear on the mechanics of making a baby, but how much do you really know about conception and fertility? There are a lot of wild stories, downright falsehoods and notions that are actually rooted in a kernel of truth out there. In the interest of sticking to the facts, we’re debunking 15 of the most common myths about conception and fertility.

Read More

When you’re knocking boots in an effort to get knocked up, timing is everything. Your best chance of conceiving is during the most fertile time of your menstrual cycle—when you ovulate. The key is figuring out exactly when that happens. Fortunately, you have a few ways of detecting ovulation. Here’s what to know about understanding ovulation and timing sex for pregnancy.

Read More

You have big plans for parenthood in 2024, which means this is the time to start laying the groundwork for everything to come. While so much of conception is beyond our control, there are actionable steps you and your partner can take right now to support and nourish your fertility.

Read More

Is there anything worse than the two-week wait? All the listicles out there sensibly advise keeping busy and journaling and talking it out, but we’re sharing more specific recommendations collected from the Beli community. Read on for seven tips for surviving the two-week wait without losing your mind.

Read More

Heard the one about ice baths and testosterone? Spoiler: there's little to no research behind that idea. Here’s what to know about cold plunges and male fertility, according to the research, plus where you should really focus your efforts if you’re trying to improve sperm health.

Read More

As a society, we’re an impatient bunch, and that applies to pregnancy, too. The second you decide it’s time to try for a baby, you’re ready to see those two pink lines. If you’ve recently tossed the birth control and you’re wondering how long it should take to get pregnant, here's what to know.

Read More

Jimmy Fallon. Hugh Jackman. Mark Zuckerberg. Keith Urban. Gordon Ramsey. Kyle Busch. Besides immediate name recognition, what else do these men have in common? They’ve all struggled with infertility issues—and it’s something they’re all talking about publicly. Here's why that matters.

Read More

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While it’s true that popular hair loss meds work minor miracles on that receding hairline and back-of-the-head bald patch, it’s also true that it can come with side effects—some of them sexual. So, what does that mean in terms of male fertility? Here’s what couples should understand about the effects of popular hair-loss medications on sperm health.

Read More

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Read More

When you’re pregnant, of course, you’re told to limit your caffeine consumption. But what about when you’re trying to conceive? Can too much caffeine affect your chances of conception as a couple? It's a good idea to cut back—which means you need to be really clear about sneaky sources of caffeine in your diet.

Read More

Here at Beli, we’re staunch advocates of supporting men's fertility health in anticipation of fatherhood. In fact, our men’s prenatal vitamin, Beli Vitality for Men, is actually our flagship product. Today, we’re diving into the obvious and unexpected benefits of prenatal vitamins for men, starting with what actually happens when you start taking them.

Read More

Forbes Health recently reviewed our men's prenatal vitamins and we love author Leigh Weingus' take: "Beli Men Vitality Multivitamins first caught my eye because while I often see supplements that claim to improve fertility outcomes for women, I rarely see the same thing for men." We hear you, Leigh! Check out the full review here and read on for some highlights.

Read More

Everyone responds to supplementation (not to mention pregnancy!) differently, which is one reason that how you feel isn’t a clue into whether or not your prenatal vitamin is actually working. Instead, you need to be confident about the prenatal vitamin itself, and there are a few things you’ll want to look for.

Read More

We’re back with our second post in our “It Starts With The Sperm” mini series on the key roles sperm plays in conception, pregnancy and baby, and this time, we’re talking DNA. When it comes to male fertility, it’s not enough to have a high sperm count and top marks for motility and morphology. Without low levels of DNA fragmentation, a man’s fertility—along with his ability to successfully conceive with a partner—is affected.

Read More

Men really do benefit from specialized nutrition in the form of a prenatal vitamin that’s formulated to support sperm health. Here’s what that looks like, and how specific nutrients can impact a man’s fertility health before fatherhood.

Read More

Shilajit is finally getting the credit it’s due, and we’re proud to point out that our proprietary formula was the very first to include this powerful Ayurvedic compound. Here’s why shilajit is rapidly becoming the darling of the male fertility world–and what you’re missing if you’re skipping it.

Read More

Ever wondered why men produce so much darn sperm, especially if only one of them will ultimately fertilize the egg? There are millions of sperm in normal ejaculate because it increases the likelihood that one will reach the egg and seal the deal. It begs the question, what exactly happens on the journey to the egg?

Read More

A shot to the balls may be played for laughs on screen, but testicular impacts really aren’t a joke. Worse case scenario, getting hit in the balls can affect fertility thanks to complications like sexual dysfunction, low testosterone and other issues. Let's discuss.

Read More

With the New Year upon us, there are all kinds of articles and videos making the rounds with predictions of the Zodiac signs most likely to get pregnant in 2024. But here at Beli, we take a much more scientific approach to conception. Here are the top eight things people will do to get pregnant in 2024.

Read More

Research shows that the overall health of both biological parents during the preconception window plays a huge role in everything from conception to pregnancy health to the lifetime health of their baby. Luckily, there are simple steps you can both take to improve your health together.

Read More

When it comes to becoming parents, good habits really will take you where you want to go. Now, new science is giving us insight into exactly how long it takes to form those good habits. We're breaking down all the ways you can build healthy habits to boost your chances of conception. Think of it as life-hacking, but for grown-ups.

Read More

Here at Beli, we’re working hard to raise awareness of the important role men play in the baby-making equation, which brings us to today’s topic of men’s preconception health and specifically, sperm health. Knowing what you’re working with can save you a lot of time, but is at-home sperm testing considered an important part of men’s preconception health? Let’s break it down.

Read More

There’s a certain magic to the holiday season, whether you’re all-in on the decorations and the family time or a self-proclaimed Scrooge from mid-November to the New Year. But when you’re trying to conceive, it can be a challenging time.  We’re sharing five tips for managing the holidays when you’re trying to conceive.

Read More

Everyone knows that alcohol and pregnancy don’t mix. But what about before you’re pregnant, during the trying-to-conceive stage? There’s no evidence that the occasional drink—i.e. one or two a week—is going to torpedo your chances of parenthood. But it is true that the more you drink, the greater the likelihood it will have an effect on your health. Here’s what the research says about alcohol and your fertility.

Read More

You’re clear on the mechanics of making a baby, but how much do you really know about conception and fertility? There are a lot of wild stories, downright falsehoods and notions that are actually rooted in a kernel of truth out there. In the interest of sticking to the facts, we’re debunking 15 of the most common myths about conception and fertility.

Read More

When you’re knocking boots in an effort to get knocked up, timing is everything. Your best chance of conceiving is during the most fertile time of your menstrual cycle—when you ovulate. The key is figuring out exactly when that happens. Fortunately, you have a few ways of detecting ovulation. Here’s what to know about understanding ovulation and timing sex for pregnancy.

Read More

You have big plans for parenthood in 2024, which means this is the time to start laying the groundwork for everything to come. While so much of conception is beyond our control, there are actionable steps you and your partner can take right now to support and nourish your fertility.

Read More

Welcome to our little corner of common fertility and pregnancy terms! We know that jargon can be overwhelming, so consider this your very own baby-making dictionary. Here, confusing medical terms transform into easy-to-understand facts that help you confidently navigate your family planning journey. 

Read More

Is there anything worse than the two-week wait? All the listicles out there sensibly advise keeping busy and journaling and talking it out, but we’re sharing more specific recommendations collected from the Beli community. Read on for seven tips for surviving the two-week wait without losing your mind.

Read More

Heard the one about ice baths and testosterone? Spoiler: there's little to no research behind that idea. Here’s what to know about cold plunges and male fertility, according to the research, plus where you should really focus your efforts if you’re trying to improve sperm health.

Read More

As a society, we’re an impatient bunch, and that applies to pregnancy, too. The second you decide it’s time to try for a baby, you’re ready to see those two pink lines. If you’ve recently tossed the birth control and you’re wondering how long it should take to get pregnant, here's what to know.

Read More

Jimmy Fallon. Hugh Jackman. Mark Zuckerberg. Keith Urban. Gordon Ramsey. Kyle Busch. Besides immediate name recognition, what else do these men have in common? They’ve all struggled with infertility issues—and it’s something they’re all talking about publicly. Here's why that matters.

Read More

While it’s true that popular hair loss meds work minor miracles on that receding hairline and back-of-the-head bald patch, it’s also true that it can come with side effects—some of them sexual. So, what does that mean in terms of male fertility? Here’s what couples should understand about the effects of popular hair-loss medications on sperm health.

Read More

A few years ago, the keto diet was all the rage—a high-fat, low-carb way to shed pounds quickly. While it’s lost a bit of its luster, as all diet trends do, interest in the keto diet remains. Specifically, those hoping to become parents wonder whether following this way of eating could support fertility. Is a diet high in fat and low in carbs the answer? It’s possible. Here’s what to know about the keto diet and whether it might help support fertility.

Read More

When you’re pregnant, of course, you’re told to limit your caffeine consumption. But what about when you’re trying to conceive? Can too much caffeine affect your chances of conception as a couple? It's a good idea to cut back—which means you need to be really clear about sneaky sources of caffeine in your diet.

Read More

Here at Beli, we’re staunch advocates of supporting men's fertility health in anticipation of fatherhood. In fact, our men’s prenatal vitamin, Beli Vitality for Men, is actually our flagship product. Today, we’re diving into the obvious and unexpected benefits of prenatal vitamins for men, starting with what actually happens when you start taking them.

Read More

Forbes Health recently reviewed our men's prenatal vitamins and we love author Leigh Weingus' take: "Beli Men Vitality Multivitamins first caught my eye because while I often see supplements that claim to improve fertility outcomes for women, I rarely see the same thing for men." We hear you, Leigh! Check out the full review here and read on for some highlights.

Read More

Everyone responds to supplementation (not to mention pregnancy!) differently, which is one reason that how you feel isn’t a clue into whether or not your prenatal vitamin is actually working. Instead, you need to be confident about the prenatal vitamin itself, and there are a few things you’ll want to look for.

Read More

We’re back with our second post in our “It Starts With The Sperm” mini series on the key roles sperm plays in conception, pregnancy and baby, and this time, we’re talking DNA. When it comes to male fertility, it’s not enough to have a high sperm count and top marks for motility and morphology. Without low levels of DNA fragmentation, a man’s fertility—along with his ability to successfully conceive with a partner—is affected.

Read More