Shocking new research showed the pain killer ibuprofen can reduce sperm numbers and hormone levels in men.

Ibuprofen is a non-steroidal anti inflammatory and analgesic. It’s commonly used to treat fever, pain and inflammation, for conditions such as headaches, joint pain, muscle pain, menstrual pain, colds and flu. Common brand names include Advil, Brufen, Motrin and Nurofen.

An interesting study has just been published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. It found that men who took ibuprofen long term experienced changes in hormone production. Researchers from France and Denmark found that the men developed a condition called compensated hypogonadism.

Researchers asked 31 men aged between 18 and 35 years to take 600 milligrams (three tablets) of ibuprofen each day for six weeks. Another group of volunteers were given a placebo. These men typically had testosterone levels in the high-normal range and are at peak fertility. After two weeks, all of the men taking ibuprofen experienced an increase in blood levels of luteinizing hormone. This hormone is made by the pituitary gland in the brain, and levels rise when the testes are not able to produce sufficient testosterone.

Testosterone is necessary for sperm production. The researchers stated that compensated hypogonadism can cause a temporary drop in the production of sperm, reducing fertility. These effects occurred after only six weeks of use. It’s far more concerning to think that some men take ibuprofen long term for chronic health problems.

Professional athletes and men with chronic pain issues such as arthritis or headaches can develop a condition called overt primary hypogonadism. This can cause a significant drop in fertility, plus unpleasant symptoms of testosterone deficiency, such as low libido, erectile problems, reduced muscle strength, anxiety, depression and loss of motivation.

Not every man is concerned with his fertility, but no man wants to suffer the effects of low testosterone. The symptoms of low testosterone significantly reduce quality of life. Pain killers like ibuprofen are absolutely necessary sometimes, because chronic or intense pain can be unbearable. Occasional use is not a problem. If you are relying on ibuprofen regularly, please know there may be safer, natural alternatives. I have written an entire free e-book about chronic pain, which you can download hereMagnesium and serrapeptase are my favorite remedies for chronic pain because they are so highly effective at reducing pain and inflammation, and improving quality of life.