SEX STUFF

Semen Smoothie, Anyone?

Posted by Joshua Gonzalez on

Semen Smoothie, Anyone?

If you make a habit of keeping up with the Kardashians (and we won’t judge if you do), you may have heard a bit of controversial advice that Kourtney Kardashian got from one of her doctors recently. In an episode of “The Kardashians,” Kourtney shared that a doctor told her to drink her husband’s semen four times a week to improve her thyroid levels and increase her chances of conceiving a child. If your response to that was some version of “wtf,” you’re in good company.

As a urologist and sexual health expert, I talk about semen all day, every day, but rarely do I discuss cum consumption in terms of health benefits, curative properties or nutrient content. However, it’s not unheard of for people to extol the virtues of drinking semen, and some scientific research has been done on this topic as it relates to fertility and pregnancy or health and wellness. So, I guess I owe Kourtney a big “thank you” for giving us the opportunity to have the conversation that we’re going to have here today.


What’s in Semen Anyway?

To spit or to swallow? It’s an age-old question that’s always permeated the discussion around oral sex, but usually it’s asked in the context of personal preference or possibly taste and/or volume. Rarely does swallowing semen involve a nutritional analysis. However, seminal fluid is a rich mix of many different ingredients that the body produces in order to help move sperm along its journey from the testicles to the penis.  

First things first. Semen and sperm are not the same thing, and semen is not released from the testicles like sperm is. Semen is composed of fluids released from the seminal vesicles, prostate gland and Cowper’s glands. It contains water, fructose, glucose, sodium, citrate, zinc, chloride, proteins, prostaglandins, calcium, lactic acid, magnesium, potassium and urea. Many of these work to activate the sperm while others help to move the sperm through the male reproductive system and out the tip of the penis during ejaculation. 

Contrary to popular belief (and most pornography), the volume of semen is not huge even though it does contain a number of different components. The average amount of semen a man ejaculates ranges from a third of a teaspoon to one whole teaspoon. If you’re counting calories, you’ll be happy to know that a “serving” of semen only contains about 5 to 7 calories. And while it does have protein, or “brotein” as some have called it, the amount is quite small. If you’re looking to add protein to your diet, you’re way better off going with a scoop of protein powder. 


Is It Safe?

Is cum safe to consume? The answer to that is yes and no. The ingredients of cum are generally safe and well-tolerated in the general public. However, because semen is a bodily fluid, it can be responsible for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). These can include herpes, gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis and human papillomavirus (HPV). While it’s theoretically possible for HIV to be transmitted through semen during oral sex, evidence shows that in reality, the risk of acquiring HIV this way is very low compared to anal or vaginal sex. 

It’s important to have a conversation with your partner about STI testing and STI history to determine the risk of these infections before you engage in any type of unprotected sex, oral included. Unfortunately, for men, there is no approved test available for HPV, a virus that can cause throat and cervical cancers, even though it’s estimated that at least 75 percent of the reproductive-age population has been exposed to it at some point in their lives. 

In addition to the risk of STIs, you might find yourself to be among the vast minority of people who are allergic to semen. Although rare, an allergy to semen could cause similar symptoms to other allergies, including hives, itching, redness, swelling, pain and difficulty breathing. If you’re unsure if you’re allergic or you suspect that you might be, you can try applying a very small amount of your partner’s semen to your skin to see if there’s any type of reaction.   


Is It Healthy?

While it’s generally not unhealthy to consume semen (STIs and allergic reactions aside), there’s very little research that shows any definitive health benefits. Even if the average load was jam-packed with nutrients, feel-good chemicals and pixie dust, you’d still have to drink cups and cups, if not gallons, of the stuff. And, despite what Kourtney Kardashian’s semen-prescribing doctor says, to date, there hasn’t been any research done on drinking semen and thyroid function. 

However, some scientific studies on the consumption of semen have been done. For instance, one study of 293 female college students at the State University of New York in Albany showed that exposure to semen could possibly lower the instances of depression. They compared students who were having sex with condoms to students who were having sex without condoms, and they found that those who were raw-dogging it had fewer symptoms of depression. 

This does NOT mean you should go out and have unprotected sex nor does it mean that there is scientific proof that semen cures depression. And it’s important to note that the study only followed women who were consuming semen vaginally (so to speak), not orally, although there was evidence that some components of semen could be detected in the bloodstream within hours of exposure. 

Another study done in 2003 and published in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology showed that swallowing semen on a regular basis could lower blood pressure. Specifically, women who consumed their partner’s ejaculate while they were pregnant were less likely to have preeclampsia, a pregnancy complication where sky-high blood pressure can endanger the lives of the mother and baby.

In fact, much of the research out there about drinking semen has been done in the context of fertility and pregnancy. For instance, one study published in the Journal of Reproductive Immunology showed that oral sex was associated with a reduced incidence of miscarriages. Other research has suggested that women might be able to induce ovulation and avoid morning sickness if they regularly drink their partner’s ejaculate.

If you’ve heard that downing shots of semen can help your hair, skin, nails, teeth, libido, energy or stamina, we regret to inform you that no conclusive scientific research has been done to back those claims. However, if we do hear something through the medical grapevine, we promise you’ll be the first to know.


Bottoms Up!

It’s unclear whether Kourtney Kardashian and her husband, Travis Barker, took their doctor’s advice, so we don’t know if it worked for them or not. And even though that particular episode of “The Kardashians” created a decent amount of buzz, it’s highly unlikely that you’ll see semen smoothies being sold at your local juice bar anytime soon. 

What we do know for sure is that whether you decide to spit or swallow, oral sex is an intensely erotic act that can be an intimately bonding experience between you and your partner. If you’d like to do more swallowing than spitting, but the taste of semen is holding you back, we encourage you and your partner to try our Popstar supplement. Popstar contains bromelain, sourced from pineapples, which sweetens the flavor of semen. 


I think we can all agree to drink to that. Cheers!



 

 

 

 

References:

https://www.insider.com/kourtney-kardashian-drink-travis-barker-semen-doctor-advice-2022-5

https://hypebae.com/2022/5/kourtney-kardashian-told-to-drink-travis-barker-semen-fertility-doctor-hulu-show
https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/no-nut-november-and-the-science-of-masturbation/id1505460817?i=1000542438606

https://www.healthline.com/health/semen-calories

https://www.healthline.com/health/healthy-sex/swallowing-semen#takeaway

https://www.webmd.com/sex-relationships/how-many-nutrients-are-in-semen

https://www.sheknows.com/health-and-wellness/articles/1079514/health-benefits-of-sperm/

https://www.news-medical.net/health/Swallowing-Semen.aspx

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0165037818302183

https://www.prb.org/resources/human-papillomavirus-a-hidden-epidemic-in-the-united-states/