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If you’re struggling with infertility, you may have heard about the use of serrapeptase for fertility. There is some evidence of serrapeptase benefits for fertility, which we’ll talk about more, especially if your cause of infertility relates to blocked fallopian tubes.
What Is Serrapeptase?
Before going into the specifics of serrapeptase for infertility, what is it?
Serrapeptase is an enzyme that’s derived from the silkworm. Also known as serratiopeptidase, it’s classified as a proteolytic enzyme. Proteolytic enzymes help break proteins down. This particular enzyme was initially discovered in the digestive system of silkworms. In silkworms, it’s used to dissolve cocoons to facilitate the emergence of a moth.
Research has been conducted into the benefits of serrapeptase and other proteolytic enzymes for human health. Primarily, the benefits stem from the anti-fibrotic and anti-inflammatory properties. Serrapetpase is thought to work by breaking down and reducing scar tissue in the body.
Serrapeptase Health Benefits
Some of the potential benefits of a serrapeptase supplement include:
- It’s believed to reduce inflammation in the body.
- Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, it may help alleviate pain associated with conditions like joint pain or arthritis.
- Serrapetpase has fibrinolytic activity, meaning it can help to break down fibrin. Fibrin is involved in the formation of blood clots.
- Some studies show serrapeptase is beneficial for respiratory conditions because it can reduce mucus and inflammation. It’s been explored as a supportive treatment for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and also chronic sinusitis.
- It’s used to help with wound healing because it reduces inflammation and promotes tissue repair.
- Some limited research shows that serrapeptase modulates the immune system and, as a result, could help with autoimmune symptoms.
Blocked Fallopian Tubes and Infertility
If you’re considering the use of serrapeptase for fertility, you might wonder about the mechanism of action that allows it to be potentially helpful in this area. There are a few ways that serrapeptase can support fertility, but one of the main ones is its ability to affect blocked fallopian tubes positively.
Blocked fallopian tubes are a condition where one or both fallopian tubes are partially or entirely obstructed. The fallopian tubes connect the ovaries to the uterus. They’re the pathway for the egg to travel from your ovary to the uterus, making them critical to fertility. Fertilization also usually occurs in the fallopian tubes.
There are numerous reasons that a woman can have blocked fallopian tubes, including:
- Pelvic inflammatory disease: Infections, such as sexually transmitted infections like chlamydia, can cause inflammation and scarring in the fallopian tubes that lead to blockages.
- Endometriosis: In this condition, the tissue lining the uterus grows outside of it, which can cause blockages if it grows on or around the fallopian tubes.
- Pelvic surgery: Having previous pelvic surgeries to treat ovarian cysts or ectopic pregnancy can lead to scarring and block the fallopian tubes.
- Adhesions: An adhesion is scar tissue that forms between the pelvic organs, which includes the fallopian tubes, because of inflammation or previous surgeries.
- Congenital defects: In rare cases, the fallopian tubes may be blocked because of congenital abnormalities in the structure of the fallopian tubes.
Blocked fallopian tubes can significantly impact fertility, hindering the normal conception process. The fallopian tubes play a role in reproduction because they provide a path for the sperm to reach the egg and the embryo, which is the fertilized egg, to travel to the uterus for implantation.
Whether one or both fallopian tubes are blocked, fertility issues can occur, including the following:
- Blocked fallopian tubes can keep the egg and sperm from meeting, which is needed for fertilization to happen. If the egg released from the ovary can’t pass through a blocked tube to reach the sperm that’s waiting in the fallopian tube, fertilization won’t take place.
- Even if fertilization does occur, a blocked fallopian tube can prevent the embryo, which is the fertilized egg, from reaching the uterus, where it would otherwise be implanted. This can cause an ectopic pregnancy, which is where the embryo implants and starts growing outside of the uterus, usually in the fallopian tube. Ectopic pregnancies aren’t viable and can be life-threatening without prompt treatment.
- In cases where there’s not an ectopic pregnancy but one fallopian tube is blocked, there’s a higher risk of miscarriage because of compromised fertility or abnormal embryo development. These risks are due to factors like scarring and inflammation.
- Even if there’s fertilization occurring outside of the fallopian tubes, such as during IVF, blocked tubes can still be a sign of underlying fertility issues, which can affect outcomes in different ways.
Is Serrapeptase Useful for Fertility?
There are some ways that serrapeptase for fertility could be helpful. There’s not a lot of research to back up these claims right now, but the mechanisms through which serrapeptase could help fertility include:
- Serrapeptase has anti-inflammatory effects. Inflammation can contribute to scar tissue and blockages in the fallopian tubes. By reducing inflammation, serrapeptase could help alleviate blockages and improve the function of the fallopian tubes, enhancing fertility.
- The fibrinolytic activity of serrapeptase is an integral part of its ability to help with fertility. It breaks down fibrin, which is a protein that’s involved in blood clotting and the formation of scar tissue. If someone has scar tissue or adhesions that are causing blockages in the fallopian tubes, serrapeptase might, in theory, help dissolve the obstructions, which allows for an improvement in the passage of eggs and sperm.
- The proteolytic activity of serrapeptase supplements may promote tissue remodeling and repair. The supplement can break down proteins within scar tissue, which, in theory, could promote the restriction of the fallopian tubes, reducing blockages and restoring normal function.
- Serrapeptase can thin and clear mucus because it breaks down the mucus proteins. In fertility, this could improve the ability of sperm to pass through the cervix and fallopian tubes, enhancing the likelihood of fertilization.
The primary benefits of serrapeptase for fertility are thought to stem from its proteolytic activity, which means protein digestion. Scar tissue is mainly made up of collagen, a protein that forms during wound healing. Serrapeptase can break down proteins like collagen that form the main components of scar tissue.
Specifically, a serrapeptase supplement can target and hydrolyze the peptide bonds in proteins, leading to their fragmentation and breakdown. Enzymes like serrapeptase have specific active sites that recognize and cleave peptide bonds.
By breaking down proteins that makeup scar tissue, the supplement may help with tissue remodeling and repair, softening and reducing the size of scar tissue. Additionally, since serrapeptase has anti-inflammatory properties, this may further its benefits in reducing the formation of scar tissue. Inflammation can contribute to excessive scar formation.
How to Take Serrapeptase for Fertility
There’s not any specific guidance about things like how to take serrapeptase for blocked tubes, but in general, whether you’re taking it for infertility or other reasons, doses of serrapeptase range from 10,000 to 120,000 international units (IU) per day, in divided doses. Some manufacturers recommend starting with a low dose and gradually increasing it.
It’s also recommended to take serrapeptase on an empty stomach for the best absorption and effectiveness. When you take it without food, it can pass through the stomach and then the small intestine more efficiently, so it can then be absorbed into the bloodstream. When you take serrapeptase on an empty stomach, it’s less likely to encounter food that would negatively impact its absorption or activity.
Are There Risks of Taking Serrapeptase for Fertility?
As a supplement, serrapeptase is generally considered safe. Still, there are some potential risks and side effects to be aware of, which include:
- Gastrointestinal effects are typically mild and can include abdominal discomfort, diarrhea or nausea.
- Allergic reactions are rare but possible.
- Since serrapeptase has fibrinolytic activity, which means it can dissolve blood clots, it can increase the risk of bleeding. If you have a bleeding disorder or take anticoagulant medicines, be aware of this risk.
- Serrapeptase may interfere with blood thinners, aspirin or clopidogrel. It could also interact with specific immunosuppressants or antibiotics.
Other Proteolytic Enzymes for Fertility
Serrapeptase is one of many proteolytic enzymes that has been studied for infertility benefits, including blocked fallopian tubes. Other proteolytic enzymes that may help with blocked fallopian tubes and fertility include:
- Bromelain is a proteolytic enzyme from pineapple. It’s thought to reduce inflammation and swelling, and some studies suggest it can also help break down scar tissue and blockages in the fallopian tubes.
- Nattokinase comes from fermented soybeans, primarily from natto, a Japanese food. Nattokinase is known for its fibrinolytic activity and ability to dissolve blood clots. It also promotes fertility by reducing inflammation and improving blood flow.
- Papain is an enzyme from papaya fruit, and it may help with inflammation.
- Trypsin and chymotrypsin are naturally produced in the pancreas and play a role in protein digestion. Synthetic forms of these enzymes may help with tissue damage and inflammation, and their properties are similar to the activity of serrapeptase.
Serrapeptase Benefits for Fertility—Frequently Asked Questions
Below are brief answers to some of the most common questions about how to take serrapeptase for blocked tubes and how to take serrapeptase for fertility.
Is serrapeptase effective for improving fertility?
It is suggested that serrapeptase has benefits for fertility because of its proteolytic and anti-inflammatory properties. Some people may explore its use as a complementary therapy if they’re dealing with blocked tubes or fertility issues. Still, it’s not a replacement for evidence-based treatment recommended by a healthcare professional.
Can serrapeptase help with blocked fallopian tubes?
Some research suggests serrapeptase can help with blocked fallopian tubes, supporting fertility. The proteolytic activity may dissolve scar tissue or blockages in the fallopian tubes.
How should serrapeptase be taken for fertility?
Serrapeptase is best taken on an empty stomach, usually one to two hours before or after meals, for optimal absorption. Recommended doses vary but typically range from 10,000 to 120,000 IU a day in divided doses. Follow the instructions of the supplement manufacturer.
Are there any risks or side effects associated with taking serrapeptase for fertility?
Serrapeptase is considered safe for most people when taken as directed, but mild side effects are possible, such as stomach upset. It may also increase the risk of bleeding, especially if you take an anticoagulant.
Can serrapeptase be taken during pregnancy or breastfeeding?
Limited information exists about the safety of supplementing with serrapeptase when pregnant and breastfeeding. Avoid taking it as a precaution unless specifically recommended by a healthcare professional.
How long does it take to see results when taking serrapeptase for fertility?
The time it takes to see results when taking serrapeptase for fertility or blocked fallopian tubes can depend on individual factors, such as the underlying causes of fertility issues. Some people experience improvements in symptoms or fertility outcomes within a few weeks or months of supplementing, while others might not notice any significant differences.
Serrapeptase for Fertility—Final Thoughts
There is some promising evidence to suggest that serrapeptase pregnancy success is possible, primarily if the cause of infertility is related to scar tissue and blocked tubes. With that being said, there’s no guarantee that serrapeptase will be beneficial in every situation. You should also speak to your healthcare provider first and foremost about any fertility issues or questions you have about supplements.