Why Men Should Think Twice Before Drinking Mountain Dew

Mountain Dew is known for its lime green color and high caffeine content. It's also associated with a popular theory that drinking it can kill your sperm. According to the rumor mill, two of the main ingredients in Mountain Dew, Yellow No. 5 and caffeine, can negatively affect fertility. Is this true?

Let's start by looking at how these two ingredients on their own can affect sperm. In 2017, the Nutrition Journal reviewed 28 studies that looked at the effects of caffeine and coffee on the male sperm count. While some evidence suggested that consuming large amounts of caffeine could negatively affect sperm quality and count, researchers concluded that their findings were not consistent enough to be conclusive.

What about Yellow No. 5? Also called tartrazine, this additive is what gives Mountain Dew its signature yellow color (via Healthline). While there have not been many studies on tartrazine's effect on fertility, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the dye safe for human consumption. There is currently no evidence to suggest it can reduce your sperm count.

Is Mountain Dew safe for men to drink?

If we're just talking about fertility, yes. The belief that Mountain Dew can kill your sperm is a myth. When it comes to caffeine content, you would need to drink about 11 cans of 12-ounce sodas to have any negative effect on your sperm (via Healthline). Even then, this would only have a potential effect on your sperm's motility, which is its ability to move around. It would not lower your sperm count.

This isn't to say that men should chug Mountain Dew like water. This beverage is very high in sugar, which can increase your risk of diabetes and obesity. And with 54 mg of caffeine in a 12-ounce serving, it contains more caffeine than many other sodas. High amounts of caffeine can affect your sleep and make you anxious or irritable.

It's best to enjoy this carbonated beverage sparingly. Many factors can affect your sperm count, so living an overall healthy lifestyle is the best way to ensure you aren't hindering your fertility.