Obesity is a worldwide health problem that may impose infertility risk in males. This study was conducted to determine the effect of Zingiber zerumbet rhizome ethanolic extract (ZZREE) on sexual behaviours and sperm parameters in diet-induced obese rats. Male Sprague Dawley rats were fed with high fat diet (HFD), ad libitum daily for 6 weeks to induce obesity. Twenty obese rats were randomly divided into four groups (n = 6). A group of obese rats (n = 6) was treated orally with 1% b. wt. (bodyweight) of saline and served as a negative control. The other three groups of obese rats were treated orally with 200, 300, and 400 mg/kg b. wt. of ZZREE, respectively. In addition, a group of non-obese rats (n = 6) was treated with 1% b. wt. of saline and served as a normal control. All treatments were given once daily for 6 weeks. Upon completion of the treatments, sexual behaviours of male rats were observed. Then, all rats were sacrificed and epididymides were collected for sperm parameters analyses. Intromission latency, mount frequency (MF), and intromission frequency were improved significantly (p < 0.05) in obese rats treated with ZZREE (200, 300, and 400 mg/kg b. wt.) compared to the negative control group. Sperm count, sperm motility, and the percentage of sperm with normal morphology were increased significantly (p < 0.05) in obese rats treated with ZZREE (200, 300, and 400 mg/kg b. wt.) compared to the negative control. Therefore, it can be concluded that ZZREE exhibited positive effects in improving libido and sperm quality of HFD-induced obese rats. Further study is suggested to elucidate the mechanism involved.
Zingiber zerumbet, high fat diet, obesity, sexual behaviours, sperm parameters
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