Top 5 reasons that may affect fertility

4 December 2013

The road to conception is often harder than couples anticipate. It can be very frustrating. Sunshine Coast’s Coastal IVF’s goal is to provide women with every chance to experience the joy of a healthy conception. Here are 6 potential reasons for infertility, many of which are affected by environment and lifestyle.

Obesity (source @) There is also a direct link between obesity and fertility issues. Scientists believe insulin resistance (IR) is one culprit. Just as obesity causes IR leading to type 2 diabetes, it can also affect ovulation because of insulin's impact on the ovary directly. Only 5% loss of body weight can increase in ovulation rates and reduces biochemical abnormalities.

  1. Excessive Exercise (*source). There is a link between excessive exercise and infertility. Women with normal weights - those with body mass indexes (BMI) under 25 - who exercise vigorously are more likely to experience fertility issues. On the contrary, women of all body weights who exercise moderately have increased rates of conception.
  2. Caffeine. (source =) One of the first things you and your partner can do to increase your chances of conception is limit your caffeine intake. Sperm count and ovulation are affected in those who consume more than two cups of caffeine (this includes soft drink). Women begin to experience decreased muscle activity in their fallopian tubes. Dutch researchers studied 9,000 women and found those who drink 4+ caffeinated beverages per day have a 26% less chance of conceiving.
  3. Pesticides. (source%) While direct exposure to pesticides has been a known environment fertility factor for decades, it's only in recent years that a link between pesticide consumption and fertility issues has been proven. Ingested pesticides can cause low sperm count. Washing fruit & vegetables will reduce your level of absorbed pesticides, but not remove it entirely.
  4. Soy Products. (source +) Soy contains natural estrogen, hence menopausal women benefiting from increased soy intake. However, this very mild estrogen source is enough to decrease male sperm count by as much as 32% for men who consume soy on a regular basis.
  5. Low-fat dairy (source &). Harvard researchers identified a connection between women who consume two or more low-fat dairy products having a 85% higher chance of ovulation-related fertility problems. On the flip side, women who consume one or more servings of whole-fat dairy products are 50% less likely to experience ovulation problems.

By eliminating these environmental fertility related factors, your chances of conceiving may increase. Please contact Coastal IVF for additional information or to help schedule an appointment with Dr Paul Stokes.