There is a lot of advice out there for couples having trouble conceiving a baby. But this one may be new:
Don’t eat meat.
According to The Wall Street Journal, a new study from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) found that “couples with higher levels of certain mostly banned chemicals, such as PCBs, in their blood took longer to get pregnant.”
How can couples avoid these chemicals? NIH News reports the answer: “By removing and avoiding the fat of meat and fish, and by limiting the consumption of animal products,” according to “the study’s first author, Germaine Buck Louis, Ph.D., Director of Epidemiology, Statistics, and Prevention Research at the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) at NIH.” (Interestingly, The Wall Street Journal’s report left out any mention of avoiding animal products, raising the question of just whose pocket it is in.)
The presence of banned chemicals in animal products doesn’t necessarily mean that companies are still using them. “They are part of a category of chemicals known as persistent organochlorine pollutants” that “are resistant to decay, and may persist in the environment for decades.” Some of them “accumulate in fatty tissues.” Animals pick them up because they linger “in soil, water, and in the food chain.”
It looks like couples who are “trying” should change their diet in addition to changing from briefs to boxers.
This isn’t the first study to find that eating animal products harms our health. NIH weighs in again to report on a study earlier this year that “adds to the evidence that eating red meat on a regular basis may shorten your lifespan.”
Fox News reported that a study this year “suggests the cholesterol in egg yolks is almost as dangerous as smoking cigarettes” because it “increased plaque buildup approximately two-thirds as much as smoking would.”
The article cited a registered dietician who said that “people should have no more than 300 milligrams of cholesterol a day.” Animal products are the only source of cholesterol. No plants contain it. And you don’t need to eat any of it at all — our bodies create it themselves.
“Dairy products — including cheese, ice cream, milk, butter, and yogurt — contribute significant amounts of cholesterol and are the number one source of saturated fat in the diet,” according to the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. They “can increase the risk of heart disease,” stress fractures, “prostate and breast cancer,” and more.
So if you want to conceive, and then live to a ripe old age to see your children grown, it might help to take a look at what you’re eating.
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