Help Protect Your Body from Toxins Shown to Impact Fertility.
How to Protect Your Body from Toxins Shown to Impact Fertility – Environmental toxins are so commonplace in our world that there is no way to completely eliminate them.
Avoid them. They come from industrial pollutants, hormones and chemicals added to foods, plastics, pesticides, drugs, and more. Research shows many chemicals can affect your health and reproductive system. It is suspected that nearly 40% of the pesticides used in commercial agriculture are hormone disruptors.
Hormone disruptors from pollutants, estrogen exposure in the womb, chemical residues in food, water, and plastics are linked to fertility problems in both sexes. Multiple exposures to toxins can disrupt conception efforts for both partners, potentially affecting ovulation and lowering sperm count and viability.
How Do Environmental Toxins Disrupt Fertility?
Hormone disruptors in toxins can affect your endocrine system. They alter the production and breakdown of your own hormones and the function of your hormone receptors—disrupting balance at its core. They can even compete for hormone receptor sites in the body and bind to them in place of natural hormones, causing fluctuations in your hormonal levels that can impact reproductive health.
When it comes to fertility, toxins can have several debilitating effects: they can change a woman’s hormone balance and affect the menstrual cycle. They can accelerate the aging of eggs. Environmental toxins can affect sperm counts or quality.
Learn what steps to take to reduce overall exposure to toxins.
Environmental toxins are all around us: in the water, air, soil, consumer products, and in our food. We are all exposed to toxins to varying degrees, and these agents can affect fertility in both men and women.
People who live in polluted areas or who work with toxins such as pesticides, organic chemicals, heavy metals, and radiation are at the greatest risk of toxin exposure. Environmental toxins can have variable effects on your body, including fatigue, headaches, joint pains, nausea, and an increased risk of cancer.
When it comes to fertility, toxins can have several debilitating effects:
- They can change a woman’s hormone balance and affect the menstrual cycle.
- They can accelerate the aging of eggs.
- Environmental toxins can affect sperm counts or quality.
- During early pregnancy, they can increase the risk of miscarriage or birth defects.
- Later in pregnancy, they can affect the growth of the fetus.
While we cannot completely eliminate our exposure to toxins, we can take measures to try to minimize our overall exposure.
- Choose healthy foods with less pesticide exposure, which may include local produce and organic foods.
- Minimize processed and fast foods.
- To minimize chemical and other toxin exposure in the home or workplace,
- When working with chemicals or toxins, wear gloves, goggles, and other protective equipment.
- Stay current with any monitoring program in the workplace.
- Read labels on cleaning solutions and gardening products.
- Minimize eating deep-sea fish such as swordfish, sharks, king mackerel, and tilefish, all of which have a more concentrated level of mercury.
- Check for lead-based paint in your home (in older homes).
The Chemical Link to Male Fertility Problems
A healthy human male produces about 1500 sperm with every heartbeat. However, studies show sperm counts have dropped on average by more than half over the last 50 years. Sperm are very rich in lipids and are sensitive to free radical damage and pollutants. In one study, high free radical levels in the male reproductive tract were linked to infertility in 40% of men. In another study, a significant decline in sperm quality was seen in men with high exposure to three pesticides: alachlor, diazinon, and atrazine, all found in water supplies.
Long-term exposure to solvents like paint, printing presses, and dry cleaning chemicals is also linked to male fertility problems. Over 1,000 workplace chemicals have been linked to reproductive problems. Hormone disruptors from pesticides can lower sperm count, affect sperm viability, and reduce the amount of seminal fluid produced by men.
The highest-risk jobs studied so far are livestock and dairy farmers, fruit and flower growers, and gardeners. Men who work in plastic production, welding, or who work with lead or other heavy metals face reproductive hazards, too.
Are you at risk? No one is immune to all environmental chemicals, but you may be especially exposed if:
- You work in a profession where there is exposure to pesticides, solvents, metals, or plastics.
- You live in a highly agricultural area; you eat a high-fat diet (fatty areas of your body store pesticides and other agricultural chemicals).
- You eat hormone-injected foods (commercial meats and dairy) regularly.
- You’re on a lot of prescription drugs, especially hormone replacement drugs or birth control pills.
Four Ways to Reduce Your Toxin Exposure
1. Consume less fat and opt for organic foods whenever possible.An organic food diet can help protect a fetus from the chemicals present in the environment.
2. Consume seaweeds such as kelp, nori, and dulse.Algin, a gel-like substance in seaweed, binds to chemicals and metals so they can be eliminated safely from the body.
3. Consume cruciferous vegetables, which improve estrogen metabolism in women, in particular. Think broccoli, kale, Brussels sprouts.
4. Avoid commercial meats containing hormones, such as beef.Choose hormone-free dairy products too. If possible, avoid all hormone-containing drugs.