5 tiny everyday habits you never realised could be harming your fertility
We all know about the whole biological clock issue when it comes to our bodies and fertility.
But did you know there are also so many of our little everyday habits and activities that could be harmful to our reproductive health? It's true, unfortunately.
And a group of chemicals in our lives, known as Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals (EDC) could be the cause.
So you know that coffee you are enjoying in a takeway cup on your way into the office? Or the microwave popcorn you make before sitting down in front of Netflix? Or that re-heated Chinese you had for dinner last night? You might want to rethink those if you are looking to get pregnant soon.
According to Dr Mark Green, lecturer in Reproductive Biology at The University of Melbourne, the endocrine system plays a major role in regulating our reproductive system, through the release of hormones such as oestrogen and testosterone. However, Green, who has studied how the everyday chemicals in our life affect our hormones, many hemicals found in pesticides, herbicides, fabrics, packaging and particularly plastics have made it into our body.
Speaking to Kidspot.com, Green explains:
“Everyone in society will have the majority of these (chemicals) in their bloodstream at a level we know will have some effect on the body."
The big problem?
The chemicals BPA (Bisphenol A), phthalates and parabens disrupt our endocrine system many different ways. They can either bind to where the hormone would usually bind, or they interfere with the production of the hormone. They can also block the normal hormone or mimic the effects. The whole body can be affected by these chemicals, but if you’re trying to fall pregnant, they can make it a lot harder to do so.
Living in the world today, it would be close to impossible to remove ourselves completely from these chemicals, but the good news is that you can limit your exposure a great deal with some fairly simple lifestyle changes.
Want to increase your chances of getting pregnant? Make these changes now:
Never be reheated food in plastic box, rather place the food in a ceramic bowl and cover the food with a paper towel. The plastic can leach into the food we are eating. The lining of disposable coffee cups, pizza box lining and microwave popcorn bags also have EDC that can leach into our food.
Never leave your plastic disposable water bottle in the sun before drinking out of it. Hard glass or steel bottles are the best to drink out of. Canned food and prepackaged processed foods also have plastics on the inside of the containers that leach into the food. Instead, buy fresh fruit and vegetables and give them a good wash to remove any pesticides or herbicides.
Say ‘no thanks’ to sales receipts, as they are coated in BPA. If you touch the shiny surface with wet hands, this EDC can leach straight into your bloodstream.
Avoid inhaling new chemicals. The ‘new car’ smell may be nice, but if you can smell those new chemicals, you are inhaling them straight into your body. If you buy a new couch or carpet, open a window and ventilate the house. These chemicals are often flame retardants which are difficult to remove from your body.
Look for products with no parabens
You don’t need to be a chemist when avoiding these products. Look for ‘Paraben free’ on personal care products such as shampoos and conditioners and ‘Green’ for cleaning products.