Posted on May 10, 2018, 11 p.m.
Becoming pregnant takes longer for women who consume diets low in fruits and high in amounts of junk/fast foods, a new study suggests it leads to decreased chances of conceiving within a year, as published in Human Reproduction.
5590 women were interviewed about their eating habits by midwives during initial antenatal visits to women in Ireland, Uk, Australia, and New Zealand who had not given birth before. Findings show women who minimised fast/junk food consumption and consumed good quality diets including fruit had improved fertility and reduced time to become pregnant.
468 couples that participated in this study were deemed to be infertile due to more than a year passing to conceive, and 2204 couples conceived within a month. It was found that women who had consumed fruit one to three times per month took two weeks longer to become pregnant, and women who consumed fast/junk foods four or more times weekly took almost a year longer to conceive. Likeliness of infertility rose from 8 to 16% for women who consumed junk/fast foods four or more times per week, 8-12% for those which neglected fruit intake. 340 couples received fertility treatments prior to conception.
Information was obtained by the midwives was regarding participants diet and how long it took to conceive, establishing details including how much and how often they consumed fish, fruit, junk/fast foods among others. Junk/fast food consumed which originated from supermarkets was omitted from analysis, which was an oversight. Infertility treatments on account of the male partner were also omitted from the study. Majority of women didn’t suffer from infertility history and the risk relationships were adjusted for alcohol intake, smoking, BMI, and maternal age.
Restrictions of the study include having to depend on recollections of past diets. Father’s food intake was not taken into consideration. Food range was also not comprehensive, and the study size was small. These possible factors can’t be dismissed or confirmed as having effects. As women did not change diets from pre to during pregnancy researchers feel diet recall is likely to be reasonably accurate.
This area of interest is continued to be pursued by the team, which intend to establish specific patterns in diets, as opposed to separate food groups, that link to conception times.
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