Keeping a mobile (cell) phone in the pocket can damage sperm, and affect a man’s fertility.
Sperm number and movement, or motility, is affected by electromagnetic radiation when a mobile phone is carried around in trouser pockets, say researchers.
Researchers from the University of Exeter analysed 10 studies, involving 1,492 men, and found that nine of them had discovered deterioration in sperm quality.
The overall decline was around 8 per cent, the researchers say, which is probably not significant in a healthy man, but it could be an important factor in any man who is already suffering from poor fertility.
The reproductive health of the average male is in sharp decline, the world’s largest study of the quality and concentration of sperm has found.
Between 1989 and 2005, average sperm counts fell by a third in the study of 26,000 men, increasing their risk of infertility. The amount of healthy sperm was also reduced, by a similar proportion.
The findings confirm research over the past 20 years that has shown sperm counts declining in many countries across the world. The decline occurred progressively throughout the 17-year period, suggesting that it could be continuing.
The results, reported in the journal Human Reproduction, showed the concentration of sperm per millilitre of semen declined progressively by 1.9% a year throughout the 17 years – from 73.6 million sperm per millilitre in 1989 to 49.9 million/ml in 2005. The proportion of normally formed sperm also decreased by 33.4% over the same period.
The scientists said the results constituted a “serious public health warning” and that the link with the environment “particularly needs to be determined”.
The worldwide fall in sperm counts has been accompanied by a rise in testicular cancer – rates have doubled in the last 30 years – and in other male sexual disorders such as undescended testes, which are indicative of a “worrying pattern”, scientists say.
Richard Sharpe, professor of reproductive health at Edinburgh Uni and an international expert on toxins in the environment, said the study was “hugely impressive” and answered sceptics who doubted whether the global decline was real.
“Something in our modern lifestyle, diet or environment is causing this and it is getting progressively worse. We still do not know which are the most important factors but the most likely are … a high-fat diet and environmental chemical exposures.”
Suggestions include reducing exposure to industrial chemicals such as those used in making plastics – they can mimic the female hormone oestrogen countering male hormones.
Are you determined to get pregnant this year? Did you start this year hoping that 2012 will be the year you finally overcome fertility issues and conceive your baby?
Well, I see fertility specialist Sarah Holland is doing a special free online seminar which might be worth listening to. She is going to share her top tips and techniques to help you get there. I have listened to a lot of her stuff in recent years (get the recordings here from the Purehealth website) and she makes a lot of sense.
She also offers a complete programme called Total Fertility Turnaround. Check her out and register for the free call or recording of it (if you can’t make the live call) here: New Year, New Baby. What have you got to lose except the stress of baby-making?
Good luck, and hope it helps. Send me any pictures of new babies please so I can ooh and aah!
I read this morning a good basic explanation of why it simply is not enough to measure TSH if you think your thyroid is underactive.
If you think your body temperature is low and you have the signs of an underactive thyroid (constipation, weight gain, low mood, body dryness, feeling cold, infertility etc), it is important to get your T4 to T3 conversion measured. If positive, it is termed Wilson’s Syndrome and could explain a lot.
Do you feel fatigued, depressed, or anxious? Are you losing hair or having trouble losing weight? And, have the doctors found nothing wrong with you?
If so, you may have a problem with your thyroid hormones.
But not the usual problem your doctor might be looking for, as we’ll see in a moment.
Thyroid hormones do lots of important things. Perhaps the most important is that they govern your metabolic rate, or how fast your body burns off calories. Essentially, thyroid hormones set the thermostat for your body.
You also need optimal thyroid hormone function to ovulate and have a baby.
If your doctor suspects a thyroid problem, he or she will typically order a TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) lab test. If your TSH test comes back normal, you may be told that your thyroid is fine and that if you are depressed and can’t lose weight, maybe you should take an antidepressant and go on a diet to lose weight. The implication is that it’s “all in your head”.
But there is a problem with the TSH test. It only checks for ONE of the hormones related to thyroid function.
What else might be going on? A lot of things. There is a complex interplay between your thyroid hormones and other hormones. There is an interplay between your (internal and external) environment and thyroid hormones. There is the conversion of thyroid hormones into other thyroid hormones.
Out of this messy complexity, let’s just pick one thing.
This is important because it appears that stress may disturb your thyroid hormones. Under normal conditions, a thyroid hormone called “T4” is converted by your tissues into the biologically active form called “T3”. T3 is the active hormone that affects your body.
But…when you’re under stress, your tissues do not convert as much T4 into T3. Instead, the T4 is converted into “rT3”, also known as “reverse T3”. In contrast to T3, rT3 is NOT active.
The rT3 occupies the binding sites on your cells, thus blocking the regular T3 from binding to the cell and performing its correct function. It’s like musical chairs. You have two hormones, T3 and rT3 competing for one chair. When the music stops, only one of them will be sitting on the chair. The other one will be left out.
The result is symptoms of low thyroid function, even if your typical thyroid test says you are “normal”. The reason is that almost no one tests for rT3. In fact, many doctors don’t even think it exists!
A chronic condition that appears to be hypothyroidism, combined with stress and low body temperature is referred to by some health professionals as “Wilson’s Syndrome”, named after Denis Wilson, M.D., who first brought it to our attention.
Here are the takaways: 1) A normal TSH does not necessarily mean that your thyroid function is OK. 2) Stress is more dangerous than you think, and may be impairing your thyroid function. It is absolutely crucial that you reduce stress. 3) A tipoff for Wilson’s Syndrome is a low body temperature. For one month, do an armpit temperature test every morning before you get out of bed. Low body temperature reduces enzyme activity in your body, which adversely impacts every cell in your body. 4) Normal thyroid hormone function is required for reduction of PCOS symptoms, losing weight, and pregnancy. 5) Wilson’s Syndrome is predominantly found in women.
Sources: Wilson’s Thyroid Syndrome: A Reversible Thyroid Problem, E. Denis Wilson, M.D. Wilson’s Temperature Syndrome: A Reversible Low Temperature Problem, E. Denis Wilson, M.D. www.wilsonssyndrome.com
I also test for thyroid antibodies in this screen because often those are not looked for either, and their presence can explain why your thyroid may not be working very well – it is being attacked as a ‘self-antigen’.
Both of these tests are especially useful if you cannot get to the bottom of why your body temperature is low and why you have all the signs of an underactive thyroid, cannot lose weight, cannot get pregnant etc but your TSH level keeps coming back OK.
Last year, do you remember I told you about an online fertility seminar with loads of experts you could listen in to live by phone or computer, for free? Well, they’re doing another one for 2011.
You can listen free to the live interviews every day, as I did last year, and/or you can get a copy of the sessions to listen to in your own time later on. I found it really helpful for passing on knowledge to patients so I am pleased to see it happening again.
Here is the official blurb for you:
If you have been trying for a baby for some time, and are perhaps going through infertility tests or treatment, you’ll know how confusing and upsetting the whole process can be. You want to know how you can improve your chances of success, but you don’t know where to look for answers.
I’m pleased to invite you to the Fertility Focus Telesummit 2011. An amazing “virtual event” that you can attend for free! The telesummit will feature fertility experts from around the world sharing their knowledge and insights on a wide range of fertility subjects. You can listen in to all the information-packed presentations either online or over the phone every day of the telesummit, starting on March 21st.
Grab your free place now to attend this exciting event, and get fully informed about what you can do to improve your chances of having a baby.
One of the issues I really want to get into even more is preconception care and fertility treatment. Why? Because I see many people struggling to conceive, sadly not being able to carry babies to term and having babies who ultimately get health problems like eczema. Much of this, thankfully, is preventable.
For years I have advocated a four month preconception programme which has worked several times (much like the Foresight programme who I am thinking of joining as a therapist when I get the chance). Anyway, I have just heard about a free fertility teleseminar which you can access via your computer or phone and listen to several experts giving their advice about fertility issues. You simply listen online or via your phone live whilst they give a presentation, and you can ask questions or hide as you like.
Not sure if it will be any good, but I know a few of you really want to address this issue and the more we can all learn about the subject, the better. I plan to collate the info if I get chance into a report for you, alongside other info I already have, so if you don’t get a chance to join the seminar, I will hopefully be able to provide you with info soon on the website etc.
Go to http://www.fertilityfocustelesummit.com/ to sign up for free. It will give you the option to purchase a ‘golden ticket’ with access to recordings and other resources but that’s up to you if you take it up.