Household Chemicals Possibly Linked to Infertility

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household chemicals linked to infertilityWhen I was trying to conceive, I didn't go nuts with trying to cut down on exposure to toxins and chemicals, but I did try to be fairly conscious of the choices I made. That said, I think not all chemicals and potential environmental risks can be completely avoided in this day and age of synthetic everything.

So take this with a grain of salt (I am, too.) But new research shows a possible link between common household chemicals and infertility in women.

Researchers at the UCLA School of Public Health have found initial proof that perfluorinated chemicals -- or PFCs -- chemicals that are commonly used in everyday household items such as food packaging, clothing, carpets, pesticides, and personal care products, may be linked to infertility. Their study found that women with higher levels of these chemicals in their blood took longer to become pregnant than those with lower levels. It's unclear why that is, but one possible reason is that exposure may interfere with the hormones involved in reproduction.

Further research will be necessary to determine if PFCs, previously thought to be biologically inactive, should be added to the list of potential risk factors for infertility. Men's sperm quality could in theory be affected, too, as couples would likely be living in the same house and exposed to the same things, but researchers in this study tested only the moms.

What do you think? If you're trying to conceive, do reports like this worry you, or do you think there are only so many things you can avoid, worry about, or try to control?



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