HEALTH / WELLNESS

A Mother’s Diet At Conception Can Help Decide Their Baby’s Gender – Research Suggests

Up until now, a baby’s gender was believed to be determined by the type of male sperm that combined with the female egg. In fact, it was believed that a female had scientifically absolutely no role to play in whether she conceived a baby boy or a baby girl. However, according to the old women tales, the kind of food eaten by a soon-to-be mother could play a vital role in determining the baby’s sex. Now this notion seems to have been proven somewhat true by a recent research conducted in UK, which has established a likely link between the diet of a female at the time of conception and the sex of her unborn child.

More About The Research

The study, carried out by the researchers at Oxford and the University of Exeter in England, has suggested that a baby’s sex is linked to the dietary habits of his or her mother during the time of conception. The study was inspired by the fact that the birth rate for the boys has been steadily declining over the past four decades in industrialized countries such as UK, USA and Canada.

The study was led by Dr. Fiona Mathews, from the University of Exeter, who along with her colleagues investigated the diets of 740 first time mothers from UK. These women were unaware of the sex of their unborn child and provided information about their dietary habits before and around the time of conception as well as during the first few months of their pregnancy. The participants of the study were divided into various groups based on their daily calorie intake around the time they conceived and the results were then compared with the sex of their babies.

What The Study Found?

The results of the study were published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. The researchers found a strong link between the between the chances of females consuming a high energy diet at the time of conception and giving birth to a baby boy. This conclusion was based on the following facts.

  • 56% of women in the highest energy diet intake group gave birth to boys.
  • Only 45% of the women in the lowest energy diet intake group gave birth to boys.
  • Women giving birth to boys were known to not only consume high energy diets but also had more likely consumed a wider range and higher amount of nutrients.
  • The researchers also learnt that there was a strong link between eating cereals for breakfast and bearing a son.

Put in the simplest terms, the study established that women who ate more, especially around the time of conception, were more likely to give birth to baby boy.

What The Results Mean

The study has played a vital role in shedding light on the trend of decline in the number of women in the western countries giving birth to boys. It has clarified the fact that the proportions of boy births are decreasing especially amongst women who choose to have low calorie diet or tends to regularly skip breakfast.

Dr. Mathews, further added that the study also provided evidence to the fact that the women in the western countries were using a natural way to control the sex of their unborn child. However, most women were doing so without even realizing the affect that their eating habits would have on the sex of their child.

At the same time the findings of the study did not show any links between the gender of a child and the tendency of their mother to smoke, drink or even have high caffeine intake before pregnancy. In addition, no link was also established between the mother’s BMI and the sex of the child.

 

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