How Does a High Sugar Diet Affect Fertility?
How Can Too Much Sugar Affect Fertility?
Edited and Published by Wellness Monster Dina
How Much Sugar Is Too Much?
Too much sugar is unhealthy for anyone, factor into the equation someone trying to get pregnant, sugar can play havoc on fertility and create obstacles difficult to overcome in conception. Generally speaking, the most sugar anyone should be consuming per day is 6 teaspoons. Preferably less. However on average, most people eat 22.2 teaspoons per day (Priyaring.com)! Imagine sitting at the sugar bowl every day with a spoon in hand and downing all that sugar. Not a comfortable image.
The Impact of Sugar on the Body
What does consuming all of that sugar do to a body? Aside from increasing the odds of developing Diabetes by increasing insulin resistance, too much sugar will cause weight gain, yeast infections, lowered immunity, and hormone disruption. Hormones play a major part in conceiving. Having a hormone disruption is not going to help anyone get pregnant. And essentially, a woman can become infertile by consuming too much sugar.
Maintaining a healthy body is incredibly important in becoming pregnant, staying pregnant and delivery a healthy baby. Weight gain created by sugar can prematurely harm sperm and egg cells (ConceptFertility.co.uk). What does that tell us? Not only do women need to be conscientious of their diet while trying to conceive, but so do men. Too much sugar is known to also cause erectile dysfunction.
A study performed on IVF patients found that those that cut back on foods high in carbohydrates and sugars and increase foods that were high in protein saw an increased success rate from 19% to 45% (ConceptFertility.co.uk)! Those are amazing results, enough so to convince most women that are trying to get pregnant to review their diets. What needs to be avoided is damage to the egg. By choosing to follow a healthy diet, the possibility of conceiving becomes a more likely result.
Foods that are high in sugar include sodas, sauces such as barbecue and salad dressings, breads, granolas, candies, pastas, potatoes, and anything with high carbohydrates. Additionally, when someone is insulin intolerant and they eat these foods, their body is unable to break down the sugars the way it should. When too much sugar is consumed the body loses any fighting chance it may have had in breaking it all down.
The Brain, Joints, and Skin
When the body is overcome with too much sugar, many areas of the body become affected. The brain releases dopamine which is the “feel good” hormone. When the brain is used to getting that fix, it starts to need more. It affects the joints by creating inflammation and pain. Sugar also has an affect on skin, making it age faster. Specifically, sugar damages collagen and elastin in the skin that would normally keep skin firm and youthful (WebMD.com).
Liver and Heart
The liver and heart are also affected. The liver may become resistant to insulin. Insulin joins the process of turning sugar into energy. If this isn’t happening, type 2 diabetes will most likely be on the horizon. The heart is affected because the extra insulin in the arteries causes the walls to become too thick. Thickened artery walls creates stress on the heart. and may cause anything from heart disease to heart attacks and/or strokes.
Too much sugar can cause kidney damage also. The kidneys are the blood filters of the body. If they kidneys can’t do their job, then the waste in the bloodstream is not filtered out. This is then followed up by kidney failure. And as previously mentioned, sugar affects body weight.
Trouble in the Bedroom, Circulatory Issues, and The Adrenal Glands
One more embarrassing area that could be affected is sexual health. It becomes increasingly difficult to become pregnant if the man becomes impotent. The increase of sugar in the blood causes circulatory problems. If a man is having circulatory problems, then the chances of them being able to get and keep an erection become increasingly difficult. A healthy diet with low sugar and carbs, but high in protein can help to keep these things from happening.
The adrenal glands are two very important, yet very small, glands that help in the process of dealing with stressful situations. Sugar to the body is a stressful situation; therefore the adrenal glands go into overtime battling the sugar by releasing cortisol. The body is able to handle stress occasionally, however if the body is dealt too much sugar, it becomes chronic stress. If cortisol is being produced too much in a chronic situation, it then leads to chronic inflammation and excess belly fat (FeedYourFertileBody.com). How does this have anything to do with fertility? The adrenal glands produce sex hormones as well. If they are overworked by dealing with the stress of too much sugar in the body, there will be fewer sex hormones and a lower chance of fertility and pregnancy.
With less foods being consumed that are high in sugar, and more foods that are high in protein, the body is given a better opportunity at conceiving. A healthy diet is necessary for survival, including conception. By eating less sugary foods, there’s more room to eat healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables. Sugary foods will allow an individual to fill up faster; however there is no nutritional value to these foods, resulting in empty calories. By eating healthier foods, nutrients are being introduced to the body allowing them to build up immunity and helping with the process of fertility and pregnancy. Pregnancy requires a lot of nutrients, so eating those nutritious foods versus the unhealthy sugary foods is a much better choice.
Keep Sugar Consumption Low
Overall, consuming too much sugar will definitely impact the possibility of becoming pregnant. Whether male or female, if conception is the path they are on, sugar should be cut back to no more than 6 teaspoons a day. Too much sugar may cause a man to become impotent and it may cause a woman to be unable to conceive by affecting the sex hormone pregnenolone from being produced by the adrenal glands. Once pregnant, it is important to continue eating a healthy diet to ensure the pregnancy goes to term and the baby is born healthy.
Woman Eating Sugars [Photo 92170851 © Nobilior – Dreamstime.com]
Pregnant Woman Smiling [ID 56482445 © Wavebreakmedia Ltd | Dreamstime.com]
Healthy Foods and Veggies [ID 85810933 © Olga Kriger | Dreamstime.com]