Poor diet and less fruit linked to fertility problems

Experts say good diet boosted the chances of conceiving

Lower intake of fruit and higher intake of fast food in the preconception period are both associated with a longer time for conception, a new Australian study finds.

A survey of 5,598 women found those who ate fast food four or more times a week took nearly a month longer to get pregnant than those who never or rarely ate it. Regular junk food eaters were also less likely to conceive within a year, the report in Human Reproduction found.

Experts said it suggested a good diet boosted the chances of conceiving.


The role of preconception diet in women remains poorly studied up to now, comment the authors Jessica A Grieger Luke E Grzeskowiak Tina Bianco-Miotto Tanja Jankovic-KarasoulosLisa J Moran Rebecca L Wilson Shalem Y Leemaqz Lucilla Poston Lesley McCowanLouise C Kenny 
Jenny Myers James J Walker Robert J Norman Gus A DekkerClaire T Roberts.


Prof Claire Roberts, from the University of Adelaide, Australia, who led the study, said:


These findings show that eating a good quality diet that includes fruit and minimising fast food consumption improves fertility and reduces the time it takes to get pregnant."

Women in Australia, New Zealand, the UK and Ireland were quizzed in the study about what they had eaten in the month before they became pregnant with their first child.

Researchers calculated that the women with the lowest intake of fruit had a 12% risk of having been unable to conceive within a year, while this was 16% for those who had eaten fast food four or more times a week. This compared with a risk of 8% in the group as a whole.