How pesticides impact fertility

If you are planning a pregnancy, or struggling with infertility, consider taking a closer look at the potential pesticides you are exposed to, through the food you eat, your local environment, or your workplace.  Research has shown that pesticide exposure can impact fertility in both women and men. Unfortunately, we can’t control all potential sources of pesticide exposure. However, being mindful of the produce you eat is one area you can impact.  

A study found that women who ate high-pesticide produce were 18 percent less likely to become pregnant and 26 percent less likely to produce a live birth, when compared to women consuming produce with the least amount of pesticide exposure.  Another study showed that men who consumed pesticide-laden produce has lower semen quality.

Produce types that typically carries more pesticide residue are kale, spinach, apples, strawberries, grapes, tomatoes and peppers.  Thicker-skinned produce like oranges and avocados are examples of lower-pesticide produce.  

Click here to see the EWG Dirty Dozen List of higher pesticide foods to limit or avoid and protect yourself from harmful pesticide exposure.  When shopping at the grocery store or farmer’s market, look for organic, pesticide-free produce.