A new study published in the December 2010 issue of Reproductive BioMedicine Online reports that women may have the ability to determine the sex of their child if they control their diets and strategically time when they have sex. According to the study:
Natural sex selection methods have been applied for several decades, but their use and effectiveness are still a matter of debate among medical professionals. Therefore, we assessed the efficacy of a maternal diet low in sodium and potassium, high in calcium and magnesium, in combination with timing of intercourse well before ovulation as a method to improve the chances of conceiving a girl baby. A total of 172 couples wanting a girl volunteered to participate in the study and the 150 couples that actually started were followed during their treatment and possible pregnancy . . . In total, 32 women satisfied the conditions of the prediction rule and the observed percentage of female babies in this group was 81%. The conclusion of the study is that a maternal diet together with timing of sexual intercourse and use of a prediction rule will lead to an increased probability of a girl baby.
The sample size for this study was admittedly very low, but I find it fascinating that diet can play such an important role in determining the sex of the baby.
I have several questions that I think would be worth pursuing in future studies (as if I’m in any sort of position to be telling researchers where they should go in the future). First of all, what type of diet would have a greater chance of producing a male baby? And what effect, if any, does diet play when a baby is born intersex or transgender? Also, how much influence does the mother’s thoughts have on the sex of the baby? The women in this study wanted to have a girl – if you’re constantly thinking “it’s a girl,” will that influence the outcome of the pregnancy? Would it be possible to replicate this study without using women who specifically state that they want to have a girl?
What’s your take on this study? I’d love to hear what other curious people think.