Eating fast food could cause infertility in men, new study says

Eating fast food could cause infertility in men, new study says

Feeling peckish? If you're trying to conceive, skip the fast food

If you’re trying to conceive, maybe you should think twice before buying yourself a Big Mac. A new study published in Environmental Health Perspectives has found a link between fast food consumption and phthalates, a chemical compound that’s been linked with diabetes, cancer, and—wait for it—infertility in men.

Eating fast food could cause infertility in men

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As part of the National Health Nutrition Survey, 8,877 participants were asked by the researchers from George Washington University about their fast food consumption in the past 24 hours. The results showed that people who reported consuming fast food registered 23.8% and 39% higher levels of phthalates.

It’s not just your burger that’s the problem. It’s how it’s prepared and packaged.

Phthalates are man-made industrial chemicals commonly used in plastics and soaps. How did they get in your fast food? More contact with plastic machinery increases the likelihood of your food getting contaminated with phthalates.

It’s time to change your eating habits! Click to read more about the study.

Watch out for grains

The study also revealed that fast food was not the only source of phthalates; the researchers found that grain and meat items also contributed to phthalate exposure. This is perhaps because grain products are often found on the exterior of foods like pizza or burritos, and thus come in greater contact with packaging materials.

Eating fast food could cause infertility in men

Photo: Pexels

Does this mean that if you bring your own plate and cutlery to Taco Bell, you’re good to go? Dr Ami Zota, the lead author of the study, noted that fast food in general should be avoided for one’s own health:

“People concerned about this issue can’t go wrong by eating more fruits and vegetables and less fast food.

A diet filled with whole foods offers a variety of health benefits that go far beyond the question of phthalates.”


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