Obesity Linked to Infertility in Men
Obese men are more likely to be infertile than normal weight men according to a study by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.
Akinso: Obese men are more likely to be infertile than normal weight men according to a study by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. Since 1993, researchers have studied couples enrolled in the Agricultural Health Study, which examined factors that impact the health of farmers and their families in agricultural communities. Doctor Donna Baird, an NIEHS epidemiologist with the study, said women who are overweight or obese tend to have a more difficult time becoming pregnant than normal-weight women, but whether men who are overweight or obese also have fertility problems had not been studied until now.
Baird: We found out that men's BMI which is a body mass index, as it increased so did their risk of infertility. So men with BMI of 32-34 which is considered in the obese range had about twice the odds of infertility as men with a normal BMI like 20-22 which is considered normal weight. So based on data from this study, an increase in weight of about 20 pounds would be expected to increase the risk of infertility by about 10 percent.
Akinso: The data on infertility and body mass came from questionnaires that about 1,500 farmers and their wives completed when they enrolled in the study. Dr. Baird said this study provides data on some additional health problems associated with obesity. For more information, visit, www.niehs.nih.gov. This is Wally Akinso at the National Institutes of Health Bethesda, Maryland.
About This Audio Report
Reporter: Wally Akinso
Sound Bite: Dr. Donna Baird