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Old 07-02-2004, 07:31 PM   #1  
Head Princess
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Default Low Carb & Fertility

Since this was brought up a few days ago, here's an article recently posted on the Atkins website.

Mice Are Not Men!
It is a mistake to assume that observations of mice in a laboratory setting can be directly applied to humans.

Research presented by Dr. David Gardner at the 20th annual conference of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology stated that a study done on mice fed a diet consisting of 25 percent protein diminished their fertility. As a result, the media has mistakenly made the leap that doing Atkins can decrease fertility in women.

Let’s look at the facts. In the research conducted by Dr. Gardner, it is important to note that there was no mention of carbohydrate control. Moreover, the study subjects are herbivores; humans are inherently ominivores. Whether or not these findings apply to humans is unknown.

In fact, some studies show a positive correlation between controlling carbohydrates and female fertility. For example, Dr. Eric Westman presented an abstract at the Society of General Internal Medicine’s 2004 annual meeting on a study of women with polycystic ovary syndrome treated with a controlled-carbohydrate approach.1 On average, the women experienced improvement in hormonal levels as well as weight loss. In addition, two of the women in the study who had previously experienced difficulty in becoming pregnant conceived during the study.

“The positive role of controlled-carbohydrate nutrition has been well established clinically in women who are either overweight and/or not ovulating normally,” said Ben Gocial, M.D., a reproductive endocrinologist from Thomas Jefferson University Hospital.

The media brouhaha about fertility in mice overlooks the real issues of how obesity in women can impact their ability to conceive, add to their risks during pregnancy and affect the health of a baby before and after delivery. Look for an upcoming article on women’s health issues.

Selected References
Westman, E.C., Yancy, W.S., Hepburn, J., and Mavropoulos, J., “A Pilot Study of a Low-Carbohydrate, Ketogenic Diet for Obesity-Related Polycystic Ovary Syndrome,” Journal of General Internal Medicine, 2004;19 (supplement 1):111.
For related research links, you can go here:
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