NAT­U­RAL SEX SE­LEC­TION

Your Pregnancy - - Pregnancy Files -

Old wives’ tale or med­i­cal truth? Will these meth­ods in­flu­ence the sex of your baby?

HAV­ING AN­OTHER CHILD

FALSE Many women be­lieve that giv­ing it one more go will re­sult in the boy or girl they have dreamed of. Re­pro­duc­tive medicine spe­cial­ist Dr Saleema Nosarka says that this is an old wives’ tale. The odds are still 50/50, every time.

SEX­UAL PO­SI­TIONS AND OR­GASMS

FALSETThe Shet­tles method, among oth­ers, claims that women want­ing a baby girl should avoid or­gasms be­cause it makes the vagina al­ka­line and the X-bear­ing sperm prefers an acidic en­vi­ron­ment. Women want­ing girls should also avoid deep pen­e­tra­tion. But Michelle Ri­js­dijk, a senior em­bry­ol­o­gist at the Dalmeyer Fer­til­ity Unit in Port El­iz­a­beth, says this is un­true. “The acid­ity of the vagina and the sex­ual po­si­tion used do not play a role in sex se­lec­tion.”

EAT­ING A CER­TAIN DIET

TRUE A mother’s food choices may in­flu­ence the gen­der of her off­spring. “Ret­ro­spec­tive diet sur­veys found that women who con­ceived three or more girls and no boys had a diet with high lev­els of cal­cium and mag­ne­sium, whereas moth­ers with pre­dom­i­nantly male off­spring had a high sodium in­take in their diet,” says fer­til­ity spe­cial­ist Dr Sascha Edel­stein.

SEX AT A CER­TAIN TIME OF THE DAY

FALSE Whether in­ter­course hap­pens in the morn­ing or late in the evening will make no dif­fer­ence to the baby’s gen­der.

SHET­TLES METHOD

TRUE Part of this method sug­gests that tim­ing in­ter­course around ovu­la­tion can in fact in­crease your chances of de­ter­min­ing the sex. For a girl, it should take place a few days be­fore ovu­la­tion; for a boy, on the day or one day af­ter. Dr Edel­stein ex­plains: “Y-bear­ing sperm are lighter and faster, but also more frag­ile and shorter-lived than X-bear­ing sperm. Hav­ing sex­ual in­ter­course closer to ovu­la­tion, the like­li­hood of male off­spring is en­hanced. If sex is timed to oc­cur two days be­fore ovu­la­tion, then the Y-bear­ing sperm will be de­pleted and fer­til­i­sa­tion will oc­cur with an X-bear­ing sperm (pro­duc­ing a fe­male child).”

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