Although it is agreed that breast milk is the best possible start in life, there are other choices such as formulas based on dairy or soy milk. This new research is reported in a paper published at the beginning of May in Biology of Reproduction and is in the early stages. It is based on a study with mice, but does throw up a worrying possibility where soy products are a regular part of a woman’s diet.
Soy is estrogenic in nature and the results suggest that exposure to estrogenic chemicals in the womb or during childhood has the potential to affect a woman’s fertility as an adult and possibly providing insight into some cases of unexplained female infertility.
We are already aware that neonatal exposure to plant estrogens or other environmental estrogens may have long- term effects on adult female reproductive health as one of the features of oestrogen dominance. Wendy N. Jefferson, at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), has previously demonstrated that neonatal exposure to plant estrogens results in complete infertility in female adult mice.
Causes of infertility included failure to ovulate, a reduced ability to support embryo development before implantation, and failure of the uterus to support effective implantation. The new research indicates that changes can be seen that led to harmfully altered immune responses which would likely contribute to infertility.
What Can You Do?
If you are a soy milk fan, and for health reasons cannot switch, there are other milks available such as goat or sheep and rice and almond milks can be found in health stores.
However, the most important thing when dealing with fertility is to ensure hormone balance, and in particular that good levels of progesterone are present. To ensure a viable pregnancy has the best possible start, then supplementation with bioidentical natural progesterone cream is recommended before conception.
It is suggested you continue to use it up until the end of the first trimester – unless you have a history of miscarriage in which case it is recommended you continue up to week 36 when your own body’s progesterone levels will be well established.
If you wish to read more about pregnancy please see the following articles: