You may have seen a few of the strange and misleading headlines with respect to dairy and fertility, including “Ice cream gets you pregnant” and my personal favorite “Tubs of ice cream help women make babies.” As much as moms-to-be would love this to be true, the full story is a bit more telling.
Utilizing the massive Nurses Health Study, Dr. Jorge Chavarro and colleagues of Harvard School of Public Health in Boston sought information on the effects of dairy (milk-derived products) on fertility. They chose the records of 18,555 women aged 24 to 42 that had tried to become pregnant or had became pregnant between 1991 and 1999.
The researchers found that women who ate two or more servings of low-fat dairy foods a day (low fat milk, cottage cheese, yogurt, etc.) had an 85 percent higher risk of a certain type of infertility than women who ate less than one serving of low-fat dairy food a week.
Women who ate one serving of high-fat dairy food a day (just one) were 27 percent less likely to be infertile than women who avoided full-fat dairy foods. Many experts are not buying this end of the argument and are much more concerned with the dramatic effects low-fat dairy seems to have. Also, since weight has been proven to affect fertility, indulging in “buckets” of ice cream would likely have a contradictory result.