Comment influencer le sexe de son futur bébé ?

How to influence the sex of your future baby?

Have you ever heard of the influence of diet on the sex of your future baby? Is it a legend, an impossible fantasy, or a scientifically proven truth? What is the principle, and what other methods exist? We will do our best to answer all your questions on the subject in this article.

Grandma's methods

Having always preferred to have a little girl, I have always asked myself this question: is there a way to influence the sex of one's child ? Well, I'm sorry to disappoint you, but unfortunately I still don't have the answer to this question, even after reading multiple articles and studies on this subject. We are all free to believe in what we want, and I decided to believe in it. Here is all the information I have so you can form your own opinion. ;)

Who hasn't already wanted to decide in advance the sex of their future child?

For centuries, many people have tried to find a foolproof method to achieve this. The influence of the sex of the baby could, according to these methods, play out on feeding, on the moment of conception, and even on the position during sexual relations. Today, different methods can be used to select the sex of future babies, including sperm sorting in the form of a diet. This is the method we will mainly talk about in this article.

The first question that comes to mind is that I have always heard that the sex of a child is determined by the father. So why would a diet followed by the mother influence all of this? Back to SVT class ( life and earth sciences)! ;)

Indeed, according to Paul Bischof, Professor in the Hormonology laboratory, “ the sex of a child is determined at the chromosomal level, at fertilization. In other words, the meeting of a sperm from the father and an egg from the mother. Each of these reproductive cells contains 23 chromosomes, carrying the genetic heritage of the father and that of the mother respectively. Of these 23 chromosomes, one of them determines sex. In sperm, this sex chromosome can be either X (female) or Y (male). The egg cell only contains X chromosomes. It is therefore the sperm which decides the sex of the future child. If the chromosome pairing gives XX, we will have a girl. If we get an XY, a boy will be born.”

But these diets interfere with the mother's genital tract: The mother's specific diet beforehand influences the sorting of sperm, carrying either the X chromosome or the Y chromosome. It is in fact a technique which is based on vaginal acidity and the ovulation cycle. According to studies, male sperm are faster, and female sperm are more resistant. If you want to have a girl, the method recommends following a diet that promotes the acidity of the vagina, because the female sperm will tolerate it better. It is also recommended to conceive your baby two to three days before ovulation, and for a boy, to start precisely on the day of ovulation.

The Stolkowsky method , developed by the doctor of the same name, applies to modifying the pH of vaginal secretions. In France, a diet developed by Doctor François Papa, gynecologist at the Port-Royal maternity ward, announces results of around 80% success, and as indicated earlier, the acidity of the vaginal environment seems to play a role in the selection of sperm, which reach the oocyte.

Overall, we recommend salting dishes “as much as possible” to get a boy and cooking everything without salt to get a girl. Mineral supplements are also prescribed to fill in any deficiencies (calcium, potassium or magnesium ) that could result from following this method. This strict diet must be followed for at least four months before fertilization. And since we don't always know when this will occur, this diet can sometimes last a year!

  • The diet to have a boy

    First of all: it is important and necessary to consult a doctor before starting such a diet. Indeed, it is very complex to follow, but can also be dangerous for health and lead to deficiencies. In the new version of his method “ Choose the sex of your child ” ( JC Lattès editions, February 2011 ), Dr. Papa warns future mothers: “The diet must be strictly followed, without deviation and under medical supervision. involves many constraints: you must start the diet at least two and a half months before conception – with a contraceptive method other than the pill. And you have to follow this diet for the entire duration of the baby trials, i.e. several months, even a year... So much time dissecting the contents of your plates!

    Here, for information purposes only, is the list of foods recommended by Dr Papa during baby trials to increase your chances of having a boy:

    Without moderation: tea, all fruit juices, sparkling mineral waters rich in sodium (like Vichy), all meats and fish, cold meats, all fruits (but in particular bananas, dates, apricots , oranges, peaches, cherries, chestnuts, prunes, dried apricots and dried figs), certain vegetables (potatoes, mushrooms, artichoke, dried white beans, lentils, leeks , carrots, onions), and to delight those with a sweet tooth, dark chocolate, sweets, desserts and milk-free cakes.

    In moderation: coffee, sodas, alcohol, white rice and pasta, goat cheese.

    Here, as a guide, are the foods to avoid (or even ban) during baby trials to have a better chance of having a boy:

    Milk (in all its forms), mineral waters except Vichy water, shellfish and crustaceans, eggs as a main course, wholemeal or salt-free bread, wholemeal rice, pastries with milk or cream, pancakes, dried fruits (walnuts, hazelnuts, peanuts, almonds), all green salads (except lamb's lettuce), raw cabbage, spinach, mustard, walnuts, etc.

    • The diet to have a girl

      These changes must take place well before the fertilization of the egg, so that the metabolism of the future mother assimilates them and undergoes modifications which will make it more sensitive to X sperm, which carry the female gene.

      Here, for information only, is the list of foods recommended by Dr. Papa during baby trials to increase your chances of having a girl:

      Without moderation: dairy products (cottage cheese, petit-suisses), calcium mineral waters, cabbage, drinks made from apples and grapes, shellfish, rice, pasta, eggs, green vegetables, oils plants, bread without salt and pastries without salt or yeast, sugar, honey, jam, fresh red fruits, frozen, or in syrup. Butter, always without salt, and crème fraîche.

      In moderation: 130g of unsalted meat or fish maximum per day, bananas, fruit juice, alcohol, cheese, sodas.

      Here, as a guide, are the foods to avoid (or even ban) during baby trials to have a better chance of having a girl: 

      Automatically, the foods to avoid are (salted) bread, corn, cold meats, zucchini and endive, goat cheese, salt in all its forms, dried fruits, sweets, and all foods that are recommended to optimize her chances of having a boy.

      For Dr Chadi Yazbeck, obstetrician-gynecologist and specialist in medically assisted procreation (PMA) at Foch hospital, “as long as this mainly involves only rebalancing the diet – without deficiencies – it does not negative medical implication, so I see no contraindication. On the other hand, for those who would be tempted to modify the pH at the source, for example by putting lemon in their vagina, this should definitely not be done, at the risk of disrupting the balance of the vaginal microbiota, of contracting an infection or mycosis.

      The beginnings of hypotheses, where does that come from?

      Indeed, this method is not revolutionary. It emerged in the 1970s, although no scientist has ever validated it. It is the American biologist Landrum Shettles, author of How to choose the sex of your baby , which claimed in the 1960s that male sperm are faster, and female sperm are more resistant. But in 1995, a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine indicates that the time of conception has no influence on the sex of the embryo. Following the ovulation cycle to determine sex would therefore not be a reliable method. In 2001, the American Society of Andrology also became interested in the differences between spermatozoa. It highlights that there are no morphological differences between male and female chromosomes. “ Male and female spermatozoa are not exactly similar, but we cannot identify them with the naked eye today; a genetic analysis is required, ” explains Michaël Grynberg, head of the reproductive medicine department at the Antoine Béclère Hospital in Clamart.

      Then, retrospective studies of women who had several children of the same sex were carried out. All these women were interviewed and thus classified according to their sodium/potassium to calcium/magnesium ratio. Women in category 1 have a ratio greater than 5. Those in category 2 have a ratio less than 2.8. In category 3 are all women with a relationship between these two parameters.

      The anonymity of the study is then removed to note that among the women who had a more boyish diet (ratio greater than 5), 90% were mothers of boys. The same results were obtained with the daughter diet. These women had eating habits which, without them knowing it, influenced the sex of their children.

      At the Parisian Cochin hospital, at the end of the 1970s, Doctor Papa tested a diet on 300 female volunteers supposed to determine the sex of their child. Result: more than 80% of women who complete the test obtain a child of the desired sex. But there is no evidence to show that this percentage is necessarily linked to diet, nor that vaginal acidity has a real effect on sperm selection. ” Conditions of the vagina are related to diet. But it's a shortcut to go from acidity to sperm selection ,” adds the gynecologist who considers the method “ a pipe dream. […] I can't believe that we guarantee this at 90%. on the basis of such scientific weakness .”

      Many methods have already been popularized to orient the sex of the child. Well before Doctor Papa's regime, some claimed that pinching this or that testicle had an influence, while others affirmed that the sexual position was determining. But as Professor Grynberg reminds us, “ There are no reliable natural methods today for predicting the sex of a child .”

      Applications have emerged

      Some applications have made this technique their business. My Blubelly, for example, is personalized coaching to follow this diet and thus conceive a baby of the sex of your choice. They provide diet guidance and personalized coaching for €149 per month. Thanks to an application, you have access to advice, articles, nutritional monitoring, and you also receive a box containing food supplements, ovulation and pH tests. Then, the process of “ no longer leaving it to chance”, takes place in two stages: first, a nutritional diet for approximately three months, then monitoring of the ovarian cycle. Health professionals (gynecologists, sexologist, endocrinologist, nutritionists, psychologists, and naturopath) make up the application team. If no results have been demonstrated, the method is therefore based on its own results, and justifies its 90% success rate by the crossing of the two techniques, but above all by coaching. “We must keep in mind that we are talking about a natural method here, we cannot expect 100% reliability,” recalls Dr. Bied-Damon.

      Methods that are almost 100% reliable

      Preimplantation diagnosis (PGD)

      Preimplantation diagnosis makes it possible to detect the presence of possible genetic or chromosomal anomalies in embryos conceived after in vitro fertilization. The aim is to differentiate embryos affected by a genetic disease from those carrying healthy or unaffected ones. As part of in vitro fertilization , cells can be taken from the embryos and analyzed to obtain various genetic data, including the sex of the embryos. Subsequently, only embryos corresponding to the desired sex will be implanted in the mother's uterus. Unwanted embryos will be destroyed.

      The intervention is pre-conception: all you have to do is use a machine which will sort the man's sperm by separating the male Ys and the female Xs. Then, the parents' chosen ones will happily sail through the mother's uterus until she is born. ovum . In France, currently and only in this case, parents who risk transmitting a serious hereditary disease linked precisely to the sex of the child, such as for example Duchenne muscular dystrophy or hemophilia, also have the possibility of choosing the sex of the child. the child. It will then be possible to select only healthy embryos. A pre-diagnosis must be carried out before implantation of the embryo into the uterus. Doctors then only choose the chromosomes from an embryo that does not carry the gene. Therefore, they also choose the sex of the child to avoid transmission.

      But choosing the sex of the baby for pure convenience is prohibited in France and more broadly in all countries of the European Union. On the other hand, “sexing” is authorized in the United States. This practice is also common in Asia, particularly in China, India, Pakistan or even Afghanistan, although it is illegal. Indeed, these methods can excessively cause a shortage of women (an imbalance in the sex ratio in favor of men in certain countries.) In these countries, the birth of a girl is often considered a burden because she leaves her family at his marriage to enrich another household. This cost is sometimes compounded by the payment of a dowry at the time of marriage by the woman's family. Conversely, a boy ensures the continuity of the home and income. To avoid these inconveniences, couples choose to have boys rather than girls. This choice can take the form of abortion if the sex of the fetus can be determined, infanticide at birth, or neglect of girls for the benefit of boys.

      What is selective abortion?

      It is a voluntary abortion motivated by one or more characteristics of the unborn child, considered undesirable, such as its sex . To diagnose the sex of an embryo or fetus, there is the classic ultrasound , blood test, amniocentesis, and placenta biopsy.

      These last three methods, although they can be applied early in pregnancy, are expensive and complex, which limits their use in this context. Ultrasound, which takes place around the fourth month of pregnancy, is the most common technique for detecting the sex of a fetus. When this is revealed, one can choose to resort to a late abortion. Selective abortion is a controversial practice, which attempts are being made to limit in several countries.

      In Asia, the proportion of boys began to increase in the early 1980s. We then noted a return to normal, except in China, where the sex ratio continued to increase to 120 boys per 100 girls. In this country, the rate of selective abortions has considerably accelerated because of the implementation of the one-child policy. In 40 years, between 1971 and 2010, 330 million abortions were performed. 

      We were already aware of this trend in these Asian countries, but much less in Europe, even if the phenomenon would have already been criticized ten years ago.

      Which countries are affected by selective abortion in Europe?

      These include, in particular, Albania, Kosovo, Armenia and Azerbaijan, but also, even if less blatantly, Montenegro and Western Macedonia. Their sex ratio is between 110 and 117. These are sparsely populated countries. In total, their population reaches 23 million inhabitants. Diasporas of Asian origin are also affected, in England for example, where the sex ratio among populations of Indian origin is 113 boys for 100 girls.

      As for the selection of the sex of the future baby by in vitro fertilization with preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Groups like the United Nations, the World Health Organization, the religious sector, bioethicists, and many doctors (who take issue with the concept of "playing God") oppose it. The procedure is even banned in countries like Canada, China, India, Australia and the United Kingdom due to ethical reasons. In fact, the United States is one of the few countries where non-medical sex selection is legal — and there's even a new industry called "reproductive tourism," in which couples or individuals of all over the world (Italy, Thailand, Mexico, etc.) go to the United States to choose the sex of their child.

      Is this ethical?

      To those who point out the risk of ethical drift, Sandra Ifrah responds that the method only uses natural tools, that it is simply a question of optimizing one's chances of realizing one's wishes. “We are not in the business of genetic manipulation, nor in the field of “sexing” the embryo, which is an unethical drift and which is not authorized in France , recalls Dr. Bied-Damon .

      If the use of sex selection techniques for medical reasons is understandable, even laudable, it remains that the generalization of these processes could have potentially serious consequences on societies. As explained earlier, the birth of a boy is much more valued than that of a girl in several countries around the world, whether for financial or religious reasons. In the event that sex selection becomes widespread, we could witness a dramatic drop in the number of female babies in these countries, which would painfully affect the balance of society.

      Furthermore, sex selection for non-medical purposes could open the door to other abuses. Eventually, it might become possible to choose a large number of genetic characteristics and thus create tailor-made, improved children.

      Science could therefore allow us to create generations of supermen. However, although this idea may seem attractive in certain aspects, it remains very dangerous and unnatural. This is why several researchers working in the medical field choose to remain cautious on this issue and advocate for the supervision of assisted procreation practices rather than their liberalization.

      Obviously, I think we can all agree that the good health of the baby is paramount, regardless of gender. Find below a short video which summarizes this article. Also, do not hesitate to consult our article on the right diet to adopt for your baby, your family and yourself. ❤️

      Sources: ,explains%20the%20Doctor%20Fran%C3%A7ois%20Dad., on%20the%20spermatozo %C3%AFdes%20du%20dad. law/1533-choosing-the-sex-of-the-baby-the-limits-of-the-law,le-regime-a-suivre-pour-avoir-un-garcon,2701191,3354997.asp -their-babies-but-is-it-ethical