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Conception Jun 2, 2021
3 Minutes

Vaping and fertility: is there an impact?

E-cigarettes and vaping have become much more popular these days (particularly amongst younger people) partly because they are seen as a ‘safer’ alternative to smoking. We know that traditional cigarettes are a disaster for fertility but what about this ‘safer’ alternative? We take a look at the science which may surprise you… 

Just heated ‘water and some flavouring’ – so how bad can vaping really be?! 

E-Cigarettes work by heating e-fluid (sometimes with nicotine/sometimes without and just a flavour) to release a vapour. The two main ingredients within this e-liquid are: Propylene Glycol and Glycerol (vegetable glycine). Largely regarded as ‘safe’ particularly vs traditional cigarettes. 

However, here’s where the issue with vaping comes… 

The issue is that when these two ingredients are heated (to create the vapour) there are all sorts of bi-products produced including: formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, acetone, benzene, toluene and others. You also have nanoparticles like lead, mercury and even pesticides within some of the chemical flavourings added. 

How vaping impacts male fertility: 

There has been relatively limited research so far in the area of fertility, however, animal studies have shown some marked effects, particularly on hormones and male fertility. Related once again to a common cause of trouble: Oxidative Stress. Click here for more. 

With (or without) nicotine can cause as much as 50% drop in testosterone!?

In rat studies we saw a decline in testosterone by as much as 50% with nicotine and as much as 30% without. Indicating the ability of vaping to disrupt our all important sex hormones…. 

Vaping appears to impact sperm count and quality: 

Interestingly the sperm collected after vaping exposure had ‘significantly reduced count’ and viability. With reduced motility, morphology (shape) and evidence of damage to germ cells. 

Flavourings seem to be particularly problematic: 

Interestingly in one study  showed that vaping without nicotine was worse than with when it comes to sperm count (32m on av. vs 38m with nicotine). This appears to be related to toxicity within certain vape flavours. 

 

vaping fertility

Source

What about vaping and female fertility? Two main areas of concern: 

Once again these studies focus primarily on animal research – however, two main areas appeared to be impacted: delay in time to first litter of pups (in rat studies) and delays around the delicate process of implantation. Why? It appears to impact gene expression around uterine receptivity. 

vaping

Bottom line…

No, we are not rats or mice (which is principally where these studies were done), however, the impacts were material enough to indicate serious caution around vaping when trying to conceive. Often these substitutes can lull us into a false sense of security so best bet, say no! 

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This article is for informational purposes only. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice. The information on this website has been developed following years of personal research and from referenced and sourced medical research. Before making any changes we strongly recommend you consult a healthcare professional before you begin.

 

 

 

 

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