NO… study does not link pesticides with lower sperm count

Hard to get dumber than this one.

The “researchers” asked 155 men at a fertility clinic how much fruit and vegetables they ate. Exposure to pesticides was then guesstimated based on USDA reports about pesticide residues on fruits and vegetables. The pesticide guesstimates were then compared with single sperm samples from each man.

Here are some of the major flaws of this study:

1. The men’s actual exposures to pesticides is unknown. Unverified, self-reported dietary data is always a dubious proposition. Compounding this problem with assumed intake of a variety of pesticides makes this exercise mind-blowingly ridiculous.

2. Sperm counts can very for a number of reasons, none of which can be ruled out based on unverified self-reported data. Moreover, this study is based on one sperm sample per man — hardly representative of even an individual’s sperm count.

3. There is no other credible biological, medical or real-world evidence indicating that typical/ambient chemical exposures (especially via diet) affect sperm count or, more importantly, fertility. Remember that the 20th century Baby Boom came amid an explosion of chemical exposures.

There is nothing here except the ensuing sensationalist headlines.

Click for the study.

6 thoughts on “NO… study does not link pesticides with lower sperm count”

  1. One more point. This was not a blind population sample, but a group of men already at a fertility clinic. The population of low speak or defective speak males will definitely be higher there.

  2. Considering the same people that want to reduce the population of humans to a tiny percentage of present are the same crowd that is attacking pesticides and every other beneficial chemical/process, aren’t they shooting them selves in the foot with this “study”?

  3. A perfect example to show why I no longer read medical journals. I’m sure there are occassional worthwhile articles but mostly they are filled with this kind of junk. And this is just one of thousands of “studies” financed with taxpayer money. The NIH should be abolished and there should be no government financing of scientific research.

  4. Of course they could have looked at any of ~100 foods, some combination of foods, and any of 50 or so pesticides. The real creativity in a study like this is writing some sort of plausible sounding narrative. Where was the editor?

  5. Let’s also mention that this crap came out of the once prestigious Harvard School of Public Health…on an NIH grant.

    For those readers under 40, please realize that this sort of thing would have been proposed as a JOKE 40 years ago during grad school/faculty lunches.

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