Yet another study links weight and fertility; specifically in this instance, nearly 48,000 Danish couples who were clinically obese. Obesity is marked at body-mass index (BMI) -- weight in kilograms divided by the square of height in meters -- of 30 or higher. But the study authors slipped up in one especially important area: they didn't inquire as to how much sexual intercourse was occurring in the subject group. Much has already been written on the relationships between weight and how too much or too little can negatively impact both male and female fertility levels. This study, just published in the journal Human Reproduction
, is the first to examine the weight of a couple as a unit. In this review of the study on MedPage Today
, the resulting action points indicated are to explain to patients: A. that if both partners are obese, it could take longer than a year to conceive, and B. the length of time to conception could be shortened when the woman (if she is obese,) in particular, loses weight. Good advice, no doubt. The study review renders plenty of supporting details. However, it's very hard to feel quite confident in the results when the researchers plainly state that no reliable information "on the frequency and timing of sexual intercourse" was collected from the subjects, so they "cannot know whether infrequent intercourse delayed conception in overweight and obese couples." The gap in data led another article
to surmise that the fertility problem for obese couples could be more related to their sex life than to some hormonal or other biophysical connection.