Kenya Moore May Be Having Her First Child Via a Surrogate

Kenya Moore May Be Having Her First Child Via a Surrogate

Kenya Moore

Kenya Moore is officially set to be a mother by the end of the year. The news was confirmed on a Real Housewives of Atlanta reunion show. However, rumors are already flying that the former beauty queen is using a surrogate.

  • Journey to motherhood
  • Theories for why Moore might be using a surrogate
  • Looking ahead

Journey to motherhood

Last June, Moore married Marc Daly in a secret wedding on the island of Saint Lucia. Only a handful of friends and family were invited. None of the stars from the Real Housewives of Atlanta were present.

Shortly after the wedding news was released to the public, Moore discussed her desire to become pregnant in multiple interviews. Moore and her husband were even spotted at a fertility clinic in Barbados several weeks later. During the reunion show for Real Housewives, host Andy Cohen asked Moore if she was pregnant and if the baby’s name will be Twirl. Moore confirmed the first question and denied the second. She already has a dog named Twirl.

“We will definitely be welcoming a boy or girl in late this year,” she said. “I do not want to talk about the details. I am still just very nervous about everything, so I just want to get past a safe place….I want a healthy baby.”

Theories for why Moore might be using a surrogate

Some viewers believe Moore might be using a surrogate because she never used the word “pregnant” in her announcement.

One user commented on her Instagram account, saying, “You’re telling me this woman who has struggled with fertility as much as she has, has a surrogate but doesn’t know the due date.”

Another thought she may be using a surrogate, but reminded other commenters that there is nothing wrong with using a surrogate. “Omggg @thekenyamoore I’m so Freakinggggg Happy For You We All waited for this moment, nothing but blessings your way & a safe & healthy pregnancy & baby don’t believe she said that lol sounds like she may have a surrogate and there’s nothing wrong with that. Happy for her.”

Looking ahead

“Live your best life!” Moore wrote in a recent Instagram post. “I’m living mine. It took me a long time to receive the blessing of having a family. I prayed for this life! God blessed me with this life and this new joy! I will always speak the truth. I will continue to grow, forgive my enemies, and help as many people I can by example not words.”

The happy couple is also about to reach their one-year anniversary.

Regardless of whether or not Moore used surrogacy, her baby news is exciting and certainly calls for a celebration.

Pesticides Add a New Hurdle to ‘Eating Clean’

Pesticides Add a New Hurdle to ‘Eating Clean’

What ‘eating clean’ actually means for your fruits and veggies

You could still eat fruits and vegetables! It’s just that maybe you should consider organic options for some of them. Fruits and vegetables are nutritionally vital to our diets, but the pesticides involved with their growth can lead to fertility issues for both men and women.

A recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association links the top 14 pesticide-heavy produce with a drop in fertility. Women who reported eating 2.2 servings of these fruits and vegetables were 26 percent less likely to get pregnant than women who ate half as much.

 

Where can I find typical pesticide concentrations for conventional fruits and veggies?

The Environmental Working Group just released the Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce, which summarizes the results of tests done by the U.S. Department of Agriculture on commonly consumed fruits and vegetables. Highlights of the guide include the “Dirty Dozen” and the “Clean Fifteen.”

 

What are the “Dirty Dozen” and the “Clean Fifteen”?

The “Dirty Dozen” are the top 12 fruits and vegetables ridden by pesticides. Each crop listed in the Dirty Dozen contained multiple pesticide residues on each sample. For example, nearly all strawberry samples had some trace of pesticides.

The “Clean Fifteen” are exactly what they sound like–the top 15 fruits and vegetables with the least pesticides. For example, fewer than 1 percent of avocados were found to have any pesticide residues. Good news for those millennials and their avocado toast.

 

What should we do?

The Shopper’s Guide is meant to educate the public on the concentrations of pesticides in their common fruits and vegetables. You don’t need to go full-on organic, but consider organic options for your favorite fruits and vegetables that have high pesticide ratings.

Though pesticides are known to have negative effects on our health, complicated procedures and relationships between lawmakers and companies make ridding our foods of toxic substances to be an uphill battle. What we can do on an individual level is limit our exposure to these substances by making informed decisions on what to put in our bodies.

Possible Win for IVF and Fertility Patients in Delaware

Possible Win for IVF and Fertility Patients in Delaware

Delaware legislatures have proposed a new bill that covers a multitude of fertility treatments such as:

  • Intrauterine insemination
  • Assisted hatching
  • Cryopreservation and thawing of eggs, sperm and embryos
  • Cryopreservation of ovarian and testicular tissue
  • Embryo biopsy
  • Consultation and diagnostic testing
  • Fresh and frozen embryo transfers
  • Six completed egg retrievals per lifetime with an unlimited number of embryo transfers
  • In vitro fertilization
  • Intracytoplasmic sperm injection
  • Medications
  • Ovulation induction
  • Storage of oocytes, embryos and tissue
  • Medical and lab services

It is no secret that fertility treatments can really break the bank. This bill goes to vote this week and it requires insurers to cover the treatments listed above for women with infertility problems.

The National Infertility Association estimates that 19,538 women in Delaware struggle with infertility. Infertility is equally as tragic to the couple as it is to their savings. Women have had to make tremendous sacrifices so that they could utilize modern day technologies to bear children. It’s not a surprise to see couples putting off buying houses or moving back in with in-laws to make up for the financial stress and cost of living.

If this bill passes, Delaware will be the 16th state to cover fertility treatments to this extent. Unfortunately, the bill hasn’t set specifications or limits on treatment, ultimately leaving it up to insurance’s discretion.

How do you qualify for coverage?

First, you need an official diagnosis of infertility. Your OBGYN needs to verify that you cannot bear children on your own. It also requires the Delawarean to try, with “reasonable effort,” less costly treatments, though there are some exceptions. The bill states that before IVF services are covered, the insurance company can require no more than three treatment cycles of ovulation induction. It also states that, if IVF is deemed medically necessary, no cycles of ovulation induction or intrauterine inseminations will be required.

The vote is set for this week, and this could be a true lifesaver for those struggling with infertility.

How the New Title X Guidelines ‘Trumped’ Contraception

How the New Title X Guidelines ‘Trumped’ Contraception

What the Trump Administration conceives of contraception

birth control

Image used courtesy of PH Lessons

The Trump Administration recently announced the new rules for the Title X family funding program, and it’s not looking good for sexual education and contraception. This year’s guidelines largely favor abstinence-only education and natural family planning methods like fertility awareness. Birth control is not mentioned at all in the new requirements.

Other than the shift towards abstinence and fertility awareness, the guidelines also specifically encourage providers specializing in “a single method of family planning” and also “community-based and faith-based organizations” to apply. Not only do the new guidelines seem to limit contraceptive methods, but they also seem to favor religious providers, who are more likely to oppose abortion as a birth control method.

Reproductive health advocates worry that the revamp of the Title X program will negatively affect the low-income communities and women it serves. Before now, the guidelines had aimed to educate the public on various birth control options and required all Title X-funded programs to follow Providing Quality Family Planning Services (which is now omitted from the new requirements).

Title X funding is in the hands of Valerie Huber, who used to be the president and CEO of Ascend, a group that promotes abstinence-only education. She also has a reputation for criticizing the “normalization” of teen sex and sex before marriage. Many healthcare advocates have spoken out about the new guidelines, claiming them as an attempt to impose conservative beliefs onto the 4 million people that depend on affordable reproductive health clinics for their family planning options.

Should Google Pay For You to Have a Baby?

Should Google Pay For You to Have a Baby?

Companies have started helping women pay to freeze their eggs. Tech companies such as Facebook and Pinterest are on the cutting edge of this new wave, one they say is designed to help people plan for families in their own ways.

This is a big shift from previous years when couples had to prove they were engaging in heterosexual sex and trying other methods to conceive before they could move on to IVF or get any fertility help from their employers.

Now things are improving rapidly, especially for families that don’t fit the norm.

Pinterest recently helped a man and his partner with surrogacy costs so they could start a family. “We made a decision to actually research surrogacy benefits with a $20,000 net benefit that directly enabled this employee and his husband to start a family,” Serrano, Pinterest’s senior vice president of people, said. “They’ve gone through that process now … and they’re expecting their first child.”

As companies become more open to helping employees with their family lives and the intense costs that can be associated with fertility, they are inspiring more loyalty amongst their employees.

One woman told Pinterest that she would “reconfirm her commitment with Pinterest long-term because we’re in the game.” Because Pinterest was so willing to help her start a family and deal with infertility issues, she was more inclined to be loyal to her job there and keep working there, which is something many companies want but is becoming increasingly harder as changing jobs frequently is becoming the norm.

This is a huge change from when Facebook began to compensate employees who were choosing to freeze their eggs and made national news. Now fertility benefits are all the range, and 62% of Millenial women polled said “they would choose a job that offered a fertility benefit over a job that did not, all else being equal.”

Maybe it’s time for more companies to catch up with the tech giants like Spotify and Google that are offering amazing benefits to their employees and who are understanding of the fact that family comes first, and that family planning is one of the most important things their workplace can help them with outside of directly job related things.

What is Olivia Munn’s One Simple Trick to Increase Fertility?

What is Olivia Munn’s One Simple Trick to Increase Fertility?

 

Olivia Munn, known for her role in X-Men: Apocalypse, recently decided to freeze her eggs on the advice of her best friend and a mother of three, Kim Kardashian West. Kardashian recently had her third child, Chicago, who was born via a surrogate due to the difficulties of her two pregnancies.

Munn says that part of the reason she went to Kardashian West is that she’s just so knowledgeable. “Honestly, out of all of my girlfriends, she is the most knowledgeable. If you want to know about anything, she’s the girl. Truly,” Munn told Entertainment Tonight.

At first, Munn had only been debating freezing her eggs in case she decided to go through with in vitro in the future. However, after hearing Kardashian West’s story, she made up her mind to do it. Kardashian West also recommended her to her doctor.

“I was like, ‘Well, there’s no reason to, but I wanted to.’ I think every woman should, honestly. Later on, when women are going through in vitro it’s hard because you are just scrambling to get some eggs. I was able to just store a ton.” So while Munn might not have made any firm decisions as to when she’s looking to conceive yet, she has definitely ensured she’ll have a better chance of conceiving if she chooses to do it later in life.

Infertility and the possibility of in vitro fertilization may feel far off to some, but like Munn says, it never hurts to have a backup plan, and storing your eggs will give you more choices later in life if you change your mind about conceiving or find that you can’t get pregnant.

Ibuprofen’s Effect on Your Baby’s Fertility

Ibuprofen’s Effect on Your Baby’s Fertility

You may want to reconsider your everyday pain reliever


Ibuprofen, a common active ingredient found in many medications like Advil, NeoProfen, and Motrin, may be lowering your daughter’s egg count before she’s even born. Studies have already linked ibuprofen with the higher likelihood of heart defect formation in late pregnancy, but a recent study has given us a reason to be wary of using it during early pregnancy too.

 

Who said that ibuprofen could negatively affect my baby’s fertility?

Inserm, a French human health research organization, recently published a study in Human Reproduction that investigates the effect of ibuprofen Ston the development of the human ovary. Previous studies have researched the effect of ibuprofen on rodent ovarian tissue, but Inserm’s study focuses specifically on human ovarian tissue. Unfortunately, results suggested that ibuprofen does indeed lower a female fetus’ ovarian follicle count.

 

How does ibuprofen affect my child’s fertility?

Fetuses absorb the same nutrients as their mothers. Both drugs and nutrients pass through the placenta as easily as they pass into the mother’s bloodstream. Considering that ibuprofen affects the development of germ cells that grow into ovarian follicles, ibuprofen also affects the human eggs that develop from these follicles. Ibuprofen can cause some of the germ cells that potentially develop into ovarian follicles to stop growing and or dividing, or even kill them.

Inserm’s study found that the growth and division of ovarian germ cells are affected as early as two days into using ibuprofen. After a week of use, results were deemed “significant.” Even after the discontinued use of ibuprofen, cells didn’t grow back or repair themselves.

 

So does that mean I can’t use ibuprofen when I’m pregnant?

Inserm admits that their study was only observed in a lab and not in utero. Also, the effect of ibuprofen on a baby girl’s fertility has never been recorded in a long-term study. Although Inserm’s study observes a significant effect of ibuprofen on a female fetus’ ovarian follicle count, they can’t be sure that the results would be the same if observed during a real pregnancy or if the damage would persist into adulthood.

So take this information as a reminder to ask your doctor about your pain relief options for your specific situation. Staying informed on what may be harmful to both you and your child will help ensure a healthy, successful pregnancy.

Is Kylie Jenner’s Pregnancy Bad For Children?

Is Kylie Jenner’s Pregnancy Bad For Children?

kylie jenner

Image used courtesy of Vogue

Kylie Jenner’s pregnancy has taken the world–or at least the 13 to 25 crowd–by storm (pun intended). After staying out of the media’s eye for most of the past year, she took to YouTube in early February to post a video about her pregnancy and her daughter, Stormi’s, birth.

She is proud of Stormi and said during the video that her number one desire since she was fifteen was to get pregnant. The same is not true of all women who get pregnant at twenty. Not everyone has Jenner’s privileges and the ability to support Stormi easily.

Some people are worried about the effect Jenner’s pregnancy and the excitement she has over it may have over some of her impressionable fans. Brit + Co talked with Dr. Lauren Brim, who is the author of The New American Family. She discusses how the American family isn’t breaking down or dying like so many critical think pieces are discussing. Instead, it’s just changing to a new form and, in her eyes, reawakening.

She does caution those who may be considering taking after Jenner. While watching a young woman go through pregnancy and motherhood with such grace can be a good role model, it may also lead to issues. Jenner’s life is unrealistically glamorous, and as such her new motherhood (or at least what the public sees of it) is as well, which may give young women misleading ideas of what pregnancy and motherhood can be.

Jenner’s pregnancy also shows why it can sometimes be healthier for younger woman to get pregnant. Their bodies tend to be more resilient after giving birth, and are less inclined to health issues such as gestational diabetes during the pregnancy. Younger women are also the most fertile, so Kylie is probably the most fertile she will ever be.

Whether teens are looking up to Kylie for her motherhood, her lipkits and business skills, or her great selfie game, she’s one of the most iconic new celebrities. Stormi will probably be one of the most iconic babies around too.

Olympic workouts: how exercise impacts fertility

Olympic workouts: how exercise impacts fertility

Dispelling myths while staying informed about extreme sports

Every few years, the reemergence of the world’s greatest athletes for the Olympic games sparks conversation, including exercise routines and more.  While not all of us are up to par with Olympians, many of us still strive to be competitive athletes or at least frequent gym-goers. In an article posted by the Romper, writer Lindsay E. Mack details research from the Southern California Reproductive Center to decide whether or not extreme athletics can help or harm fertility chances. The article details three major components of dealing with the Olympics:

  • Understanding the details of extensive training hours along with external factors.
  • Potential issues caused by extreme exercise, including issues with ovulation.
  • Realizing the common misconceptions when dealing with women and exercise.

 

Training long hours & external factors

When looking at the Olympic games, different levels and different types of training apply to each sport.  Regardless of sport, however, consulting a doctor for health advice when starting these routines is crucial.  In addition, while long training hours can affect your fertility, it is important not to assume it is the sole cause of issues.  Additional factors more often than not can affect fertility, regardless of athletics.


Ovulation & issues that arise

While some aspects of intense exercise effects may remain uncertain, there are certain connections we can pinpoint.  According to the Mayo Clinic, heavy exercise impacts ovulation, as timing is often key for successful conception (many women often track their cycles on apps in order to ensure accurate results).  Another common ovulation-related issue is amenorrhea, which is described as infrequent periods usually as a result of exercise.  This issue is described by OB-GYN Stephen K. Montoya, MD: “If you’re not having periods, it indicates that you’re probably not ovulating and for sure you’re not making enough hormones to sustain a fetus.”  Further studies have looked into if these delays are long term, and research shows the effects are only temporary.


Misconceptions surrounding women & exercise

Unfortunately, misconceptions have often outnumbered actually effects such as amenorrhea, furthering worry for conceiving a child while being an athlete.  Heavy exercise can also negatively impact sperm count, causing issues for both males and females.  The article also noted that several female Olympians have conceived, and even competed, during training season, proving there is still high chances of having a child while partaking in high levels of exercise.

As you digest the past few weeks’ Olympic sports, be sure to keep these thoughts in mind!

Important Facts You Should Know About Births in America

Important Facts You Should Know About Births in America

The fertility rate in America is at a historic low with only 59.6 births per 1,000 women. It’s been declining for years. Some experts are becoming worried because if the trend continues, our country could face “economic and cultural turmoil.”

Why is this happening?

Birth rates are decreasing for women in their teens and 20s while increasing for women in their 30s and 40s. This is because there have been fewer instances of teen pregnancies. At the same time, women have been waiting to get married and have children until later on in life.

The exact reason for the waiting trend is unclear, but one possibility could involve uncertainty about the country’s future. People are more willing to commit to having children when they are confident about their nation’s current and future cultural health. People may simply not feel comfortable raising a child right now.

What are the consequences?

Mothers who are older when they have their first birth are more likely to have any other children closer together, or not have any more at all. Brady Hamilton, a statistician working for the National Center for Health Statistics, said delaying the birth of one’s first child can make the possibility of having more problematic. Age is the number one factor contributing to fertility, “so the longer you postpone, the more potential you have for smaller families and smaller population growth.”

Reproduction is one of the most important measures of demographic health. The number needs to reach a certain point, called the “replacement rate,” in order to keep a population stable so it doesn’t dramatically grow or shrink. America’s replacement rate is about 2.1 children per woman, and is not being met. Fertility rate as of 2015 is 1.84 births per woman, which is critically low. If birth rate is too low, there’s a danger that there wouldn’t be enough people to replace the aging workforce, pay for social security, or cover taxes to keep the economy balanced.

Is there anything to be done?

Many experts are debating whether the U.S. is headed towards a “national emergency,” or if the drop in births will level off soon.

William Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institution, says there may not be cause for alarm yet. America still has more births than deaths and a higher fertility rate compared to other developed countries like Germany and Italy.

Frey attributes the decline in birthrates to women’s lifestyle choices as well as the current economy. He says economic downturn or uncertainty tends to cause a decrease in birth rates, but “when the economy is getting better then we’ll start having more children.”