Christina Sarich — Natural Society August 13, 2015
Male fertility is declining, and for years researchers have been trying to figure out why. The numbers may seem shocking, but between 60-80 million couples around the world are having a difficult time conceiving, and there is a likely culprit, especially considering evidence arising from the latest study published at Science Direct.
Titled, “Potential pathways of pesticide action on erectile function – A contributory factor in male infertility,” the study shows that along with heavy metals, radioactivity, and poisonous fumes of organic chemicals, pesticides are largely contributing to erectile dysfunction and the downfall of male fertility. Of course there are numerous “psychological, physiological, pathological, social, environmental, and nutritional factors (plus others), at play.
It is estimated in some studies that as much as 52% of men over 40 are suffering from erectile dysfunction. How is this possible when in times past such a phenomenon was rare? The numbers of birth defects we are observing as a planet are also on the rise. Is this any surprise, though, when Syngenta covers up how their pesticide, Atrazine, was causing frogs to change genders and have serious fertility issues? Or when Monsanto lies about the true effects of their herbicide, glyphosate, on fertility?
To whit, in the April 16 issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences:
“…University of California, Berkeley, developmental endocrinologist Tyrone B. Hayes, associate professor of integrative biology, and his colleagues report that Atrazine at levels often found in the environment demasculinizes tadpoles and turns them into hermaphrodites – creatures with both male and female sexual characteristics. The herbicide also lowers levels of the male hormone testosterone in sexually mature male frogs by a factor of 10, to levels lower than those in normal female frogs.”
Or how about this little ditty published in the Journal of Reproductive Toxicology, titled “Glyphosate impairs male offspring reproductive development by disrupting gonadotropin expression:”
“This study shows, for the first time, the effects on the reproductive development of male offspring from dams treated with glyphosate only in the perinatal period. We conclude that the exposure promotes behavioral changes and histological and endocrine problems in reproductive parameters and these changes are reflected by a hyperse-cretion of androgens and increased gonadal activity, sperm production and libido.”
With evidence like this preceding the latest study proving that pesticides are causing erectile dysfunction, you have to wonder exactly why these chemicals are running rampant in the U.S.? And let’s be clear: there are MANY other problems arising from our gross pesticide use.
Why Pesticides are a “Major Cause” of Male Infertility
The authors call pesticides “A MAJOR CAUSE OF MALE INFERTILITY.” This happens for several reasons:
1. Pesticides are responsible for decreasing testosterone concentration either by inhibiting release of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) or luteinizing hormone (LH) . Pesticides are also responsible for “apoptosis of leydig cells and hence decreasing overall concentration testosterone.” What’s more, pesticides cause increase secretion of hypothalamic corticotrophin-releasing hormone which stimulates the release of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) and cortisol . High cortisol level inhibit gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH). The result? LH and testosterone decrease.
2. Pesticides inhibit acetylcholine esterase, an important chemical that interacts with neurotransmitters in the brain to cause an erection in men.
3. They cause severe oxidative stress.
4. They cause apoptosis and necrosis of cells – a scientific way of saying cells die and shrivel up.
5. Pesticides are endocrine disruptors, which means the hormones which regulate a man’s sexual expression are inhibited or demasculinized.
6. They effect leydig cells which are responsible for creating testosterone and without proper functioning, low sperm count. Glyphosate alone decreases testosterone levels by as much as 37%!
7. Pesticides mess with neurotransmitters that are responsible for creating an erection.
8. They also negatively affect the tunica albuginea, which is the tough fibrous envelope of connective tissue that surrounds the corpora cavernosa of the penis. It consists of approximately 5% elastin, an extensible tissue that is primarily made up of the amino acids glycine, valine, alanine, and proline. The majority of the remaining tissue is collagen, which is made up of lysine, proline, glycine, alanine, and other amino acids .
It almost reads as if pesticides were specifically designed to cause infertility.