According to Sarah Baker, there are a lot of different theories and approaches to natural gender selection but very little scientific study. As there’s no solid evidence, medical experts warn against taking them too seriously.
Some people say there’s strong anecdotal evidence and that there’s no harm in trying them, as very few methods are intrusive.
Here’s a round-up of the most popular gender selection methods around:
1. Timing of Sex – Shettles Theory & Billings Method
Female sperm are heavier and live longer than male sperm so if you have sex a few days before ovulation and then abstain (while the male sperm die), this should increase the chances of conceiving a girl.
Male sperm are lighter in weight and swim faster than female ones so are more likely to reach the egg. Therefore, having sex on the day of ovulation should increase the chances of conceiving a boy.
2. Sexual Position Theory
Male sperm are more vulnerable and the vagina becomes less acidic closer to the cervix. So, if penetration is deep (woman-on-top or man-behind positions), the male sperm will enter a more alkaline environment and are more likely to survive the short journey. Therefore, deeper positions should mean a boy is more likely.
Shallow penetration should favour your chances of conceiving a girl – the slower female sperm are hardy enough to withstand the acidic conditions at the entrance to the vagina so could make it through to the egg after the male sperm have died off.
3. Male Sexual Abstinence Theory
Abstaining for a few days before making love increases your chances of conceiving a boy. The greater the volume of sperm, the more male sperm should be present, so theoretically there’s a greater chance that a male sperm survives and fertilizes the egg before a female sperm can reach it.
4. Changing your Diet Theory
The minerals in your diet could affect your metabolism and the environment of your eggs.
– To improve conditions for male sperm you need potassium (in meat, bananas, apricots and celery).
– To improve conditions for female sperm you need more magnesium-rich food (in nuts, soya beans and leafy green vegetables).
Historical events have shown that famine can result in more boys being born but also that women weighing less than 54.5kg are more likely to have girls.
This could mean that the type of food and nutrients available to those people played a part, or that calorie intake has an effect – but a low-calorie diet has a very different effect to malnutrition.
5. Timing of Orgasm Theory
If you reach orgasm before your partner, your vagina becomes more alkaline, which creates a better environment for male sperm.
Female sperm survive better in the naturally acidic environment of your vagina, so climaxing first would favour the conception of boys.
Best of luck!