This article written by Aly Walansky was originally featured on one of our favorite sites: YourTango.
Get after it!
It sounds like an old wive's tale, but can sex positions influence your baby's sex? Realistically, no. But at the same time, there are plenty of sex tips to increase fertility.
"At the present time, there is no evidence that conceiving a boy or a girl is more likely with specific sexual positions," says Dr. Aaron Styer, a top reproductive endocrinologist and co-medical director of CCRM Boston. In reality, there are no foods, lifestyle habits, or methods before, during, or after sex that will influence the sex of the baby conceived.
Still, you'll see tons of impending parents debating that you actually can determine a baby's sex based on how you make that baby.
The sex of the baby is determined at the time when the woman's egg is fertilized by sperm.
"The unfertilized egg carries an X chromosome while the sperm can carry an X or a Y chromosome. If the sperm carrying an X chromosome fertilizes the egg, a girl or female (XX) will be conceived. If the sperm carrying a Y chromosome fertilizes the egg, then a boy or male (XY) will be conceived," advises Styer.
There are many common misconceptions about conceiving, such as specific foods influencing the sex of your baby.
"Eating foods that are high in calcium and magnesium increase your chances of having a girl. Certain foods, medications, and sexual positions/activities improve your chances of getting pregnant. Eating pineapples during timed intercourse will improve chances for pregnancy. Taking cough syrup prior to ovulation will make your cervical mucous very thin, help sperm swim more quickly towards the released egg, and improve the chances for fertilization," says Styer.
So while there aren't exactly specific positions that can influence a baby's gender, the following sex tips to increase fertility might ease your mind.
1. The obvious: Make sure he orgasms.
Some believe having an orgasm during sex will increase chances for conception. Which makes sense, since you can't create a baby without sperm, right?
2. Bend your knees.
Yoga classes will really come in handy here. It is believed the gender of the baby is determined by the chromosome which will fertilize the egg first. So, male sperm is represented by Y, and female sperm is represented by X. If Y sperm wins over X sperm, you will have a boy.
So, if for example you are hoping for a boy, you want the male sperm to win in that race, and that means getting as many sperm as possible to the egg — maximum penetration happens when the woman bends her knees, lifting herself upward.
3. Lay on your back immediately after you're finished.
"You should lay on your back or stand on your head immediately after sex to prevent sperm from spilling out of your vagina and to improve your chances of getting pregnant," says Styer.
4. Time your sex.
The ideal time to conceive a baby should begin 4 days prior to the day of ovulation and continue through the day of ovulation.
"The best lifestyle interventions to optimize fertility include a well-balanced diet, taking a multivitamin supplement which includes folic acid, daily recommended Vitamin D and calcium, maintaining an appropriate body weight, abstinence from tobacco and recreational drugs, and avoiding excessive caffeine intake," says Styer.
5. Try woman-on-top if you're hoping for a girl.
As we pointed out, the sex of the baby is determined by the chromosome which will fertilize the egg first. So, male sperm is represented by Y, and female sperm is represented by X. If Y sperm wins over X sperm then you will have a boy; otherwise, you will have a girl. So, go for that deep penetration and give those little guys a fighting chance.
However, sex therapist Ava Cadell claims that a woman on top will control the depth of penetration and that means more likelihood of a girl! Who knew?
6. Try a position with shallow penetration.
Spooning leads to shallow penetration, which, by the same logic as above, would mean female sperm wins. So, try this position if you are hoping for a girl. No guarantees, of course. But it's super-intimate and also fun.
7. And finally: Make sure you orgasm, too!
Orgasms absolutely lead to a more friendly environment for the visiting sperm.
"It is always a good thing to have during sex. These things probably aren't going to help but they won't hurt either," says OB/GYN Dr. Lisa Masterson.
More juicy reads from YourTango:
7 Signs You're EXTREMELY Fertile (So Watch Out!)
5 Things Your Man Needs to Do NOW to Help You Get Pregnant
How to Have GREAT (Not Good) Sex: 7 Tips to Make It Hot Every Time