Gender Swaying: How To Conceive Your Gender of Choice

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There’s no exact science to ensure you conceive a girl or a boy, though it would be nice, wouldn’t it? Being able to adjust your diet, conceived in a certain position, take a certain vitamin or medication or conceive at a particular time of the month. Being able to control whether you have a baby girl that you’ve always dreamed of having, or a boy you’ve always wanted to have.

In this post, we will explore all the methods people have come up with to ensure they have their desired sex.

Though many of these methods of swaying the baby’s sex are not proven to be effective and are not always backed by science as the chromosomes the baby gets is rather 50/50 between XY and XX, there is no harm in trying these methods!

women picking out baby girl clothes

How to Conceive a Girl

Method 1: The Shettles Method

Dating back to the 1960s and claiming a 75-90% success rate for couples, the Shettles Method has helped to conceive a girl. Dr Shettles believed that the most important factor in controlling the sex of the baby was timing. The baby’s sex is determined by the chromosome carrying sperm. ‘Boy sperm’ is said to swim faster but do not survive very long. ‘Girl sperm’ is stronger and more resilient but swim slower than their male producing counterparts. According to Shettles’ study, a couple wanting a baby girl should try and conceive two to four days before ovulation. By the time ovulation occurs, only the girl sperm should be left to fertilise the egg.

Method 2: Whelan’s Method

The second method hailed by its followers was theorised by Dr Whelan. Only claiming a 57% success rate, her theory has similar timings to Shettles, claiming you must conceive two or three days before ovulation.

Method 3: Positions

The second part of Shettles’ theory is that the baby’s sex can be determined by the position in which the baby is conceived. It is believed that shallow penetration, coupled with the sperm ejaculated close to the entrance of the vagina favours female conception because the area is more acidic, which will kill off the weaker ‘Boy Sperm’.

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Method 4: Amount of Sex

According to, rather than restricting your sex life to specific times as Shettles recommends, when trying for a girl you should aim to have more sex - the worst news ever, we know! In the days leading up to your fertile window, you should have as much sex as you can. Reducing your partner’s sperm count will mean that there are fewer fast-swimmers available to partake in the race to fertilisation.

Method 5: The Girl Diet

Cutting out certain foods, lowering calories and reducing your intake of particular foods in a bid to help your chances of conceiving a girl, has been said to hold some merit. Reducing your calories to around 1500-1800 per day and not overindulging is the key message of this diet. Cutting out red meat that increases testosterone levels in the body and reducing the salt and potassium intake, such as removing bananas, potatoes and tomatoes from your diet as well as stopping adding salt to season everything. Some have also claimed that cutting out high-fat foods can also aid your chances on this Girl Diet. Instead, you are told to guzzle cranberry juice and milk, and eat high-carb foods like pasta with cheese and butter as well as consuming lots of fresh fruit throughout the day. Cases all across the world have claimed that changing the way they eat prior to conception has increased their odds of having a baby girl, though many do not say the diet is the sole reason, just that it was a contributing factor.

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How to Conceive a Boy:

Method 1: The Shettles Method

Looking once again at this theory that ‘Boy Sperm’ are faster to the egg than the ‘Girl Sperm’, the couple must have sex as close to ovulation as possible so that the faster swimmers can get to the egg quicker. Depositing the sperm through deep penetration, in the least acidic area near the uterus opening, allows the faster ‘Boy Sperm’ to reach the egg first. Intercourse should occur from 5am and continue every 2 hours during the ovulation period, however, according to this theory, eggs are more likely to be fertilised before 7am, which is known as “the peak conceiving period”. Intercourse should occur no earlier than 24 hours before ovulation and no later than 12 hours since you have ovulated.

Whelan’s method suggests that for a boy, you must have intercourse four to six days before your fertile window (ovulation) in order to increase the likelihood of having a boy.

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Method 2: Position & Orgasm

Sperm that is closest to the cervix has a better chance of reaching the egg before they die off by the time they reach the fallopian tubes. Twelve hours before ovulation is thought to maximise your chances of having a boy. According to studies, it also helps if the woman orgasms - so take note ladies, it’s time to get those men working harder! When a woman has an orgasm, the alkaline properties in the vagina are boosted, which helps the sperm do their work. Orgasm also causes the uterine and vaginal contractions which help to push the sperm upwards to where they need to go.

Method 3: The Boy Diet

Much like the ‘Girl Diet’, restricting certain foods is said to help your chances in conceiving a boy. Cutting out spicy foods that contain vinegar, citrus and fruit juices or food with tart/tangy flavours, as well as avoiding dairy and swapping them for a higher intake of bread, avocado, almonds, sprouts and wheatgrass as well as pine nuts and cherries is recommended. Eating more potassium-rich foods like bananas, broccoli, potatoes and spinach as well as cutting out the foods mentioned above is suggested to make the vagina a less acidic environment, allowing the weaker Boy sperm to reach the unfertilized egg.

Caffeine could also be a contributing factor to the conception of a baby boy. It has been theorised that coffee, energy drink or even some chocolate before sex could increase your chances, so having an espresso shot and a bar of chocolate can’t hurt!

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Myth Busting

While the facts remain that is actually the men that can influence the sex of the baby, not the women. Men provide the sperm that either has the X or Y chromosomes. Both testicles produce both boy and girl sperms and it is impossible to put your money on one sex or another without external control. Some men do produce better quality X or Y sperm which could account for why some families have a large number of boys or girls. Trading in the tight boxer briefs for some loose-fitting boxer shorts, however, could prevent the testes from overheating, which in turn can stop the reduction of sperm that are produced, increasing the likelihood of conceiving a boy.

The use of herbal and complementary medicine remedies have also been proven to make no impact on determining or swaying the sex of the baby at conception. Many seem to offer spurious claims, however, they are not based on scientific fact or reason.

All of these methods, bar one, have been brushed aside by medical experts as there have been many conflicting results in further studies and tests on the subject. Unfortunately, they’ve found little supporting evidence to say that these methods do in fact work. The only method mentioned above that has scientific and medical backing is the timing of intercourse, under Shettles and Whelan’s advice is to keep track of your ovulation fertile window [ insert ovulation tracking app link] and aim to have intercourse before or during to help increase your chances of having the baby you want.

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