Environment, Lifestyle, and Female Infertility

Abstract

Lifestyle factors, which include the practices we adopt in our daily life, have a significant role in shaping our overall health. These lifestyle choices are mainly centered on personal preferences and our surrounding social environment. In addition to lifestyle factors, we continuously interact with our environment, which impacts physiology. Several factors have been claimed to affect women’s fertility; lifestyle-related factors, in particular, have received great attention in the last decade. Due to societal and professional pressure, childbearing age in women has gradually shifted to the 30s. Delayed age of childbearing along with modern lifestyle offers a wider window of opportunity for various lifestyle and genetic perturbations to penetrate to affect fertility. While clinical studies have strengthened a direct correlation between lifestyle, environment, and female reproductive health; experimental studies on animal models have investigated their mechanism of action. In most instances, these factors target the neuroendocrine pathways, resulting in metabolic derangements. This review aims to dissect the plausible interconnection of lifestyle and environmental factors with various neuroendocrine pathways and to discuss how it can affect the female physiology in the long-term, resulting in reproductive incompetence.

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Acknowledgements

RB is thankful to University Grant Commission (UGC), Govt. Of India for Junior Research Fellowship.

Funding

This work was supported by the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) under grant 102/IFD/SAN/4713/2015–2016 and BT/PR16349/MED/97/291/2016, New Delhi, India.

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Renu Bala and Vertika singh surveyed the literature and had primary responsibility of manuscript writing. Kiran Singh and Singh Rajender helped in drafting the content and manuscript editing.

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Correspondence to Singh Rajender or Kiran Singh.

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Bala, R., Singh, V., Rajender, S. et al. Environment, Lifestyle, and Female Infertility. Reprod. Sci. 28, 617–638 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s43032-020-00279-3

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Keywords

  • Lifestyle factors
  • Reproductive health
  • Neuroendocrine signaling
  • Female fertility