Do Cell Phones Lower Sperm Counts?

Do Cell Phones Lower Sperm Counts?
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What is the effect of cell phone radiation on sperm motility and DNA damage?

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Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

“Are men talking their reproductive health away?” There have been “unexplained declines in semen quality reported in several countries.” Might cell phones be playing a role, as “[r]adio-frequency electromagnetic radiation from these devices could potentially affect sperm development and function.” The cell phone industry bristles at the “r-word,” radiation, preferring the more innocuous sounding “RF-EMF”s. They do have a point, though, about it being used by snake-oil hucksters of “radiation protection” gadgets. Radiation need not be atomic-bomb gamma rays, but just the warm glow of sunshine on your face; that’s radiation, too. The question is: does the specific type of radiation emitted by cell phones affect male fertility?

After the “World Health Organization…declared that cell phones [could possibly] cause brain cancer,” many folks were like, no problem, I’ll just keep it in my pants and use Bluetooth or something. Away from the brain, but “close to the gonads.” Put all the studies together, including nearly 1,500 semen samples and: “Exposure to mobile phones was associated with reduced sperm motility…and viability…,” though not necessarily sperm concentration.”

How much less could they swim? Sperm motility only appeared to be about 8% less, and so that alone may not actually translate into reduced fertility—unless you’re starting out with a marginal sperm count in the first place. So, especially for men who already have fertility problems, it might be better to avoid keeping an active cell phone next to your crotch for long periods of time. Cell phones may just be one of a bunch of things that could potentially add up. For example, Wi-Fi may be an issue. So, researchers got semen samples from more than a thousand guys, and the total number of swimmers? “[M]otile sperm were decreased in a group who used a wireless internet.”

Okay, but these were all just observational studies. Maybe men who use Wi-Fi just tend to smoke more, or do more horseback riding, or something—and that’s the reason for the apparent link. You don’t know, until you put it to the test.

Unfortunately, many of the studies are like this: on rats. So, while the microwaves emitted from a cell phone do not appear to affect rat testicles, it can be argued that you can’t necessarily extrapolate from these animal models, since, for example, their scrotums are “nonpendulous”—meaning their testicles are more inside their bodies rather than out swinging around.

So, at least “[u]ntil proven otherwise, it is recommended that [men] with…fertility issues” may not want to keep their cell phones in their front pants pocket, “in close proximity to the[ir] testicles.” Even when not in use, cell phones emit radiation—to keep pinging their location, though the main exposure is during talk mode, where it may still remain in the pocket, thanks to headsets these days.

And then, what happens when you have it in proximity to other common metal objects? Here’s a cross-section at crotch level. There’s the phone. You may have a metal zipper, key ring in your pocket. “When all three objects were added, the SAR [the amount of radiation absorbed into]…the testicles, was generally increased…[even] approximately doubled.”

But, that’s only a problem if the radiation does actually damage sperm. How hard is it to just design a study where you just wave a cell phone over some human sperm in a Petri dish to see if it’s an issue? And…here we go. Significantly more DNA fragmentation in sperm exposed to cell phone radiation, starting within an hour of exposure. Such a dramatic effect that they suggest women might not want to pocket their cell phones for a few days after trying to get pregnant, so as to not put the sperm at further risk.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Martin Abegglen via flickr. Image has been modified.

Motion graphics by Avocado Video

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

“Are men talking their reproductive health away?” There have been “unexplained declines in semen quality reported in several countries.” Might cell phones be playing a role, as “[r]adio-frequency electromagnetic radiation from these devices could potentially affect sperm development and function.” The cell phone industry bristles at the “r-word,” radiation, preferring the more innocuous sounding “RF-EMF”s. They do have a point, though, about it being used by snake-oil hucksters of “radiation protection” gadgets. Radiation need not be atomic-bomb gamma rays, but just the warm glow of sunshine on your face; that’s radiation, too. The question is: does the specific type of radiation emitted by cell phones affect male fertility?

After the “World Health Organization…declared that cell phones [could possibly] cause brain cancer,” many folks were like, no problem, I’ll just keep it in my pants and use Bluetooth or something. Away from the brain, but “close to the gonads.” Put all the studies together, including nearly 1,500 semen samples and: “Exposure to mobile phones was associated with reduced sperm motility…and viability…,” though not necessarily sperm concentration.”

How much less could they swim? Sperm motility only appeared to be about 8% less, and so that alone may not actually translate into reduced fertility—unless you’re starting out with a marginal sperm count in the first place. So, especially for men who already have fertility problems, it might be better to avoid keeping an active cell phone next to your crotch for long periods of time. Cell phones may just be one of a bunch of things that could potentially add up. For example, Wi-Fi may be an issue. So, researchers got semen samples from more than a thousand guys, and the total number of swimmers? “[M]otile sperm were decreased in a group who used a wireless internet.”

Okay, but these were all just observational studies. Maybe men who use Wi-Fi just tend to smoke more, or do more horseback riding, or something—and that’s the reason for the apparent link. You don’t know, until you put it to the test.

Unfortunately, many of the studies are like this: on rats. So, while the microwaves emitted from a cell phone do not appear to affect rat testicles, it can be argued that you can’t necessarily extrapolate from these animal models, since, for example, their scrotums are “nonpendulous”—meaning their testicles are more inside their bodies rather than out swinging around.

So, at least “[u]ntil proven otherwise, it is recommended that [men] with…fertility issues” may not want to keep their cell phones in their front pants pocket, “in close proximity to the[ir] testicles.” Even when not in use, cell phones emit radiation—to keep pinging their location, though the main exposure is during talk mode, where it may still remain in the pocket, thanks to headsets these days.

And then, what happens when you have it in proximity to other common metal objects? Here’s a cross-section at crotch level. There’s the phone. You may have a metal zipper, key ring in your pocket. “When all three objects were added, the SAR [the amount of radiation absorbed into]…the testicles, was generally increased…[even] approximately doubled.”

But, that’s only a problem if the radiation does actually damage sperm. How hard is it to just design a study where you just wave a cell phone over some human sperm in a Petri dish to see if it’s an issue? And…here we go. Significantly more DNA fragmentation in sperm exposed to cell phone radiation, starting within an hour of exposure. Such a dramatic effect that they suggest women might not want to pocket their cell phones for a few days after trying to get pregnant, so as to not put the sperm at further risk.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Martin Abegglen via flickr. Image has been modified.

Motion graphics by Avocado Video

Doctor's Note

What about laptop WiFi? Should they not be in our laps after all? That’s the topic of my next video: Does Laptop Wi-Fi Lower Sperm Counts?

I covered the brain issues in:

More on male fertility in videos such as:

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

58 responses to “Do Cell Phones Lower Sperm Counts?

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  1. Please, more on the WI-fi issue. We are awash in it, whether we are connected or not. All public buildings, restaurants, grocery stores, airplanes, trains,
    libraries, schools, sporting arenas…..surrounded at all times we are by people downloading this and that, streaming video, on line, etc. Scary, huh?

    1. As far as the potential dangers of microwaves goes, despite increasing evidence I find myself in a similar position to someone warning about the dangers of tobacco smoke in the 1950’s. Many people smoked several packs a day, and even though research had begun to come out about the dangers – after decades of effective suppression by the tobacco industry, but just about no one wants to hear about it, let alone take it seriously. Routinely exposing children to what we now recognize as toxic levels of second-hand smoke just seemed an accepted part of life.

      Decades from now, will we realize that the negative health effects from our continually increasing exposure to microwave sources proved just as damaging to health, though in different ways, than tobacco has? Hard to say, as research like the recent U.S government National Toxicology Program study has just begun to appear past the industry’s blockade. The industry argued that any microwave exposure that does not cause cooking – according to the theory they promoted – can literally NOT have any biological effects – and therefore any exposure below that level seems safe and does not need any testing for safety.

      Many research studies have invalidated this theory, including the ones mentioned in this video, demonstrating effects at microwaves well below the level needed for heating. (See https://www.researchgate.net/publication/242331926_Electromagnetic_fields_act_via_activation_of_voltage-gated_calcium_channels_to_produce_beneficial_or_adverse_effects for an overview). However for obvious reasons the microwave industry has stuck to this position and their lobbyists have made sure that our government policy makers have as well.

      This despite the U.S governments own NTP study demonstrating that microwaves at cell phone frequencies at non-thermal exposure levels approved by our government as safe DO cause cancer and DNA breaks. ( https://www.wsj.com/articles/cellphone-cancer-link-found-in-government-study-1464324146 http://microwavenews.com/short-takes-archive/no-high-risk) Just recently, a second large study just appeared from from the Ramazzini Institute in Bologna, Italy that found tumors in the Schwann cells —schwannomas— in the hearts of male rats exposed to cell phone radiation, confirming the NTP results. ( http://microwavenews.com/news-center/more-coincidence )

      While with respect to cancer, while I do not believe that the effect of microwave exposures will seem at all comparable in magnitude to that of smoking or of eating the Standard American Diet, this DOES open the proverbial can of worms, with respect to all of the safety studies the microwave industry has NOT done for having an effect on OTHER diseases, while exponentially increasing human exposure to microwaves at a wide variety of new and untested frequencies year after year, such as the significantly increased DNA fragmentation in sperm exposed to cell phone radiation, starting within an hour of exposure, covered in this video.

      1. The video has nothing to do with microwave ovens. The radiation from a cell phone is designed to go remotely that is far from source, so one can communicate.
        The radiation from a microwave to include shiefding designs in ovens are with the intent of radiation being localized and concentrated so it may heat a object. Nothing suggest any amount of harmful radiation be present at any distance from a microwave. One inch away from one provides something in the range of 100 times less absorbable radiation.

        Which is why the WHO determines radiation from a microwave used normally is not cancer causing and one from a cell phone is.

        There is a range of data from studies pointing here and there. WHO studies multiple study results from multiple sources all published when making determinations. They have not found cause for concerns with ovens.
        And there does not exist a microwave oven lobby, they are made by multiple manufacturers in various countries. And typically microwaves are only a secondary item of production. GE for instance may make ovens, but it is only a very tiny part of all they do, certainly not enough to warrant shielding documentation and study on ovens…..

        And microwaves in use since 1970….no one has noticed any statistical basis for a problem.

        Cell phones WHO states there is a problem. Apparently this may include this specific.though WHO has not addressed it yet.

        Really only the tin foil hat types are scared of microwave ovens. Yes in studies rendered by the tin foil hat crowd definitive study may be found. Amongst the rest of us…that study bears scrutiny as under study it usually is not published and has obvious flaws.

        1. Ron – we have had this discussion before. Just a basic query here.

          Do you understand that cell phones emit microwave radiation to communicate? And in the same frequencies ranges that microwave ovens do? And that recently large peer reviewed government studies have compellingly demonstrated that these microwave frequencies – at non-thermal levels, have harmful effects?

          Microwave ovens use 2,450 MHz radiation to cook foods, at levels inside the oven high enough to cause heating. Levels outside the oven seem far lower, and unless one has faulty oven seals, fall far below the levels that can cause heating. However these leakage level of microwave radiation do fall in the same range as that of cell phones. And while the microwave radiation from cell phones also seems way too low to cause heating, it does have demonstrable biological effects, including as the NTP and Ramazzini Institute studies recently confirmed, both cancer and DNA breaks, that looked at the effects of microwave radiation at 900 MHz and 1800 MHz. This research applies not just to the microwave radiation emitted by cell phones, but to the microwave radiation leaked by microwave ovens.

          1. Who in their determination on cell phones reviewed hundreds of published studies to make that qualification as cancer causing.

            Why have they not made a similar determination on microwave ovens…..as one singular study or two showing harm does not suffice to make such determinations.
            Study may produce faulted result, even good solid studies. So in things of importance we must weigh a perponderence of the evidence for and against…it is not enough to produce a study or two showing this or that.
            Ovens at shielded and the amount of their type of radiation decreases dramatically even one inch away from the device.
            The problem with cell phones is normal use is within one inch of your body.

            Yes In theory and some study microwave radiation as found in ovens may be damageing. But we absorb so much less even one inch away it means nothing to us individually.
            A cell phone that is simply not the case.

            1. Lab studies do not look at the effects of actual cell phones or microwave ovens – they look at the effect of a generic source calibrated to broadcast microwaves in the frequencies that these devices generate. A result that shows a biological or harmful effect for any particular frequency applies to any device that generates that frequency. As as you can see from the listing I put up in another post, the frequency leaked by microwave ovens falls right in the range of frequencieis known to have harmful effects at non-thernal levels.

              You wrote: “But we absorb so much less even one inch away it means nothing to us individually.”

              That just does not seem true. I’ve taken measurement of around a dozen microwave ovens, and at least that many cell phones. The level of microwaves leaked from even a new microwave oven, even 6 feet away, seems comparable to what you get from a cell phone measured justnext to it, and MUCH more if you stand near the oven while it operates, let alone hold it an inch away.

              I know you don’t believe me, and I can only suggest that you get a good microwave meter – I use the Extech 480836 3.5GHz RF EMF Strength Meter (Amazon sells it) – and take measurements for yourself.

              1. this does not seem to be true

                From a WHO publication on the issue.
                INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS
                Several countries, as well as the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), the International Committee on Electromagnetic Safety (ICES) of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENELEC), have set a product emission limit of 50 watts per square metre (W/m2) at any point 5 cm away from the external surfaces of the oven. In practice, emissions from modern domestic microwave ovens are substantially below this international limit, and have interlocks that prevent people being exposed to microwaves while the oven is on. Moreover, exposure decreases rapidly with distance; e.g. a person 50 cm from the oven receives about one one-hundredth of the microwave exposure of a person 5 cm away. ”

                FDA says the same. Could they be all working at behest of the industry. Since WHO has said cell phones cause cancer, that seems highly doubtful. The largest company in the world is Apple not emerson electric.

                1. Our government and others, set their standards for microwave emissions over 50 years ago, when they believed – and the scientific research available at the time supported the idea, that microwave exposure that did not cause significant heating seemed safe. No conspiracies required.

                  A great deal of research has appeared since then, like the research featured in this video showing significantly increased DNA fragmentation in sperm exposed to cell phone microwave radiation, showing that at MUCH lower levels of exposures than required for heating can have harmful effects.

                  From the WHO publication: ” . . the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENELEC), have set a product emission limit of 50 watts per square metre (W/m2) at any point 5 cm away from the external surfaces of the oven. In practice, emissions from modern domestic microwave ovens are substantially below this international limit, and have interlocks that prevent people being exposed to microwaves while the oven is on. Moreover, exposure decreases rapidly with distance; e.g. a person 50 cm from the oven receives about one one-hundredth of the microwave exposure of a person 5 cm away. ””

                  A little math.

                  At 5 cm from the surface of the oven, microwave exposure =

                  50 watts per square metre (W/m2) = 50,000,000 microwatts per square metre (W/m2)

                  At 50 cm ( a little over a foot and a half) from the surface of the oven, according to that WHO publication, microwave exposure goes down 100 fold to 0.5 watts per square metre (W/m2) = 500,000 microwatts per square metre (W/m2)

                  That sounds right, and agrees with measurements I’ve repeatedly made myself of microwave oven emissions.

                  Most cell phones, measured at close range, put out about 100,000 microwatts per meter square, And THAT low level of microwave radiation, 5 times LESS that what a microwave emits due to leakage at a foot and a half according to your WHO publication, caused increased DNA fragmentation in sperm.

                  From my point of view, as far as the potential, toxicity of microwave radiation goes, it does not matter what device they come from, whether it comes from a cell phone, a router, or as leakage from a microwave oven. As with any other potential toxin, such as arsenic, I care about the level of exposure, not the source. While I like rice, now that I know that rice has very high levels of arsenic, I no longer eat it. I like the convenience of cooking with microwave ovens, but now that I know how much microwave radiation they emit if I stand anywhere near them, I choose not to use them.

                  1. I listed WHO references in study below 32 and you may note many are quite current, as regards to non thermal injury from this radiation excepting cell phone use addressed by another study group.

                    Here is a header from the FDA group responsible for microwave acceptable use standard…note the date of the last change to the requirements……2017….not fifty years ago.

                    ” [Code of Federal Regulations]
                    [Title 21, Volume 8]
                    [Revised as of April 1, 2017]
                    [CITE: 21CFR1030]

                    TITLE 21–FOOD AND DRUGS
                    CHAPTER I–FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION
                    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
                    SUBCHAPTER J–RADIOLOGICAL HEALTH

                    PART 1030
                    PERFORMANCE STANDARDS FOR MICROWAVE AND RADIO FREQUENCY EMITTING PRODUCTS”

                    Shall I also produce California standards? All these groups are in the pocket of big microwave oven then but not apple and Samsung as WHO has definitely impinged upon their majority products……just willing to take on apple but not emerson electric or any number of other small manufacturers of microwave ovens…as they are way way more powerful than apple…..is that the reasoning behind this conspiracy?

                    1. You misunderstand the situation.

                      The same microwave safety standards applies to ANY microwave emitting device – whether a cell phone or a microwave oven or a router or a smart meter etc. They do not have separate safety standards.

                      If you change the safety standard for microwave exposure for one device – like cell phones – the safety standard will change for all microwave emitting devices, including your beloved microwave oven. Microwave oven manufacturers don’t need to do anything – not when lobbyists of the far more powerful cell phone industry have the resources and cash to do whatever they need to do to protect the industry that pays them. I don’t see any conspiracy here – not even anything necessarily illegal. Just a very wealthy and powerful industry doing what it can to maximize its profits and to minimize its potential liability.

                    2. FYI.

                      1966 U.S. Safety standard for microwave radiation set at: 10 mW/cm squared (100,000,000 microwatts per meter squared).

                      http://www.magdahavas.com/pick-of-the-week-2-origins-of-1966-u-s-safety-standards-for-microwave-radiation/

                      2018 U.S. Safety standard for microwave radiation: still 10 mW/cm squared

                      From: https://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=STANDARDS&p_id=9745

                      1910.97(a)(2)(i)
                      For normal environmental conditions and for incident electromagnetic energy of frequencies from 10 MHz to 100 GHz, the radiation protection guide is 10 mW/cm.(2) (milliwatt per square centimeter) as averaged over any possible 0.1-hour period. This means the following:

                      Power density: 10 mW./cm.2 for periods of 0.1-hour or more.

                      Energy density: 1 mW.-hr./cm.2 (milliwatt hour per square centimeter) during any 0.1-hour period.

                      This guide applies whether the radiation is continuous or intermittent.

                      In the U.S we have the same standard as fifty years ago. Some countries have greatly decreased their standards for safe exposure to microwaves, but the United States has not. A chart: http://www.magdahavas.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/Screen-shot-2010-07-07-at-2.38.35-PM.png

                    3. I “Microwave oven manufacturers don’t need to do anything – not when lobbyists of the far more powerful cell phone industry have the resources and cash to do whatever they need to do to protect the industry that pays them. I don’t see any conspiracy here” –

                      Is your statement. Who has already established cell phones as a possible cancer causing object and have issued precautions and standards for use. And microwave oven standards are meeting not just US standards but EU standards as well, they vary slightly but manufacturers make devices so they can sell in both places, This is a global economy now.

                      I have already on this thread named the studies and provided the standards for both the US and the EU. And have shown that our standard was last revised not 50 years ago but 9 months ago.

                      It reminds me pf the macrobiotic diet people from years ago most of which did not live much past seventy.They refused all electricity even electric ovens a microwave a strict no no. Yet they lived not long at all…why???
                      They consumed types of seaweed which we now know to contain gross amounts of contaminants. Dr Greger has doen a video on these contaminants in seaweed. REally the stuff should be illegal it is so bad.
                      What matters most to diet and our health is not the microwave but what we cook in the microwave…
                      This is obvious. .

        2. Hi Ron – one more more comment that may help clear things up, or not.

          When I wrote “As far as the potential dangers of microwaves goes,” I did not refer to microwave OVENS as such as you apparently assumed, but to microwave RADIATION.

          Cell phones, WiFi, and microwave ovens do all emit microwave radiation. In the case of cell phones and WiFI, they use microwaves to communicate, in the case of microwave ovens, they leak microwaves because the seals on the oven do not seem perfect even when new.

          For comparison, a listing of the commonly used microwave frequencies emitted by a few devicesin GigaHertz:

          Cell phones 0.9 GHz, 1.8 GHz, and 2.7 GHz

          WiFi 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz

          Cordless phones 0.9 GHz, 1.9 GHz, 2.4 GHz, and 5.8 GHz.

          Smart Meters 0.9 GHz and 2.4GHz

          Microwave Ovens 2.45 GHz

          1. You are clearly referencing microwaves in a cooking context as this partial quote infers…
            The industry argued that any microwave exposure that does not cause cooking – according to the theory they promoted – can literally NOT have any biological effects – and therefore any exposure below that level seems safe and does not need any testing for safety. and in your second post quote….”Do you understand that cell phones emit microwave radiation to communicate? And in the same frequencies ranges that microwave ovens do? And that recently large peer reviewed government studies have compellingly demonstrated that these microwave frequencies – at non-thermal levels, have harmful effects?

            And you are now combing the two again….Cell phones, WiFi, and microwave ovens do all emit microwave radiation. In the case of cell phones and WiFI, they use microwaves to communicate, in the case of microwave ovens, they leak microwaves because the seals on the oven do not seem perfect even when new.

            And now you mean to say you are not making that claim about ovens?

            Well then if that is your claim I will retract not the content of my discussion but any reference to your part in it.
            But I suspect that is not your claim, you mean to combine the two which is not scientifically substantiated nor observational by population study other than in isolated singular result.
            Cell phones we know cause cancer it is proven and likely cause sperm damage as attested to here.Microwaves in other contexts like specifically ovens, do not..

            1. It is you see not a single thing about microwaves, it is a thing of application and exposure to microwaves in concentrated form that makes them dangerous.

              Your inferal is and remains..microwaves themselves are a great threat like tobacco…science does not point to that conclusion.. You then widen that of course to other things like ovens.
              Yes we have conversed before if you want to say this is not your claim…say so. Ovens cause no harm.I will completely agree with you.Cellphones cause harm not ovens.

    2. Not really so scary miss tea. One can take reasonable precautiions. It is not in the receiving of the thing but in the giving. Live next to a cell phone tower not so good a idea. Put your wireless signal emitting device next to your sleeping head….also not so good a idea. Phones themselves should be kept away from the head at most times.

      We are mostly not seeing any vast increase in cancers. Usually heart disease strokes high blood pressure, things of a dietary nature we can influence are more statistically concerning.

      1. Keep in mind Miss tea..your phone may be transmitting even if you do not have it on or are making a call.

        How is that…….it is as parts of it are always on to show location and such things to receiving devices elsewhere.
        So it may appear not on but it is and transmitting. So my weather information changes depending if I am in my area or in the nearby city…as my location is transmitted though I personally have not used the phone at all.Part of my phone transmits to make that possible. It is not overtly emitting radiation as when we make a call but it is nevertheless a part of it transmitting location data and other data.

        1. Let’s remember that we don’t have to attack the person. Let’s try to have calm discussions about ideas, so we can all benefit. No one benefits when people are trying to make the other person look bad.

          1. John took a while but I figured it out…I am not calling alef a name,I am responding to the first post on this thread by miss tea..
            I don’t know why this program they use sets things up this way but replies to people often do not show up in the same places if one makes multiple comments.

            Here by appearance it appears I am calling perhaps alef miss tea, as that how it prompts up. See those posts were made to alef about a hour and a a half after the miss tea post response.

            I responded to miss tea being alarmed and then if one reads my post it makes sense. Neither alef nor I have called each other names. It is a heated discussion but not personalized. We both have commented we have talked to eachother about this before but that is as far as any personalization goes.

            1. No offense to those who run the site, II am sure they are doing the best they can but…..this program on comments they use is very odd.It is tailored to singular responses not multiple. I have commented for the better part of 20 years in all sorts of mediums and this is to my personal experiences one of the least functional for discussion. Glad to see they have added a test to eliminate bots though.
              So I guess they are progressing.
              They really need a membership qualifier, and should leave you tube comment section to the purview of casual comments.
              Having casual comments here and there is just redundant.
              A section should be added for questions. They have continual health questions intruding on each discussion. ON dead discussions they go unanswered which is a shame and on live discussion they intrude as off topic.
              A separate heading a forth should be a question one with a qualifier as non medical opinion offered.

  2. Even if the radiation, I mean RF-EMFs, didn’t cause damage to the sperm, the heat generated by the phone and its battery would. It’s been known for decades that extra heat to the genitals damages sperm- saunas, hot tubs, even tight pants! Evolution didn’t make testicles dangle for extra protection, it’s to decrease their temperature!

    1. Valid point. heat is the reason the they descend and that heat is our own bodies heat. Which by any measure is not that much at all 98 or so F. So observationally anything around the temp would be excessive.

      1. I actually do often wonder how much of the science is really a read on that not other things. A study on laptops..is not one sitting? A study on telly watching and sperm count showed a significant decline…..was it not the sitting? A similar study on transportation drivers showed a decrease……was it not the sitting?

        How many studies are using controls that are also sitting the same equal amounts?? I’d say very few. It is often and may be in studyshowing the heat from the sitting which is abnormal as probably in our environmental history we did not sit for prolonged periods.
        These things are designed with one thing in mind..heat mediation. But study really rarely accounts for the abnormal high temps produced to this area by sitting for long periods.Which decreases sperm count.

  3. If the 1.8GHz cell phone radiation does harm to sperm DNA in a petrie dish, does the similar frequency radiation in a microwave oven affect the DNA of the food? Does it matter since we are going to break it down in our guts shortly after anyway? You’ve done a few vids about microwaves, which put my mind at ease (I loves ma microwave!) but have there been any studies like this one on living reproductive tissue, been done on no longer living food tissue in a micro?

    1. The level of microwaves leaked from even a new microwave oven, even at a few feet way, seems comparable to what you get from a cell phone held next to your body, and much more if you stand near the oven while it operates. I’ve personally measured this many times.

      As these leakage levels seem way too low to cause heating, according to the over 50 year old U.S. government microwave exposure safety standard they seem “safe” and nothing that manufacturers – or consumers – need concern themselves with.

      As I wrote in a post above, many research studies have invalidated this theory, including the ones mentioned in this video, demonstrating effects at microwaves well below the level needed for heating, including the one covered in this video on the significantly increased DNA fragmentation in sperm exposed to cell phone radiation, starting within just one hour of exposure.

      Hopefully at some point, given the compelling new evidence that non-thermal levels of microwaves can have harmful effects, the U.S. government will revise their safe level of exposure sharply downwards. But I would not expect this anytime soon, given the forces in opposition that a multi-trillion dollar industry can bring to bear.

      1. This is not just the US government but the entire world who has no problem with microwave ovens. The EU has examined it as well and found no problem.
        And WHO who is the global authority found no problem as well.

        No grand conspiracy exists in the microwave industry to subvert study as no singular industry exists. There are multiple makers and designers. The one exclusive maker with patent not yet sold was existant in 1970 not now. Everyone and their brother is making microwaves usually as a distinctly small subset of other industry.

        The facts in this particular conspiracy theory do not stand up to scrutiny. If the US was corrupted in this certainly some other place would not be..but we find all find no fault with ovens.

      2. Thank you alef1 for your explanations. I wonder if it would be better to unplug the router at night ? In a household of four or more, the number of devices that use microwave technology can really get up there quickly. I on the other hand, have a small household in a small space but I was looking for ideas to cut down unnecessary microwave radiation if I can.

        1. Hi Susan –

          That depends where you’ve put it. If within 10 feet of where someone sleeps, I suggest unplugging it at night, or relocating it.

          As a general suggestion, I suggest setting up your router in a location as far away as possible from where people spend any significant amount of time – but where everything still works! A friend moved her router from her living room to the garage – everything still works fine, and the level of microwave radiation in her living room went down100 fold.

      3. A list of the 32 studies WHO by way of their subgroup made determinations of non hazard by not thermal radiation effect..
        “WHO EMF Studies
        The following 32 WHO EMF studies conclude that there are no non-thermal effects for all non-ionising EMF radiation.
        Repacholi MH 24 Studies
        Kheifets L 15 Studies
        van Deventer TE 10 Studies
        Repacholi MH, Cardis E (1997) Criteria for EMF health risk assessment. Radiation Protection Dosimetry, 72:305-312.
        Repacholi MH (ed) (1998) Low-level exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields: health effects and research needs. Bioelectromagnetics, 19:1-19.
        McKinlay AF and Repacholi MH (eds) (1999) Exposure metrics and dosimetry for EMF epidemiology. Radiation Protection Dosimetry, 83(1-2):194.
        Repacholi MH and Greenebaum B (eds) (1999) Interaction of static and extremely low frequency electric and magnetic fields with living systems: Health effects and research needs. Bioelectromagnetics, 20:133-160.
        Foster KH, Vecchia P, Repacholi MH (2000) Science and the precautionary policy. Science, 288:979-981.
        Kheifets L (2001) Electric and magnetic field exposure and brain cancer. Bioelectromagnetics 5: S120-S131.
        Kheifets L (2001) Electric and Magnetic Fields and Occupational Health. Patty’s Industrial Hygiene and Toxicology, Fifth Edition 100: 141-198.
        Kheifets L, Greenberg R, Neutra R, Hester G, Poole C, Rall D, Banerjee G (2001) From epidemiology to policy: An EMF case study. American Journal of Epidemiology 154(12): S50-59.
        Kheifets L, Hester G, Banerjee G (2001) The Precautionary Principle and EMF: Implementation and Evaluation. Journal of Risk Research 4(2): 113-125.
        Mezei G, Kheifets L (2001) “Is There any Evidence for Differential Misclassification or Bias Away from the Null in the Swedish Childhood Cancer Study?” Letter to the Editor, Epidemiology 12(6):750.
        Repacholi MH (2001) Health risks from the use of mobile phones. Toxicology Letters 120: 323-331.
        Foster KR, Osepchuk JM, and Repacholi MH (2002) Environmental impacts of electromagnetic fields from major electrical technologies. Environmental Health Perspectives
        Goldstein LS, Kheifets L, van Deventer TE, Repacholi MH (2002) Comments on the paper “Long-term exposure of Em -Pim1 transgenic mice to 898.4 MHz microwaves does not increase lymphoma incidence” Radiation Research. Radiation Research 158: 357-364.
        Goldstein LS, Kheifets L, van Deventer TE, Repacholi MH (2002) Further comments on “Long-term Exposure of E&mgr;-Pim1 Transgenic Mice to 898.4 MHz Microwaves Does Not Increase Lymphoma Incidence” by Utteridge et al., Radiation Research 158, 357-364 (2002)
        Kheifets L, Thrall N (2002) Electromagnetic Fields and Health. Macmillians Guide to Pollution
        Litvak E, Foster KR, and Repacholi MH (2002) Health and safety implications of exposure to electromagnetic fields in the frequency range 300 Hz to 10 MHz., Bioelectromagnetics, 23(1):68-82.
        Mezei G, Kheifets L (2002) Clues to the possible viral etiology of childhood leukemia. Technology 9: 3-14.
        Repacholi MH (2002) Assessment of the Health Effects of EMF Exposure. The Radio Science Bulletin 301: 14-24.
        Sahl J, Mezei G, Kavet R, McMillan A, Silvers A, Sastre A, Kheifets L (2002) Occupational magnetic field exposures and cardiovascular mortality in a cohort of electric utility workers. American Journal of Epidemiology 156:913-918.
        Dewhirst MW, Lora-Michiels M, Viglianti BL, Dewey WC, and Repacholi MH (2003) Carcinogenic effects of hyperthermia. International Journal of Hyperthermia, 19(3):236-251
        Goldstein LS, Dewhirst MW, Repacholi MH, and Kheifets L (2003) Summary, conclusions and recommendations: adverse temperature levels in the human body, International Journal of Hyperthermia, 19(3):373-384
        Kheifets L, Repacholi MH, and Saunders R (2003) Thermal stress and radiation protection principles. International Journal of Hyperthermia, 19(3):215-224
        McKinlay A, Repacholi MH (2003) (eds) Weak electric fields effects in the body. Radiation Protection Dosimetry 106 (4) 2003
        Repacholi MH (2003) WHO’s health risk assessment of ELF fields. Radiation Protection Dosimetry, 106(4):297-299
        Riadh W. Habash Y, Brodsky LM, Leiss W, Krewski D, Repacholi MH (2003) Health Risks of Electromagnetic Fields. Part I: Evaluation and Assessment of Electric and Magnetic Fields. Critical Review in Biomedical Engineering, 31(3&4):219–273
        van Deventer TE, Repacholi MH (2004) Effet de la Téléphonie mobile su la santé humaine: état des connaissances scientifiques, Droit de l’environnement dans la pratique, 8, 708-724
        Kheifets L, Repacholi M, Saunders R, van Deventer TE (2005) Sensitivity of Children to Electromagnetic Fields, Pediatrics, August 2005, 303-313
        Kheifets L, Sahl J, Shimkhada R, Repacholi MH (2005) Developing policy in the face of scientific uncertainty: interpreting 0.3 µT or 0.4 µT cut points from EMF epidemiologic studies, Risk Analysis, 25 (4), vol. 5, no.1, 927-935
        van Deventer TE, Saunders R, Repacholi MH (2005) WHO health risk assessment process for static fields, Progress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology, 87, 355-363
        Kheifets L, van Deventer TE, Lundel G, Swanson J (2006) Le principe de précaution et les champs électriques et magnétiques : mise en œuvre et évaluation, Environnement, risques et santé, Jan-Feb 2006, 43-53
        van Rongen E, Saunders R, van Deventer TE, Repacholi MH (2006) Static fields: Biological effects and mechanisms relevant to exposure limits. Health Physics, June 2007, vol. 92, no. 6, 584-590
        Valberg P, van Deventer TE, Repacholi MH (2007) Workgroup Report: Base Stations and Wireless Networks: Radiofrequency (RF) Exposures and Health Consequences. Environmental Health Perspectives, March 2007, vol. 115, no. 3, 416-424
        van Deventer TE, Simunic D, Repacholi MH (2007) EMF standards for human health, chapter in Handbook of Biological Effects of Electromagnetic Fields, 3rd ed., Biological and Medical Aspects of Electromagnetic Fields, F. Barnes and B Greenebaum, eds., 277-292
        van Deventer E, Foster K (2008) Risk Assessment and Risk Communication for Electromagnetic Fields: A World Health Organization Perspective, chapter in book The Role of Evidence in Risk Characterization: Making Sense of Conflicting Data, P. Wiedemann and H. Schütz, eds., WILEY-VCH, 13-24″

        They do however add cell phones to a list of those items which may be carciogenic specific to long term expectant use result lack of determination. This is separate study.
        Basically more long term use study is necessary for a final determination of such. Cell phone particularly have not been present in use by young progressing into old to make final determinations.
        Microwave ovens…long term study result is possible as they have been in use since 1970. And there is not a specific long term WHO oven study as nothing points to need or demand for one by participatory nation states.
        . WHO determinations are based upon the weight of evidence which means the preponderance of evidence not singular studies. 32 in this specific. Studies to qualify must meet specific standard in the field of qualification.

    2. No it does not matter. Heating damages food it is part of the process. We do not think of it in that fashion but it is damageing to food in its natural state.
      Your gut is totally disorganizing it as well.

  4. Literally dynamite data showing loss of sperm motility and count, possibly a desirable supplemental contraceptive method. But more seriously, the potential DNA damage to implanted sperm in females within 1 hr of localized exposure may be a factor in the recent dramatic increase in genetic diseases and cancers in infants and children not seen in the good old days. And alcohol, smoking and other lifestyle insults may worsen this DNA damage of radiation emitted from cell phones, especially if cell towers are far away. Note exposure to innumerable other emf sources in our daily lives are weakened by distance and lower energy densities, hence far less damaging than the stronger emf fields emitted from our cell phones close to sensitive cells in fetuses, brains, etc

    1. It seems like we humans are dedicated to destroying ourselves one way of a thousand others! Yikes! Maybe that’s the earth’s plan for saving itself – let those humans destroy themselves and good old Earth will make a comeback!

  5. Finally, a silver lining to the “smart” phone mania: a reduction in population, world-wide!

    As a troglodytic outlier, I’ve imagined a plethora of liabilities that would ultimately manifest themselves after “users” had a sufficient amount of experience with these anti-social social media. Between the separation anxiety of those using (children in schools and adults in theaters or concerts or out, on a date), the dangerous lack of attention of drivers on today’s roads, and a President who apparently spends hours, sitting on the toilet, tweeting his every visceral impulse, as Executive opinion, there is little to recommend this narcosis.

    Add to those obvious issues, the price society will pay for having generations of children growing up in a society where “research” is a trip to Wikipedia; “books” become electronic feeds into devices while the content is under the control of a Cloud or an Amazon, whose subtle censorship will go largely unnoticed; the common ability to communicate plagued with the nonsense patois already largely accepted (U no? LOL); and the ultimate infusion of robotics into all aspects of daily life, I find it hard to imagine that, in twenty or thirty years, anyone with a bit of wisdom and knowledge of history, will find this technological revolution to have had a positive overall impact on humankind. Just the opposite.

    I appear to be in a distinct minority, however. Other than the British TV series, “Black Mirror” and a few movies, including “Her,” few people seem to be talking about the dark side of this societal shapeshifting.

    1. Agree excepting the few people part. Sean Parker one of facebooks presidents has spoken of its parasite inceptive scheme and Elon Musk continually verses about the unsupervised destructive nature of unregulated AI.He is part of a group I believe he founded on the threat and response to it.

      He has advised and continues to advise nation states about this threat. Though they seem to be little heeding it. Film makers generally lift their ideas from other sources. Their ideas are not the innovative thinking part, the putting it into film is.

  6. If UV damage of the DNA is not caused by raising the temperature (cooking), why did they think that microwave radiation is different?

    Not all DNA is the same. What they are missing in the studies is the capability of repairing DNA, which changes. For example, if they did the study in subjects with high repair capability, then it would show no damage (fast self repair). And rats, since they have a relative fresh DNA (short life) maybe better at this (younger). In comparison, an elderly person in theory would do worse. But the biggest mistake is this, they thing the only problem here is cancer. However, DNA encodes proteins. So DNA damage is protein damage, which can become many diseases.

    1. If the DNA damage is caused to a stem cell, and the damage is not repaired and accumulates, it is carried down the line. Having a greater exposure increases the chances of disease with time. And little historical damage can cascade into greater damage over time by losing functions. People used to live only 30 years. Now the expectation is 100.

  7. Well let’s see. The Union of Concerned Scientists just issued their report that over the last 25 years the global human population has risen from 6 to 8 billion while the remaining species have decreased by 30%. So I guess this is something we really have to worry about.

    1. For those people trying to be the next hero and succeed by making growth happen, think about this embedded social purpose

      It only exists because it is profitable

      Does the above social goal carry a single species infestation destiny (with a dramatic end)?

    2. Agree Blair….I think things that decrease our ability to procreate are generally good things considering our present impact on the environment and our own future.
      A significant decrease in population increase would help things.

  8. Laughing.

    The women with the breast cancer videos are so emotional and passionate and the men hear this and it is population control and birth control.

    Dr. Greger on a tight rope entertaining his audiences.

  9. Thanks to Dr. Gregor for bringing this evidence of harm to human reproduction from wireless radiation. Just want to draw attention to a couple of more important studies:
    Another study found increased DNA damage caused in human sperm by being near a WiFi-enabled laptop (at very low levels of exposure): Avendaño C et al., Fertil Steril. Use of laptop computers connected to internet through Wi-Fi decreases human sperm motility and increases sperm DNA fragmentation. 2012;97(1):39-45).
    A 2016 review by Australian scientists reported: “Among a total of 27 studies investigating the effects of RF-EMR on the male reproductive system, negative consequences of exposure were reported in 21.”( The effects of radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation on sperm function.
    Houston BJ, Nixon B, King BV, De Iuliis GN, Aitken RJ.
    Reproduction)
    You will find newer papers in the largest categorized database of peer-reviewed studies on biological/health effects of RF-EMR here: http://www.orsaa.org

    It is very important to keep microwave emitting devices such as tablet computers (ipads are very popular among children) away from the body. In fact, they should not be used by children at all.

  10. How is wi fi cell phone’s and tablet devices the emf level of having a cell tower in your house and on you’re water and ele tric meter the lo g term effects of emf pulses are more wide spread and harmful to cells than we realize.

  11. A thought— how many of us are reading these comments with iPads on our laps and the warmth definitely coming through to our thighs and lower abdominal area. We do this everyday for hours at a time, night after night, with television going about five feet away, modems near by and cell phone at our side near hip etc. oh my– so much food for thought. This is a great discussion by you all. Thanks. Shutting everything down right now. Bye , peace, be well. Time for me to pick up the Not To Die hardback Cookbook and give my body a break, I think.

  12. Unrelated topic but very important:
    The Rotterdam Study showed that 40mcgs of vitamin k2 daily lowers heart diease/stroke by over 50%, WOW! Unfortunately k2 (unlike k1) is pretty much only found in dairy….so what to do, Dr Greger?? ref.: https://youtu.be/leooOmu7Dco

    1. K2 is found in supplement form derived from vegan source. It is however a bit expensive. One bottle about 60 tabs runs about 20 USD or so. Available on amazon and other places.
      We metabolize K2 from other plant sources to my dim recollection. Most on a WFPB diet are not worried about it.

    2. Update On the (non) issue of vitamine K2

      What’s the problem?

      Websites such as examine.com feature an article about vitamin K2 not being found in foods and that it would be beneficial to supplement this daily.
      People are also gaining acces to the Dutch study that shows cardiovascular benefits from K2 supplements.
      WFPB doctors like cardiologist Joel Kahn feature K2 as a supplement in their books.

      So the theory is that K2 is not the same as normal vitamine K which is found in greens and that because it is only found in foods like natto that one should supplement with a pill…

      Apparently Dr. Greger has spoken about vitamine K sources in 2012;

      Not sure what magazine you were reading, but the scientific consensus is that either one (phylloquinone or menaquinone, formerly K1 and K2) is fine for maintaining human vitamin K status. The recommended intake is about 100 mcg. A half cup of kale? >500. No need for natto; just eat your greens.

      In fact dark green leafies are so packed with vitamin K that if you’re on the drug coumadin (warfarin), a drug that works by poisoning vitamin K metabolism, you have to closely work with your physician to titrate the dose to your greens intake so as to not undermine the drug’s effectiveness!

      ELI5

      Evidence suggests K2 is converted from dietary K1, and thus no intake of K2 may be needed. As always endogenous production of things the body produces as a normal function of the body (hormones, non-essential vitamines, etc…) is better then the artificial administration from exogenous sources. These substances are made in the optimal amounts as the result of a healthy functioning body. Eat a wfpb diet with the daily dozen (plenty of vit K) and you will be fine.

  13. Oh boy, here we go again. Another WFPB doctor (Fuhrman) thinks it is appropriate to give an appearance at a conference that features a bunch of charlatans. So here we go thelongevitynowconference features the #1 bestselling author of “wheat belly” next to “Dr. Gundry” and anti-vaccination entrepreneur “David Wolfe”. Why would you want to be featured and affiliated to people like this? Fuhrman has 25 years of experience and he has not figured out that this is not appropriate? Nonono.

    1. Methinks it is a matter of attention. Main stream media has a bias against this thing so it gets little served in it. So one is left with their own communications or alternative site media. If ones own communication medium is not a stand alone operation which Dr Gregers is due to assistance and funding…the venues are limited..

  14. Dr. Greger!
    I’m beyond thankful for the great work that you do!
    Having overcome obesity myself, I am now very passionate about helping others get these results. I really want to go into medicine and specialize in obesity medicine for that reason and especially since it has now become a global epidemic. I was wondering if you ever considered founding a medical training fellowship or curriculum to supplement medical students with the nutrition knowledge that they need to have but are lacking from today’s curricula?
    Please consider this!

    All the best,

  15. Anytime I’ve seen a woman stuff her cell phone in her bra, I’ve mused about that and breast cancer. I’ve nagged my fiancé about it so much, she doesn’t do it around me.

    WRT to men, is it the radiation or the heat that causes the damage? And, what if you use a lap desk — does that provide a sufficient space or barrier to EMF?

    And does the wifi cause other problems (i.e., pancreatic or liver cancer)?

    Questions beget more and better questions?

    I no longer sleep with my cellphone anywhere near my head and it’s usually at least yard away.

    In the absence of “fact”, caution is warranted?

  16. Reinkefj,

    Good questions…. it appears that it may be a combination of both the heat and the radiation being cumulative. There is no lack of controversy and between the industry publications and those that are more objective. It makes sense to keep a distance between some tissues such as the reproductive organs and perhaps less so with those such as bone and brain tissues. Susceptibility to cellular change at lower levels of both heat and radiation for soft tissues seems to be a very real concern.

    To dive into the radiation issues further, you might want to evaluate the use of taxpayers funding to the tune of $25 million on 3000 mice and rats exposed to cell phones…..for the 10 year study….

    As to concerns with radiation you can purchase inexpensive ($<100) meters to evaluate your actual distance needed to decrease or eliminate the levels to insignificant amounts. You might be very surprised that other home appliances including electric shavers, heating pads and other close to the skin products are the equal or worse than your cell phone.

    Want to know the SAR of your cell phone, ie. the emission level listing can be found at : https://cellphones.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=003054

    I think you're on the right track towards a bit of caution and separating your self from your phone by some distance.

    Dr. Alan Kadish Health Support Volunteer

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