Books about reproductive health, Fertility Awareness, and Natural Family Planning

More about Katie Singer

Garden of Fertility Book CoverHonoring Our CyclesIn her books, The Garden of Fertility (2004) and Honoring Our Cycles (2006), Katie Singerintroduces Fertility Awareness (also called Natural Family Planning).With these methods, a woman who charts her temperature and cervical mucus can know when she is fertile and infertile. A woman who charts her fertility signs can also know whether she is ovulating or miscarrying. You can learn remedies for problems like Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) and fertility.

R E S O U R C E S   A N D   B I B L I O G R A P H Y
T h e   E n v i r o n m e n t   &   F e r t i l i t y

Berkson, Lindsey, Hormone Deception: How Everyday Foods and Products Can disrupt your hormones--and How To Protect Yourself and Your Family. Contemporary Books, 2000. Explains how common items like plastic, paint, soap, and pesticides can disrupt men's and women's hormones; and how to reduce your exposure to harmful chemicals. Berkson is a DES daughter, and her observations and resources about this (still used) drug are also part of her excellent book. Bioneers are activisits, scientists, entrepreneurs, farmers and prophets with a vision of the future guided by the principles of nature, kinship, interdependence, cooperation and community. 1-877-BIONEER (246-6337) The mission of the Children's Health Environmental Coalition is to inform parents and all those concerned with the welfare of children about preventable health and development problems caused by exposure to toxic substances in homes, schools and communities; and to encourage the public to take action to protect children against these toxic threats. POB 1540, Princeton, NJ 08542. 609.252.1915.

Colborn, Theo, Diane Dumanoski, and John Peterson Myers, Our Stolen Future, Plume, 1997. Picking up where Rachel Carson's Silent Spring left off, this groundbreaking work gives a gripping account that traces birth defects, sexual abnormalities, and reproductive failures in wildlife to their source--synthetic chemicals which mimic natural hormones. Includes, for example, studies which show that sperm counts have decreased internationally as much as 50% in recent decades.

Dadd, Debra Lynn, Home Safe Home: Protecting Yourself and Your Family from Everyday Toxics and Harmful Household Products, Tarcher/Putnam, 1997. Includes hundreds of inexpensive, do-it-yourself formulas and mail-order sources for making your home safer and healthier.

Erickson, Kim, Drop-Dead Gorgeous: Protecting Yourself from the Hidden Dangers of Cosmetics, Contemporary Books, 2002. This sobering book tells about the hazardous, synthetic chemicals commonly used to create skin, hair, and beauty products; it shows you how to read and interpret product labels; and offers natural alternatives and easy-to-follow recipes for creating your own cosmetics at home. Presents UN-funded studies on food and agriculture. We use disposable tampons and pads and their packaging at a high price to our environment: each year, women in the U.S. throw over 7 billion tampons and 12 billion pads into landfills and sewage systems. Disposables can also contain a variety of chemicals, including dioxin, which has been linked to birth defects, endometriosis, and cancer. Gladrags sells washable, cotton menstrual pads, organically-grown cotton tampons, cloth diapers, and more.

Health Care Without Harm focuses on stopping the health care industry from using hazardous chemicals, including mercury and PVC (polyvinyl chloride) plastic, which creates hormone disrupting and carcinogenic chemicals when it's made and burned, and also leaches a toxic chemical during use. (For example, IV bags are made from PVC.) HCWH also has a campaign about phthalates, a chemical found in many popular cosmetics and medical devices which is linked to birth defects in males. 202.234.0091;;

Huggins, Hal, D.D.S, and Thomas Levy, M.D., Uninformed Consent: The Hidden Dangers in Dental Care, Hampton Roads, 1999. These doctors propose that numerous physical disorders (like MS, lupus, chronic fatigue, birth defects and more) are caused, in part, by the metal toxins we pay to have put in our bodies during everyday dentistry. A thorough listing of the medical papers which confirm their theories is presented, along with info on dental detoxification. Dr. Huggins' book also presents information about the hazards of dentistry during pregnancy. 888.843.5832;

The Lunar Calendar, Luna Press. More than 50,000 years ago, women noted the correspondence between menstrual cycles and the moon's phases. A refreshing synthesis of art and science, these calendars (published annually since 1975) are packed with information about the moon. Order from Luna Press, POB 15511, Kenmore Station, Boston, MA 02215-0009. 617.427.9846.

Odent, Michel, The Farmer and the Obstetrician, Free Association Books, 2002. In his newest book, Odent (the obstetrician who introduced the concepts of home-like birthing rooms and birthing pools in a French state hospital about 30 years ago) describes the striking similarities between the industrialization of farming and the industrialization of childbirth. Dr. Odent's website,, introduces a preconception program for detoxifying the body and carrying a healthy pregnancy to term.

Partsch, C-J, Scrotal Temperature is Increased in Disposable Plastic Lined Nappies. Male infertility and testicular cancer, which are increasing, may be related to baby boys wearing disposable plastic diapers in their first six months of life. The plastic diapers raise the temperature of baby boys' scrotums, thereby affecting their development at a crucial time. With cloth diapers, temperatures are not raised., and search by author or title.

Steingraber, Sandra, Having Faith: An Ecologist's Journey to Motherhood, Perseus, 2001. This is one of the most beautiful books I've read. Steingraber, a poet and biologist, weaves her personal experience (beginning with the discovery of her pregnancy) with the intricate unfolding of embryonic organs, the astonishing transformation of the mother's body as it nourishes the new life, and the alarming extent to which environmental hazards--from industrial poisons found in amniotic fluid to the toxic contamination of breast milk--now threaten each crucial stage of infant development. This passionate, lyrical book calls for "the world's feast (to) be made safe for women and children. May mothers' milk run clean again. May denial give way to courageous action."

  • The Environment & Fertility