How to Plan for a Particular Gender of Baby Before Conception

By Amy Sutton
Natural methods of trying for gender selection are much less invasive than clinical alternatives.
Natural methods of trying for gender selection are much less invasive than clinical alternatives.

As a parent, ultimately the most important thing to you is having a healthy baby. That doesn't mean you don't envision having a sweet baby girl to play tea party with or a strapping boy who loves to play baseball. If you have your heart set on one or the other, there are some noninvasive, low-tech methods that some claim can help you conceive the boy or girl you want. These are just theories and offer no guarantees. If you want better odds of having a particular gender, choose a high-tech option, such as in-vitro fertilization or sperm selection. However, the natural methods are free and can be much more fun to try.

Whelan Method

The Whelan Method works by timing your intercourse for certain days during your cycle, notes the BabyCenter website. It is named after Elizabeth Whelan, who claims that her method is effective 56 percent of the time for conceiving a girl and 68 percent of the time when trying for a boy.

Whelan's theory is that biochemical changes that possibly favor male-producing sperm happen earlier in a cycle. Therefore, if you are trying to conceive a boy, sex should happen in the four to six days prior to your basal body temperature rising. To conceive a girl, intercourse should happen in the two to three days prior to ovulation.

Dr. Eugen Jonas Method

The Dr. Eugen Jonas Method has been researched by Dr. Jonas for more than four decades. There are two independent cycles of fertility for women. Ovulation is the first cycle that occurs between a woman's two monthly periods of menstruation. A second cycle, known as spontaneous ovulation, is different for each woman but are often highly fertile days.

Jonas theorizes there are certain days during your cycle where you can only conceive a boy and certain days where only a girl can be conceived. With this method, you submit an application form to the Dr. Eugen Jonas Natural Conception Control corporation. Specialists analyze the mother's data to pinpoint her most fertile days to conceive a girl and the best days to conceive a boy. A personalized calendar is then sent to you, which shows you the days to have intercourse to achieve the gender you desire.

Shettles Method

The Shettles Method is one of the better known natural methods of choosing gender before conception, according to WebMD. Landrum B. Shettles developed the theory that you can plan the gender of your baby by assuming certain sexual positions and timing intercourse to a woman's cycle.

Female sperm is thought to be slower and longer living, while male sperm is quicker, smaller and short-lived. Therefore, if you are trying for a boy, you should have sex as close to ovulation as possible, since this is when an egg is released. This gives male sperm a better chance at reaching the egg before female sperm. Couples trying for a boy should have rear entry sex, where the man enters the woman from behind, to get sperm as close to the cervix as possible. To conceive a girl, couples need to have sex two to four days before ovulation occurs, using the missionary position.

Other Methods

The Chinese Gender Chart has been used by many mothers for generations to determine both gender and fertility. It uses the month of conception and a mother's age to determine gender. First, a mother must find her Chinese lunar age. At birth, you are 1 year old, according to lunar age, and you get one year older each Chinese New Year. Then, you find your Chinese lunar age along the left side of the gender chart and move across to see which months are best to conceive a boy and which are best for the conception of a girl.

Diet can also play a role in the gender of your baby. Before conception, a mother that eats a diet high in potassium and sodium may have better chances of conceiving a boy. This includes foods like meats, fish, bananas and vegetables. Eating a diet high in magnesium and calcium can sometimes up your chances of having a girl, notes the website Pregnancy.org. Foods high in calcium and magnesium may include cheese, milk, nuts, cereals and beans.