Now that their multiple, highly-anticipated nuptials have passed, Kourtney Kardashian Barker and Travis Barker have their eye on expanding their blended family — and they’re looking into some alternative medical practices (including a cleanse that would have them avoiding exercise, sex and caffeine) as well as sharing one doctor’s advice that drinking some of Barker’s semen three to four times a week might be helpful.
On Thursday’s episode of Hulu’s The Kardashians, Kourtney talked about her current fertility journey and how they were meeting with Martha Soffer, an expert in Ayurvedic medicine. While on the topic, Kardashian said that her fertility doctor previously told her that she should drink Travis’ semen.
“I can’t remember what he said, if it [her thyroid level] was low or high,” Kardashian said. “He told us, well, he told me, that the thing that would help it was drinking [Travis’] come, like, four times a week.”
While they didn’t add whether that’s something they actually tried (even reality TV stars are entitled to some shreds of their privacy!), Travis notably did say “I love this doctor.”
While there are some documented health benefits of semen (like did you know there’s some science pointing to benefits of sperm exposure to reduce preeclampsia?) the benefits of ingesting it for thyroid and fertility issues aren’t something we’ve got a lot of science to back up. Semen does, however, contain chemicals like oxytocin, melatonin, progesterone and antioxidants (like Zinc) and can be linked to mood-boosting and sleep-assisting effects.
But all semen matters aside, the couple also said that their next step would be undergoing a Panchakarma cleanse — which, in addition to abstaining from things like sex, caffeine and exercise, also can include forced vomiting/purging, blood letting and enemas.
“So, our new thing that we’re going to be trying is a Panchakarma cleanse, which is Ayurvedic. It’s like 3,000 years old,” Kourtney said, noting that after an unsuccessful egg retrieval she and Travis hoped to “get all of the toxins that are deep within our tissue out of our bodies [to have] better-quality eggs.”
A good rule of thumb I encourage (and that has never failed me) is to not take health advice from celebrities, particularly when they say the word “toxins” repeatedly. Because, in this context, that word means nothing from a medical perspective. And in the event that you actually do have toxins in your body that your organs cannot handle, it’s just not a medical thing that you can address by doing yoga or bleeding out for 12 days. And, more often than not, the benefits people claim to experience are ones you could also experience via more mindful, thoughtful relationships to food, movement and stress that are less traumatizing for your body.
Our kidneys, liver and broader gastrointestinal system already do the work of ridding our bodies of things that shouldn’t be in them and a short-term intense and potentially dangerous fasting, purging routine has no science-backed benefits for our health. Other celebrities (including Aaron Rodgers) have talked about this kind of cleanse before but these sorts of things (and the “detox” culture in general) are generally something most dietitians and medical experts recommend people approach with caution or not at all.
Before you go, read up on some of our favorite quotes that help inspire positive attitudes about food and bodies: