Healthy Diet and Lifestyle
It is important to know that your lifestyle plays a large role in your fertility success. In fact, no doctor can deliver the result without your dedication and cooperation. The more “homework” you prepare on your own, the better the results. For some women, this may be the time to make certain lifestyle changes. Below is some advice that we hope you will take to heart.
Eat healthy foods. Both partners should eat a well-balanced diet. Eliminate all junk food. Replace processed foods with whole grains, fruits, and vegetables that promote healthy ovulation. Choose naturally-fed lean meats. Here are some examples which are especially good for restoring and maintaining healthy ovaries and promoting follicular recruitment: whole eggs, poultry, lamb, spinach, carrots, beets, apples, oranges, avocados, kiwis, blueberries, and other berries. Keep in mind that certain raw foods may not be easily digested, so steaming is highly recommended. Avoid trans-fats which may disrupt the hormonal pathway.
Take proper nutrition supplements. For women, taking folic acid supplements before trying to conceive will reduce the risk of neural tube defects. Other nutrition supplements, such as iron, fish oil, and certain vitamins may be helpful depending on the individual’s unique body condition. Consult your doctor for proper nutrition supplements.
Stop smoking. Tobacco affects cervical mucus in ways that may obstruct fertilization. Smoking also reduces sperm count and sperm health. Exposure to secondhand smoke can be just as counterproductive.
Avoid alcohol and cut caffeine. A recent study has shown that consuming more than 200 mg of caffeine (approximately two cups of coffee, but it can also come from other sources such as soda) on a daily basis during the first trimester of pregnancy may increase the chances of miscarriage. The more you can eliminate alcohol and caffeine, the higher your changes of pregnancy success.
Cut sugar consumption, which may come from refined sugars, soft drinks, ice cream, artificial sweeteners, and other sources. Patients with PCOS should specifically watch sugar and carbohydrate intake.
Keep moderate exercise. Exercise is a good way to keep your body active and energetic. However, heavy exercises may in fact weaken your body conditions, creating an acidic environment that can harm ovaries. Moderate exercise, on the other hand, improves blood flow, allowing the entry of nutrients and exit of toxins. A 30-minute brisk walk or other moderate exercises three times a week is highly recommended.
Practice yoga. Yoga is a good form of exercise for women wanting pregnancy. It can refresh and recharge the body while simultaneously calming the mind and emotions. Yoga’s breathing techniques additionally improve the body’s antioxidant function. Some yoga poses are especially helpful in flushing toxins out of the ovaries and improving ovarian blood flow.
Give yourself enough sleep. Sleep deprivation results in lower levels of the hormone leptin, without which ovulation can be negatively affected. Sleep at least 7-8 hours a night, according to your body’s needs.
Keep your feet warm. Soaking your feet in hot water for 15 minutes before going to sleep is helpful in reducing stress and improving the quality of sleep and blood circulation. TCM considers it critical to maintain a warm temperature for not only feet, but the entire body as well for a woman’s overall health. Research in rats has shown ovarian blood flow improves modestly when the hind paws are heated.
Use a filter for your drinking water. If possible, use a water filter for your showers too.
Identify harmful environmental exposures and minimize or eliminate these conditions.
If feeling stressed, use stress-reduction techniques (such as yoga or meditation), and consult a fertility counselor for professional help.