New Year Health Resolutions Can Improve Your Fertility!Taking some time over New Year and January may provide an ideal opportunity for you to spend some relaxing quality time with your partner. It’s an ideal scenario in which to think about having a baby and taking the necessary steps to make it happen!
Being Stress FreeA relaxingsummer holiday can increase your chances of conceiving by reducing stress levels. Stress from any source including work pressure, can reduce the chance of conception as it creates imbalances in the reproductive organs of both men and women. The menstrual cycle can become irregular and chemical changes in vaginal secretions can negatively impact on sperm. Sperm count can be lower and the quality of sperm affected including its shape and ability to swim! High levels of stress can adversely affect ovulation, basically shutting down the reproductive system as you go into ‘fight or flight’ mode. When you are in this state, most of your normal supply of blood is shunted away from your digestive and reproductive organs and redirected to your working muscles so that you can either run away from danger or fight. The last thing your body will consider when in this continual stressful mode is falling pregnant.
10 Tips To Increase Your Chances Of Conceiving
- Take a well-deserved romantic holiday. A break will help reduce stress levels and create an atmosphere conducive to conception.
- Don’t overeat – extra weight can contribute to fat cells secreting excess oestrogen, which can inhibit conception. (And if you have been indulging over Christmas – then it’s time to go easy now!)
- Start exercising on a regular basis. This will ensure you get rid of any extra Christmas kilos. Aim to walk at least 1 hour a day.
- Make sure you’re getting enough Vitamin D. Vitamin D is best synthesised in the skin by direct sunlight – if you work in an office you may not be getting enough. (Vitamin D is also available as a supplement from Mr Vitamins – ask one of the Naturopaths for advice on dosage.) Low vitamin D levels have been implicated in reduced fertility rates in recent studies. You can get your Vitamin D levels measured in a simple blood test. Optimum levels are around 100 nmol/l. And take care not to get sunburnt when exposing yourself to the sun.
- Avoid alcohol, as it can be harmful to the developing foetus.
- Drink lots of good quality water (filtered or mineral).
- Avoid fruit juices. Although 2 servings of fruit a day are healthy it is best to avoid fruit juices, which are high in fructose (sugar found in fruit). Fructose is not readily metabolised and can be stored in liver as fat. This can adversely affect the ability of your liver to break down hormones. It can cause an imbalance, which can affect your chances of conception. So please no more juices.
- A good quality natal multi-vitamin, filtered Omega 3 and calcium supplement are recommended if you’re thinking about pregnancy. Taking vitamins has been shown to increase the odds of a successful birth and reduce the chances of children developing certain types of cancers such as leukaemia. It has been found by Dr. G. Koren from the University of Toronto, that taking a multi-vitamin before and in early pregnancy reduced the risk of childhood leukaemia by 36 percent.
- Lovemaking (as often as possible!) should be targeted towards the middle of the menstrual cycle (ovulation time) so that there is a higher chance of conception.
- If you are thinking about conceiving we recommend that you consult a Naturopath in order to get the best available advice for this most important time.