Providing adequate nutrition for FertilityAn important aspect of preparation is ensuring your diet provides adequate nutrition for conceiving and maintaining a pregnancy. It is easy to forget the importance of this step in this age of nutritional supplements and fortified foods. The importance of pre-conception nutrition is one of the cornerstones of a healthy pregnancy and baby. Here are the top nutrients required to enhance fertility and how to get them from food sources.
- Vitamin B6: involved in a healthy immune system, production of red blood cells, production of neurotransmitters and healthy nervous system, essential for proper cell division and multiplication processes such as ovarian development and conception. Food sources include: sunflower seeds, chickpeas, walnuts, wheat germ, bananas, kale, beef, sweet potatoes, chicken, fish and brown rice
- Zinc: an essential component of genetic material, helps produce DNA, required for hormone production, boosts immune system, balances blood sugar levels which assist in balancing hormones, involved in production of hydrochloric acid needed for digestion, helps body utilise oestrogen and progesterone. Food sources include: beef, eggs, whole grains, whole fat organic dairy, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, molasses, cashews, almonds, oysters, chickpeas.
- Vitamin C: can increase progesterone levels for women, can provide healthier sperm in men, sperm are more motile and have greater numbers along with normal morphology, in women can assist in normalising the luteal phase. Food sources (best sources are brightly coloured): papaya, cauliflower, kiwifruit, oranges, pineapple, strawberries, broccoli, capsicum, brussels sprout, kale and red cabbage
- Selenium: has been found to be a critical element in the healthy maturation of ovarian follicles. Its antioxidant actions have been found to protect follicles from oxidative damage producing follicles which are more capable of sustaining pregnancy. Selenoproteins found in the ovaries are significantly higher in eggs which yielded a pregnancy. Food sources include: brazil nuts, grass fed beef, chicken, oysters, tuna, sunflower seeds, pork, shiitake mushrooms, eggs, cabbage, garlic, spinach and flaxseeds. This nutrient is often deficient in modern diets
- Folic Acid: essential for preventing spina bifida, involved in red blood cell production, proper DNA formation, required for proper cell division and is essential for adequate blood supply during pregnancy. Foods sources include: leafy green vegetables, citrus fruits, beans, brown rice, lentils, spinach, asparagus, cos lettuce, avocado, broccoli.
Naturopath Chloe Okorn
Naturopath ChloeOkorn has developed this series to educate people on the importance of diet prior to conception. It is wholly within your control as to what you eat and it can easily be changed without the need of supplements. She can assist you in developing a highly nutritious eating plan for fertility which targets essential nutrients required for conception.
Diet is the first step which needs to be addressed when preparing for pregnancy.
Chloe is passionate about pre conception care and has experience in preparing couples for this wonderful journey. If you are wishing to create the healthiest, happiest and brightest children possible don’t hesitate to book in for a consultation with Chloe.