Updated: 4 hours ago
Want to know what can you do to improve your chances of conceiving naturally?
Wonder what should you focus on for natural family planning or if you have been trying for a baby and not yet conceived? Read on!
1. Identify and eliminate environmental hazards such as pesticides, solvents and heavy metals as these can damage DNA harming fertility and sexual health. Avoid storing hot food in plastics, heating anything with cling film and plastic water bottles. Shop organic, look for natural cleaning and beauty products. This goes for men too - shaving cream, moisturisers, deodorants.
2. Use effective stress reduction techniques to reduce cortisol levels and improve sleep. When the body is stressed the reproductive system shuts down as it is the least essential body system, halting any chance of pregnancy. You can use apps such as Calm, or simply reading a good book or going a cup of tea with a trusted friend.
Regular exercise 3 - 4 times a week is also recommended. It will make you feel fighting fit and help with any stress.
3. Essential foods to add and increase in your diet:
*Increase antioxidant rich foods: dark green leafy vegetables (2 cups per day), mixed berries, bell peppers, citrus fruits.
*Get the recommended serving of 2-3 fruits and 7-8 vegetables PER DAY!
*Increase salmon, mackerel, anchovies and sardines 2-3 times per week for essential Omega-3 oils. Vegetarian/vegan options include chai and hemp seeds, brussel sprouts and walnuts.
*Daily intake of olive oil, avocado, flaxseeds, nuts and seeds.
*Ensure adequate hydration. You want to be drinking 1.5 - 2 litres per day. Suggest using a reusable water bottle to motivate and track intake.
*Optimise protein intake from organic, wild fish or vegetarian sources such as tempeh, tofu, beans and lentils. If you must eat red meat, ensure it is organic and grass fed.
4. Essential foods to eliminate from you diet:
*Vegetable oils such as sunflower. Try to use a good quality olive oil instead.
*Avoid animal protein and dairy, especially whilst waiting for IVF treatment. Synthetic hormones can disrupt your natural balance
*Refined sugars, to minimise spiking blood sugar levels.
In addition some specific things to avoid for each gender -
*Feminine body washes, scented tampons or any products that will disturb the vaginal pH
*Medicines that alter cervical fluid; antihistamines, some cough mixtures, tamoxifen, progesterone
*Non sperm friendly lubricants
*Exposure to free radicals eg: burnt bbq food, cigarettes and drugs
*Alcohol is linked with miscarriage due to its negative effects on embryo implantation
*High stress situations. Stress will raise your cortisol, which puts your body into survival mode. This is not conducive to improved fertility.