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Navigating Your Fertility Journey: An In-depth Guide to Freezing Eggs

Freezing eggs has become an increasingly popular option for women looking to preserve their fertility for the future. Whether due to medical reasons such disease, surgery, or early menopause, or simply to have the peace of mind knowing that their eggs are safely stored, egg freezing can provide a sense of security and empowerment. In this blog we will explore the considerations and steps involved in freezing eggs, as well as strategies for improving egg health and overall fertility. Let's navigate this journey together, empowering you to take control of your reproductive future.


Why Consider Freezing Your Eggs? Exploring the Benefits and Precautions

woman hormone injection

In the realm of reproductive choices, egg freezing emerges as a beacon of hope for many women, offering an avenue to preserve fertility until the time feels right to start or expand a family. The reality of our biological clocks can prompt considerations of egg freezing, especially in a society where career aspirations, education, or finding the right partner might delay family planning. For others, the shadow of medical treatments with potential fertility implications, such as chemotherapy, pushes the decision into immediate contemplation. This proactive step allows women to capture and maintain the quality of their eggs at a younger age, thereby potentially bypassing some age-related fertility challenges that could surface later.


However, embarking on this path requires careful deliberation of both the potential upsides and downsides. The process is not only financially demanding but also emotionally and physically taxing. Success rates, while promising, vary significantly based on individual health factors and age at the time of egg retrieval. Additionally, the procedures entail a commitment to hormonal treatments and the physical process of egg retrieval, which may not be suitable for everyone. It is a huge endeavour for a woman, and can feel lonely and isolating.


In weighing up these considerations, it’s crucial to engage with fertility specialists who can provide tailored advice, taking into account personal health history and future goals. This informed approach ensures that any decision made is in harmony with one’s wellbeing and life ambitions, and ensure expectations are managed.


The Journey to Enhancing Egg Health: A Timeline

Embarking on a pathway to enrich egg health requires patience, with the timeline varying from person to person but on average, requiring at least 3 months. This journey often begins with an assessment of lifestyle factors that can be optimised over a period of months. Implementing dietary changes and incorporating specific nutrients that play a pivotal role in egg development is the most important step.


Alongside nutritional adjustments, introducing gentle exercise regimes and reducing stress through mindfulness or meditative practices contributes to creating an optimal environment for egg health and the process of ovulation. It’s important to understand that these alterations don’t yield immediate results; rather, the enhancement of egg quality is a process that unfolds gradually, typically over three to six months. This timeframe allows for the completion of an egg’s maturation cycle with the support of a healthier internal milieu.


Antioxidants & A Healthy Diet: Your New Favourite Words

Nourishing your body with the right nutrients is SO important, with antioxidants standing at the forefront of this mission. These powerful compounds help shield the eggs from oxidative stress, an internal process that damages cells. Incorporating a rainbow of antioxidant-rich foods into your daily meals — think vibrant berries, verdant leafy greens, and crunchy nuts — will keep your body fortified with the right compounds. You also want to avoid foods that do not offer antioxidants - processed and ultra processed foods, fast funks, low quality snacks and sugary foods.

salad

Beyond antioxidants, a balanced diet that includes ample amounts of folate, iron, and omega-3 fatty acids is equally crucial in supporting reproductive wellbeing. Each of these nutrients contributes to a fertile foundation, enhancing not only the quality of the eggs but also the overall environment in which they mature.


The Role of Acupuncture in Supporting Fertility

Acupuncture, a cornerstone of traditional Chinese medicine has proven to both myself, and Founder Kelly Mulhall, its benefits in improving fertility. There has been a lot of research into how, suggesting that it's a balance of harmonising hormone levels, fostering improved blood circulation to reproductive organs, and mitigating stress, that make it work. Whatever you believe, it is a really lovely practice to include and gives you some much needed quiet time.


woman acupuncture

If you're unfamiliar with acupuncture, it is the practice of inserting fine needles at specific body points which are believed to unlock and regulate the body's vital energy, or Qi, thereby facilitating a conducive state for health and vitality. It is imperative, however, to entrust this delicate aspect of your journey to a practitioner not only qualified but also experienced in the fertility domain. This ensures the therapy is adeptly tailored to your specific reproductive health narrative, promising a holistic augmentation of your fertility pathway.


Exercise Dos and Don'ts During Your Fertility Journey

Embarking on a regime of physical activity whilst navigating your fertility journey requires a delicate balance, prioritising forms of exercise that nurture rather than negate your reproductive goals. High-intensity training, exhaustive cardiovascular routines, and rigorous weightlifting can inadvertently exert undue stress on the body, potentially hampering your fertility aspirations. Such strenuous activities may impact hormone levels and increase oxidative stress, undermining the good work being done through dietary changes.


Instead, try to embrace gentler, more moderate exercises such as walking, jogging, swimming, yoga or pilates. These offer a harmonious blend of physical toning and mental relaxation, enhancing blood flow and reducing stress levels - perfect for reproductive health! As with all exercise, it is important to listen to your body's cues and adjust your activities accordingly, ensuring that your chosen regime supports and aligns with your journey towards fertility.


Navigating the Minefield of Toxins: What to Avoid

The world is a pretty toxic place these days - flame retardants, synthetic fragrances, heavy duty cleaning products, make up, deodorants just to name a few. In the lead up to egg retrieval, and down the line in pregnancy, understanding the landscape of environmental and household toxins cannot be underestimated. These invisible adversaries, present in everyday items from beauty products to household cleaners, can subtly undermine reproductive health by playing havoc with hormones. The key here is avoidance and minimisation - avoid most and minimise the unavoidable.


Foremost, prioritising the use of natural and organic personal care products can significantly reduce exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals, commonly found in make-up, haircare, and skincare items. Opt for brands that are transparent about their ingredients, shunning those that contain parabens, phthalates, and sulphates, which are notorious for their negative effects on hormonal health.


cleaning

Similarly, household cleaning products often harbour a cocktail of chemicals that can be harmful if inhaled or absorbed through the skin. Swapping these out for eco-friendly alternatives not only contributes to a healthier living environment but also supports your reproductive wellbeing. When selecting these products, vigilance is key; look for goods with certified organic labels or those that boast a minimal ingredient list, ensuring that what you use in your home is as safe and natural as possible.


Lastly, where possible choose organic foods. Avoiding foods that are grown using pesticides, synthetic fertilisers and other chemicals will ensure you are limiting the amount of chemicals you are ingesting and then being transported directly into your cells.


We recommend downloading some apps to help you when you're next in the supermarket - Yuka, ThinkDirty and OnSkin are ones used by the team here at The Natural Balance.


The Emotional Aspects of Egg Freezing: Coping with the Journey

Egg freezing will be a very emotional journey for you, so try to prepare yourself to feel ALL of the emotions - from exhilaration at taking control of one’s fertility future to trepidation about the unknowns that lie ahead. It’s a profoundly personal expedition, so it's important to also work on your emotional resilience. Engaging with a supportive network, be it through close relationships, professional counselling, or connecting with others on a similar path, becomes invaluable. These sources of support can offer solace, understanding, and practical advice, helping to lighten the emotional load. Moreover, it’s crucial to grant yourself grace and patience, recognising that fluctuating emotions are part and parcel of this significant life decision (and a nice gift from the hormone injections). By embracing both self-compassion and a proactive approach to emotional wellbeing, you'll create a journey that is not only manageable but also infused with a sense of purpose and hope.


If you're struggling with infertility, working with our fertility specialist can help you develop a nutrition plan that is tailored to your individual needs. Whether you're trying to conceive or simply looking to improve your health, eating a diet that is rich in fibre and other essential nutrients can provide important nutrition for fertility and pregnancy and support optimal hormonal balance.





Gail Madalena

Registered Nutritional Therapist, Fertility & Pregnancy Specialist

Dip CNM, mBANT, mANP, mCNHC

Fertility & Pregnancy Nutritionist London

Gail Madalena is a registered nutritional therapist specialising in fertility, pregnancy and women’s health. Her expertise lies in hormonal imbalances, such as irregular cycles, debilitating PMS, PCOS, endometriosis, thyroid issues and sub-optimal fertility. Her goal is to reduce hormonal side effects and symptoms by addressing the root cause of the issue. Gail helps couples optimise your nutrition and lifestyle choices, supporting you on your journey to achieving a healthy pregnancy.




At The Natural Balance we do not attempt to prevent, treat or cure any physical, mental or emotional issues. Do not disregard medical advice or delay seeking medical advice because of information you have read on this website. Do not start or stop taking any medications without speaking to your primary health care provider.

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