Exercise has a variety of effects on the body, so it’s no wonder that it can also play a role in fertility. Too much exercise, and fertility levels can drop greatly, especially if you’re underweight. On the flip side, too little exercise can also lower chances of conceiving, especially if you’re overweight.
Ob/Gyns have long advocated for future moms to start eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables before becoming pregnant, and to bump up their intake of iron and folic acid (a B vitamin to help prevent neurological birth defects that may occur in the first three months of pregnancy). Now, there is a strong case to be made that couples struggling with infertility can benefit from dietary changes.
To some women, preparing for an IVF cycle involves doctor's visits, medication training, injections, waiting and sometimes praying. To others, especially those who spend any time on the fertility forums, the traditional ways to deal with your cycle aren't always enough. And if the internet is good for anything, it's providing an old wives tale when you need one.
A healthy diet is critical to women trying to conceive as well as those who are pregnant or breastfeeding, according to Victoria Maizes, M.D. She recommends a whole food diet, rich in vegetables and fruits, abundant in high omega 3 fatty acids, eggs, and vegetable sources of protein. “The diet should be low in processed foods, meat, and rapidly digesting, high glycemic index carbohydrates,” she says.
Maizes is the executive director of the University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine and a Professor of Medicine and Public Health. In her new book, Be Fruitful: The Essential Guide to Maximizing Fertility and Giving Birth to a Healthy Child, she outlines how the foods we eat, the toxins we ingest, and the overall lifestyle we lead has an effect on fertility and the health of our unborn children. Following are five tips to maximize fertility.
According to Dr. David Keefe, a New York fertility doctor at NYU Fertility Center, there are a number of lifestyle factors that affect fertility and egg quality including smoking, weight, certain drugs and genetic problems
A study presented at the 2012 American Heart Association annual meeting found a connection between multiple miscarriages and cardiovascular problems, particularly atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries.
I have to admit, I never thought the tight pink Dittos I wore in high school might diminish my ability to have a baby. Or the Freshman Fifteen I put on my first year of college — or the anxiety of being a teenager in general. But over the last few weeks, news stories have come out that tight pants, obesity and stress can lower your fertility quotient, and eating walnuts can have the opposite effect.
It is true that lifestyle, past history and high anxiety come into play when trying to have a baby. Remember — a woman in her 20s with no fertility issues has only a 20 percent chance of getting pregnant each month when diligently trying, so even though most women spend their fertile years trying NOT to get knocked up, it’s actually not that easy. That means for those of us who’ve spent our future baby’s college fund on IVF, PGD, ICSI and IUI, keeping our bodies and our minds healthy is an invaluable component of success.