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Trying to Get Pregnant? Relaxing Really Can Help

South Florida Health,  April 24, 2012

Now research is finally proving that there's science behind the age-old wisdom of "Just relax." British and American researchers tracked the fertility and stress levels of 274 British women, ages 18 to 40, who were trying to become pregnant. For six menstrual cycles (or until they conceived), the women used fertility monitors to tell when they were ovulating, then used pregnancy test kits to see if they had become pregnant. They also took a sample of their own saliva on the sixth day of every cycle, which researchers tested for cortisol and alpha-amylase, compounds produced by the body under stress. The outcome: Women with the highest levels of alpha-amylase were 12 percent less likely to conceive compared with women having the lowest levels. Cortisol levels weren't correlated with conception rates. (Women in this study had no known infertility issues.)

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