Natural Fertility Methods to Boost Pregnancy Chances
Many couples take fertility for granted until they try unsuccessfully for a baby. Combinations of factors play a role in contributing to fertility. Things like diet, exercise, and overall health all have a huge impact on fertility.
In order to improve fertility, one of the most important steps is to monitor when the woman is most fertile. Many couples have difficulty getting pregnant because they are having sexual intercourse at times when the woman isn’t fertile. This can hamper the chances of early conception. There are a number of different ways of monitoring fertility. It is a good idea to start by monitoring the basal body temperature. This will help to determine exactly when ovulation is taking place – the basal body temperature will increase when the female body is ready to release an egg.
Keeping a fertility chart will raise a couple’s fertility awareness, allowing them to pinpoint when the woman is actually ovulating. Devices such as a fertility monitor, can also help couples keep track of their conception calendar and dates.
Diet plays an important role in fertility. A balanced diet helps to regulate hormones and nourish the reproductive system. It is important to maintain a healthy weight as this has a dramatic impact on fertility. Women who are underweight or overweight may have a harder time becoming pregnant because body fat levels impact the production of sex hormones.
Vitamins and Minerals
It is also important to include certain vitamins and minerals in the diet. When trying to conceive it is helpful to try and include the following vitamins and minerals in your diet:
- vitamin C and antioxidants: These vitamins prevent sperm defects and boost sperm motility. They also reduce stress on the female eggs and reproductive organs.
- zinc: Zinc deficiencies have been linked with reduced testosterone and semen levels.
- calcium and vitamin D: A daily, therapeutic dose of these nutrients have been shown to help increase male fertility.
What to Avoid
Whilst trying to conceive, certain foods and chemicals should be avoided as they may hinder efforts to get pregnant. Try to avoid or at least cut back on the following:
- alcohol: Alcohol can reduce your fertility levels by up to 50%. It can also decrease sperm count and increase the production of abnormal sperm.
- caffeine: Caffeine, found in coffee, teas, cola, and chocolate, has been shown to reduce both male and female fertility levels. As little as one cup of coffee a day can cut your chances of conception in half.
- xenoestrogens: Xenoestrogens are estrogens found in environmental chemicals and pesticides. Produce and other foods can have high levels of xenoestrogens, which, if ingested, may disturb the balance of hormones. Imbalanced hormones are often the cause of fertility issues.
Moderate exercise can also be a good natural fertility treatment. When combined with a balanced and nutritious diet, exercise can help to maintain a healthy body weight. Excess body fat can increase the amount of estrogen in your body, throwing the female fertility cycle out of balance. Exercise helps to burn off this excess body fat, allowing hormone levels to return to normal. However, it is important not over-do exercise as too much rigorous exercising can actually impair fertility. Low impact aerobic workouts like walking, swimming, and cycling are best.
Herbs and Natural Alternative Therapy
Many couples look towards herbal medicine to help them conceive. Herbs have been used to promote fertility for thousands of years and can be considered to be a form of natural fertility medication. Because herbs can be very potent, it is important to speak with a suitably qualified therapist before taking any herbal supplements. There are many natural fertility clinics that offer help and advice to couples facing fertility issues. These methods are often less invasive than IVF treatment.
Keep a Fertility Calendar
Another good idea is to keep a fertility calendar in order to record ovulation times. It is important to have sexual intercourse just before an egg is released, in order to maximise the chance of conception.
It is important to remember that a couple is not classed as having a fertility problem, unless they have been trying to conceive for 12 months and have been having unprotected intercourse regularly (two to three times per week); if the woman is 35 years or older, this period is reduced to six months.
By focusing on getting the body into optimum condition for pregnancy through diet, exercise and supplements it not only increases the chances of a healthy conception and pregnancy in itself, but also reduces the tension and stress that can be caused through infertility, thus furthering chances of conception. It is also important to remember to monitor fertility so that the woman feels in control of her fertility and the couple can optimise their chances of conceiving a child.