Nobody doubts the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle. We all love toned and healthy bodies. Physical activities, hydration, well-balanced and healthy diet are things that benefit our lives mentally, medically and physically. Based on years of experience and researches, certain types of foods and lifestyle choices have been proven to influence fertility as well. Further we will focus on fertility diet – nutrients and meals that give a boost to reproductive system and support healthy pregnancy.
It is important to realize that diet choices influence fertility a long before actually trying to conceive – by the moment of pregnancy, it is essential to have a well prepared body. Remember that very low or very high body mass index (BMI) is often responsible for irregular menstruation, ovulation and a number of pregnancy complications.
Iron & Vitamin C
During menstruation, iron is leaving the body together with the red blood cells. For some females, periods are more heavy and they tend to lose more iron from the body. Iron deficiency is neither recommended for the baby, nor for the mother. It is really a hurdle to provide body with enough iron right before the pregnancy. For that reason, females should consider enriching their diet with iron- especially during menstruation.
It is recommended to avoid meals and beverages that may make periods heavier. Some examples are : alcoholic drinks, caffeine and spicy food.
Excessive amounts of caffeine can also be connected with conceiving difficulties. Remember that coffee is not the only beverage including caffeine. Tea and a number of soft drinks are too. However, it is okay to consume moderate amounts of them.
Foods rich in iron include:
- green vegetables
- pumpkin beets
Vitamin C helps to absorb iron and provides body with essential nutrients. Tomatoes, broccoli, citruses and strawberry are examples of products rich with Vitamin C.
Protein sources and Vitamin B
Enriching fertility diet with proteins is important. However, as commonly believed, meat is not the only source of protein. Replacing meat with vegetable proteins is considered to be a good idea. They are lower in fats, can support ovulation and improve fertility.
Vegetables rich in protein include :
Vitamin B and folic acids can also aid ovulation. Folic acids, additionally can prevent fetal brain and spinal cord defects. Vitamin B may also aid the production of eggs. Future mothers may want to consider following products :
- whole grains
While fish is a good source to support fertility, regulate ovulation, improve egg quality, support baby’s brain and eye development, not all kinds of fish will do good.
Salmon, tuna (except some sorts), shrimps and catfish are rich in Omega-3 and should be included in fertility diet.
Taking fish oil supplements is also a reasonable option to consider, but it is better to choose one according to doctor’s recommendation.
Sushi, or any other forms of raw fish should be avoided. Fish that contain certain levels of metal – mercury, can also be harmful while trying to get pregnant. Types of fish that are high in mercury include :
- orange roughy
- ahi tuna
Hydration is crucial. Future mothers should maximize their water intake and keep alcohol consumption levels low. For women who love to consume dairy products, it is recommended to avoid low-fat dairies and substitute them with whole milk or full-fat yoghurt.
Similarly to females, future fathers should also control their health, weight and diet. Folic acid, vitamin C and zinc are good sources to support healthy sperm production. Alcoholic beverages, drugs and smoking should be avoided or completely limited.
The last, but not the least – remember to be physically active ! Some people may not want to go for a 5 km run or lift weights in the gym, however, they should definitely go for short, slow jogs or walks.