Supporting Fertility is highly relevant in the modern world when you consider that the usual statistics for couples seeking medical help for infertility is one in seven. However a UK National Fertility Survey, published in 2007 suggested that fertility problems are more than double what was commonly believed. Together with this one in four women will experience a miscarriage.
The most common type of infertility is unexplained which means that despite medical tests doctors have been unable to find any medical problem. It goes without saying that there are many factors which may lead to infertility and these cover both physical, emotional and lifestyle aspects.
Food And Fertility
In supporting fertility health professionals are now starting to look at nutritional deficiencies together with environmental toxins as a potential cause of delays in conception. Environmental toxins may take the form of pesticides, plastics, petro chemical by – products and synthetic oestrogen. Added to this there is an excess of hormones and hormone like compounds which we consume in everyday foods. This kind of toxic overload on the systems of the body may affect ovulation in women and may lower sperm count in men.
Fertility Boosting Diet
In order to support fertility a healthy diet is extremely important during pregnancy and in the postnatal period, however diet may also affect the ability of the body to conceive. The following food groups are recommended as part of a Fertility action plan:
- Lots of fresh organic fruits and vegetables
- Complex carbohydrates such as whole grains including brown rice, oats and wholemeal bread
- Oily foods such as fish, seeds and oils
- A reduced intake of saturated fats from dairy products
- Try to avoid additives, preservatives and chemicals such as artificial sweeteners
- Reduce sugar intake both on its own together with hidden sugars in foods
- Try to incorporate as much organic foods into the diet as possible
Avoid caffeine, alcohol, and smoking as these factors have been linked to an increased risk of infertility in both men and women.
In order to support fertility It is important to try and keep weight within healthy boundaries if women are trying to conceive. Women need at least 18% body fat to ovulate and the best chance of conceiving is when 20-25% of the body mass is fat tissue. However menstrual cycles can be disrupted by being 25% over weight. It is important for men to keep within an ideal weight range as there is an increased risk of infertility or poor sperm quality in men who are over weight or obese.
Stress can cause irregular ovulation or even amenorrhoea, it can also lower sperm counts. In order to reduce stress it is important to eat a healthy balanced diet which will help to maintain a blood sugar balance, exercise regularly and try to get at least seven to eight hours sleep each night. Exercise such as yoga or meditation can be helpful together with complimentary therapies including massage, aromatherapy, reflexology or counselling as infertility can be very stressful.
Why Try Reflexology
Fertility Reflexology is a calm, relaxing treatment which may help to reduce emotional stress and anxiety in relation to fertility problems.
Regular treatments may encourage the body to restore its natural balance which is important in terms of encouraging ovulation and conception. Fertility Reflexology may also help to reduce stress and anxiety in relation to assisted conception procedures such as IVF.