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Simple acupuncture fertility advice

Simple advice

If you are coming for acupuncture to help increase your chances of achieving pregnancy you may also think about making adjustments to your lifestyle and diet to help the whole process and maximise your health and well-being. Here are some simple things to consider.

Diet


WATER: Drink lots of water. It is important for organ function by serving as the mechanism for helping deliver the nutrients to your body. It also influences your hormonal balance and helps carry toxins out of your body.

COMPLEX CARBOHYDRATES: Eating complex carbohydrates like vegetables, whole grains, brown rice, and whole grain cereals and pasta are some of the best ways to get the nutrients that positively influence your fertility. The complex carbohydrates of vegetables, whole grains and fruits also ensure that you have fiber in your diet adding further help in removing toxins.

PROTEIN: Protein influences your fertility by providing the nutrients that contribute towards hormone production. However, it is
important what type of protein you eat. Diets that are high in red meat consumption are often connected to health concerns that can impact your fertility such as endometriosis. The better proteins come from eggs, beans, nuts, seeds, oily fish and white meat. Interestingly lots of these foods nourish Blood and have a slightly warming effect from a Chinese medical perspective, which is essential for a healthy fertile environment as far as acupuncture is concerned.

GOOD FATS: There are different types of fats and they are important to your fertility. The fatty acids found in oily fish, nuts and seeds affect both fertility and the healthy development of your growing baby during pregnancy. Essential fatty acids can be obtained in oily fish like mackerel and salmon, as well as nuts and seeds. There have been recommendations that women eat up to 12 ounces a week of fish that are low in mercury to get the Omega 3 fatty acids needed for healthy fertility and baby development.

Nutrients

A fertility diet should be based on sound nutritional eating for overall good health.
What's more a healthy diet will impact on the fertility of both you and your partner.
However, there are certainly some key nutrients that directly affect fertility in women:

ZINC: There is plenty of research linking deficiencies in zinc with negative effects on fertility for both men and women. Getting zinc naturally can be done by eating vegetables, eggs, whole grains, nuts, sunflower seeds, watermelon and dried fruit. You can also find zinc in onions, beetroot, peas and beans.

VITAMIN B6: This contributes to the production of female sex hormones and by regulating both oestrogen and progesterone. B6 increases your chances of conception and decreases your chances of miscarriage. Getting B6 naturally can be done so by eating eggs, salmon, peanuts, bananas and sunflower seeds. Prenatal vitamins will also contain B6 as part of the supplement and are a great way to ensure that you have this essential fertility and baby wellness nutrient.

VITAMIN C: Vitamin C is a fertility nutrient because it helps in triggering ovulation. It also helps in sperm count for men, so it plays a key role for both men and women. Vitamin C can be consumed through vegetables and fruits, in particular strawberries, oranges, kiwi, mangoes and blueberries.

VITAMIN E: Vitamin E is another fertility nutrient for both men and women. It enhances hormone function in women and affects sperm function in men. Vitamin E can be obtained naturally through oily fish, green leafy vegetables, broccoli, nuts, egg yolk, whole grains and unrefined oils.

Essentially the best thing to remember is always go for balance, natural products and avoid extremes in dieting.


Try to avoid

Here are some of the top things in your diet and intake to avoid.

CAFFEINE: Research has shown that it can lower your fertility by approximately 27%, having a negative effect on your overall nutrition because it restricts the body’s ability to absorb iron and calcium.

PROCESSED FOOD: Highly processed foods often contain pesticides, artificial hormones, and preservatives. These can negatively affect your fertility by decreasing your hormonal health. Always try to eat organic. If you know foods that you eat have come from a farm as opposed to a factory that is a start. Also avoid biscuits, crisps and frozen meals in favour of fresh fruits, vegetables and some meat. A good rule of thumb is avoid any packaged item with more than five ingredients. Anything that has refined sugars in it is best to avoid (including white bread and pasta) because they cause your body to use up more nutrients to process than they provide. However, the biggest reason is their implication in the West's weight gain and the obesity epidemic. It is a fact overweight couples are less fertile.

BAD FATS: When in comes to health in general, there are good fats and there are bad fats. Research increasingly points to links with bad fats like the trans fats (partially hydrogenated fats) found in processed foods and the saturated fats in animal meat with lower fertility rates. Therefore, trans fats and saturated fats should be eliminated from your diet and replaced with good fats like mono-unsaturated fat found in olive oil.

SOY PRODUCTS: Due to recent research soy-based products would be a good thing to avoid while trying to conceive as they been shown to decrease sperm counts in men. While for women studies have shown that even small amounts of the compound Genistein (found in soy products) in the female tract could destroy sperm. So best avoid for now.

... and of course anything toxic or of a chemical nature that your body can't process needs to be eliminated if possible. This includes alcohol and nicotine.


Lifestyle

Adjustments to your work life balance, environment and activity can make a difference to your health and body's balance so here are some things to consider.

EXERCISE: This is great as it gets your energy and Blood moving. Just watch pushing it to the limit and depleting yourself. Instead try Tai Chi or Yoga. These are generally more gentle and focus on relaxation as well as movement which helps build reserves.

RELAXATION TECHNIQUES: This may be anything from meditation where the mind is allowed to settle, breathing techniques or going for a walk in a natural environment. Anything that allows you to let go of tension in the body and the mind is going to help. Just sitting quietly and getting some rest and away time is also a great thing to do.

SLEEP: Try to plan for more sleep than you usually get. Your body repairs during this time so allow it to happen. If you have trouble sleeping trying the previous two tips may help.

WATCH YOUR ENVIRONMENT: Being surrounded by positive people and those who can support you if you ask for it is certainly going to help. Even if you never mention your situation being around those kind of people will keep you in a better mental state. This includes workplaces. Watch your work life balance and watch where your energy is spent.

(The Essential Guide to Getting Pregnant Dr P B Imler & D Wilbanks 2010)






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