In this day and age, nutrition is tied to crash diets and weight loss far too often. But the truth is that what you eat has a much bigger impact on your body than the number on the scale.
And as you probably know, nutrition is an essential part of healthy fertility, conception, and pregnancy.
Below, I’m going to cover the fundamental ways that diet can impact your fertility, and how you can best nourish and prepare your body for pregnancy.
1. Nutrition Supports Healthy Hormone Production
Hormones are everything when it comes to fertility – they run your cycle, impact your uterine lining, affect ovulation, and more. (It goes without saying that hormones impact everything else in your body too, beyond just fertility!)
With this in mind, here are some nutrition tips for optimal hormone production.
- • Eat enough healthy fats – Try flax oil, fish oil, and grass-fed butter. Additionally, make sure your salad dressings are an avocado, olive oil, or sunflower oil base.
- • Eat plenty of fiber – To get your fiber up, aim for lots of vegetables, fruit (especially with skin on), beans, and whole grains.
2. Hormone Metabolism
In modern-day life, we’re exposed to more hormones and hormone-mimicking chemicals than ever. That said, it’s important to support your body in flushing out those excess compounds.
Here are some tips for promoting healthy hormone metabolism.
• Getting enough fiber will boost your body’s natural ability to get rid of excess hormones.
- • Drinking enough water sounds like a no-brainer, but it makes a big difference with cervical mucus production, detoxification, and hormonal balance.
- • Eat organic produce and grass-fed meat and dairy as often as you can. This is important because inorganic food may contain glyphosates (among other pesticides) that can lead to reproductive issues and other health problems.
Not everyone has access to organic food – and if you don’t, that’s okay! Instead, you can wash your fruits and vegetables well to reduce your exposure to herbicides and pesticides.
Antioxidants protect the health and integrity of your cells (and the ovum is the largest cell in a woman’s body.) Try to get a wide variety of antioxidants each day, as you need to get them continuously for the best protection.
How Do You Know Which Foods Have Antioxidants?
Water soluble antioxidants are going to be in fruits and vegetables with vibrant, rich colors.
Fat soluble antioxidants like vitamin A and vitamin E come from healthy meats and raw nuts and seeds. It’s especially important to eat nuts and seeds raw because heat can damage their nutrients.
4. Reduce Inflammation
Inflammation plays a role in nearly every part of overall wellness – including your reproductive health. Having said that, here are some ways to boost your body’s natural anti-inflammatory response.
Choose Foods That Reduce Inflammation
High antioxidant foods and foods with essential fatty acids will naturally be rich in anti-inflammatory compounds. Try to include:
- • Colorful fruits and vegetables like berries, spinach, beets, sweet potatoes, etc.
- • Foods containing omega-3s such as fish, healthy plant oils, chia seeds, walnuts, and flaxseed.
Avoid Foods That Aggravate Inflammation
On the other hand, there are many foods that can cause inflammation in the body. Common causes of inflammation are gluten, dairy, processed meat, or refined carbohydrates – but it can be different for everyone.
5. Nutrition Supports Healthy Uterine Lining
A healthy uterine lining will encourage implantation. Many women find out if their uterine lining is thick or thin through ultrasounds, but some other signs could simply be heavy or light cycles.
So, how does nutrition tie into this?
Well, nutritional deficiencies are actually very common because modern diets are full of processed foods – and this can impact the health of your uterine lining.
- • When you have a thin uterine lining, build up your system. Make sure you’re eating a healthy diet with enough protein and iron to support healthy blood production.
- • When your lining is too thick, you can help your body with its natural ability to metabolize hormones using the pointers from tip number two in this post.
How to Know if You’re Getting Enough Nutrients for Healthy Uterine Lining
One way to find out if you have nutritional deficiencies is by tracking your regular nutrient intake.
A free app called Cronometer that can help you with this. If you track everything you ordinarily eat in a week, the app will give you an estimate of what nutrients you may or may not be missing.
6. Nutrition Protects Egg and Sperm Health Integrity
If you’re on your fertility journey or preparing for a medical fertility treatment, you may be wondering: How do I protect the health of my eggs?
Nutrition (and especially your antioxidant intake) plays a key role in this.
It’s important not to focus on crash diets or eliminating food groups. Instead, the best thing you can do is nourish your body with a variety of whole, unprocessed foods.
By choosing your foods with this in mind, you’re taking an amazing step in boosting your egg (or sperm) health – and the health of your future child.
The Takeaway on Nutrition’s Impact on Fertility Health
What you feed your body matters for a healthy conception and pregnancy. By following the tips mentioned in this post, you can ensure you’re getting the nutrients you need to naturally boost your reproductive health.
If you need more support, there are resources available on the site that can help. And if you can’t find what you need here, feel free to reach out to us for additional guidance.