I talk about how beneficial it is to exercise while pregnant, but what about using it to prepare your body before that and improving your chances? For some, getting pregnant is an instant thing, but with many people leaving it later in life to start a family, the chances of conceiving quickly are lower.
Naturally everyone is different, but making some small changes to your diet and lifestyle could really help your chances:
Look at adding certain vitamins and nutrients to your diet. Include enough protein, iron, zinc, vitamin C, and vitamin D in your diet, because deficiencies in these nutrients have been linked to lengthened menstrual cycles (and therefore less frequent ovulation).
Ask your doctor if you should take a daily multivitamin supplement too, but it’s worth looking for supplements that include vitamin B6, which has been shown to increase fertility. And, take it with Omega-3 fish oil, which helps aid absorption of the vitamins.
Exercise but don’t go crazy
Exercise improves metabolism and circulation, both of which contribute to better egg production. Regular activity also optimizes your reproductive system by stimulating the endocrine glands, which secrete hormones that help eggs grow. It also makes you feel good and is a great stress reliever, which is shown to inhibit your conception chances.
That all being said, you need to watch what exercise you do. Don’t take up marathon running or doing extreme sports, and going full pelt with HIIT workouts isn’t the way forward. Intense exercise sessions cause the body to break down the proteins in muscles, producing ammonia, a pregnancy-inhibiting chemical.
Cut back on caffeine and alcohol
I’m not saying cut out completely as that can make things more stressful and have the opposite effect, but cutting down will be beneficial not just for your pregnancy but health in general. It will also prepare you for having to go without for the 9 months!
Watch your weight
Don’t go on an extreme diet, but having a healthy body weight will get your body ready. Being overweight can lead to an overproduction of certain hormones that disrupt ovulation. Your cycles may be less regular, you may ovulate less often, and you lower your chances of getting pregnant. Equally, you may have disrupted periods if you’re on the other side with a very low body weight.
Relax and de-stress
Don’t let ‘baby-making’ be all your sex life is about. The more you focus on it the more stressful it gets and as mentioned already, stress won’t help you! Enjoy the journey and have fun with it
Stub out that butt
We all know smoking is bad for us, but the toxins in cigarettes both damage a woman's eggs, interfering with the fertilization and implantation process, and also cause ageing of the ovaries. Naturally the older your ovaries are the less fertile they become. Again, giving up now, will help you keep off them for the pregnancy.
Know your cycle
Take note of your menstrual cycle to try and work out your ovulation time. Once you work it out, take that window of opportunity and get working!
And don’t forget it’s not just the woman that should be making the changes, the male part of the equation should also take heed!
Obviously I’m not a medical practitioner, so my tips are purely from a natural health and wellbeing perspective. If you’re still having trouble then I would recommend speaking to your GP about your options or I’ve also heard fantastic things about reflexology and acupuncture and can thoroughly recommend:
Carole Mabboux - http://www.acucarma.co.uk/
Rakhi Shah - http://www.fbab.co.uk/
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