If you're planning on trying to get pregnant in the next few months, it's really important to get your diet on a healthy track to prepare your body for pregnancy and birth.
We all know that maintaining an ideal weight is important for our overall health and wellbeing, but what we have come to learn from recent studies, is that weight can cause complications during pregnancy and also has a significant effect on fertility. In fact, research shows that overweight and obese women have poorer outcomes following fertility treatment.
However, it's not just women who need to keep their weight in check when trying for a baby but men may need to review their diet, too - men who are overweight or obese have a higher risk of fertility problems. Below is a list of fertility-boosting foods packed with the most important vitamins and minerals for a healthy body ahead of IVF treatment:
- Get your fertility off to a cracking good start and make eggs part of your breakfast routine! They are nutritious, portable, quick and easy to cook - what's not to love? Eggs are also rich in fertility boosting properties such as vitamin B12 and folate which can help minimise the risk of birth defects.
- Whole grains: such as oats, brown rice, whole wheat and quinoa are complex carbohydrates and so not only give you lots of energy by releasing sugar into your blood slowly and evenly, but are also a rich source of B and E vitamins which are essential to produce healthy eggs and maintain hormonal balance.
- Stock up on fish! Fish supplies important essential fatty acids (omega 3) to our diet and these fatty acids aid in the production of hormones, reduce inflammation, and help regulate the menstrual cycle. However, avoid fish that have high mercury content due to their environment--including swordfish, tilefish and king mackerel.
- Garlic is a great conception booster for men. It contains allicin, which improves blood flow to his sexual organs and protects sperm from damage. Garlic also contains selenium, an antioxidant which can improve sperm quality.
- Drink plenty of water! Yes, it may not be a snack, but drinking plenty of water is an essential ingredient in helping you stick to your healthy eating plan. Regular water intake leaves you feeling fuller, thereby reducing the risk of binge eating. Another magic water fact is that drinking it regularly can help to balance your hormones.
- Bananas: Are full of goodness and are the perfect portable snack. Not only are they a natural way of satisfying a sweet tooth, bananas are a fantastic nutritional boost, boasting high levels of Vitamin B6, Manganese, Vitamin C, Potassium, Dietary Fibre, Protein, Magnesium, Folate, Riboflavin, Niacin, vitamin A and iron.
For most adults, an ideal BMI is between 18.5 - 24.9. Making sure your BMI stays within this parameter helps to achieve optimal wellness, which is important whilst trying for a baby either naturally or via fertility treatment.
If you think you may need extra support to drive a healthy eating programme, why not seek the assistance of a nutritionist who can help guide you? Nutritionist Neema Savvides, at Harley Street Fertility Clinic can show you how to optimise your diet to increase your fertility levels and overall health. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or alternatively call 020 7436 6838 for more information.