Fertility and Diet

Your body needs certain things to keep it running smoothly and efficiently. Different foods provide different nutrients, all of which are important to aspects of your health including your fertility. During pregnancy and while you are trying to achieve, it is important that you and your partner both make sure you are living and eating healthily, getting in all those foods that nourish you while omitting those that can be detrimental to your health and hence fertility.

General nutrition

Your chances at conception are definitely increased through a healthier diet with fewer kebabs and more home cooked meals, and yes, salads when possible. It doesn’t mean you have to stringently cut your diet down to the bare essentials, but it is definitely a good idea to review what you’re putting into your body to make sure you’re getting the right amounts and types of foods full of protein, unsaturated fats, carbohydrates etc.

Making these adjustments can also be very important in the long run as they prepare a female body for pregnancy, which can be very physically demanding. Eating healthy will mean that you can get through your pregnancy healthily and with a healthy baby, who needs proper nutrition to grow healthily.

Calorie intake

‘Calories’ are for many people the stuff of nightmares, the enemy which leads to weight gain. However while an excess can certainly lead to obesity, we all have a baseline amount of calories that we need to take in on a day by day basis to keep everything running as it should. What’s important is to make sure that we meet the required amount of calories through foods that have nutritional value, like fresh vegetables, rather than empty and detrimental calories from sugary snacks and sweets.

The monthly menstrual cycle which dictates female fertility is controlled to some extent by the amount of nutrients you take in on a daily basis, so taking in the right amounts of the right nutrients on a daily basis is vital to healthy fertility. The reason for this is that regular menstruation needs a certain amount of energy, and your body makes sure that it can afford to spend that energy, which it gets from food, on menstruation before doing so. This is why if you are underweight and/or not eating enough every day, you can suffer from irregular menstruation. If you are underweight then increasing your calorie intake is one of the first and most important steps to take if you want to get pregnant.

Men are no exception to this rule. To produce quality sperm in the right quantities you need the energy to do so. An undernourished man can suffer fertility issues as sperm might not be as motile or as numerous as they should be.

Deficiencies in minerals other bits and pieces

While protein, unsaturated fats, and other major nutrients in food are a really important component of your diet when it comes to both general lifestyle and fertility, minerals and vitamins are equally important. It’s easy to forget about smaller elements of our diet like Zinc, but these can have an extremely important role to play in fertility.

Low amounts of zinc can reduce the amount or volume of semen a man is able to produce, which in turn can be a cause of infertility. As a man you need certain amount of semen to be able to successfully conceive, and so suffering from a zinc deficiency can have a most definite effect on your ability to achieve pregnancy. Women also need zinc as it has been noted that a zinc deficiency can increase the chances of miscarriage and extended labour. You don’t need much zinc, and can find it in many different food sources like lamb, wheat germ beef.

Folic acid is used during pregnancy help the foetus grow healthily, particularly the developing nervous system. Many women supplement folic acid whilst pregnant and trying to conceive, but natural foods like green veg and hard boiled eggs can get the required amounts into your diet.

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