Fertility Boosting Foods & Herbs

Fertility boosters: give nature a helping handAlmonds (and nuts in general) are prime sources of essential fatty acids which help maintain a healthy balance of sex hormones in men and women. Almonds are also a good source of zinc. Zinc deficiency in women can lead to infertility and an increased risk of miscarriage. Zinc is crucial for guys too as it is also essential for the production of healthy sperm. In short, zinc is crucial for conception as severe deficiencies can impair fertility.

Strawberries: All fruit and vegetables – particularly kiwi fruit, peppers, strawberries and citrus fruits – contain abundant quantities of vitamin C. In women vitamin C can help trigger ovulation and in men it plays a key role in boosting the immune system, and thus aids a healthy conception. This vitamin may also help to prevent the condition known as ‘agglutination’, in which the sperm become stuck together and are unable to reach the egg.

Green vegetables: Green vegetables contain good levels of vitamin B6 and folic acid. Vitamin B6 is essential for the production of sex hormones and folic acid helps to prevent spina bifida in the baby. Folic acid and zinc together have been shown to increase sperm counts by 74%. You’ll also find folic acid in nuts and legumes but to be on the safe side take a good antenatal vitamin and mineral too (like Fertility Plus).

Sweet potato: A comforting source of manganese. Research has shown that manganese is important for good reproductive function in both men and women — in other words, it’s a baby-making essential.

Oily fish or hemp or flax seeds: Most of us don’t eat enough essential fats, so when you are trying to maximise your fertility it’s a good idea to add them to your diet. Research has shown the benefits of supplementing with essential fatty acids during pregnancy to avoid low birth weight and also the advantages to the growing baby in terms of brain development. EFAs help regulate hormone levels, ensure proper membrane fluidity and improve sperm quality and blood flow. Anything that helps blood get to sexual organs is helpful and, because semen is rich in prostaglandins (hormone-like fatty acids found in healthy oils), EFAs are especially beneficial to men. If you don’t eat fish, flax or hemp seeds are a superb source of essential fatty acids.

Green tea is thought to be an excellent fertility enhancer because it contains a high level of antioxidants which aid in healthy immune systems. Research has shown that women who regularly drink green tea increase their chance of conception.

Water is critical because 75% of your body is made up of water. Your body uses water constantly to do its normal functions. Drinking water will help flush out wastes, keep your body running smoothly and provide proper fluids for conception to occur. So be sure you drink ample water if you wish to get pregnant! Get in the good habit of drinking at least eight glasses of mineral water a day.

Basil: a love token! (and a useful fertility booster)Basil has a warming effect on the body and promotes circulation to the reproductive organs. In some parts of Italy, basil is a love-token. Alfalfa is also considered a general reproductive tonic for both men and women.

Chasteberry: This herb (also known as agnus castus) works to increase fertility by stimulating the pituitary gland. This is the gland responsible for producing sex hormones like oestrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. Chasteberry should help fertility by balancing the sex hormones.

Dong Quai is a Chinese fertility herb, long-used to solve menstrual difficulties. It also helps to balance oestrogen levels in the body and improve chances of implantation.

Siberian ginseng: By supporting healthy womb function, Siberian ginseng may be useful in female fertility. Men may experience an increased sperm count. Animal studies indicate that the herb can even boost testosterone levels and thus help reverse certain cases of male impotence.

(Note: It is important to speak to a qualified practitioner before taking herbs while you are trying to get pregnant.)

A good source of protein: Lentils give your body the amino acids it needs to produce fertility hormonesLentils: A good low fat source of healthy protein. Protein is essential for your fertility because it keeps your blood sugar levels stable and gives your body the even supply of amino acids it needs to build and repair cells and manufacture fertility hormones. Other good sources of protein include quinoa, eggs, vegetables, nuts, seeds and soya products.

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