Monday, February 25, 2013

Daily habits to change for improved fertility

I so often take for granted basic facts about how to improve fertility. After 4+ years of trying, it feels like I could write my own infertility guide. But, I realize many couples are starting their efforts to conceive and could use any helpful facts. Plus, I might always learn something new!   I received this article with information provided by Dr. Isabelle Ryan and presenting 6 overlooked habits that can give a couple the edge of achieving pregnancy.

Can Every Day Habits Age Your Fertility?
You want to do everything you can to stay healthy and become pregnant. But can “too much of a good thing” actually backfire? When taken to an extreme, certain healthy habits may do exactly that. With a little care, however, you can prevent problems. 
  1. Avoid hot tubs and saunas. “Yes, it's important to relax, but avoid these methods of relaxation when trying to become pregnant. Raising your core body temperature too high may increase the risk of birth defects, miscarriage and low sperm counts,” says Dr. Isabelle Ryan, a board-certified reproductive endocrinologist and infertility specialist at pacific Fertility Center in San Francisco. 
  2. Exercise, but don’t overdo it.   Not only can very intense workouts raise your core body temperature, but in women they may also cause irregular menstrual cycles and hormonal imbalances.  “Use your best judgment on hot, humid days. Cool down between intensive workouts. In most cases, however, reasonable but vigorous exercise may actually help you become pregnant,” advises Dr. Ryan. 
  3. Protect against cycling risks. Leisurely recreational biking shouldn't pose a big problem. But serious endurance cycling may increase the risk of male infertility by overheating the groin area or creating hormonal imbalances.  Racing saddles or a poorly fitting bicycle seat may also affect the testicles, but pain should provide a warning before you get into big trouble.
  4. Maintain a healthy weight.  According to the Nurses Health Study, women with the lowest, as well as the highest, body mass index (BMI) were most likely to experience problems with infertility.  You need about 22 percent body fat to maintain normal menstrual function.
  5. Rethink dairy—for now.  In general, a low-fat diet is laudable. But here's another surprising finding from the Nurses Health Study: Women who consumed a lot of low-fat dairy products, such as nonfat milk, were more likely to experience fertility problems than those who did not. Having a daily serving or two of dairy products made from whole milk appears to protect against ovulatory infertility. Just watch out for the extra calories.
  6. Know your vitamin RDA. Sure, certain vitamins and minerals are essential to your overall health. Some may even help you get pregnant and protect your unborn baby. But, if you have a habit of taking mega doses of vitamins, be sure to discuss this with your doctor. You need to know safe recommended daily

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Motherhood Wanted approved!

Motherhood Wanted approved!
Diana Farrell, MA


Motherhood Wanted approved!