Do you need to boost your fertility? Would you prefer to do so naturally? Is your fertility affected by suspected Low Ovarian Reserve, Low Antral Follicle count or advanced age? If yes, then these tips are for you: (which follow on from tips 1-10 which you can read here)
Of course, specific professional advice tailored to your unique situation is the best way. Seeing an experienced Chinese Medicine practitioner or Naturopath is the best way to obtain guidance to optimise your health and Natural Fertility. The health tips below can complement your care and is based on the science of minimising factors which can result in the premature recruitment or destruction of your follicles and ageing.
- Sleep more and better. The average adult needs 6-9 hours. Easier said than done right? Try going to sleep even 30 minutes earlier. Wind down before getting into bed to encourage deeper sleep. Click here for more sleep tips.
- Relax more and better. Practice meditation, yoga, qi gong, tai chi or the like. There are many guided meditation apps and videos available these days. Or find a local class. We hold Qi Gong classes here at Freedom Chinese Medicine in Ivanhoe. See which method works for you and practice daily, even five minutes can help. Stress increases oxidative damage. Stress decreases sex hormone production due to an increase in cortisol production. Stress decreases digestive capacity by activating the sympathetic nervous system. Reduce your stress to boost your fertility.
- Avoid coffee. Yes, you might love it but your follicles won’t unfortunately.
- Avoid alcohol. Yes, alcohol damages ovaries8. Here are some handy juice recipes to boost your fertility instead.
- Avoid smoking. Smoking increases your FSH (follicle stimulating hormone). Potentially increasing the rate of ovarian follicle damage and the speed at which your follicles diminish.9
- Remove any mercury dental amalgams. Mercury is an environmental toxin. Sources of mercury include dental amalgams, seafood, personal care products such as preparation H, spermicides, vaccines, makeup, skin creams, etc. Levels of excreted mercury were inversely proportional to progesterone levels, increasing miscarriages.10 Methylmercury denatures DNA and can induce chromosomal aberrations.11
- Take supplements, via a qualified practitioner is by far the best way to work out which supplements are best for you. It is much more safe and effective that way. Supplements that may help, depending on your individual presentation include:
- Vitamin C is very important for implantation, prevention of miscarriages, protection against cell damage, ageing, and to help facilitate ovulation.12
- DHEA may be useful in diminished ovarian reserve13
- Vitamin D is associated with longer telomeres – reducing ageing14
- Take herbal medicine. There are many many herbs which can enhance fertility. For slowing or reversing ageing eggs we can look to:
- Astragalus (United States Patent 20070122501 (research conducted by applicants).
- Chinese herbal formula Bu Zhong Yi Qi Tang (which contains astragalus, ginseng, cimicifuga, etc). Consult your Chinese Medicine Practitioner for advice.
- Have acupuncture. It’s relaxing and works! Acupuncture:
- improves ovarian response to gonadotropins 15
- normalises hormone levels (E2, FSH, LH, PR) 16
- improves ovarian blood flow 17
- increases Growth Hormone levels18
- Keep your feet warm. Ask any Chinese Medicine practitioner about the importance of keeping your feet warm when trying to get pregnant or when you’re pregnant. Now research in rats provides some evidence that ovarian blood flow improves when the hind paws are heated.19
P.S. Don’t forget to enjoy sex (if you’re trying to conceive via sexual intercourse). I realise it can be tricky if you’ve been trying for a while, but try to keep it as fun and enjoyable as possible. Have sex every second day during your fertile period. Or every second day regardless if it suits both of you, then you don’t need to overthink the timing. Talk about what you can do to make it more enjoyable for both of you.
Enough to think about & implement for now? I understand that can be a lot to take in. Try introducing one change per week or even a month so the habit sticks. Then stay tuned by liking our Facebook page or subscribing to our newsletter here for other ways to boost your fertility naturally.
Also be aware that the lifespan of your egg, from what we call a primordial follicle to ovulation is 150 days. Yes, 5 months. So boosting your fertility in this way can be gradual process but it needs to be sustainable and consistent over months to really make a difference to your fertility. The added bonus of following this advice is that it can improve your health overall.
Dr. Elaine Hickman
B.H.Sc. TCM (Acupuncture), Cert.Cl.Ac (Beijing)
Registered Doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine
Freedom Chinese Medicine
261 Waterdale Road
Ivanhoe, VIC 3079
Ph. 03) 9486 5966
P.S. I appreciate that trying to conceive is a deeply personal process and you want to make sure that you feel comfortable with the practitioner who is helping you. That is why we offer an initial health assessment, in which we do a brief assessment of your health and advise a treatment strategy for you. It gives you the opportunity to see if my team and I are the right people to help you.
Call today on 03 9486 5966 or click here to book.
- Adv Ther. 2005 Nov-Dec,22(6):548-58).
- Hum Reprod. 2007 Apr;22(4):1175-85. Epub 2007 Jan 29.
- Hormone reproduction update, 1998, Vol 4, No.3 pp301-309.
- Environmental Mutagenesis Volume 5, Issue 5, Pages 679-686. Published Online 14 July 2006.
- Life Sc. 1998;63(11):935-48.
- Hum Reprod, 2006 Nov:21(11):2845-9. Epub 2006 Sep22.
- Am J Clin Nutr. 2007 Nov;86(5);1420-5).
- Qintero. Fertility and Sterilit Volume 81: Supplement 3 April 2004.
- Shen. J Tradit Chin Med 2005 Mar:25(1):3-6.
- Stener.J Appl Physio. 2006 Jul:101(1):84-91. Epub 2006 Mar 2.
- Acupunct Electrother Res. 1991;16(1-2):45-51.
- J Physiol Sci. 2007 Aug: 57(4);227-33, Epub 2007 aug 2.