If you are about to undergo IVF or simply considering it as a way forwards, then there are a number of preparatory steps you can take which will boost your chances of success. Things to help with IVF include trying alternative therapies, stress management, understanding the stages of the procedure and, of course, changing your diet.
What we eat impacts upon all areas of our health and well-being and fertility is no exception. The right kind of diet is crucial to a successful pregnancy and a healthy baby, but did you realise that your diet can help to correct hormonal imbalances which could be affecting your ability to conceive? In addition, certain foods and drinks will lower fertility.
Ideally, you should begin modifying your diet at least 3 months before your IVF attempt, but if this is imminent, then do not let this put you off as any changes you make will be beneficial.
Knowing about how certain substances can affect you is vital. Things to help with IVF include understanding the impact of alcohol, tobacco, caffeine and xenoestrogens.
This will affect both you and your partner. Studies show that drinking alcohol can reduce fertility significantly. Women who drink very little or no alcohol are twice as likely to conceive compared to moderate drinkers. In men, alcohol can reduce the sperm count and increase the proportion of abnormal sperm.
Tobacco has been linked with infertility in both parties. In women, it can bring on an early menopause and decrease fertility generally. In men it can reduce the sperm count and make the sperm sluggish.
Try to eliminate all drinks and foods which contain caffeine for at least 3 months before your procedure as there is evidence to suggest that as little as one cup of coffee a day can halve your chances of conception with IVF. It can also cause problems with sperm in terms of a reduction in sperm count and motility problems.
These are estrogen-mimicking compounds which originate from pesticides and the plastic industry. When ingested, they can cause hormonal imbalances which can disrupt your chances of conceiving. Prepare yourself by eating organic produce ideally for 3 months before your IVF procedure and avoid eating foods from soft plastic containers, particularly those which can been heated.
Now, lets turn to positive things to help with IVF. In other words, what you can eat to improve your chances.
Certain supplements are often recommended by IVF doctors and if not mentioned, you might like to ask which she recommends for you and your partner. In general, the nutrients which are believed to be particularly helpful for those undergoing IVF include Folic Acid, Zinc, Selenium, EFA’s, Vitamins A, C and E, L-Arginine and L-Carnitine.
Other things to help with IVF include singling out particular foods which are believed to be beneficial. Pineapple is one such food. It contains a component called Bromelin which is said to help to make th cervical mucos more “sticky”, therefore helping with implantation. It is also anti-inflammatory which is also a “positive” where IVF is concerned. Another great food to consider is walnuts. Rich in Omega 3 and B vitamins, there is much anecdotal evidence to suggest that they can help and as they are a rich source of nutrients, it will do you no harm to include a few in your diet each day.
Eating a good balanced diet is vital. Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins. You should also ensure that you consume three servings of milk products each day. Avoid processed foods and those with artificial additives.
Other things to help with IVF, such as taking regular, moderate exercise and alternative therapies such as acupuncture and using relaxation techniques are all best done in combination to boost your chances of success.
If you would like further comprehensive information on how you can significantly increase your chances of IVF success, you might like to consider taking a look at the program, The Full Embrace.
Specifically designed to teach you various things to help with IVF including dietary hints, this program will help dramatically improve your chances of becoming pregnant with just one cycle, using techniques which are scientifically proven to work.
Elena Vincent –
About the Author:
Elena writes on a range of issues relating to female health and fertility.