Food and Fertility

While there are many myths out there today about things that women and men should and shouldn't do to try to conceive, there are some interesting lifestyle patterns and foods that can, indeed, help and hinder pregnancy.  Some of these ideas are well known, and others of them are quite unusual.  Nothing, of course, gives a couple a guarantee that they will conceive.  So, too, changing your lifestyle and your diet will not instantaneously create conception; these ideas may, however, help to improve your chances of conceiving.  And these ideas are certainly worth trying before spending money on IVF, going through costly doctor visits, and the like.

Fit for Conception

You don't want to enter a pregnancy either too thin or too heavy, if you can help it. If you try to diet too much while trying to conceive, you may disrupt your normal ovulation cycle.  Men who diet too much might reduce their sperm count.  At the same time, obesity has also been found to negatively influence fertility.  Try to maintain a healthy weight and a natural diet during this time period.  It will keep your body in optimal shape to try to conceive, and will certainly give you more energy and make you feel better emotionally.

The Oyster Advantage

There are many old wives tales about foods you should eat while trying to conceive.  The only one that has actually been proven to increase fertility is oysters!  Oysters have an amazing amount of zinc in them, and this helps with semen levels and blood testosterone levels in men.  There haven't been any direct fertility studies that showed that it helped the woman's body, but a number of studies have shown the link between zinc and male potency.  Researchers have found other ways to mimic the zinc in oysters, for those who don't like oysters.  Vitamin E supplements increase sperm movement as does taking a combination of 1000 mg of calcium a day and 10 mg of vitamin D.  These are ideas to consider for men who don't want to pop oysters continually!

Other Foods to Consider

Other foods and lifestyle changes to consider include alcohol and caffeine.  Women should not drink alcohol while trying to conceive, as it has been found to reduce the chances of conceiving by as much as 50 percent.  Coffee has an interesting influence on fertility.  For women, it has been shown to reduce fertility and to be a potential factor in causing miscarriages.  For men, however, coffee prior to intimacy may actually increase sperm movement.

Consuming large quantities of any food is not recommended to create a healthy diet.  Two foods, in particular, that should be eaten in moderation while trying to conceive, and while pregnant, are soy and fish.  Tofu and soy are thought to be healthy sources of protein - and they are.  A few studies, however, have linked large quantities of soy with decreased fertility.  These quantities are much higher than what most people eat in a given day; however, it is important to eat soy in moderation during this time.  Fish is another item that people wonder about for fertility and pregnancy.  Fish with high levels of mercury can harm an unborn child's developing nervous system.  Therefore, fish such as shark, swordfish, king mackerel and tilefish should be avoided when trying to conceive and while pregnant.  Other fish that is low in mercury is fine to eat in small portions, approximately twice a week during this period of a woman's life.

Create a balanced food plan for yourself while trying to conceive and while pregnant and try to stick to it.  Enjoy some of these interesting food fertility suggestions and try them out - you never know what will tip the balance and help you to become pregnant!

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