How Lifestyle Factors May Play a Part in Infertility Issues

Although there are many underlying causes of infertility, healthy lifestyle choices can help promote female fertility. If you are thinking of becoming pregnant, or having difficulty becoming pregnant, now is a good time to examine your lifestyle and consider the impact certain aspects of that lifestyle may have upon your fertility. Improving your lifestyle could make the difference between conceiving without fertility treatments as opposed to conceiving with fertility treatments which can be expensive and painful. It is widely accepted that certain lifestyle factors can certainly interfere with a couple's ability to conceive, and, in some cases, simple changes can greatly increase your fertility. Below are some of the typical lifestyle factors which can adversely affect your fertility.


Maintaining a healthy weight is generally thought to increase the frequency of ovulation, therefore the likelihood of pregnancy. If you are either significantly overweight or underweight, the production of estrogen may be affected, which will in turn inhibit normal ovulation. By maintaining a normal weight, you are also improving your overall health, which can improve your chances of becoming pregnant.


Sexually transmitted diseases, especially chlamydia and gonorrhea can severely damage the fallopian tubes. Although there are many reasons to avoid having unprotected sex with multiple partners, fertility is one of the problems which can result from such lifestyle choices.

Environmental Hazards

Your environment can interfere with your ability to become pregnant. If you are exposed to toxic fumes, lead or other poisons on a regular basis, they can be the cause of your fertility issues. If you work in an industry which causes you to come into regular contact with pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, paint fumes, radiation or chemical cleaners or solvents, you must speak with your health care provider about how this affects your fertility as well as your health in general. Environmental estrogens can also affect your hormone levels in a negative manner. While our bodies produce estrogen which helps regulate ovulation and menstruation, we also get extra, synthetic estrogens from food items, plastic containers and other types of food packaging. Too much estrogen can throw your reproductive cycles completely out of whack, so do your very best to avoid environmental hazards to the extent possible.

Smoking and Alcohol

Smoking ages your ovaries, and damages your cervix and fallopian tubes, prematurely depleting your store of eggs. Nicotine, as well as other chemicals in cigarettes has also been found to interfere with estrogen production, causing your eggs to be more prone to genetic abnormalities. If you smoke, and are trying to get pregnant, ask your doctor to help you quit. Heavy drinking is also associated with an increased risk of ovulation disorders-in fact, research has shown that even moderate drinking can significantly reduce your chances of conception. If you are trying to get pregnant, staying away from cigarettes and alcohol can help you reach your goal of becoming a mother.

Excessive Caffeine Consumption and Stress

Ingesting too much caffeine can increase estrogen production, decrease estrogen metabolism and further contribute to fallopian tube damage or endometriosis. Limit your consumption of caffeine to no more than six cups of coffee per day, or 900 milligrams of caffeine. Don't forget the caffeine in tea, chocolate, soda and energy drinks when calculating your daily consumption. Stress can be a factor in infertility, just as it can in many health problems. Severe stress can inhibit ovulation, and studies show that even consistent mild stress can affect your fertility. To the extent possible, minimize your stress, and practice healthy coping techniques when trying to get pregnant. Infertility is an issue wrought with emotions, however changing certain factors in your lifestyle can give you a much better chance of conception.