Natural supplements known to boost the baby-making machine
by Colleen Crivello
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Whether is was cinch (or not) to get pregnant with the first or you’re prepping for your second – or even just thinking about it – we’ve broken down a few key supplements and foods that work to boost your baby mojo with benefits that often go beyond conceiving and are just generally good for you.
Go BPA-Free (like now): This we’ve all heard, again and again – not just when trying to get pregnant, but in general as well – make sure to minimize exposure to harmful chemicals in our household products, plastic water bottles and conventional cosmetic/beauty products.
Red Raspberry Leaf:A well know fertility herb that’s also good during pregnancy due to it’s high nutrient profile including calcium – which is a uterine tonic. You can find it both in capsule form or as a tea.
Red Clover: Has a very high vitamin content and contains almost every trace mineral – it’s known to help balance hormones and restore fertility.
Maca: This hormone-balancing herb contains fertility and vitality promoting properties that help balance the estrogen and progesterone in women – in turn boosting fertility. In addition, it’s high iron content may be particularly important to women prior to conception. Good for both men and women to increase fertility as maca root also helps improve sperm count and motility. It comes in powder form or capsule form. Not to be taken during pregnancy.
Vitamin D: Vitamin D deficiency is very common and can be very detrimental to overall health. Recent studies link inadequate vitamin D with infertility and miscarriage. Have your levels checked to find out how much you need. Sunlight is the most natural form for vitamin D production in the body, if possible get about 10 minutes daily exposure. Also, eat foods high in vitamin D and take vitamin D supplements after consulting a doctor. is a fat-soluble vitamin we typically get from sun exposure.More sunlight, and taking as much as 4,000 IUs of vitamin D (D-3 is best) per day pre-pregnancy, can help regulate your cycle and, during pregnancy, can reduce the occurrence of preterm birth and preeclampsia.
Eat this: Pastured grass-fed eggs and butter, wild-caught salmon and some mushrooms (grown in ultraviolet light)
Vitamin C: A potent antioxidant, vitamin C is good for both male and female infertility. Aim for at least 2,000 mg a day pre-conception.
Eat this: Oranges, red peppers, kale, brussels sprouts, broccoli
Pomegranate: Pomegranate boosts fertility in women by increasing blood flow to the uterus and thickening the uterine lining. It even helps the healthy development of the fetus. In addition, it helps sperm quality in men. Drink a glass of pomegranate juice daily.
Olive Oil: When undergoing infertility treatment, olive oil is a good remedy to increase your chance of getting pregnant. Intake of monounsaturated fat present in olive oil is associated with reproductive health. Eat 1 to 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil daily to boost fertility.
Dates: According to Ayurveda, dates help increase your chance of getting pregnant, because they’re rich in vital vitamins and minerals that are good for fertility.
Apple Cider Vinegar: Some health practitioners recommend apple cider vinegar for infertility. It flushes toxins out of the body and helps balance hormones. Though it’s acidic in nature, it has an alkalinizing effect in the body, which helps maintain an alkaline pH in both your saliva and your vaginal environment to facilitate conception. In addition, it helps treat candida that may lead to infertility.
Add 2 teaspoons of raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar and a small amount of raw honey to a glass of water and drink it twice daily. You can even add 1 cup of raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar to your bathwater and soak in it for 20 to 30 minutes daily before going to bed.
Folic Acid: Folic acid is an important vitamin for those who are trying to conceive. It helps cell division and promotes ovulation. In fact, health experts recommend taking this vitamin before and during pregnancy. Take folic acid supplements (typically 400 mcg) daily for at least 1 month before you conceive and through your first trimester. Talk to your doctor about how much you need before and after you conceive. Plus eat tons of foods rich in folic acid. reported that women who consumed more than 730 micrograms of folic acid a day before getting pregnant were 20 percent less likely to experience a miscarriage than women who didn’t take a supplement.
Eat this: Dark green leafy vegetables, broccoli, avocado, raisins, beans and lentils.
Chasteberry: The herb chasteberry, also called vitex, is another effective home remedy for getting pregnant. It helps improve ovulation and hormonal imbalance in the body that may be delaying pregnancy. In addition, it helps combat PCOS, one of the leading causes behind female infertility. You can easily find this herb in the market in different forms like dried berry, capsules, or tincture. For proper dosage and suitability, consult your doctor.
Diet, Sleep and Exercise: Staying well nourished boosts your odds of getting pregnant and remember you are what you eat, as the adage goes. Remove processed grains and foods, sugars and starches and obtain more nutrient dense carbohydrates from vegetables, some fruits and starchy sources like sweet potatoes and squash. Increase healthy fats in the diet especially from sources like coconuts, coconut oil, olives and olive oil, butter, grass-fed meats, eggs, avocado and nuts. Get enough protein especially from grass fed meats, eggs, and nuts. Eat a lot of vegetables, especially green leafy varieties like lettuce, spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, collard, chard, cabbage, brussels sprouts and similar veggies. Lastly, make sure to drink enough water- hydration is important for so many functions within the body, including fertility.
Make sleep a priority, gas this plays a vital role in production of many hormones. Studies have shown that women with low melatonin and serotonin levels have a shorter luteal phase (time between ovulation and menstruation) and consequently have a lower chance of conceiving. A completely dark sleep environment may also help melatonin levels and sleep.
Lastly, getting adequate exercise is important for fertility, but too much can have the opposite effect. Most women do well with several hours of recreational activity a week (walking, fun sports, or swimming) and a few weight training sessions.
*As with any herbs, supplements, or medication, consult a doctor or health care professional about your specific case and do your own research!