Trying to conceive can be a difficult and frustrating process. You’re probably doing everything you can to increase your chances, but did you know that there are certain foods you should avoid while trying to conceive? While you may think that what you eat doesn’t matter, the truth is that certain foods can actually affect your chances of conceiving.
Diet is an essential part of maintaining and boosting your fertility. A fertility diet is important for everyone trying to conceive but even more so for people who are facing infertility issues such as low sperm count or sperm motility and irregular ovulation due to Polycystic ovary Syndrome (PCOS) and other ovulatory disorders.
Food can help male fertility as well as female fertility but what should you certainly avoid, you ask? Well, in this blog post, we will explore some of the foods you should avoid while trying to conceive, as well as some alternative options that you should be including to maintain your reproductive health and boost your chances to conceive. Read on!
Why is Diet Important for Fertility?
When you’re trying to conceive, you’re likely to hear a lot of advice about what to eat and what to avoid. Some of it is conflicting, and some of it may even seem contradictory. The truth is, there is no one “right” diet for fertility.
However, eating a healthy diet is important for both men and women who are trying to conceive. There are a few key reasons why a healthy diet is important for fertility.
- Eating a healthy diet helps to ensure that your body is getting the nutrients it needs to function optimally. This includes nutrients like folic acid, which is important for preventing birth defects and reducing the risk of ovulatory infertility.
- Maintaining a healthy weight is important for fertility. Being overweight or underweight can lead to hormonal imbalances that can make it difficult to conceive. A good diet can help with weight gain or weight loss.
- A healthy diet can help reduce stress levels, which can also impact fertility. High levels of stress can interfere with ovulation in women and lower sperm quality and sperm count in men.
- It can help you balance the risk of insulin resistance. In women suffering from PCOS, high blood sugar can lead to diabetes as the action of insulin is restricted. Insulin resistance can lead to a higher risk of diabetes in the long run and can also interfere with menstrual cycles and ovulation.
- What you eat can affect your vaginal pH levels. Having an imbalance in vaginal pH can make it more difficult for sperm to survive and reach the egg. Eating foods that promote vaginal health, like yogurt and cranberries, can help maintain a healthy pH balance.
What Foods to Avoid While Trying to Get Pregnant?
There are many foods and drinks that can affect fertility, and caffeine is one of them. Caffeine can interfere with a woman’s ability to conceive by affecting the way her body absorbs and metabolizes nutrients. It can also increase the risk of miscarriage and other pregnancy complications.
Caffeine is found in coffee, tea, energy drinks, chocolate, and some over-the-counter medications. If you’re trying to conceive, it’s important to limit your caffeine intake or avoid it altogether. Talk to your doctor about how much caffeine is safe for you to consume during pregnancy.
When trying to conceive, it is important to avoid alcohol. Alcohol can reduce fertility in both men and women. It can also increase the risk of miscarriage and birth defects. If you are trying to conceive, it is best to abstain from alcohol entirely.
Alcohol has adverse effects on libido as well as sexual function in men. In women, it throws off the hormone balance in their bodies and can also interfere with normal menstrual cycles making it difficult to get pregnant.
Processed foods are a big no-no when you’re trying to conceive. That’s because they’re typically high in unhealthy fats, salt, and sugar, and low in the nutrients that are essential for a healthy pregnancy. Processed foods can lead to lower semen quality in men and it is also associated with an increased risk of inflammation in the body. Inflammation is bad news when you’re trying to conceive.
So what counts as processed food? Basically, anything that’s been through more than one step of processing before it reaches your plate. This includes things like frozen meals, lunch meats, pre-made soups, crackers, and even some so-called “healthy” snacks like granola bars or yogurt drinks.
While you don’t have to be perfect when it comes to avoiding processed foods, do your best to limit them as much as possible. Stick with whole, unprocessed foods like fruits, vegetables, lean animal protein, and whole grains. These will give you the nutrients you need for a healthy pregnancy—and help you avoid those extra pounds that can be so tough to lose after the baby arrives. Whole foods ultimately reduce the chance of obesity as well and provide you with a wealth of important elements like omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and essential vitamins like vitamin c . vitamin d, and vitamin b12.
High-mercury fish are one of the foods to avoid while trying to conceive. Mercury is a heavy metal that can damage the nervous system and is especially harmful to developing fetuses. The FDA recommends that women who are pregnant or may become pregnant avoid eating high-mercury fish such as shark, swordfish, king mackerel, and tilefish. Instead, they should eat up to 12 ounces (two average meals) per week of a variety of fish and shellfish that are lower in mercury. These include shrimp, pollock, and salmon.
There are a few types of fats that can be harmful to your health and should be avoided while trying to conceive. Trans fats, saturated fats, and omega-6 fatty acids can all contribute to inflammation in the body, which can lead to problems with fertility.
Trans fats are found in processed foods like cookies, crackers, and margarine. They can also be found in some fast food. Saturated fats are found in animal products like meat and dairy. They can also be found in coconut oil, palm oil, and other vegetable oils. Omega-6 fatty acids are found in corn oil, soybean oil, and sunflower oil.
Eating a diet high in healthy fats like olive oil, avocados, nuts, and seeds is a good way to make sure you’re getting the nutrients you need without exposing yourself to unhealthy fats. It’s also a good idea to replace your low-fat dairy with full-fat dairy or whole milk. Low-fat dairy has been found to reduce fertility in men and women while high-fat dairy has been found to help.
High-sugar Drinks and Soda
High-sugar foods and drinks lower fertility in both men and women. It can cause inflammation and also causes the aging of our internal organs including the reproductive system. It has also been linked to lower-quality eggs. Sugary drinks and foods have also been found to affect the success rates of In-vitro fertilization (IVF). By reducing the number of viable eggs and oocytes that can be retrieved, the consumption of sugary drinks can reduce the chances of getting pregnant.
What Should You be Eating if You are Trying to Conceive?
Here are some general guidelines on what to eat to boost your fertility:
Choose whole, unprocessed foods. Processed foods are often high in unhealthy ingredients like sugar, salt, and unhealthy fats. They can also be low in the nutrients you need for a healthy pregnancy, like folic acid, iron, and calcium. opt for whole, unprocessed foods like fruits, vegetables, lean protein, whole grains, lentils, and healthy fats instead. Having a balanced amount of carbohydrates in the food together with other nutrients can help you.
Make sure you’re getting enough calories. If you’re trying to lose weight or get pregnant faster, you might be tempted to cut calories. But if you’re underweight or overweight, it can actually make it harder to conceive. Be sure to talk to your nutritionist or dietitian about how many calories you need per day to maintain a healthy weight.
Get plenty of protein. Protein is essential for a healthy pregnancy — it helps build the placenta and supports fetal growth. Good sources of protein include lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, tofu, nuts, and seeds.
Eat lots of folate-rich foods. Folate is a water-soluble B vitamin that’s important for the development of the neural tube — the part of the embryo that becomes the baby’s brain and spinal cord. Good sources of folate include leafy green vegetables, legumes, nuts, and fortified foods like cereal and bread.
Eat iron-rich foods. Iron is important for making hemoglobin, which carries oxygen to your cells. during pregnancy, your blood volume increases, so you need more iron to meet your body’s needs. good sources of iron include lean red meat, poultry, fish, beans, spinach, and other dark leafy greens.
In short, including these in your diet can eliminate the causes of infertility and boost your endocrine and reproductive function
- dark leafy greens
- nuts and seeds
- olive oil
- whole grains
- fatty fish like salmon
While trying to conceive, it is important to pay attention to the foods you are eating. Some foods can increase the risk of infertility or cause problems during pregnancy. If you are trying to get pregnant, avoid alcohol, caffeine, processed meats, and unpasteurized dairy products. Eating a healthy diet full of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains will help you conceive and have a healthy pregnancy.
Routinely getting tested to understand the nutrient levels in your body, taking necessary supplements, and adjusting your dietary patterns accordingly are the best bet. Along with a good diet, it is also important to focus on your mental and spiritual well-being as well as getting regular exercise and good sleep will also help you boost fertility.
At RHWC, we focus not just on medicine. We take care to include your diet, exercise as well as mental wellness as a part of the fertility care program. Our specialists will be with you every step of the way while you try to build your family. Schedule a consultation today to get started.