Millions of women in America suffer from infertility according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Approximately 7.5 million women between 15 and 44 years old are having a difficulty staying pregnant or getting pregnant. Fortunately, there are a number of natural treatment methods for infertility that may help.
The infertility rate in America and other countries around the world continue to increase. Many people blame the different toxins that pollute the body. These toxins compromise the normal functioning of the body such as fertility, pregnancy, and childbirth.
What is infertility?
Infertility is the inability to conceive children despite trying to get pregnant for at least one year. Infertility can have many causes, which include:
- Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)
- Candida infection
- Poor nutrition
- Eating disorders
- Medical conditions such as thyroid disorders, hormonal imbalance, or obesity
- Excessive exercise
Secondary infertility refers to the inability to become pregnant or carry a baby to term following the birth of one or more children.
Holistic Treatments for Infertility
There are natural infertility treatments available that can help couples conceive sooner or later with or without invasive treatments.
1. Consume a Healthy Diet
One of the best and most natural treatment options for infertility is to consume a diet full of nutritious foods, which would help the body to restore back to its proper functioning. Below is a list of some foods that would naturally help treat infertility:
- Wild Fish - They are known to contain omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce inflammation along with promoting fertilization as well as implantation. Studies have suggested that a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids may help regulate the ovulation process, improves the quality of eggs, and delays the ovaries from aging. Just make sure to avoid fish that are high in mercury, which can be harmful to the body.
- Vitamin E - It is an important vitamin needed for the proper functioning of the endocrine system.
- Vitamin C - Foods rich in vitamin C are also considered good for infertility treatment. It helps trigger the ovulation process in women. In the case of men, taking vitamin C may increase their sperm count. Vitamin C also helps the body to effectively absorb iron, which is an important nutrient for pregnant women. Good sources of vitamin C include kale, guava, citrus fruits, grapefruit, kiwis, and red peppers.
- Cruciferous Vegetables - Cabbage, broccoli, and Brussels sprout contain indole-3-carbinol (I3C), which helps the liver to metabolize the hormone called estrogen. The ideal way of consuming cruciferous vegetables is to steam them to avoid the consumption of goitrogens, which are present in their raw state.
- Folic Acid or Folate - It is a B vitamin, which helps the body in building new cells as well as preventing birth defects. Folic acid is even recommended before pregnancy. Most women are encouraged to take prenatal vitamins that contain folic acid to ensure that their body gets the recommended folic acid dose of 400-800 mg on a daily basis. Aside from taking vitamins, eat foods that are rich in folic acid, which would include green leafy vegetables, beans, citrus fruits, and wheat germ.
- Pumpkin Seeds - For men, the intake of pumpkin seeds is good since it contains zinc, which is essential for the process of reproduction.
Foods to avoid:
- Grains - They may increase the levels of estrogen and cortisol in the body, which can lead to infertility problems.
- Processed Meat - High-fat processed meats contain additives and can cause inflammation in the body.
- Alcohol - Consuming alcohol can also lead to an increase in inflammation as well as a reduction in the functioning of the immune system. Excessive alcohol intake can affect the ovulation process in women and may cause endometriosis. In the case of men, heavy drinking is linked with low testosterone levels, which can lead to erectile dysfunction along with reduced sperm count.
- Drugs - Drugs such as marijuana can negatively affect fertility since it can make ovulation difficult each month.
- Refined Sugar - The regular consumption of refined sugars reduces immune function and may cause a depletion of nutrients. It also contributes to obesity, which is a significant risk factor for infertility.
- Caffeine - Consuming too much caffeine leads to hormonal imbalances, mineral deficiencies, and dehydration. Increased caffeine consumption also causes interference with fertility. So, if you are trying to get pregnant, it is ideal to give up or limit your caffeine intake.
2. Reduce Stress
Apart from diet, releasing tension and stress from our mind and body is one of the holistic and natural methods of infertility treatment. In today’s way of living, it is inevitable to be a part of stressful environments and situations, which constantly underestimate the ill effects on our health. It is quite important to reduce stress levels to improve our overall health, especially those who are trying to conceive. According to studies, stress has a direct impact on the women’s risk of infertility.
There was a one-year study that measured the enzyme called alpha-amylase in the saliva of women who were trying to get pregnant. Alpha-amylase is an enzyme produced by the pancreas and salivary gland to begin the process of starch digestion. This enzyme is also linked with “fight-or-flight” stress reactions.
Researchers found out that 87 percent of women from approximately 400 couples who participated in the study were able to get pregnant. After making certain modifications in age, income, race, cigarette smoking, alcohol intake, and caffeine consumption, they also found out that women who had high levels of amylase had a 29 percent lower likelihood of pregnancy.
3. Get Enough Sleep
Apart from keeping stress at bay, it is also important to get an adequate amount of sleep to boost fertility. According to the National Sleep Foundation (NSF), women who are 30-60 years old only get approximately 6 hours and 40 minutes of sleep during the work week. Research shows that not getting enough sleep each night can negatively affect a woman’s ability to conceive.
Sleep is very important to getting pregnant since sleeping habits significantly affect the hormones in the body. If women do not get enough sleep, their cycle and ovulation can get out of sync. Moreover, poor sleep can decrease leptin, which can also negatively affect a woman’s ovulation. People with insomnia tend to have increased levels of stress hormones, which can hinder fertility. Thus, try to aim at least 8 hours of sleep at night.
4. Balance Your Hormones with Exercise
Exercising can improve the mood of some people. They may even experience changes in their sleeping pattern and sexual appetite. Such changes happen due to hormonal changes. An example would be the “feel-good hormone” called serotonin, which tend to increase when people exercise.
If women want to get pregnant, exercising can be beneficial to get their hormones in proper order. Remember that hormones play an important role in each and every process of conception. Engaging in regular exercises can help people balance their hormones. Exercising also encourages a healthier waistline, which helps women increase their chances of conceiving. However, strenuous activities or too much exercise can also cause hormonal problems. For this reason, remember to engage only in moderate exercises to improve fertility.
5. Use Essential Oils
For some individuals, using essential oils for hormones are a helpful part of natural infertility treatment. The following essential oils can help promote fertility:
- For women: Ylang-ylang, thyme, and Roman chamomile
- For men: Sandalwood or thyme