Can You Fuel Your Fertility with What You Eat? Absolutely!
You are what you eat. So it makes sense that eating well when trying to conceive (TTC) could make a difference. It does.
Most women are highly motivated to help the baby-making process along. Armed with the list below, it will be easy to fuel your fertility. Start eating them right now, because every little bit helps. (This comes from my book Eating Expectantly.) Check out my other post Eating for Fertility and How Weight Affects Fertility.Find what #foods can fuel your #fertility here: bit.ly/2dBzZSQ. Click To Tweet
What about Dad?
It seems like Dad would be off the hook here–but he should be eating these foods too. Most important is to eat more fruits and veggies, as well as foods rich in selenium and folic acid. Did you know that Dad’s diet can ultimately affect the DNA in his sperm and thus also affect the health of your future children? If that doesn’t inspire that dad-to-be in your life, I don’t know what will! (Find more in this post: Male Fertility in the News.) #TryingToConceive? Dad's #diet makes a difference. 14 #foods to fuel #fertility here: Click To Tweet
Below are foods recommended for the Eating Expectantly Before Baby Diet–and the nutrients that make them excellent choices while you are TTC.
Remember– variety and moderation are key.
Buckwheat: D-Chiro Inositol, magnesium, iron, zinc, potassium. Buckwheat farinetta is especially rich in D-Chiro inositol. According to Angela Grassi RDN, both Myo and D-Chiro inositol help with PCOS and fertility by decreasing androgens, improving egg quality & ovarian function. Buy it straight from the grower here. See complete review of the scientific research on inositol here.
Crab and shrimp: Zinc, selenium, iodine. To fuel your fertility, make sure to eat these foods grilled or boiled, not fried! Commercially fried foods often contain trans fats.
Blueberries, cranberries, artichokes, Plum Smart juice, pomegranate juice, red / purple grape juice, dark chocolate, natural cocoa: These contain Polyphenolic antioxidants, which fuel your fertility by protecting the cell membranes of sperm and eggs from oxidative stress.
Eggs, cod, lean beef, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and cauliflower: Choline, which fuels your fertility by decreasing homocysteine levels. High homocysteine levels could cause increased risk of birth defects.
Pork Tenderloin: Selenium, niacin, thiamin. Selenium deficiency has been linked to fertility and miscarriage.
Guava, watermelon, grapefruit, kiwifruit, papaya, cantaloupe, apricots, orange, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, lemons. Vitamin C and other antioxidants like lycopene, which protect reproductive organs and cells from oxidative stress.
Quinoa, chick peas, lentils and other legumes, and lean beef: Iron, zinc, B vitamins including folate. Low levels of iron in the body are linked with infertility. Sperm motility is dependent on zinc. Folate metabolism affects ovarian function, implantation and the entire process of pregnancy.
Milk and yogurt: Calcium, vitamin D, iodine, zinc. Vitamin D deficiency is linked with insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome, which are risk factors for ovulatory infertility. Women with the highest serum levels of vitamin D were more likely to become pregnant after IVF-ET.
Potato (white and sweet): Iodine, vitamin C, potassium, beta carotene. Vitamin C is an important antioxidant which affects semen quality. Iodine is critical for the production of thyroid hormones, which are vital to reproduction.
Spinach, asparagus, kale, arugula (rocket), avocado, broccoli, tomatoes: Folate, beta carotene and other antioxidants like lycopene. Green leafy veggies are especially powerful to fuel your fertility.
Don’t Forget the Small Stuff!
You can easily add these foods to salads and smoothies!
Almonds, pecans, pistachios and walnuts: Omega-3 fat (alpha linoleic acid), antioxidants, zinc, fiber, vitamin E, magnesium, manganese and copper. Surprisingly, healthy men who ate 2 1/2 ounces of walnuts daily for 12 weeks had sperm with better motility and vitality than men who didn’t eat nuts.
Sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds: Vitamin E, thiamin, manganese, copper, magnesium, selenium, vitamin B6 and folate. Vitamin E is a “super nutrient” for male fertility as it’s a strong antioxidant.
Super Spices: Black Pepper, Chili Powder, Cinnamon, Cloves, Cumin, Garlic Powder, Ginger, Oregano, Red Pepper, Rosemary, Thyme, and Turmeric: Antioxidants
Wheat germ and oatmeal: Zinc, iron, vitamin E, fiber, magnesium, folate.
A Few References: