The decision to have a baby and prepare for a new little addition to your family is an exciting time for you and your partner. We can easily get caught up in what pregnancy will be like and let our minds skip ahead to the joy the baby will bring when it’s born. But first, is your body baby ready? Are you creating an optimal environment to give you the best chance of conceiving?
This is important when you consider how long it takes for a women’s egg and a man’s sperm to fully mature. These two crucial components in the baby making process can take three or more months to fully mature – a long time before they’re called into action. Preparing our bodies in advance with good nutrition and lifestyle choices will help ensure our system is primed to prepare and carry a healthy baby.
Here’s a few important things to consider if you’re trying to fall pregnant:
A no brainer really, but eating nutritious food is a key to a healthy system. For both women and men, food and fertility are linked. More fruits, vegetables, lean meats (such as fish), whole grains and calcium rich foods, like milk and yoghurt, are the goal. A balanced diet can help you and your partner meet your nutrient needs to support conception, including the main ones – zinc, folate, vitamins B, C and D, and omega-3 fatty acids. However, some health professionals recommend a prenatal vitamin to ensure you’re hitting the nutritional mark. If you’re trying to have a baby and worried about your diet, book a visit with a naturopath at Inner Balance Health Clinics to see if you’re on the right track.
Drink plenty of water
Put simply, our entire system works better with water. Every second, micro-processes take place in our body that require water to occur. Water is needed for a healthy uterus and cervix in women, while it also encourages healthy development of eggs and sperm.
Trying to fall pregnant and stress can go hand in hand, yet reducing stress on the body is one of the most important factors in falling pregnant. The stress hormone, cortisol, can have a negative impact on our entire system when it lingers too long in our body. Investing time in our mental health and wellbeing will help reduce stress and create a better environment for conception. It might be regular exercise, such as walking or yoga, doing meditation, or simply catching up with friends – find a stress reliever that works for you.
While few scientists know why, studies have shown acupuncture might be effective at enhancing conception rates. One explanation is that acupuncture needles might trigger the release of hormones that aid fertility and create an environment that supports fetal growth. Book an appointment with a traditional Chinese medicine practitioner at Inner balance Health Clinics to discuss your options when it comes to acupuncture, or the use of herbal medicines for fertility.
Inner Balance Recipe – Grounding Salad
- 5 tablespoons (75 mL) extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 4 baby potatoes, sliced (I prefer the colored ones, but any kind will do!)
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons fine sea salt, divided
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder, divided
- 2 teaspoons onion powder, divided
- ½ cup (44 g) quartered Brussels sprouts
- 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- ¼ cup (31 g) sliced carrot
- 2 teaspoons slivered almonds
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 cup (68 g) chopped kale
- 1 cup (29 g) spring mix salad
- Preheat the oven to 220°C. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets with 2 tablespoons (30 mL) olive oil and set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine the potatoes, oregano, 1 tablespoon (15 mL) olive oil, and 1 teaspoon each of the salt, garlic, and onion powder, and mix until thoroughly coated. Transfer the potatoes to one of the prepared baking sheets and roast for 10 minutes or until the edges turn crisp and golden brown.
- Meanwhile, combine the Brussels sprouts and 1 tablespoon (15 mL) olive oil in a small bowl and toss with the remaining 1 teaspoon salt, garlic powder, and onion powder. Arrange them on the other prepared baking sheet and roast in the oven for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the edges turn crisp and golden brown.
- Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon (15 mL) olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and shallot and sauté for 1 minute until fragrant. Add the sliced carrots, almonds, turmeric, curry powder, and ground coriander, reduce the heat, and lightly sauté for several minutes, until the shallots and garlic are browned.
- Divide the kale and spring mix between 2 individual serving bowls. Add the roasted potatoes and Brussels sprouts, and then finish with the carrot mixture.
Yours In Optimum Health
The IBHC Team
The advice/information contained in our communications is intended to be of a general nature and should under no circumstances be substituted for medical advice from your health care provider. We strongly recommend you seek individual medical advice should you require it.