Foods For Fertility

While food itself isn't a cure for infertility, women or couples trying to have a baby can increase their chances of conceiving sooner by watching the types of foods they eat. Both partners should take the time to make proper food choices since diet affects the fertility of both men and women.

How Fertility Foods Work

It's important to get all the necessary nutrients when trying to conceive because an unbalanced diet can lower your body's nutrient reserves necessary for properly balanced human hormones which affect the reproductive systems. Hormone production can be blocked when there's a shortage of zinc, vitamin A, essential fatty acids, magnesium, antioxidants and vitamin B6. Hampered hormone production creates and imbalance which can make it difficult to conceive.

Essential Fatty Acids

You've likely heard that a healthy diet doesn't contain fat. This is correct but it needs to be clarified that a healthy diet doesn't contain bad fat. Bad fat are trans and saturated fats found in animal fats, cream, butter, milk fat (choose low fat dairy), cookies and cakes. Palm oil and coconuts also tend to full of bad fat. Use these products in extreme moderation and try to avoid foods containing high amounts of palmolein, palm oil.

Essential fatty acids (also known as good fat) are polyunsaturated fatty acids and monounsaturated fatty acids. Monounsaturated fats can be found in rapeseed oil, olive oil, sunflower oil and canola oils. Polyunsaturated fat, often referred to as Omega fats, can be found in high fat fish, nuts and some soft margarine. These types of fat balance the brain hormones and monounsaturated fats reduce levels of bad cholesterol.

Antioxidants and Minerals

Antioxidants help your body get rid of toxins and waste by-products which could affect your body's hormone balances. They also boost the immune system. To get the right amount of antioxidants in your diet, eat more vegetables and fruits. Choose ones with bright colors like red grapes, berries, carrots, broccoli, tomatoes and spinach. Other options include soy or both green or black tea.

Minerals protect the DNA inside your cells and help your body effectively use the reproductive hormones, estrogen and progesterone. Zinc, for example, helps with healthy sperm development. Iron helps deliver oxygen throughout the body and aids in red blood cell production. Foods high in zinc include wheat germ, Brewer's yeast, bran and pine nuts. High mineral foods include potatoes if eaten with the skin, beans, liver, lentils, sunflower seeds, cashews seafood, animal meats with little fat and low-fat dairy products.


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