If you and your wife are planning to get pregnant, it’s important to keep your bodies in prime shape early on. Thankfully, aside from exercise and living a healthy lifestyle, there are certain types of food available that help promote reproductive health, boosting fertility for you both to increase your chances of conceiving.
A required source for tissue growth and repair, protein is an essential building block of the body. Your muscles, skin, bones and even your blood are all made up of protein. Protein also helps strengthen your immune system to help ward off diseases.
Hormones, such as testosterone and estrogen, are also made up of proteins. The body’s requirement for protein increases during such periods as pre-pregnancy due to a higher demand for tissue repair and replacement. So stock up on peas, spinach, lentils, beans, peanuts and soybeans, as these are excellent plant-based sources of protein.
A Harvard study revealed that regular consumption of fish helped in increasing chances of women for conceiving. Important to note, though, is that certain fish high in mercury should be avoided. Those planning to get pregnant or who are of childbearing age should particularly avoid shark, king mackerel, swordfish, and tilefish, which have high amounts of methyl mercury. These can potentially harm the central nervous system of an unborn child.
The essential fatty acid omega 3, commonly found in seafood, particularly oily food, helps improve sperm count among males, as well as sperm quality and mobility.
Examples of oily fish include tuna, salmon and mackerel.
Rich in folic acid, dark leafy green vegetables help stimulate the production of sperm and eggs. These are also good sources of iron, which is essential for oxygen transport in the body and cell growth. They also contain antioxidants which help fortify the immune system. Other sources are dark green lettuce, dark red peppers, and other leafy vegetables.
Oats, whole wheat foods and brown rice are rich in vitamins B and E which aid in cellular reproduction, help maintain hormonal balance and in the production of healthy eggs and sperm. Oatmeal, for instance, is rich in inositol, which is responsible for maintaining cell membrane health for the brain, bone marrow, eyes and intestines.
To help enhance ovarian health, have plenty of dairy products such as milk, yogurt, ice cream and other full fat sources. These also help reduce chances of ovulatory infertility, usually called unexplained infertility of the ovary. Dairy products have been found to increase the amount of prostaglandins, which increase estrogen levels.