By: Beth Walsh for Uterus1
A healthy diet and regular exercise may promote fertility in otherwise healthy women with an ovulatory disorder, according to findings published in Obstetrics & Gynecology.
|To best prepare your body for conception and pregnancy, eat a healthy diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables, make sure you get enough iron and cut alcohol and caffeine, and get regular cardiovascular exercise.|
No amount of good nutrition or other healthy lifestyle factors will help with conception if you are not having sex on the right days of the month. Use an online ovulation calculator or over-the-counter ovulation kit to determine your most fertile days.
Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health reported that women who followed a combination of five or more lifestyle factors, especially dietary changes, had a more than 80 percent reduction in their risk of ovulatory infertility as compared with those who undertook none of these changes.
Researchers studied more than 17,000 women over eight years and rated their diet and activity by five factors: the ratio of monounsaturated to trans fats in diet; protein consumption (from animals or vegetable); carbohydrate consumption (including fiber intake and dietary glycemic index); dairy consumption (low-fat and high-fat); iron consumption, multivitamin use; body mass index; and physical activity.
These results suggest that the majority of infertility cases caused by ovulation disorders are preventable through modification of diet and lifestyle, the researchers said.
Although large randomized trials are needed to reproduce these findings, this study suggests that women with ovulatory disorders trying to get pregnant should consider these lifestyle practices because they are consistent with an overall healthy lifestyle and may also help them conceive, the researchers concluded.
According to the World Health Organization, about 15 percent of couples of childbearing age seek medical help for infertility, usually after about two years of failing to conceive. Both men and women can be the source of infertility problems. In women, ovulatory disorders are the primary (40 percent) reason for infertility. Other causes include fallopian tube obstruction (35 percent) and endometriosis (20 percent). The rest is unexplained (five percent). Ovulatory disorders are most often caused by a deficiency in one of the controlling hormones, but the ovaries can also be resistant to normal levels of hormones.
Increasing demand has led to the development of numerous fertility treatments, ranging from drugs to surgical procedures. Talk to your doctor about when is the right time to consider fertility treatment and don’t panic – you have options.