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6 Key Nutrients for Women When Trying to Conceive

December 8, 2017
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The national birth records show that the most popular birthday in Britain and the US is September 16th, so today, December 11th is the most fertile day of the year. If you are currently trying to conceive, today could be your lucky day!

Trying to Conceive

 

Trying to Conceive?

With this time of the year being so hectic, we have put together a list of key nutrients that optimise your chances of conceiving and may be missing from your diet:

  • Calcium
  • Folate
  • Healthy Fats
  • Vitamin B12
  • Vitamin D
  • Iron

 

Calcium:

Calcium is important when you are trying to conceive as it helps build strong bongs and teeth. Research has shown that it also plays an important role in creating the right environment for the sperm to successfully reach the egg. [i] Calcium is most commonly found in dairy products such as milk, yogurt and cheese.

 

Folate:

Folate helps prepare the body for conception by producing healthy eggs and sperm. It can also reduce the risk of your baby having a neural tube defect, such as spina bifida. A neural tube defect is when the foetus’ spinal cord (part of the body’s nervous system) doesn’t form correctly.

Folate is found naturally in leafy greens such as kale, spinach and broccoli as well as legumes and orange juice. It can also be found in certain fortified breakfast cereals and bread.

Folate is often supplemented surrounding the time of pregnancy using Folic Acid. Don’t worry if you get pregnant unexpectedly and weren’t taking folic acid supplements. Start taking them as soon as you find out, until you’re past the first 12 weeks of pregnancy.

 

Healthy Fats:

Essential fatty acids such as omega-3 are vital for healthy reproductive organs. These fats also help regulate hormone levels, improve sperm quality and the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins D and E. These healthy fats are found in oily fish such as salmon, trout, mackerel, herring, sardines or fresh tuna (aim for two portions a week); flaxseeds; pumpkin seeds and nuts.

 
Trying to Conceive
 

Vitamin B12:

One of the eight B vitamins, B12 is a water-soluble vitamin that helps your brain and nervous system function.  B12 is only found in animal based food such as salmon, red meat, chicken, and eggs. Vitamin B12 deficiency has been associated with infertility as it may interfere with ovulation or normal cell division. [ii]

 

Vitamin D:

Low levels of Vitamin D during pregnancy can affect the growth and development of a baby. As our exposure to natural sunlight is reduced significantly during winter, it is very important that your diet includes oily fish such as salmon, eggs and meat. Worryingly, Vitamin D deficiency can sometimes lead to temporary infertility. As it can be difficult to get enough Vitamin D through your diet, you could consider a Vitamin D supplement.

 

Iron:

Iron deficiency is the number one deficiency for women in the world, and few women are aware of iron’s connection with their fertility and pregnancy complications. Studies have shown that women who do not get sufficient amounts of iron may suffer from lack of ovulation and possibly poor egg health, which inhibits pregnancy.[iii]

 

Male Fertility:

There has been a discussion for many years on fertility but the majority of it is directed towards the females and male fertility is largely overlooked. Your partner’s diet should include B12, Vitamin C, Vitamin E and Zinc. He should also be trying to avoid excessive alcohol consumption, exercising regularly.

 

Fertility & Hormone Screening:

For many people trying to conceive, fertility issues can cause unwanted emotional turmoil and stress. At LetsGetChecked, we enable you to check and monitor your fertility and vitamin levels in the comfort of your home. See below for some tests that may be suitable to you when trying to conceive.

 
Trying to Conceive
 

For Women:

  • Ovarian Reserve: Measures your ovarian reserves, the number of eggs you have in your ovaries.
  • Female Hormone: Gives you a complete overview of your hormonal health and ability to conceive.
  • Progesterone-Ovulation: Determines if ovulation has occurred and if pregnancy can be achieved.
  • Basic Vitamin: Monitor key vitamins to identify deficiencies – Vitamin D, Vitamin B12, and Folate Serum.

 

For Men:

  • Male Hormone: Gives an overall view of a man’s hormonal health.
  • Basic Vitamin: Monitor key vitamins to identify deficiencies – Vitamin D, Vitamin B12, and Folate Serum.

 

If you have any questions or queries, please visit LetsGetChecked.com and speak to one of our nurses, they will be able to help you choose the test that best suits your needs.

 

 

[i] March of Dimes, https://www.marchofdimes.org/pregnancy/vitamins-and-other-nutrients-during-pregnancy.aspx

[ii] M. Bennet, J Reprod Med. 2001 Mar;46(3):209-12. Vitamin B12 deficiency, infertility and recurrent fetal loss.

[iii] S.Sasikumar, J.Shyam, Sundar, D.Dakshayani, R.Prabavathy, and M.KarthikaInt. J. Curr. Res. Aca. Rev. (2014); 2(2): 96-115. A study on significant biochemical changes in the serum of infertile women. Retrieved from: http://www.ijcrar.com/vol-2-2/S.Sasikumar,%20et%20al.pdf