- Fertility & Reproductive Systems
Fertility Boosting Foods
Pre-conception can be a difficult time in a woman's life when it seems like everywhere you look somebody has a baby.If you're thinking about baby-making you should start with a pre-conception check up with your Doctor.
In the mean time, there are some foods you can be eating that will increase your reproductive health.
Complex carbohydrates like those found in whole grain breads, brown rice, stone-ground cornmeal, and oatmeal are incredibly healthy for you for a number of reasons but we're talking fertility. We know that carb's affect your blood sugar levels but complex carb's...not so much. In fact, anything that's good for insulin function is good for fertility.
Monounsaturated, Polyunsatured, Omega-3 Fatty Acids
You'll find these fats in nuts, pumpkin and sesame seeds and deep sea fish like tuna and sardines. Two serves of fish each week and a serve of nuts and seeds each day will reduce inflammation and increase insulin sensitivity - remember...good for insulin production, good for fertility.
Full-Fat Dairy Products
Dairy products are rich in calcium which is not only vital for bone health but has also been found to be an important fertility nutrient. Harvard studies have shown that women who eat full fat foods (whole milk, yoghurt etc) have fewer issues with ovulation. So...that's right, now you can actually feel good about reaching for the full fat ice-cream - yippee.
Not just any old protein - we're talking vegetable proteins. Protein from plant sources like beans, peas, and peanuts has been associated with increased fertility. Beans are also high in iron, another fertility-helper.
Fresh Fruit & Veg
This is a no-brainer but so many benefits where do I start!? Fresh fruit and vegetables are full folate which is beneficial for neural tube problems (especially the dark green leafy veg). They are full of antioxidents which promote not just your general well being but your reproductive health too. A healthy diet should be built around fruit and veg - and whole grains - which means two fruit and five veg every day.
Many of the important nutrients found in fruit and veg are easily destroyed in the cooking process. Try steaming your veg and eat fresh wherever possible - you're heart and waistline will love you for it.
Ah nuts! (and pulses)
Nuts, seeds and pulses are the steroids of the food world. Who would have thought just looking at those tiny little critters? They contain plant chemicals called phytosterols, which have been linked to improving testosterone production. Sunflower seeds are the ultimate steroid of the nuts & pulses family and should also be included in your diet. Nuts are also rich in magnesium which is also beneficial in the sperm making process but what you really need is almonds. Almonds have the highest reproductive system nutrients and are rich in zinc and L-arginine.
Almonds are regarded as the most nutrient-containing nut high in important reproductive system nutrients including zinc and L-arginine. Sunflowers also regarded as the most nutrient-containing seed.
Aaah...the "viagra' of the Aztec world (and our favourite aphrodisiac) is known for releasing feel-good chemicals. Chocolate / pure cacao is rich in the mood-enhancing amino acids and is both a sedative that relaxes, and a stimulant that increases desire. Yes...there's a lot of truth in the saying - "Just hand over the chocolate and nobody gets hurt!"
One particular study has shown that garlic can significantly increase in the weight of seminal vesicles, epididymides and the sperm counts were also significantly elevated. I wouldn't recommend this study though - the garlic was administered as 100mg per kilo of body weight in drinking water....eurk!
And don't forget these one's...
Pregnancy: alfalfa sprouts, bean sprouts, beet, beet greens, carrot, kale, lamb's quarters, parsnip, swiss chard, grapefruit, peach and watermelon.
Menstrual problems: beet, beet greens, swiss chard and water cress.
Impotence problems: alfalfa sprouts, kale, lamb's quarters and wheatgrass.
Prostate problems: asparagus, parsley, cherry, pear, strawberry and watermelon.