Issue Date: January 24, 2010
Can foods aid fertility?
Can diet help the millions of couples who find conception difficult? "There are no magical foods that make you instantly fertile," says Breea Johnson, a nutritionist at Pulling Down the Moon, which offers holistic health services. But studies have shown that some foods can improve the chances of pregnancy in women with ovulatory dysfunction, such as polycystic ovarian syndrome. Some foods to be mindful of:
Sprouts, broccoli and cabbage contain a compound that helps with estrogen metabolism and hormonal balance.
Some foods can improve the chances of pregnancy.
Sea veggies such as kelp and nori help to boost low thyroid function, which can be an underlying disorder related to fertility.
Beans are full of protein and fiber, too, which boosts digestive health, making it easier for nutrients to reach reproductive tissues.
Fish are high in omega-3s, which can help manage endometriosis, a condition that can cause infertility. Avoid fish high in mercury; it can build up in the body and interrupt ovulation. Some safe choices: wild-caught salmon and farm-raised freshwater trout.
Alcohol and caffeine can raise the risk of miscarriage. Stick to the occasional glass of wine and no more than one small cup of green tea per day.
-- Jenny Rough