Fertility is a common topic of conversation in our female circles. Whether you plan to have children or not, knowing how chemicals, food and even your partner’s practices affect your body is valuable and important information. We asked Naturopathic Doctor and Licensed Acupuncturist Dr. Katie Lundberg to share a few surprising and somewhat off-the-radar facts about fertility that regardless of your family plans, will help improve your overall hormonal health.
CUT OUT ALL FORMS OF NICOTINE
Quitting smoking alone isn’t enough. Using nicotine patches, gum, or e-cigarettes may reduce your exposure to heavy metals and other toxic ingredients in cigarettes, but nicotine takes the same toll on your hormones, resulting in reduced ovarian function and delaying conception.
EAT MORE FAT
Eat fat, the good kind. Cholesterol is necessary to produce hormones. Avoid low-fat, high-processed diets. Eat a healthy quantity and variety of fats from nuts, nut butters, avocados, olive oils, cold-water fish (like wild-caught salmon, halibut, mackerel). Pesticides tend to accumulate in fats, so choose organic, pastured or grassfed for most of your oil and fatty foods.
CLEAN UP YOUR COSMETICS
Our skin is our biggest organ, and what we put on our bodies is just as important as what we put in our bodies. Mineral makeups such as EcoGlo Minerals or Maia’s Minerals are safer alternatives to your typical drugstore fare. If you are curious about the state of your current skin care regime, check out the Environmental Working Group’s for your rating.
PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR PRENATAL VITAMINS
Put thought and care into your prenatal vitamins. Simple folic acid supplementation is going out of style. Folic acid is a synthetic vitamin and can block our ability to use other important B vitamins. Look for pre-natal vitamins that contain “active” folic acid, like L-5 methylfolate, folate, or folinic acid.
IT IS A TEAM EFFORT
Fertility isn’t just your responsibility, having your partner be diligent in their healthcare is just as important as maintaining wellness for your own body. Have an honest conversation about things you can BOTH do to improve your hormonal health.
p.s. Speaking of supplements, don’t forget one of the best sources for additional nutrients - your food!