Trying to conceive is not always a simple process. It can become a huge challenge, both mentally and physically. Many people look at ways they can improve their fertility when they’re trying for a baby and the good news is, making small adjustments to your diet or adding in additional supplements is a great way to give your body a helping hand.
In this month's blog, we’ve going to be exploring 4 natural vitamins and supplements that can help boost your fertility (for both men and women).
It’s recommended that women take folate (vitamin B9) during the conception and pregnancy stages. Sometimes folate is confused with folic acid (which is the synthetic form of vitamin B9), our practitioner recommends supplementing with prenatals containing folate as it’s a natural form.
The reason for this is because folate has been linked to higher chances of conception and also preventing birth defects in babies such as neural tube defects and spina bifida. You should carry on taking the supplements until you are past the first trimester.
Other B Vitamins
B vitamins (including folate) are an excellent fertility supplement to take for both men and women.
In a large-scale study of almost 19,000 married, pre-menopausal women, the women who had a higher intake of vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, and B12 were found to have a lower risk of ovulatory infertility.
Low levels of Vitamin B12 have been linked to infertility in women, so it’s important that you are getting enough B vitamins either in your diet or through a supplement. Foods that are high in B vitamins include meat, fish, eggs, cheese, leafy greens, legumes, and fortified cereals.
Vitamin D supplements are used for a broad range of health benefits, but they’re also effective for men and women who are trying to conceive. This is because vitamin D improves ovarian stimulation and sperm quality.
Low levels of vitamin D have been linked to infertility in women. Therefore if you’re struggling to conceive, it’s important to get tested for a vitamin D deficiency to rule that out as a potential factor.
If you want to consume more vitamin D through your diet, eat more oily fish, eggs and red meat. However, as vitamin D is not present in many foods, it can be hard to get enough through your diet alone, especially if you are vegetarian or vegan - that’s where vitamin D supplements come in.
Vitamin D can be supplemented all year round, especially between September and April for those prone to low levels or Seasonal Affective Disorder. If your vitamin D levels are tested and found to be on the low side, you can supplement high doses of vitamin D (5000IU) for shorter periods to bring it back up to normal levels.
Acetyl L-carnitine (ALC) is a form of the amino acid L-carnitine (LC) which helps to turn fat into energy. Carnitine is found in animal products such as meat, fish, eggs, and milk.
ALC has antioxidants that keep the female reproductive system healthy and slow down ageing. Studies have also shown that ALC and LC have been proven to increase sperm motility in men.
Above are some of the best nutrients to consider supplementing if you’re trying to conceive, but make sure you always follow the recommended daily dose and if you’re in any doubt, speak to your doctor or healthcare practitioner before adding any new supplements into your regime.
We’re shortly going to be releasing another blog about fertility from our in-house nutritional practitioner, Marika. Make sure you keep your eyes peeled for that and consider signing up for our email newsletter to be the first to receive it.
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