This Blog was originally posted in March 2011 but still holds true. We hope you find it helpful again and continues to be a relevant listing of the top 9 Health Tips before you conceive.
Like most fertility patients, your primary goal is probably to become pregnant as soon as possible and to have a healthy baby. As fertility/reproductive endocrinology experts, we are here to help you achieve that as quickly and safely as possible. Part of bearing a healthy baby includes a healthy mom before conception. We call this time the preconception window and it is a critical time to foster maternal health, both by increasing the body’s reserves of nutrients and avoiding exposure to toxins.
1 No Smoking, Alcohol, or Drugs- Smoking causes not only cancer but causes unhelpful changes in cervical mucus that can disallow sperm to reach the egg. Smoking also causes blood flow to be limited to the baby, which can result in low birth weight babies, as well as babies who are addicted to nicotine. If you need help to stop, get it now. Call our office and we can guide you. Avoid alcohol before and when you are pregnant, do not drink any alcohol at all.
2 Live As Green A Life As Possible- This includes drinking purified water—reverse osmosis is best—eating a diet of moderate, lean and clean protein, lots of fresh organic fruits and veggies, two to three servings of organic dairy per day, taking a prenatal vitamin. Eat foliate, a B vitamin, also known as folic acid. Some food sources high in folic acid include cereals, spinach, beans, lentils, oranges, and cruciferous veggies. Avoid pollution. Avoid pesticides and all toxic substances.
3 Exercise- Make it a goal to get close to your ideal body weight. If you need help, call us for nutritional guidance. Exercise with strength training and walking several times per week. Breathe deeply, every hour, deep breaths have the effect of telling your body to relax and in turn will help oxygenate your tissues. If you exercise too much, this can also hamper conception. Burning more than 2,000-4,000 calories per week can inhibit ovulation in some women.
4 Sleep- Ah yes, that old idiom, “Early to bed, early to rise, makes a (human) healthy, wealthy and wise.” Study after study shows that sleep deprivation causes cognitive decline, depression, anxiety, and blood sugar fluctuations. Stop, drop and sleep! Every night, eight hours. If you have sleep problems, there has never been a better time to get help. Multiple resources exist to diagnose and treat sleep issues.
5 Use No Medications Unless Absolutely Necessary- Check with you medical team about each and every medication, over the counter as well as prescription. Also, thoroughly check out all herbal remedies, supplements and vitamins, most of which are not regulated by the FDA. If these substances are produced in another country, doubly check the conditions under which they were created. We recommend that other than a prenatal vitamin, you call us to ask about every supplement.
6 Get Outside -in nature a few times per week, which will foster health and well being.
8 Laugh, Already- Our bodies understand when we are having a good time and respond positively to laughter. Our bodies work best when they are relaxed, surrounded with joy, love, and a healthful environment.
9. Consult Your Doctor- before becoming pregnant. If you have tried to conceive for twelve or more months or if you are over age 35 and need help in conceiving a healthy pregnancy we urge you to contact Albrecht Women’s Care Denver IVF.