One of the most momentous phases in the life of any couple together is when they decide to have a baby! It’s this decision that will take your relationship to a whole new level and strengthen your bond more than you could ever imagine! Though making up your mind about this big step may make you think that you’ve overcome the greatest challenge that comes with carrying forward your lineage, but that might not always be the case. Modern day’s eccentric and hurried way of life along with a plethora of unhealthy food options available can pose many dangers to your overall health and well being.
These factors can also play a huge role in determining your sexual health and fertility, to an extent that even your unborn child can be affected by it. If you and your partner are trying to conceive, here are five crucial strategies that will help you enhance fertility and have a healthy baby:
1. Seek Medical Advice
The first thing you and your partner must do after you decide to have a baby is schedule an appointment with your doctor. Discuss in detail your health concerns, your family medical history and other preconception considerations that you need to keep in mind. Doing this will help you be better equipped and take early precautionary measures (vaccinations, medicines, lifestyle changes etc.) to prevent birth defects and any complications that may arise over the course of your pregnancy.
2. Exercise Regularly
Here’s another area positively impacted by regular exercise, in addition to your body image, mood, muscle and cardiovascular health. Exercise also plays a huge role in enhancing fertility and reducing pregnancy complications. Moderate exercise helps lower the risk of ovulatory infertility, miscarriage and increases the rate of implantation. Since too much of anything is a bad thing, make sure to exercise in moderation. A study published in the Journal of Fertility and Sterility suggests that excessive, vigorous exercises can have a counteractive effect on your fertility. Stick to moderate-intensity exercises like brisk walking, cycling, dancing, and swimming. Don’t, however, forget to turn to your doctor for consent!
3. Eat Healthily And Sensibly
Fancy bacon and cheese sandwiches for breakfast and blueberry cheesecake and coffee for supper? In an attempt to please your taste buds, you could be harming your fertility! Foods high in trans fats spike up blood sugar, thereby causing inflammation and subsequent problems with fertility. High sugar foods like pastries and candies can disrupt hormonal activity and lead to weight gain – two of the greatest causes of infertility. A high sugar diet can also cause insulin resistance that can lead to PCOS. Include foods that are rich in calcium, folic acid, iron, omega-3 fatty acids, and antioxidants. Calcium (milk, cheese, leafy greens) improves the alkalinity of the reproductive tract and helps sperms thrive. Folic acid (beans, lentils, leafy greens) reduces the risk of neural tube defects in the fetus.
Unsaturated fats like omega-3 (nuts, oily fish, enriched eggs) increase the flow of blood to the reproductive organs and thus help in the production of sex hormones. The imbalance of these hormones can cause a delay in fertility. Omega-3 fatty acids also lower inflammation that could contribute to infertility. Iron rich foods (lean meat, whole grains, beans) lower the risk of ovulatory infertility and iron deficiency in the unborn baby. Antioxidants like vitamin E and C lower the risk of DNA damage to the sperm, thus making it more fertile.
4. Ditch The Bad Habits
While you may think that a glass of wine and about 2-3 cigarettes a day won’t do you much harm, the truth is far from your belief! Alcohol can cause impotence, reduce libido and even deteriorate sperm quality. Mothers who smoke take longer to conceive and can heighten the risk of birth defects in their unborn child. The kids of fathers who smoke face increased susceptibility to blood cancer.
5. Look Out For Your Partner
Fertility problems aren’t associated with females alone, as opposed to popular belief! While you are doing all it takes to ensure a healthy pregnancy and delivery, also ensure that your partner contributes to your efforts equally. It is as important for him to follow a healthy diet and lifestyle as it is for you. What’s even better is that you two can be a constant source of inspiration to each other!
Along with these tips for a healthy pregnancy, make sure to set a strict sleep pattern as well. Avoid stressing too much about your work and personal life and try to practice calming activities like yoga and meditation. Keep yourself well hydrated and drink at least 8-10 glasses of water every day. Here’s wishing you and your partner good luck!