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  • Ways To Optimise Fertility Through Food | with Laura Bond

    Optimising fertility with foodWhile many women jump straight into trying, there is wisdom in dedicating at least three months to nourishing your body with the right foods.

    Why? Research shows it takes approximately 12 weeks for the follicles on your ovaries to develop before one is mature enough to release an egg at ovulation. So, although you can’t change the number of eggs you have, you can change their quality through a healthy diet.

    Interestingly, many traditional cultures took preconception care very seriously. The Masai in Africa, for instance, only allowed men and women to marry after spending several months consuming nutrient dense foods known to be essential to a healthy pregnancy. Part of the Masai preconception diet included the milk from cows that had been grazing on grass during the wet-season, which was higher in certain fat-soluble vitamins now known to benefit fertility, like vitamin A and K2.

    So, what other foods support fertility? Organic, whole foods, lots of fresh vegetables and fruit, plenty of protein and healthy fats. Some ideas might be a grass-fed organic steak – a good source of protein as well as B vitamins and iron - with a homemade cabbage coleslaw and 2-3 small new potatoes. It could also be spicy dhal (packed with folate) with ½ cup of wild or brown rice served with broccoli or cauliflower. Adequate protein is essential for the growth and repair of cells as well as for hormone production. Consuming protein from a wide variety of sources – both animal and plant based – will ensure you are getting a broad spectrum of nutrients.

    Top Four Fertility Boosting Foods

    Eggs: Enjoy scrambled eggs in the morning with some sautéed spinach. Eggs are one of the most easily assimilated proteins[1] and they are also jam-packed with choline which is vital for the baby’s brain development[2].

    Liver: Try liver pate crackers instead of peanut butter! Liver is known as mother nature’s multivitamin. It contains vitamin C, folate, iron, Co-Q 10, and important fat-soluble vitamins like A, K2 which have been shown to play vital roles in male and female reproductive health.

    Seafood: Look for fish high in omega 3 and low in mercury – these include wild salmon, mackerel, sardines. Omega-3s have been found to aid fertility by reducing inflammation and boosting ovulation.

    Butter: Especially from grass-fed cows as it’s rich in K2 (see above) which has been shown to benefit PCOS[3], low sperm count[4] and is really essential for prenatal health[5].

    When I work one-on-one with clients I develop individualised meal plans, which can be a powerful tool to transform habits long term and prepare your body for a baby. I also suggest lab tests to look at hormone and nutrition status as part of your prenatal care.

    [1] According to the Protein Digestibility Corrected Amino Acid Score – PDCAA
    [2] Choline: Critical Role During Fetal Development and Dietary Requirements in Adults
    [3] Beneficial health effects of Menaquinone‐7 on body composition, glycemic indices, lipid profile, and endocrine markers in polycystic ovary syndrome patients
    [4] Vitamin K2-Dependent GGCX and MGP Are Required for Homeostatic Calcium Regulation of Sperm Maturation
    [5] The Impact of Vitamin K2 (Menaquionones) in Children's Health and Diseases: A Review of the Literature

    Looking for some one-on-one guidance on eating top optimise your fertility? You can book a one-on-one consultation with Laura here. As well as offering functional medical tests, Laura provides meal plans and recipes as part of her consultation.
    Love Laura
    Laura is a qualified Nutritional Therapist who is passionate about pre and post-natal nutrition as well as children’s health. She also loves helping mum’s create meal plans or weaning programmes for fussy eaters as well as tailored diets for those dealing with chronic digestive issues or who are living with or beyond cancer.

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