Tips to support Fertility & Pregnancy ~ a series with Naturopath Adelaide Gee
Series 1 ~ Fertility & Pregnancy
When you start trying for a baby the journey into motherhood is an exciting yet daunting time that varies so greatly for each couple. Naturally, no two people are the same and therefore their individual requirements will differ. This article is designed to guide you and assist you through the conception and pregnancy stage. Remember, that something that may be beneficial to one, may not necessarily be the right fit for someone else which is why it is important to consult your practitioner on what is best for you personally. Generally speaking, below are a few recommendations that have been shown to support fertility and make the transition from woman to mother that little bit more seamless.
What are the best foods (and worst) to support and boost your fertility?
Some foods that are beneficial in supporting fertility are those that contain iron (e.g. lean meats, almonds, parsley, liver, avocado), antioxidants (e.g. fresh berries, leafy greens) selenium (e.g. broccoli, fish, eggs, alfalfa) and zinc (e.g. capsicum, beef, pumpkin seeds). All of these nutritional elements play a different part in fertility and conception. Increasing plant-based proteins is also recommended, for example, hemp seeds and quinoa.
Foods to avoid would be those high in refined sugar (e.g. ice cream, chocolate) and carbohydrates with high glycaemic load such as white potato, rice and pasta. Both types of food cause imbalances in our blood sugar levels and may contribute to systemic inflammation.
Lastly, say no to canned foods and drinks. Unfortunately canned foods/drinks contain heavy metals such as aluminium which leach into the food. The aluminium enters your bloodstream and if it is not excreted, it finds a “safe” place to live in your body. Safe for the heavy metal to live however not safe for your health!
Tips to improve overall fertility and balancing your hormones whilst trying to conceive
For all of my preconception clients, I recommend undertaking a hair analysis test to gain an understanding of their heavy metal and nutritional element status. Heavy metals are without a doubt one of the most underrated causes of health issues and can be passed onto your baby during pregnancy. Through environmental exposure, beauty products, tap water, cookware (including some ceramics), and common foods (e.g. rice and chicken) - we are exposed to a significant amount of heavy metals. Most are neurotoxins and can cause brain fog and memory issues. Additionally, they are antagonistic to your nutritional elements and largely contribute to deficiencies. By identifying this through hair analysis, you are able to manage it. Your mind and body will feel like a weight has been lifted off once they are removed.
Another simple yet important tip would be to avoid eating and drinking out of plastic. This includes pre-made meals, meal prepping and freezing in plastic containers, defrosting foods stored in plastic and takeaway coffee cups. Plastics contain ‘xenooestrogens’ which essentially synthetically mimic your natural
hormones and throw them out of balance. Switch to glass storage containers - Kmart and Ikea have a huge range.
Lastly, filtered water! This is another hugely underrated contributor to health concerns. Unfiltered water contains chemicals, heavy metals and even parasites and bacterias. Water is a daily essential for our bodies to function optimally so you want it to be good quality. Yes, filters can be an expensive investment however there are also many affordable options out there. I take my Hydrogen Health Water Bottle with me wherever I go and have added their Shower Filter to our home. The difference I noticed was immediate. Enter ‘BUBBACLOUD’ at the checkout for 15% off our Hydrogen Health products to kick start your water filter journey.
Keep it simple - eat a well balanced diet full of fruits and vegetables, reduce your caffeine and sugar intake, allow your body to
have a sufficient amount of rest and most importantly, reduce your stress (i.e. physical, mental and emotional). Some achievable ways to reduce stress is a gentle yin yoga class, float pod or 10 minute guided meditation daily.
What to do if you’re experiencing morning sickness during pregnancy?
Firstly check in with yourself and when you last ate. By not fuelling our bodies regularly, our blood sugar levels can dip and contribute to nausea during pregnancy. If you’re not up for a huge meal, simply snack on something like a herbal tea and protein ball throughout the day between the regular breakfast, lunch and dinner. Traditionally, ginger has also shown to reduce feelings of nausea and vomiting. Try adding ginger tea or candied ginger to your daily diet.
Adelaide is a clinical naturopath located in Palm Beach on the Gold Coast. She combines scientific evidence and traditional knowledge to ensure the best outcome for her clients. Adelaide is passionate about supporting women’s health, detoxification, skin conditions, digestive complaints and mental health. All appointments are available in-person or online.