Discover How To Boost Your Fertility, And Increase The Chances Of Safely Carrying Your Baby To Term (Guest Post)
Posted May 25 2012 12:00am
I want to become a mum, but…
Infertility is perhaps the biggest struggle experienced by women who suffer from PCOS. Ninety to 95% of women who attend infertility clinics because of an ovulation suffer from PCOS1.The challenges that PCOS causes in a woman’s reproductive life do not end with just infertility. Those women who are fortunate to conceive despite having PCOS face a legion of complications that can jeopardise their own health and the health of their precious baby. Thirty to 50% of women with PCOS suffer miscarriages in the first trimester (first three months) of their pregnancy2.They may also have a greater risk for complications such as:
* Pregnancy induced hypertension – i.e. abnormally high blood pressure during pregnancy3
* Gestational Diabetes - i.e. diabetes induced by pregnancy3
* Preterm delivery – i.e. delivery before the completion of 37 weeks of pregnancy3
* Birth of small-for-gestational-age (SGA) babies3
2 important reasons women with PCOS have a higher risk of miscarriage
Hormones to blame
PCOS stems from hormonal imbalances4,14. It is no different when it comes to pregnancy complications. Insulin resistance, high levels of the hormone LH, excessive testosterone and other hormonal imbalances can cause pregnancy loss and other pregnancy complications of PCOS5,6. In fact, abnormal LH levels, and low progesterone levels are two reasons why you have a higher risk of miscarriage.
How you can make simple changes to dramatically increase your chance of giving birth to a happy, bouncing baby.
Shed those pounds
I can hear you saying ‘I’ve tried before, and I can’t lose weight’. Believe me; I know how hard it can be for a woman with PCOS to lose weight. Once you know how, what and when to eat, it is entirely possible. If you need to lose weight, do so before you conceive. Losing a mere 5 to 10 % of body weight can restore your fertility7. Obesity during conception and pregnancy is associated with a higher risk of pregnancy induced diabetes and hypertension8.
Detox your system
Environmental toxins like mercury, lead, PCB’s, and phthalates, toxins in your food, household and personal products are common in the world we live in. They are not good for your health, the health of your baby while in your womb, and once born, and the rest of your family9. Take simple steps to detox your body, and your home:
Purge your house of all chemical cleaners, solvents and cosmetics and shift to natural, organic and environment friendly substitutes. There are some fantastic companies specialising in this. Items such as vinegar make great cleaners10.
Give special attention to the health of your liver, gut and kidneys which are your major ‘toxin treatment plants.’ Detoxify your body by our simple detox routines that enhance your health and get you ready to have a bouncing baby of your own.
Note: NEVER detox while pregnant!
5 tips to aid baby making
Vitamins and antioxidants- Add plenty of organic fruits and vegetables in your food. These humble foods are packed with many nutrients and antioxidants that fight infertility as well as pregnancy complications11.
Vegan Proteins- Beans of all shapes and colours, fermented soy products and spinach are packed with healthy vegan proteins. Vegan proteins are known fertility boosters11.
Fertility fats - Omega 3 fatty acids are crucial for your fertility. Include fish (not more than 3 times a week, wild preferably), nuts, seeds, avocados, olives and fish oil (or flaxseed oil for vegetarians) in your food-plan11.
Gluten free whole grains - Whole grains with a low glycaemic index can help you fight your insulin resistance. With insulin sensitivity improved, the chances of becoming pregnant and delivering a healthy bouncing baby are improved11.
Relax! Stress drops fertility. Period. If your body thinks it is fighting the proverbial sabre tooth tiger, your energy is diverted to survival, not propagation. Learning to de-stress is so important. Stress when pregnant can also cause stress pathways in your growing baby to be altered, for the worse1213.
By educating yourself about PCOS, you can increase your fertility, decrease pregnancy complications, and secure a healthy future for you and your baby.
Dr Rebecca Harwin is an Author and PCOS Expert and experienced clinician who has been helping women improve their health for many years.
1Should Obese Women with Poly Cystic Ovary Syndrome Receive Treatment for Infertility?, editorial by Adam H. Balen, Martin Dresner, British Medical Journal, 23 February 2006; 332: 434 doi: 10.1136/bmj.332.7539.434. 2 Primary Care for Women, By Phyllis Carolyn Leppert, Jeffrey F. Peipert, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2003, P250 3Homburg R .Pregnancy complications in PCOS. Best Pract Res ClinEndocrinolMetab. 2006 Jun;20(2):281-92. 4 Robin S., “Is Saw Palmetto Good For PCOS?”, Article of Livestrong.com, May 19, 2011
5Seely E.W.,Solomon C. G., “Insulin Resistance and Its Potential Role in Pregnancy-Induced Hypertension”, The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, June 2003
6Anonymous, “Complications in Pregnancy”, Journal of Plan A Baby
7Jacobs L. A, “Weight Loss & Conditioning Improve Fertility”, Fertility Today Magazine, Spring 2007
8 Reynolds D. RD, “Risk of Gestational Diabetes Can Be Predicted Prior to Conception”, Journal of Emax Health, May 31, 2011
9 Vance L., “12 Toxic Chemicals to Avoid”, Journal of Lesley Vance, March 28, 2011
10 Halvorson C., “Uses For Vinegar: Cleaning Your House”, Journal of TLC (a Discovery company), 2011
11Anonymous, “Super-Foods For Fertility”, Journal of Fertility Factor.
12 Norris C., “The Effects of Stress on Fertility”, Delaware Valley Institute of Fertility &Genetics, Summer 2007
13Gan E., “Fertility Woes: Too Much Stress Can Affect Your Babymaking Chances”, Journal of Today Online, January 10, 2012
14Brooks A., “Quit Stressing and Start Curing Your PCOS”, Journal of Genecast, January 27, 2012