Thursday, May 21, 2009

Diet Makes a Difference in Fertility

I thought I'd start with my story...

At 40, after trying to get pregnant for over a year, I visited a popular reproductive endocrinologist (a fertility doctor) in San Francisco who told me I had a 2% chance of conceiving on my own.

This was primarily due to my age, but also because my FSH had started to rise. (It was 8, which is normal, but my Clomid Challenge Test came back at 15, which is abnormal). This indicated that my stash of eggs was losing quality and/or quantity.

I wanted to scream! I had already heard the hysteria about how difficult it can be to get pregnant in one’s forties. But 2%?! That number alone put me into panic. It meant I had a 98% chance of never having a biological baby. Ever.

Nevertheless, I refused to accept the doctor’s grim prognosis that day! I had already begun researching natural, holistic methods of aiding fertility, for which I discovered there were many. In particular, I learned a lot about how dietary changes impact fertility. (Just Google “fertility diet” to learn more.)

So, bolstered by research, I decided I was not a statistic and could make a difference in my own fertility. I put myself on a strict fertility friendly diet, among other natural healing regimens, such as yoga, visualizations, meditation and supplements.

Four months later, to the astonishment of my doctor and to my own breathless amazement, I got pregnant naturally and later delivered a healthy baby (our son, Julien).

That experience taught me a lot about trusting my instincts and my body, believing in myself in spite of the odds, and accepting that I had the power to make a difference.

After that I found myself talking a lot to “infertile” friends and acquaintances about what I did to help me conceive, and I found I had a lot to share.

My feeling is this: if following a strict diet along with other natural methods worked for me, why can’t it work for you? Of course, there are no guarantees, everyone is different. The worst case scenario, however, is that you put your body in the healthiest, best possible position for conception—and that’s a really good thing.

So, in this blog, I plan to share information, ideas, tips, anecdotes, and my own experiences on natural ways to aid fertility in general, and to use food as a tool in particular.

Now let’s talk food! Thoughts on topics to come: No sugar, you say? There’s a work-around trick and it’s called Stevia. // Tips for Starting a Fertility Diet // So, What’s the Story on Soy?