When trying to conceive, many individuals start to obsess about their every daily activity. Thinking about what you should do and what you should not do and what you should eat and what you should not eat can begin to take over your life and drive even the most normal person crazy.
I’m a firm believer that everything in moderation makes the most sense, especially when trying to conceive. For this reason, I wanted to touch base about some of the most common topics that I feel my patients are most concerned about.
Everybody loves their coffee, including people that are trying to conceive, and lucky for them, avoiding all caffeinated beverages in order to conceive is completely unnecessary.
Most obstetricians and gynecologists recommend that pregnant women consume a maximum of one caffeinated beverage per day, and as a fertility specialist, I believe that 1 to 2 caffeinated beverages a day while trying to conceive is completely permitted. Stopping normal activity like drinking your daily cup of coffee just to increase your chances of pregnancy does not help.
Exercise is great, and in moderation, very helpful for everyone. Exercise allows you to clear your mind and forget about your daily activities and stressors and keeps your body in healthy shape. Extreme exercising, however, isn’t so great.
Again, moderation is very important in the area of exercise and physical activity. Many studies have shown that excessive amounts of exercise and a BMI (body mass index) that is below normal can decrease your chances of normal ovulation and menstrual cycling. For this reason, I think it is appropriate to exercise two to three times a week and to limit cardiovascular activity to 20 to 30 minutes at a time.
Eating healthy is important, always. What you intake can affect your overall health in many ways. Eating a healthy, well-balanced diet that includes all food groups and three small healthy snacks a day is very important for pregnant women and also for women trying to conceive.
If you are overweight, you can still have three healthy, weight-loss promoting meals a day to help promote an ideal weight. Any diet that has excessive amounts of one food group or lacks complete categories of food is not healthy. Limiting saturated fats and promoting high-protein and higher fiber foods is an excellent way of promoting good health. Foods that contain large amounts of antioxidants such as berries and leafy green vegetables are excellent and provide an amazing source of vitamins.
When and when not to have sex while trying to conceive sometimes takes all the fun out of a healthy sexual relationship. An ovulation predictor kit can help by using urine samples to determine days of ovulation.
Once the kit is positive, that night and the following night are probably the most important times during the month to have sex. I advise couples that are trying to conceive to not plan their intimate sensual moments around an ovulation predictor kit and highly recommend promoting a healthy sexual relationship throughout the month.
For many people, trying to conceive causes a significant amount of stress that decreases the normal arousal and lubrication of the vagina. Many patients are not even aware that lubricant they are using is actually harmful for sperm motility and decreased their chances of fertility. There are very few lubricants that are compatible with sperm, oocytes and embryos.
Astroglide currently has their newest product called Astroglide TTC (Trying to Conceive) that’s a natural-feeling, sperm-friendly lubricant. The use of TTC will allow patients to continue to have an enjoyable intercourse when trying to conceive. Becoming a parent should not be a stressful time and trying to keep the romance and fun in a relationship is incredibly important during this challenging time.
These activities are some of the most common that affect fertility, though they’re not the only ones. If you have a question about one of your favorite hobbies or habits, ask your fertility specialist if it might be making a difference for your fertility. And to learn more about the positive steps you can take to improve your chances of conception, continue to check back here where I’ll be sharing more tips every month.
Images are for illustrative purposes only.