Exercise and Nutrition for Fertility
What is the Best Exercise for Fertility?
Being healthy, eating from the right nutritional groups, getting plenty of rest and moderate exercise can go along way to help your chances for fertility and lower stress during and prior to treatments. We encourage you to consider lower and moderate intensity physical activities such as:
Exercise Caution for Women – the Pros and Cons for Fertility
Did you know that if you are on the overweight side, physical activity combined with weight loss has been shown to increase your chances for fertility and future pregnancy?
But don’t take this to the extreme since excessive exercise can negatively impact your dietary energy intake, causing hypothalamic dysfunction and alterations in gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). These negative impacts on your reproductive system can lead to menstrual and ovulation irregularities.
If you go overboard with exercise, meaning 4-5 hours per week of strenuous aerobic exercise, you may significantly decrease your chances for pregnancy.
The statistics speak volumes. In a study with over 2,000 women undergoing IVF, those who engaged in cardio exercise every day for 4-5 hours per week for one year prior to attempting pregnancy had a 40% decrease in live births. In addition they exhibited a greater risk for cycle cancellation and implantation failure.
How Much Exercise for Men is Good?
Men, keeping your body fit and toned can help you in more ways than you thought. By exercising at least 3 times per week for one hour has proven to help with the health of your sperm.
- Increased Sperm Morphology
- Better Sperm Counts
- Greater Sperm Motility
However, just as in women, overdoing it is not helpful but actually can have a negative outcome. For example, in one study, bicycling more than 5 hours a week decreased both sperm count and sperm concentration.
Nutrition to Boost Fertility
You may be wondering what the impact of your food has on your chances for fertility. Well, actually a lot. Knowing specific food groups that can help both women and men prepare for a healthy pregnancy outcome is important. Some can boost your chances for fertility.
Best Fertility Food Choices for Women
Knowing your best food choices can go a long way in increasing your chances for pregnancy. Your diet is especially tied to your ovulation and menstrual cycle.
Carbohydrates vs. Animal Protein
Additionally, research shows that if you substitute carbohydrates for animal protein, you may negatively affect your fertility outcomes. On the other hand, you can boost your chances by simply adding one serving of meat to your diet- especially if the meat was chicken or turkey. Even if you switch from carbohydrates to vegetable protein, that raises your outcomes.
Trans fats can have a negative impact on your reproductive system. When you choose trans fats vs monosaturated fats you are increasing your chances for infertility.
Best Fertility Diets for Men
Men, you can improve your semen quality by consuming a diet filled with the following:
- Fresh Fruits
- Fresh Vegetables
It has also been shown that if you consume less protein and fats, your ability for fertility is greater. Antioxidant intake has proven to be beneficial and shown significant improvement in asthenospermic patients.
Can Vitamin Supplements Increase Fertility?
Yes, women you are doing yourself and your partner a favor by taking multivitamins and were found to be less likely to experience ovulation infertility.
Foods and Eating Suggestions That Can Aid in Fertility:
- Eat Foods Rich in Antioxidants Such as Folate and Zinc
- Avoid Trans Fats
- Lower Carb Intake
- Eat More Fiber
- Swap Protein Sources
- Choose a High Fat Dairy Group
Specific Foods to Select:
- Leafy Greens Such as Kale, Spinach, Bok Choy, Broccoli
- Cereals Containing 100% of the Recommended Categories