We all know someone who’s in that “trying, not trying” stage of baby making. They’ve left it up to chance by coming off the pill but nothing seems to be happening. According to Proceive just over a third of couples will conceive in the first month of trying, while for others it can be a much longer road, with factors such as age, general health and reproductive health affecting how long it takes. Stress, anxiety, lack of sleep, dieting and poor nutrition all impact the bodies ability to absorb the nutrition needed to optimise reproductive health. Here we explore things you can proactively do 3 months before getting pregnant to give your body the best possible chance of conception…
Why it’s important to get healthy 3 months before getting pregnant
Each month, the reproductive and hormonal cycle develops an egg cell, prepares the womb and a wide range of other processes have to be performed to create the right fertile balance. The female egg takes approximately 90 days to mature before ovulation. So it is important to prioritise a balanced healthy diet full of essential nutrients before and while trying to conceive. For men, new sperm is created every 74 days, so once again, this means positive switches to diet and lifestyle should be made sooner rather than later, as they can impact sperm quality in as little as 3 months.
1. Take a conception supplement
Reproduction is an energy intensive process, so as well as a healthy diet, good sleep and regular exercise, fertility supplements can be a great way boost all the nutritional needs of your reproductive system. Despite lots of evidence that folic acid supplements improve pregnancy health, few people that were studied in the Tommy’s and King’s College London survey were taking them when trying for a baby.
Proceive is a specially formulated range of fertility and preconception nutritional supplements for men and women. Proceive has been developed by fertility experts using ingredients with clinical science supporting its impact on fertility parameters. Proceive Women contains 28 vitamins, minerals and amino acids tailored for women who are preparing for conception and trying for a baby. The pre-conception formula includes vital ingredients including the recommended 400μg Folic Acid in the natural L-Methylfolate form for improved absorption, Zinc and Vitamin D.
Proceive have tailored their products based on the different needs of their customers. Proceive Women is recommended for women under 35 years who are trying to conceive. Proceive Men contains 26 Amino Acids, Vitamins and minerals specifically tailored for men to support the nutritional needs of the male reproductive system.
2. Try to limit your stress
When life get stressful, our body focusses its efforts on the production cortisol, “stress” hormone, to help with survival. But as Nicole Jardim, certified women’s health and functional nutrition coach, says “when the body produces too much cortisol over long periods of time, that cortisol has a “dampening effect” on the secretion of the necessary hormones required for ovulation”. But we’re talking about “chronic stress” here not just a stressful day at work but it’s good to be mindful of.
Cortisol is the enemy of happy hormones like serotonin and oxytocin that are essential for boosting libido and actually getting us in the mood for sex. The more you can do to limit your chances of getting stressed and increase your chances of having sex will have a positive impact on your chance of conception. Simple hacks include spending less time on your phone which, must be barred from all personal situations – there’s nothing like a barking work email from your boss to kill the mood in the bedroom.
3. Eat the rainbow
Many phytonutrients have antioxidant properties, which support sperm and egg health. You’ll notice your hormones, cycles, periods, cervical mucus and immune system improving too. Load up on brightly coloured veg like tomatoes, which are high in lycopene and vitamin C.
Orange and yellow foods like carrots, mango and sweet potato will have an impact on sperm and egg quality too due to being high in vitamin c that combats oxidative stress. As for eating your greens, well, green vegetables are famed for their fertility boosting qualities – packed full of vitamins and minerals, especially folate, iron, calcium and zinc, which are all vital for fertility. These nutrients support normal hormone balance ensuring you are the best version of yourself to make a healthy baby.
If you struggle to eat the rainbow every day a good pre-conception supplement ensures you keep your nutrient levels topped up.
Liked this article on “Things to do 3 months before getting pregnant?” Read more on why preconception health is so important.
This is a partnership feature with Proceive – the preconception health specialists with a range of nutrition supplements to support couples trying for a baby.
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Hettie is the editor and co-founder of DOSE. A keen runner, she’s also partial to a blast of high-intensity and hot yoga. A country girl at heart, she divides her time between London and the lush rolling hills of North Devon. When she’s not jetting off on her next adventure, Hettie can be found in a candle-lit alcove with a laptop, a spaniel and a full bodied Malbec.