Here is my list of overlooked essential nutrients for fertility, the benefits of these ones are undeniable and incredible. In some cases ensuring you have an optimal intake of these nutrients will result in a 46% better chance of getting pregnant each cycle. Yes… 46%! That’s incredible!
Keep in mind I am not a Dr. Although this information is from studies that have been done by professionals, I do have to tell you before making changes to diet or lifestyle you should consult your doctor.
In fact, I actually encourage everyone to get to the Doctor and have a full work up on your health. Have your blood nutrient levels checked including a full hormone panel with all of your thyroid markers checked too. This information in the right hands can tell you a lot about what you can do to improve your fertility. And that’s why we’re here right?
This vitamin is not a vitamin, but a proHormone. A prohormone is a substance our bodies convert into hormones. Think of it as a building block for all of the hormones in your body..
Deficiencies may show up in your body as a weak immune system, mental health issues and depression, cardiovascular disease, and is even linked to obesity.
It directly affects your fertility because of its impact on your adrenals, which are the center of your whole hormone system. Vitamin D is critical in its ability to regulate itself. It is also highly supportive of male fertility as well as enhances sperm quality and increases sperm motility.
Vitamin D deficiencies are common in women with PCOS, endometriosis, and uterine fibroids.
In studies of women going through assisted reproduction, women with adequate vitamin D levels were 1/3rd more likely to have the outcome of live birth. Adequate vitamin D levels help with all stages of pregnancy, increasing chances of implantation and reducing the likelihood of complications like miscarriages and preeclampsia.
Optimal D levels are greater than 30 nanograms per milliliter, by blood test. Only 25% of the population actually has adequate levels. We spend so much time protecting ourselves from the sun that we are not able to synthesize the D in food into D3 for our bodies to use.
Dosage – For maintenance- 600-1000iu. For deficiencies, 4-5000 iu up to 10,000 has been deemed safe by NIH but going that high for an extended period of time may have adverse effects on health so it not recommended.
This vitamin is an immunity-boosting, powerful antioxidant that fights oxidative damage and free radicals. Think about sperm and egg health here. In combo with Vitamin E, it is especially beneficial for sperm health by decreasing DNA fragmentation. It also helps with motility by reducing clumping.
According to some recent studies, if on Clomid to support ovulation Vitamin C actually works with Clomid to make it more effective. If Clomid isn’t working for you try adding Vitamin C into your supplement regime.
Vitamin C in your body is found in its highest concentration in your adrenals. This tells us that it’s actually needed to support your adrenal health and function. Remember from earlier when we talked about Adrenals being the control center of your hormones? We must take care of them, making sure you are getting this essential nutrient goes a long way in supporting your hormones.
And one more amazing thing about vitamin C is that it aids in the formation of progesterone. So if you are struggling with your progesterone levels or your luteal phase length, try upping your vitamin C intake. Many luteal phase support herbs will have naturally occurring levels of vitamin C.
Dosage- the best way to get this in an active form is through food. Berries and citrus has this in abundance. You can get vitamin C from the store, but the synthesized version actually is much less helpful than the compound that vitamin c is in real food called bioflavonoids.
Aim for >100 mg’s of real food Vitamin C, if you are targeting this supplement for a specific reason listed above, add 500mg’s a day.
5 Methyl Folate
Folic acid is the one nutrient every Dr will say is critical for a developing fetus, but back that up and remember it starts with the egg and sperm.
Folic acid helps your body produce and maintain new cells, and DNA. It also helps prevent changes to DNA that may lead to cancer. If we think about DNA in terms of sperm and egg, I think we can all agree it’s pretty critical.
Here’s the thing though, up to 20-25% of people have a gene mutation called MTHFR. You may have heard about this with women, but men can have it too. You can genetically screen using a service like 23 and me or your Dr. I recommend for anyone with recurrent loss as this gene may need special treatment in early pregnancy. I would also recommend, that all women change your folic acid to 5 Methyl Folate just to be sure. It is more usable by the body and will have a greater effect on egg and sperm health.
Dosage- get prenatal with 800- micrograms of 5 Methyl Folate. Or take a 5 methyl folate on the side. I recommend hitting 1500 micrograms for 3 months leading up to any fertility treatment or if you have been diagnosed with egg quality or egg reserve issues
Iodine is an essential mineral commonly found in seafood. Your thyroid gland uses it to make thyroid hormones, which help control growth, repair damaged cells, and support a healthy metabolism.
Women who are deficient in iodine and trying to get pregnant were 46% less likely to get pregnant each cycle compared to women with healthy iodine levels, according to a recent U.S. study.
43% of women in the united states are deficient to some degree.
Not only is adequate iodine important to support optimal fertility, but it is also important for healthy fetal development, including thyroid function of both mom and baby. It also support baby brain and IQ development as well.
Dosage 150-300 mcg a day, if found deficient in blood work your doctor may prescribe more. Seaweed is packed full of iodine or look at iodine supplements like drops or kelp.
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