It’s a new year, and that means a new start—a time to reflect, refresh and renew. If you are entering 2018 with hopes of having a child, this is an excellent time to make some resolutions regarding your reproductive health. Whether it’s your first attempt at trying to conceive with the help of reproductive medicine or you’ve come to Hanabusa IVF for the mini-IVF approach as an alternative to conventional IVF, there are various ways you can set some good fertility health intentions in the new year. Below, we offer some diet and lifestyle changes that will support your chances of having a child in 2018.
Manage your weight and eat a healthy diet.
Resolving to add more fruits and vegetables to your daily diet is always a smart idea, but even more so when you are preparing to get pregnant. Your body needs all those healthy nutrients so when planning meals think about fitting a wide range of colors into your meals. If it’s not green, red, yellow, orange or blue than you know it’s time to add a handful of baby carrots to your salad or a handful of blueberries to your yogurt. Studies have shown that being over or underweight can have an impact on fertility, so talk with your doctor about your weight and find out if you may need to lose, or gain, a few pounds.
Like a healthy diet, daily exercise is wise whether you are trying to conceive or not, but most importantly when it comes to matters of infertility as moving is a great mood booster and it can help alleviate the stress of the IVF process.
Get enough sleep
Lack of sleep causes havoc on the body and messes with hormones. Be sure to establish a sleeping routine, going to bed at the same time each night and waking at the same time each day so that your body gets into a natural rhythm. Try creating a soothing bedtime ritual like having a warm bath or using a guided meditation on a sleep app. If light or noise is problem, invest in black out curtains or a sound machine.
Healthy ways to manage stress. Lots of things in life can cause stress–finances, traffic, family squabbles–but infertility and the IVF cycles can come with lots of worry, waiting, time and money. While we try to alleviate these aspects of the process as much as possible it’s still a good idea to establish ways to manage your stress effectively. Making a New Year’s commitment to take a walk in nature for at least 20 to 30 minutes a day or joining a yoga class is a good way to start. You may want to begin acupuncture—a wonderful support to IVF—or take up meditation. We also recommend joining an infertility support group to help you with the ups and downs of the process.
Avoid bad habits. It might go without saying, but if you are a smoker, or indulge in one or two a week or during social occasions, now is the time to drop this habit.
If you’d like to get a jump start on some of these, consider making an appointing with one the practitioners we refer our patients to. See the full list below:
Heidi Brockmyre, (M.S. LAc) Acupuncturist and Chinese Medicine practitioner specializing in fertility.
Rachel Rabinor, Clincial Social Worker—co-founder of the Infertility Support Group
Dr. Elizabeth Winter, Naturopathic Medicine—co-founder of the Infertility Support Grup