Did you know that being able to get and stay pregnant all starts with your egg health? Conventional thinking says that women are born with all the eggs they will ever have and their egg quality declines with age but that is only half the picture.
For most of a woman’s life her eggs are in suspended animation as immature cells however in the three to four months before ovulation, an egg must undergo major transformations.
As it grows and separates it ejects copies of chromosomes. If this goes wrong and so many times it does the egg will have chromosomal abnormalities.
This is the single most important cause of early miscarriage and failed IVF cycles as well as the reason so many older women have such a hard time conceiving.
Many times women are told there is nothing that can be done about this however this isn’t true. Research shows that there are many things you can do to improve your egg health.
The growth phase before ovulation is a critical time during which so much is happening and affecting egg health, both positively and negatively.
Below I will outline some things you can do to boost your egg quality and prevent your eggs from being damaged due to lifestyle factors.
Top 5 things to do to boost egg quality
1: Eat a diet rich in antioxidants and balanced, whole food nutrition.
I talk about this a lot but this is the single biggest thing you can do to improve your egg quality that will result in strong implantation and a healthy embryo which in turn will develop into a healthy baby.
Eating the rainbow will provide your body and eggs everything they need to protect your eggs from oxidative damage and stress. Foods highest in antioxidants are
- Berries – Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries
- Leafy greens- Spinach and kale
2: Steer clear of BPA and other chemical compounds.
BPA, which stands for Bisphenol A. This is a chemical commonly used in everything from plastic food containers to paper receipts. Research shows that even small amounts of this harmful chemical can interfere with hormonal systems and harm developing eggs.
Some places you will find BPA that you might have not thought of but will wreak havoc on your hormones, endocrine system and egg health,
- Lining of metal cans
- Plastic water bottles
- The plastic in your coffee pot
Try to stay away from these items if you are actively TTC.
3: Add these supplements to your regimen.
I always start with whole food, balanced nutrition but even the cleanest diets have holes that supplements need to fill. Always consult your doctor before you begin a new supplement however these are the ones I have found work the best for improving my clients egg health and overall fertility.
- COQ-10 – this molecule helps the body to make energy as well as is an important antioxidant that recycles vitamin E. It also helps your mitochondria function properly which helps eggs produce more energy which will improve egg quality and embryo viability.
- Royal Jelly – The jury is still out on this supplement but through my research I say take it. Unless you are allergic to bees this is a great supplement at increasing egg quality. More research needs to be done however my clients have shown much success with this sweet supplement.
- Folate (not folic acid)- This is a B vitamin used in many different biological processes. For fertility this significant vitamin plays a major role in egg development. The earlier you take it the better.
- DHEA- A hormone precursor produced by the adrenal glands and the ovaries as an intermediate step in the production of estrogen and testosterone. When taken as a supplement it can increase these hormones in the ovaries.
4: Balance your blood sugar through diet and lifestyle.
Balanced blood sugar will in turn improve your insulin levels. You want improved insulin levels to control the amount of male hormones (androgens) you have in your body. Many researchers believe hormonal imbalance is the underlying cause of PCOS and having a hormonal disruption then interferes with ovulation and fertility. Here are a few ways to balance your blood sugar on a daily basis.
- Eat balanced nutrition, high in vegetables and low in processed sugar and carbs.
- Drink enough water- .67 x your body weight in ounces per day.
- Eat within an hour of waking, eat every 4-5 hours and stop eating around 7pm and don’t eat again until at least 7am. This 12 hour fast will repair your insulin resistance overnight and allow your body to detox.
5: Manage stress.
Stress is the second leading cause of fertility related issues especially concerning egg quality and ovulation. Your body will always take from other processes in order to make stress hormones and that includes making sex hormones. Managing your stress on a daily basis is key when trying to conceive. A few things you can do to eliminate your stress and relax during this trying time is-
- Take anything off your plate that isn’t serving you.
- Practice deep breathing exercises such as 5-5-7 breathing.
- Implement self-care such as long walks, bubble baths and mediation.
As you can see there are many things you can do at home to holistically improve your egg quality and health which will have very profound implications for fertility and help to prevent miscarriage. Start implementing these suggestions today and at least 3-4 months before you plan to become pregnant or undergo IVF. If you are already deep into your journey, just start today and you will be well on your way to improved egg quality and overall fertility.
If you need a little help in this area or in any area of fertility or hormones, let’s chat. Book a free call HERE to see if working together is your next best step.
Love and Health,