After 4 miscarriages, I got serious about increasing my chances of getting pregnant. Here’s my list of 30 different things I did to increase fertility, without resorting to fertility drugs or procedures. It worked for me! This list might help you if you are struggling with fertility too!
My 30 Fertility-Enhancing Strategies
- Stop working out so much. Intense cardio is too hard on your hormones. Walking, yoga, and TTapp are preferable.
- Cut out caffeine. It’s tough on your adrenals.
- Make a real effort to get enough sleep.
- Cut some stress from your life. For me this involved saying no to taking on new freelance design projects and allowing myself more free time.
- Try acupuncture. Chinese herbs for fertility are an extra bonus if your practitioner knows both.
- Work on healing your gut if you have symptoms of leaky gut (I did, and the GAPS diet helped me).
- Make and drink bone broth frequently. Here’s a recipe.
- Cut out the worst dietary offenders: gluten, pasteurized dairy, GMOs, refined carbs, sugar, and especially soy.
- Increase your intake of organic food, especially fruits and veggies (but cook goitrogens like broccoli, cauliflower, kale, and spinach).
- Add lots of healthy fats and cholesterol to your diet, such as grass-fed butter and ghee; pastured eggs (especially the yolks), bacon, and meat. Read more about food and how it affects fertility in this book.
- Eat liver, or take dessicated liver pills. Liver is the #1 fertility-increasing food. Taking it in dried pill form can be easier on the palate.
- Take this stuff for lots of omega 3s, vitamin D and vitamin K: A fermented cod liver oil/butter oil blend. I prefer the unflavored gel, which I can keep in the refrigerator so that it will solidify, allowing me to scoop out solid pieces which I can then swallow like pills without having to taste them.
- Take probiotics and fermented foods like Bubbie’s Sauerkraut.
- Figure out your fertility signs. Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler will tell you how to read your body’s fertility. It will amaze you. Track your fertility by taking your temperature every morning and charting it with any of several great smartphone apps.
- See a chiropractor. The nervous system rules the body, and a healthy nervous system starts with proper alignment. I found out I have scoliosis and it was putting pressure on important nerves related to fertility.
- Stop drinking flouridated and chlorinated water, shower less to soak up/breathe in less flouride and chlorine, and choose flouride-free toothpaste. Flouride and chlorine are like kryptonite for your thyroid, which is very important to fertility. I like this water filtration system but I prefer these replacement filters.
- Investigate thyroid issues if you have them. Suzy Cohen has some good info on her blog.
- Ditch all air fresheners, fabric softeners, scented candles, and perfumes. “Fragrance” is a largely unregulated category of chemicals, and many commercial fragrances contain endocrine disruptors.
- Avoid putting any chemical on your skin that you wouldn’t be ok with eating, because it’s pretty much the same thing. I went through a massive overhaul of all the products I use, and got rid of most. This is the only makeup I now use.
- Drink green juice, but with one caveat: Avoid goitrogens if you have thyroid issues. I like Suzy Cohen’s greens powder.
- Get a little more sun for the free, fertility-enhancing vitamin D.
- Supplement liberally with magnesium, which is best absorbed through the skin. Try epsom salt baths or rub in some magnesium oil after you shower.
- Take chlorella for help with detox.
- Add some maca powder to smoothies.
- Eat some bee pollen.
- Drink Tulsi tea.
- Take a really, really good prenatal with folate instead of folic acid. I took these.
- Skip the flu shot. It has recently been linked to miscarriage.
- If you took the pill, read up on healing from its lingering side effects, especially b-vitamin deficiencies.
- I saved this one for last, but for me it was the most important: Know your MTHFR status. If you have an MTHFR gene mutation, choosing folate over synthetic folic acid is especially important; as is avoiding wheat flour, which is usually fortified with folic acid. Read more about how this gene might affect your fertility here.
These Fertility Strategies Worked for Me
I did all of the things on this list while hoping to get pregnant, and the combination worked for me! I’ve shared this list with a few friends, and I’m sharing it here in the hope that it might help you as well. There are many other ways to support fertility not mentioned here, and I’d love to hear what helped you in the comments below.