When it comes to your health, your lifestyle choices play a huge role, even when it comes to your fertility. There are a number of factors that you may look to change to improve your chances of conceiving with your partner or if you’re receiving fertility treatment, both physically and mentally.
Here are the key factors to research and discuss with your GP when aiming to raise a child in the future.
Smoking and alcohol
The two biggest factors when considering pregnancy are your alcohol consumption and whether or not you smoke. If you are a smoker, we recommend speaking with your doctor to get some help with quitting. What’s more, you should not be consuming alcohol when trying to conceive. More information on these lifestyle factors can be discussed with your GP.
There are a number of areas in your diet that can potentially impact your chances of conception. Aim to eat a variety of fruit, vegetables, oily fish, nuts, and grains that contain plenty of vitamins and antioxidants. Drinking enough water is also another great benefit to keeping a healthy diet, as well as avoiding fizzy drinks and junk food.
There are potential risks to women or men that are underweight or overweight in terms of fertility due to possible imbalances in hormones. As with all things, these should be discussed with your GP to ensure they provide you with the best support.
You may find that taking supplements can help improve your fertility if you have a deficiency. For women, folic acid is often a huge recommendation to take before trying to conceive and during the early stages of their pregnancy. Vitamin D is also very often a recommended supplement to take as your child is developing. For men, omega 3 and zinc are the supplements most commonly recommended to take as supplements or as a part of a healthy and rich diet.
Although the level and severity of exercise will vary from person to person, it’s beneficial to allocate time for moderate exercise each week. Walking is a great way to start a regular cycle of exercise that can strengthen your muscles and also benefits your immune system.
More vigorous exercise such as running, swimming or specific sports can help this even further but excessive exercise can reduce your chances. During your pregnancy the level of exercise you can do may vary, which can be discussed in more detail with your GP.
Prioritising your mental health before trying to conceive will ensure that you’re in the right frame of mind and in the best position to grow and raise a child.
Mental health is often linked to fertility. Stress and low mood often impacts a regular menstrual cycle and in certain cases it can be difficult to determine when is the best time to possibly conceive within the month.
There are multiple support groups and ways that you can be supported throughout your journey that can be of huge benefit to you or your partner. We know a number of wellbeing practitioners who have worked with our patients to whom we could refer you.
These factors are relative
Of course, some, all or none of these factors could be directly impacting you. They could also be more important to you to remedy than others depending on your specific situation. It’s also important to know that everyone’s fertility journey is different and that you should look for support from healthcare professionals when you’re struggling to conceive.