Fertility depends on many factors, including genetics and luck. You can’t change those two elements but you can increase your fertility and decrease your chance of miscarriage with some simple lifestyle choices. Here are 5 easy ways to help yourself.
1. Eat foods that nourish your blood. Good choices include: dark green leafy vegetables, like spinach or kale; wheat grass shots; fruits such as blackberries, raspberries and grapes. Also, consider increasing your intake of black beans. According to Chinese Medicine, the energy of the kidney system is important for reproduction. Therefore, fertility enhancement often starts by attending to the kidneys. This is where black beans come into your diet. They nourish your kidneys. From a Western perspective, black beans are an excellent source of protein, folate, iron and fiber, and are rich in antioxidants.
2. Heat your abdomen every day for 10-20 minutes (do not do this if you might be pregnant) to increase the blood flow to the reproductive organs. You can do this with a heating pad, hot water bottle or warm towels. Do not scorch your body, just warm it up.
3. Drink ginger tea. I recommend it to my patients to improve fertility and ease PMS symptoms. Ginger tea is also good for digestive problems and it is anti-inflammatory, so it can be helpful in relieving muscle pain and headaches.
4. Keep your feet warm, especially during your menstrual cycle. Cold enters your body when you place your bare feet on a cold floor, so wear slippers.
5. Reduce or eliminate coffee from your diet. A joint US/Swedish study of 562 women found that 1-3 cups of coffee increased the miscarriage rate by 30% and more than 5 cups increased it by 40%.(1) In another study that monitored 1,063 women, the results showed that those subjects who consumed 200 mg or more of caffeine per day (two or more cups of regular coffee) had twice the miscarriage risk as women who consumed no caffeine.
(1) Cnattingius, S. et al, New England Journal of Medicine Vol.343(25):1839-1845, Dec., 2000.