When you’re trying to conceive, you might feel like you need a PhD in nutrition. What foods should you be eating (or avoiding)? Will that glass of wine impact your fertility? It’s enough to make your head spin!
Fortunately, we’ve got you covered. Here are 11 fertility superfoods that can help increase your chances of conceiving and having a healthy pregnancy.
- Food impacts fertility in many ways, with certain nutrients, like folic acid, being essential for good reproductive health.
- Consuming a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, proteins, and whole grains is a good way to increase your chances of successful conception.
- Certain foods, like berries, fatty fish, and walnuts are nutritional powerhouses that you may want to consider consuming more of if you’d like to improve your overall fertility.
How Does Food Impact Fertility?
Good nutrition is vital to overall health, and that includes reproductive health. When trying to conceive, couples are often inundated with advice about what to do (and what not to do) to increase their chances of success.
And while some of this advice may be helpful, much of it is based on old wives’ tales rather than scientific evidence. So what does the latest research say about the role of diet in fertility? Let’s take a look.
There are a few things that we know for sure when it comes to the relationship between diet and fertility. For example, we know that being overweight or obese can negatively impact fertility in both men and women.
We also know that certain nutrients are essential for reproductive health.
For example, folic acid is essential for pregnant women because it helps prevent birth defects of the brain and spine.
We also know that a diet high in processed foods, saturated fats, and simple carbohydrates can lead to insulin resistance, which has been linked to an increased risk of ovulatory infertility (i.e., difficulty getting pregnant due to irregularities with ovulation).
On the other hand, a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats has been shown to improve fertility in both men and women. Also, limiting or avoiding alcohol altogether is advisable when trying to conceive.
What Foods Help Increase Fertility?
If you’re trying to conceive, you might be looking for ways to give yourself a fertility boost. Luckily, there are plenty of fertility superfoods that can help. Here are 11 of the best.
One of the best fertility-boosting foods is asparagus. This humble vegetable is packed with nutrients like folate and vitamin K, which are essential for reproductive health.
Asparagus also contains high levels of inositol, a carbohydrate that has been shown to improve ovulation in women with PCOS.
Try roasting it up with some olive oil and sea salt for a simple side dish!
One of the best foods for fertility is spinach. This leafy green is packed with nutrients, including folate, which is essential for embryonic development. Studies have shown that women who consume adequate amounts of folate have a lower risk of miscarrying.
Cooking your spinach will make the nutrients much easier to absorb. Steaming, adding a handful to broth, or sauteing in olive oil are all great options. Just a few handfuls a day can make a big difference in your fertility
Beans and Lentils
Beans and lentils are not only excellent sources of iron, protein, and fiber, but they are also a highly affordable way to boost your fertility. Iron is essential for the production of healthy red blood cells, which carry oxygen to the reproductive organs.
Protein provides the building blocks for hormones, and fiber helps to regulate hormone levels. In addition, beans and lentils are a good source of folate, a nutrient that has been shown to reduce the risk of birth defects.
When it comes to fertility, beans and lentils are a nutrient powerhouse. For an easy way to add them into your diet, try adding them to a salad or using them as a base for a soup or stew.
If you’re looking to boost your fertility, you may want to add some walnuts to your diet. Walnuts are a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin E, both of which are important nutrients for fertility.
Omega-3 fats help to promote hormonal balance, while vitamin E is essential for reproductive health. Plus, walnuts are a great source of antioxidants, which can help to protect your eggs and sperm from damage.
To get the most benefit from walnuts, try adding a handful to your morning oatmeal or blending them into a smoothie. You can also use them as a topping for salads or enjoy them as a healthy snack.
Eggs are one of nature’s perfect foods. They are an excellent source of protein and contain all the essential amino acids that our bodies need. Eggs are also a good source of iron, calcium, zinc, and folate – all nutrients that are important for fertility.
One simple way to incorporate egg yolks into your diet is to hard-boil them and add them to salads or stir-fries. You can also make a delicious frittata or quiche using egg yolks as the base.
Whichever way you choose to eat them, adding egg yolks to your diet is a great way to boost your fertility.
Sunflower seeds are an excellent food for fertility. They are a good source of vitamin E, zinc, and folic acid, which are all important nutrients for fertility. Sunflower seeds are also high in protein and fiber, which can help to regulate hormone levels and improve egg quality.
Just 1/4 cup of sunflower seeds provides nearly 50% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin E. You can add them to salads, yogurt, smoothies, or just eat them as a snack.
Fatty fish like salmon and sardines are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for reproductive health.
Omega-3s help to regulate hormone levels, improve egg quality, and promote implantation. They also reduce inflammation, which is a common cause of infertility.
In addition, fatty fish are a good source of vitamin D, which helps to regulate the menstrual cycle, improve egg quality, and increase progesterone levels.
Blueberries, raspberries, and other berries are rich in antioxidants, which have been shown to improve reproductive health in both men and women. In addition, berries can help to regulate hormone levels and improve circulation to the reproductive organs.
And because they are high in fiber, berries can also aid in detoxification, helping to remove harmful toxins from the body. If you’re looking for a natural way to boost your fertility, incorporating some berries into your diet is a good place to start.
For an easy way to enjoy them, simply add some berries to your morning yogurt or oatmeal. You can also use them as a topping for pancakes or waffles. Or for a quick and healthy snack, try mixing them with nuts and seeds.
One of the best foods for fertility is garlic. Selenium, an antioxidant, is found in garlic and has been shown to improve fertility in both men and women. One simple way to add garlic to your diet is to add it to your morning scramble or omelet.
If you’re not a fan of eggs, you can also add garlic to pasta dishes, soups, or stews. Just be sure to add it towards the end of cooking so that it doesn’t burn. Just a few cloves can make a big difference.
Sweet potatoes are one of the best foods to eat for overall health and fertility.
They are an excellent source of beta-carotene, which is converted into vitamin A in the body and is essential for fertility. Vitamin A is needed for healthy eggs and sperm, and it also helps to prevent birth defects.
Sweet potatoes are also a good source of fiber, which can help to regulate hormone levels. And they’re easy to prepare; simply bake them in the oven or cook them in boiling water.
This ancient seed is packed with nutrients that are essential for reproductive health, including protein, folate, and zinc. Quinoa is also relatively easy to prepare, making it a great option for busy couples trying to conceive.
Simply cook the quinoa in water or broth, then add your favorite vegetables and seasonings. You can also use quinoa in place of rice or pasta in many recipes. Whether you’re trying to increase your chances of conceiving or just looking for a healthy and delicious meal, quinoa is a great option.
Consider incorporating some (or all!) of these fertility superfoods into your diet if you’re looking for ways to boost your fertility naturally. By filling up on nutrient-rich foods, you’ll give yourself the best possible chance at conceiving and having a healthy pregnancy.