Despite what popular culture might have us believe, getting pregnant isn’t an easy task. For some women it can be a long, frustrating process that leaves them feeling insecure, and unless you have the proper support behind you, you might think there’s something wrong with your body. In most cases, there’s nothing wrong, and all you need is more information and an actual fertility plan if you want to conceive. Of course, our diet is one of the most important aspects, and every woman who wants to be a strong mother with a healthy baby needs to be careful about what she eats.
Are you trying to get pregnant and want to improve your chances? Then take a look at these dietary tips that should help you out.
Cutting down bad habits
When it comes to diets, what you don’t eat is just as important as what you do eat. All the healthy meals in the world won’t help you if you keep overindulging in bad food, and some of the things you should cut down on first are sugar and saturated fats. Processed junk and soda drinks can contribute to poor cardiovascular health and diabetes, and they can lower your chance of conception. Of course, alcohol is also a big no. While an occasional glass of wine won’t harm you, excessive booze can affect your adrenal glands and lead to lowered sex drive and poor-quality eggs. Limit yourself to 1-2 drinks a week, and bear in mind you should stop drinking completely once you do conceive.
Chances of conceiving naturally
Your chances of getting pregnant generally tend to become lower as you age, but this isn’t really something you can influence, and you shouldn’t worry about it. As long as your body is healthy and strong and you try for long enough, there’s a good chance of natural conception if you optimize the way you go about it. Track your cycle so you’d be aware when you are at your most fertile, clean up your eating habits, and remember that this is a long process. You might have to wait for a while, and that’s totally okay.
The Mediterranean diet has been shown to improve fertility in women, and future mothers who want to conceive can definitely benefit from its simplicity. Basically, it’s all about eating a ton of fresh veggies, fruit, whole grains, legumes, and fish. You should also be cutting down on red meat and processed foods. This kind of diet will give you all the necessary macronutrients and micronutrients to keep your body strong and healthy, and it definitely helps that most Mediterranean recipes are completely delicious and easy to make. Try to cook as much as you can instead of eating out or ordering takeout, and use almonds and fruit as snacks in between meals.
Stock up on antioxidants
Antioxidants will protect you from damaging free radicals and improve your health significantly. If you’re interested in antioxidant superfoods, go for things like blueberries, leafy green veggies, sweet potato, beans, goji berries, acai berries, and fish like salmon. If you want a simple tip to up your intake, then make sure that every meal you prepare consists of at least 50% leafy greens or other veggies.
The importance of folic acid
Pregnant women aren’t the only ones who need folic acid—it’s actually an important part of nutrition for any lady who’s trying to conceive. You should generally up your intake of folic acid as soon as you decide you want to get pregnant because this will lower the chances of your baby developing neural tube defects and causing issues such as spina bifida. You can get the necessary dose from foods such as collard greens, asparagus, kale, and citrus fruit, or simply from taking daily supplements.
More water, less caffeine
If you are someone who’s used to drinking coffee every single day, you might want to consider cutting down a little. In general, you shouldn’t take more than 150-300mg of caffeine per day if you want to be safe but bear in mind that coffee isn’t the only thing that contains this substance. Tea, chocolate, and soda also have it, so try using a calculator just to be safe. Of course, the best way to stay hydrated is to drink simple water, and any woman would benefit from upping her intake. If you need to, set up reminders on your phone to make sure you actually remember to drink when you’re supposed to.
A huge part of mindful eating is just that—mindfulness. Our body often tries to tell us whether something feels good or bad, but we rarely listen to it. So, instead of wolfing down food without pause, try to stop and listen, try to chew slowly and really take everything into consideration. Does your stomach feel uncomfortable? Are you slightly nauseated? Are you anxious? All of these are signs that you might be eating the wrong things. Every meal should be eaten slowly and thoughtfully to allow our body to respond to the food appropriately.
There are many factors that influence our fertility, and the food we eat is one of the bigger ones. If you want to improve your chances, then cleaning up your diet definitely can’t hurt, so use these tips to improve your health and start feeling good in your body.