Women's Integrative Health

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Category: Male Infertility (Page 1 of 2)

healthy sperm

Increasing Sperm Naturally!

Want to know how to increase sperm naturally?  Actually – sperm quality?

The motility (movement) and the morphology (shape) of the sperm is just as important for fertilization of the egg.  If you have been wondering if you have a ‘normal sperm count’, it may be a good idea to have a test doneHealthy Sperm for evaluation.  Your body can always use some extra help through nutritional and lifestyle choices as this can go a long way to help increase your sperm count and quality!

As part of a preconception care plan, it is always helpful to get a routine check up.  Letting your doctor know you are trying to conceive is helpful so they can discuss any relevant information you may need to know.  There are certain medical conditions that can interfere with reproductive function so these need to be ruled out, addressed or monitored.

Sperm Maturation

The spermatozoa take around three months to mature, although they are constantly being produced.  If you have had the flu, an infection or fever within the last few months, this could affect your current sperm quality.  Likewise any negative lifestyle factors can also impact your sperm cells.  How to increase sperm count?  Your body can do with some replenishment and ‘TLC’ to help restore the quality of your sperm.  Your sperm supply should be completely regenerated after around three months time.

How to Increase Sperm Count
diet

Nutrition plays a huge role for the production of healthy sperm and semen (probably more than you realize).  Keep your diet well balanced to ensure optimal fertility, and this will also help keep up energy levels.  How to increase sperm count:

  • Eat fresh organic fruits and veges – these are full of essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants (must be free of pesticides and other chemicals that damage sperm).
  • Proteins – eat more seafood and vegetable proteins rather than meats.
  • Organic lean meats/poultry/eggs and dairy – check packaging labels, must be “hormone free” (as these can significantly contribute towards hormonal imbalances).
  • Saturated fats (mostly from animal sources) – limit daily intake.
  • Trans fats (avoid totally) – liquid oils that are made into solid fats, often found in packaged products or fast foods (check all labels).
  • Eat unsaturated fats which include the essential fatty acids (the good fats) – these are found mostly from vegetable sources (except omega 3) – incorporate these into your diet.
  • (EFAs) Omega 3 found in oily cold water fish.
  • (EFAs) Omega 6 present in nuts, seeds and vegetable oils.
  • Minimize sugar intake.
  • Whole grains, nuts, seeds and legumes/pulses – are all high fiber, protein and help keep your digestive system functioning smoothly.
  • Avoid refined foods such as white flour or white rice.
  • Also avoid processed foods and soda drinks – these are full of unhealthy preservatives, additives, sugars, excess salt and fats, so best to be avoided.
  • Filtered water – is best as normal tap water can contain traces of heavy metal and chemical residue, make sure you drink at least eight x 8-ounce glasses per day or more if exercising.

A fertility diet is highly recommended as it can help re-balance the hormones that are necessary for reproductive health.  We can help with what is helpful for a fertility diet.  Contact us below and we would be happy to give you some guidance.

Supplements

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Why Thyroid Problems Should be Resolved Before Conception

Is Your Thyroid Impacting Your Fertility?

YES!  Solving thyroid problems before conceiving is more important than you think!  The thyroid is a very important gland for fertility.  Hormonal imbalance can act as a trigger for thyroid problems.

Let’s review how the thyroid functions and learn the different ways thyroid issues may affect your fertility.

The thyroid is a small butterfly shaped gland.  It is located just below the larynx, in the lower part of the neck.  The purpose of the thyroid gland is to take iodine from the foods we consume and convert them into thyroid hormones:  thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3).  Thyroid cells are the only cells in the body which can absorb iodine.  The thyroid combines iodine and the amino acid tryosine to make T4 and T3.  T4 and T3, once released into the blood stream control our metabolism.  They thyroid is also responsible for proper growth, development and repair of the body.  It is extremely important for the development of the central nervous system.  The metabolism of every single cell in our body is dependent on thyroid hormones.  The thyroid produces about 80% T4 and 20% T3, but T3 has four times the strength of T4.

Our thyroid is controlled by the pituitary gland.  The pituitary gland is controlled by the hypothalamus.  When thyroid hormones drop too low, the pituitary gland releases Thyroid Stimulation Hormone (TSH).  The release of TSH stimulates th thyroid to release more T3 and T4.  Healthy regulatory release of T3 and T4 signal the pituitary to decrease the release of TSH.  The hypothalamus stimulates the pituitary gland to release TSH through the release of TSH Releasing Hormone (TRH).  This can be so confusing.  To break it down, the hypothalamus is like you – a person who can control the thermostat in your home.  The thermostat is the pituitary and the heat is thyroid hormones.  As the heat rises (thyroid hormones), it signals the thermostat (pituitary) to shut off.  As the heat decreases, it signals the thermostat to run again.  The control person (hypothalamus) sets the thrmostat (pituitary) to a regulate the heat (thyroid).

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Fertility food

Eating for Long-Term Health – Lowering Inflammation Is the Key!

Inflammation in the body causes or contributes to many debilitating, chronic illnesses.  These include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and cancer.

Eating a diet focused on anti-inflammatory principles not only helps protect against certain diseases, but also slows the aging process by stabilizing blood sugar and increasing metabolism.  Many people find they also lose weight by following an anti-inflammatory eating pattern.

Incorporate these principles into your diet for optimal health:

Consume at least 25 grams of fiber every day.

A fiber-rich diet helps reduce inflammation by supplying naturally occurring anti-inflammatory phytonutrients found in fruits, vegetables, and other whole foods.  Seek out whole grains, fruits and vegetables to get your fill of fiber.  Best sources include whole grains such as barley and oatmeal; vegetables like okra, eggplant, and onions; and a variety of fruits like bananas and blueberries.

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Optimal Fertility and the Gut Health and Microbiome Connection

Digestion plays a role in the health of virtually every body system.  70% of your immune system cells reside in the gut wall.  Gut and digestive health are important for all couples trying to conceive.  Enhancing digestion can greatly aid men and women with fertility concerns.  An improvement in gut health may be the missing link to solving otherwise unexplained fertility.  Do you have digestive problems?  Hopefully this information will help and pave the way for relief and new power over your fertility.

How Does Digestion Impact Fertility?

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Low Down on Hormone Tests – Part 4!

MTHFR – What is it and why do you need to know about it?

MTHFR: methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase – this is actually a genetic test for how well you absorb and process folate.  It possibly is an issue in early stage miscarriage.

If you have this mutation, it could affect your ability to get and/or stay pregnant.  This mutation has an effect  on mental health as well as having implications on reproductive health.  Women usually find out about this mutation after having multiple miscarriages.  Wouldn’t it be easier and better to know before?

The MTHFR gene produces the MTHFR enzyme which is necessary for the proper utilization of folic acid or folate (vitamin B9).  The MTHFR enzyme breaks folic acid down into L-methylfolate to make it usable by the body.  This is known as methylation.

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Low Down on Hormone Tests – Part 2!

So, if you are like most couples that have been struggling to conceive or even if you are just starting this journey, you probably have a binder full of tests!  Test after test has probably been done trying to figure out why you are not getting pregnant.  Possibly you have the diagnosis of – “your test results look good, we are not sure why you are not getting pregnant!”

Let me help you try to make sense of some of this testing so you can be empowered with the information that I use to analyze my client’s lab results so they can be successful on their fertility journey.

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Confused About Hormone Testing!

If you are struggling with hormone imbalances, fertility issues or just would like a baseline understanding of how your hormones are doing, you are in the right place!

There are three types of testing:  Blood Serum, Saliva and Dried Urine.

Each serve a purpose and depending on what you are looking for, will determine what test to use.

So, what tests should you ask for and which test should you choose?  I hope to clarify some of that for you here.  Hormone testing is best when done 5-7 days after ovulation.

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Sometimes We Have Tough Cycles-Time for Some Self-Care!

As women we sometimes have tough cycles.  Some are tougher than others while we are trying to conceive.

If you are experiencing a rough cycle or just would like to soothe your heart and relieve stress, these two acupressure points are for you!

When you are trying to get pregnant, each month can feel like an emotional roller coaster.  Every  cycle you open your heart to the possibility of pregnancy and eagerly long to love your future baby.  Your heart feels crushed when it doesn’t happen.

Yet you pick yourself up, dust yourself off, gather up strength and hope, and open your heart to the possibility of yet another cycle.  It can be exhausting!  It takes an emotional toll.  The last thing you need is more stress – it’s not good for your heart.  It also isn’t good for your fertility.

How can you soothe your broken heart each month?

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So, Which Essential Oils are Helpful for Optimizing Fertility?

 

What are essential oils?

  • Derivatives of plants
  • Concentrated form of phytonutrients
  • Distillation allows to derivation of pure components
  • Been used for thousands of years
  • Very safe if used correctly
  • Can be used on a regular basis

Why are they so effective for women with hormone issues?

  • They can be used every day
  • They have a significant effect on the brain and the limbic system

    How Essential Oils Help Optimize Fertility

  • They balance the brain pathways in the body
  • You can use specific essential oils for specific symptoms
  • If used correctly, they are safe to use frequently to help to reset abnormal patterns, especially beneficial when trying to balance hormones and insulin levels
  • You can substitute essential oils for endocrine disruptors and toxic chemicals found in some cosmetics and cleaning agents

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Hormone Balance and Increasing Fertility Through Use of Essential Oils

Struggling to conceive can be very stressful.  An inability to  conceive can wreak havoc on your mental well-being.  Sooo, take a moment to picture this scenario – It’s been a very long week at work, even more so with yet another  negative pregnancy test.  You turn the lights on low in the bathroom, put on your favorite relaxation music mix, start up a hot bath.  In it you put a few drops of lavender essential oil, while simultaneously setting up the diffuse with an oil blend recommended for hormone balance or  fertility issues.  You crawl into the tub and close your eyes while allowing the stress of the day to be released as you relax in the warm tub.

Sounds awesome, right?

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