1. Optimise your BMI
Try to achieve your optimal weight. Being overweight or underweight can affect your chances of conceiving, as too much or too little body fat can make your periods irregular or stop them completely, which can affect your ovulation and ability to conceive naturally. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine has also found that obesity is associated with decreased fertility and increased risk of miscarriages.
2. Follow a healthy diet
Follow a balanced diet. Taking supplements or eating foods rich in Vitamin D, C ,E, and B12, zinc and iron can prepare the body for pregnancy, while taking folic acid is essential when you are trying for a baby.
Women can also increase their intake of foods containing folate (the natural form of folic acid), such as green leafy vegetables and brown rice.
3. Stop smoking
NHS Choices state that smoking may reduce fertility in women by reducing egg quality ; the website includes sources of advice if you are trying to quit. A recent paper reviewing scientific evidence, by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, said that “substantial harmful effects of cigarette smoke on fecundity [the ability to reproduce] and reproduction have become apparent but are not generally appreciated.” Research shows that smoking can also be linked to early menopause.
4. Reduce alcohol intake
As with pregnancy, limiting your alcohol intake to less than 5 units a week can be beneficial – and is something men need to consider too, with excessive alcohol consumption clearly shown to affect the quality of sperm.
5. Limit stress and try around ovulation
I believe that exercise, being active and being positive can all be important factors. Recent research from Australia looked at fertility and lifestyle – including factors such as stress – and how individual lifestyle assessments and support may help to conceive. Taking time out for yourself is an important step to ensure your health and welfare, and thus mood and mindset, are optimal. Get in tune with your body and once you’ve worked out when you are ovulating, concentrate on this period as the most optimal for conception.