If you look up the definition of ‘fertility’ it means the ability to conceive children or young. For some couples falling pregnant is easy and for others it can take years or involve having IVF.
Getting fertility fit!
Most women focus on their nutrition at the point of seeing the little blue line appear, confirming their test is positive and baby is on their way. Yet it is essential to ensure that your body is full of the right nutrients before conception to ensure the healthiest pregnancy as well as increase fertility and ability to conceive.
With the right nutrition in the pre natal phase as well as during pregnancy an expectant mother can be confident they are in good maternal health and cope with the additional nutrient demands pregnancy brings.
Taking care of your pre-conception health
Good overall health and wellbeing will increase a mother’s fertility and the ability to conceive. As a general rule, a pre-conception diet should be varied and balanced in the same way as a normal healthy eating plan – that is the mother should be eating foods as close to their natural state as possible with lots of fresh fruit, vegetables, lean sources of protein plus good fats from nuts, avocado and olives.
There are a few key nutrients that are important in the early stages of pregnancy that those who are planning to start a family need to be aware of:
Protein – Most women can meet their protein requirements by eating a small portion of lean protein with every meal. Choose quality meats, non-farmed fish, nuts, legumes and eggs.
Calcium – It is important to have good stores of calcium in the bones prior to conception as well so eat plenty of dark green leafy vegetables, yoghurt, milk, soy and fortified products such as juices, cereals and milk.
Iron – Iron is absorbed easier from foods such as red meat, seafood and poultry and can be obtained from plant foods such as cereals, vegetables, legumes and nuts.
Folate – Those planning to fall pregnant should eat foods such as liver, yeast, cruciferous vegetables, avocados and legumes. Ideally these foods will be in the diet anyway and it is normal to supplement, especially once the mother falls pregnant.
By creating the right balance of nutrition, rest and exercise during pregnancy a mother can be confident that these healthy active habits will easily be picked back up after birth and the pre baby body return.
Remember these are just guidelines and anyone considering starting a family should speak with their GP about specific individual requirements.
Author CJ’s Fitbumps – CJ is a pre and postnatal holistic health coach, group exercise instructor, personal trainer, nutrition expert and author of The Winning Physique. She provides specialist pre and post natal fitness classes and coaching at Riverside Ice and Leisure as well as offers one to one personalised health coaching programs lifestyle consultations and personal training. Find me at www.cjsfitbumps.com, email me via [email protected] or call me 07557683770.