Around 20 percent of Irish couples are having challenges having a successful pregnancy and this number is rising all of the time. It is often not discussed openly and can be the most difficult time of your life if it is affecting you. Sarah Leather is a Clonakilty based Natural Fertility Expert and has been helping women and couples to get and stay pregnant for 20 years. She has a bestselling book on Amazon, has been featured on national television several times and has been very successful in her work locally, nationally and around the world.
1)Work together to commit to spending three months preparing to be as healthy as possible, to create the best possible sperm and eggs for a successful pregnancy. Decide on a plan of action to eat a good fertility diet, have medical check-ups, remove toxins and manage stress. The three months prior to conception is just as important as the first trimester of pregnancy so whether you have just started trying to conceive or have been for a while, make sure you have done the groundwork for a healthier lifestyle before conception.
2)Ensure good gut and liver function. A detox/cleansing program could be useful followed by a good fertility diet. Reproductive hormones (and most cells in the body) are made from protein and good quality fat so these are essential. Bad fats that contain Trans or hydrogenated fats (in commercially produced chips, crisps, cakes, pastries where the oils have been overheated) need to be avoided.
3)Lifestyle and environmental factors need to be addressed to decrease your exposure to chemicals and toxins as these may mimic hormones leading to oestrogen dominance. The bedroom is a good place to start by cutting down on exposure to electrical appliances like phone chargers and electric blankets. Household cleaning products can be changed to natural ones (like the brands Ecover or Lily) and plastic containers replaced with glass or ceramic ones. Plastic water bottles are best replaced with stainless steel or glass ones.
4)Timing for conception is vital and there is often a lot of confusion around when ovulation happens. Observing cervical mucus is the most reliable way to detect when the best days are for baby making.
5)Regular exercise along with obtaining an ideal body weight is important. Exercise ensures adequate circulation to the reproductive organs along with helping to manage stress. If weight (or more importantly your body fat percentage) is either too low or too high then ovulation may be hindered in women. Men also need to have an average weight to ensure good sperm health.
6)Getting support for a healthy mind-set is essential. You can get Sarah’s free recording of her talk on ‘Emotional Blocks to Fertility’ (also the title of her next book) by subscribing to her email list at www.TheBabyMakingClub.com Do whatever it takes to feel joy and have fun while you are on this fertility journey together. Having fertility challenges can be the hardest time of your life so get all of the help and support you need.
7)Put yourself first. Many women and couples who are trying to conceive are very busy helping everyone else with their goals and dreams, constantly being asked or expected to mind their sibling’s children, stay on late at work and do more than their share in many areas. It is important that you put your needs first; this isn’t selfish it is essential. It is all part of having everything in place for when a pregnancy occurs so that everything is as healthy as possible.
Sarah is doing a presentation called ‘Holistic Fertility Treatment – 7 Steps to Baby Making Success’ in The Oriel Hotel in Ballincollig on Thursday, June 12 at 7.30pm. Tickets available at www.SarahLeather.ie for €20 or €25 at the door. Partners are welcome to come along for free.