With an interest in fertility, it is common for me to start treating patients once they’ve already run into issues with their fertility. Within the framework of naturopathic medicine, preventative strategies and fostering the body’s ability to be innately balanced, are integral. This is where preconception health comes in.
Seeking out care 6-12 months prior to trying to conceive, can help you ensure your body is balanced going into the process of becoming a parent. Hormonal imbalances, toxic exposures and poor blood sugar regulation can all affect your fertility. By seeking preconception care, you are better able to identify any systemic imbalances and correct them, before the ‘trying to conceive’ process has already begun. In addition to an individualized naturopathic plan, here are 3 tips for fostering a healthy body/mind/spirit before trying to conceive.
‘Xeno’ literally means foreign. Xenoestrogens are man-made compounds that are able to mimic the role of estrogen in the body. Xenoestrogens are endocrine (hormone) disruptors. They are able to attach themselves to the estrogen receptors in the body and interfere with our own natural hormone balance. Xenoestrogens are commonly found in pesticides, non-organic personal care products, sunscreens, plastics, household cleaners and make-up.
The standard north American diet includes many processed and high carbohydrate, high sugar foods. Optimizing blood sugar levels through diet means replacing processed and deep fried foods, refined sugars and carbs (white breads, pastas etc) with a whole foods approach. This generally entails lots of lean proteins, vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds, healthy fats and whole grains in moderation.
Signs of hormonal imbalance might include PMS, irregular cycles, irregular hair growth patterns, mood changes, changes to menstrual flow, breast tenderness, spotting between cycles and many more. Lifestyle changes such as ensuring good quality sleep, adequate essential fatty acid intake and optimal nutrient status can all help support healthy hormones.
If you are thinking about having a baby in the near future, or if you are currently trying to conceive and would like to enhance your health, contact us at the clinic to book your appointment!
Dr. Alison Cockerill, ND