HOW TO GET PREGNANT: THYROID HEALTH & FERTILITY
ARE YOU EXPERIENCING FERTILITY ISSUES AND HAVE BEEN DIAGNOSED WITH AN UNDERACTIVE THYROID?
Some studies suggest that Thyroid problems, especially if you have an underactive thyroid, can be associated with Infertility and Period irregularity. Thyroid hormones control our body Metabolic Rate, which regulates our energy levels and body temperature.
The thyroid mainly needs two minerals for proper functioning. The Thyroid needs IODINE to produce thyroid hormones and SELENIUM to convert thyroid hormone (T4) into its active form (T3).
IF YOU HAVE AN UNDERACTIVE THYROID MAKE SURE TO INCLUDE THESE MINERALS IN YOUR DIET.
WHAT HEALTHY FOODS ARE RICH IN IODINE & SELENIUM?
Iodine is especially important for Infant and Pregnant women (need 50%more), even though you haven't been diagnosed with thyroid problems, such as an under-active thyroid. Pregnant women need more Iodine because it is super important for their baby's brain and bone development.
3 SIMPLE STEPS TO OVERCOME THYROID PROBLEMS & IMPROVE WOMEN'S HEALTH:
Try to get plenty of the healthy food listed above (the UNDER-ACTIVE THYROID DIET)
AVOID FLUORIDE, as among all the bad effects it has on the body, it also slows the thyroid function and can aggravate thyroid problems. To improve women's health, make sure to switch to a natural toothpaste! My favourite brands are Kingfisher and DoTerra.
LIMIT GOITROGENS intake as this interferes with your thyroid's ability to absorb iodine, resulting in your thyroid not being able to produce enough thyroid hormones to regulate your metabolism.
Goitrogens are found in:
- Raw cruciferous vegetable (i.e. broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale. etc..). The good news is that you can still have them.. as they are actually very healthy food and have tons of benefits for women's health; but make sure you either ferment, steam or cook them.
- Soy: you can have some but be sure it's either fermented or cooked (such as tofu and edamame); ages (such as miso, tempeh, Tamari sauce)
- Have a smaller amount of spinach, strawberries, peanuts and peaches
HOW TO GET PREGNANT:
LIVER HEALTH & FERTILITY
WHERE IS YOUR LIVER AND WHY IS SO IMPORTANT WE TAKE CARE OF IT TO BOOST WOMEN'S HEALTH?
The liver is our largest internal organ and it is located in the upper right portion of your abdomen, between the diaphragm and the stomach.
Whether you have been diagnosed with liver problems or not, it is absolutely essential to take proper care of it.
The liver is an extraordinary organ which performs lots of functions, among which are:
- detoxifies the body
- break down fats
- produce energy and heat
- ensure the correct functioning of the thyroid, (synthesising essential hormones for the thyroid to use), therefore also affecting your metabolism
- deactivate old hormones to return in the bloodstream
These are all essential factors in order to have a healthy regular cycle and have a chance of getting pregnant!
HOW CAN YOU TAKE CARE OF YOUR LIVER & BOOST WOMEN'S HEALTH?
Here are some simple diet guidelines to understand which healthy foods are good for liver repair and some healthy living self-care tips on how to overcome liver problems with natural remedies.
Manual lymphatic drainage and Fertility Reflexology are great therapies that may enhance liver function as the therapist can use specific techniques in order to support the liver and help the body to cleanse in a more efficient way
Supplements and herbs that help metabolise food, eliminate waste and balance hormones, such as:
B vitamin; Milk Thistle (also help replace damaged liver cells); liver support supplement; holy basil; dandelion root; turmeric.
Avoid alcohol/ coffee/ packaged food/ non organic/ refined sugar (decrease 50% ability to fight infection)
Prepare your food properly: cook slow at low temperature/ soak, sprout grains, beans, nuts and seeds
Keep your Blood Sugar levels balanced and avoid the liver producing unnecessary glucose
Drink Raw organic vegetable juices
Try this easy and super yummy Turmeric latte recipe!
Do moderate exercise and build your practice step by step consistently. As the circulation raises, the liver is more able to release blood to the brain/organs and tendons. Jogging is one of the best natural anti-stress as it uses glucose, fatty deposits, cortisol (stress hormone) & help to naturally balance blood sugar levels.
Reduce your exposure to toxic substances. The liver recognises toxic substances and converts them into harmless material to be expelled. Therefore avoid: chemically sprayed crops, unnecessary medication, drugs and unprotected sex, chemical household and beauty products. Use ESSENTIAL OILS instead! It’s easy, very cost-effective and toxins free!
HOW TO GET PREGNANT:
WHAT VITAMINS AND
SUPPLEMENTS SHOULD I TAKE?
St Johns Wort (a natural antidepressant) as it affects the brain chemistry, thus the hormonal balance
Ginko Bilboa as it affects the microcirculation and brains chemistry, dilating the blood vessels
High dosage of VIT C as it dries the cervical fluid, making it harder for the sperm to reach the egg. Instead, Low dosage of VIT C (through supplements or food) are recommended as they increase the sperm count.
Even though it is always best to see a dietician/naturopath for a proper customised plan, here are some guidelines to give you an idea of what supplements may interfere or support women's health.
Always try to get Organic Supplements, free from additives and chemicals; otherwise you will do yourself more harm than good.
If you are trying to conceive and have experienced some difficulties, it may be worth looking at any nutritional deficiencies you may have. Even if you have a very healthy diet, nowadays the soil is not so rich in nutrients as it used to be, so supplementing your diet with natural products can be a well-worth addition.
WHAT VITAMINS AND SUPPLEMENTS SHALL I AVOID TO BOOST WOMEN'S HEALTH?
Vitamins and Supplements that may damage egg and sperm are as follows:
Echinacea - increases immunity and may make the body perceiving the sperm as an invader, thus attacking and destroying it. In fact, the body immune system usually decreases when progesterone levels rise, in order to create a perfect environment for the new embryo, slowing the body down.
WHAT VITAMINS AND SUPPLEMENTS SHALL I TAKE TO BOOST WOMEN'S HEALTH?
Vitamin B. When Vitamin B levels are low, the body shuts down reproductive processes to protect a potential embryo from abnormalities; it can also inhibit egg release and prevent implantation.
On the other side, correct levels of vitamin B enhance fertility.
It can be found in wheat germ, potato, sunflower and pumpkin seeds.. For more info please click here.
Probiotics. These reduce symptoms of digestive disorders such as Chrone’s, IBS, IBD. They contain the so-called "friendly bacteria" that can supposedly restore the natural balance of your gut bacteria, therefore enhancing the correct amounts of nutrients, vitamins and minerals necessary for the body to function properly. To enhance your gut health, you can also eat fermented food, bio live yoghurt and limit, avoid no organic, fat-free and fructose-rich foods.
Folic acid may reduce the risk of neural tube defects such as spina bifida, besides reducing the incidence of heart attacks, strokes, cancer and diabetes and homocystein level (which is a protein that may cause birth defects). Folic acid can be found in dark leafy greens, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, nuts and seeds, etc. For more info, please click here.
Zinc, especially for men as it has a big role in testosterone production. Zinc is an essential mineral required by the body for maintaining a sense of smell, keeping a healthy immune system, building proteins, triggering enzymes, and it helps to build healthy hormones. Healthy foods which are rich in Zinc are: shellfish such as oysters, shrimps and haddock; egg yolk, almonds, pumpkin seeds, wholemeal and rye bread (be aware that around 80% zinc is removed from the wheat during the milling process), etc. For more information please click here.
HOW TO GET PREGNANT: HEALTHY DIET & FATS (DOs & DON'Ts)
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO IDENTIFY WHAT KIND OF FATS ARE PRESENT IN YOUR FOOD?
Fat consumption has been associated for a very long time with weight gain, thus many people (especially women) try to avoid them and substitute them with foods which are often worse for their health.
On the side, it is true that fats are high caloric and you need to watch how much fat you can, but the good news is that not all fats in food are bad for you. Healthy fats are actually very important not only necessary for brain functions but are also the building block for hormones!
Therefore, if you are experiencing problems with your ovulation, make sure to keep reading and understand what are healthy fats so you can incorporate them into your diet! Healthy fats keep the body warm, skin and arteries supple and insulate nerve cells.
WHAT HEALTHY FOODS ARE RICH IN HEALTHY FATS?
Non-essential fats (founded in animals, eggs, butter, cheese) - try to use these healthy fats sparingly
Non-essential Monosaturated fats such as olive and peanut oil - try to use these healthy fats moderately
Essential Polyunsaturated fats - these are necessary for building healthy hormones and prostaglandins, which regulate hormones and aid fertility. These are healthy fats and they are fundamental for regulating your cycle, to get pregnant fast and for the development of your baby.
These healthy fats can be found in:
Nuts - almonds, brazils, cashews, walnuts, hazelnuts
Seeds - pumpkin, sesame, sunflower, flaxseeds
Oily fish - mackerel, salmon, sardines, herrings
A lack of essential fatty acids may be seen in:
- dry skin and cracked heels and fingertips
- dry eyes
- brittle nails
- loss of hair/dandruff
- frequent infection and poor wound healing
- poor memory
- PMS/ breast pain/ infertility
- excessive thirst
- difficulty to lose weight
WHAT TYPES OF FATS SHALL I AVOID & WHERE DO I FIND THEM?
Saturated fats (found in red meat and dairy) produce hormones which are inflammatory, causing swelling and pain and often can be linked to endometriosis, period pain.
Hydrogenated (trans) fats (such as margarine): AVOID! These are highly processed fats that are more similar to plastic rather than food!
Fat-free products - AVOID! In order to improve the taste, this kind of products often contains a lot of artificial sweeteners, which are like poisons for the body!
HOW TO GET PREGNANT: UNDERSTANDING STRESS
& WOMEN'S HEALTH
Stress hormones interfere with the hormonal balance. Learn more what causes stress, how to defeat it effectively and improve women's health to get pregnant fast.
Stress interferes with the hormonal communication between the brain, pituitary gland (which is the master gland that controls all the hormones in the body) and the ovaries (which produce your sex hormones).
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS AND EFFECTS OF STRESS?
When we experience physical, mental, or emotional factors that cause us to feel tense, the brain activates the so-called "stress response mechanism", releasing specific hormones which help us to regain our emotional, mental and body balance.
The hormones involved in our stress response are:
1) Prolactin. This stress hormone can greatly interfere with fertility as its increase may prevent ovulation, thus decreasing your chances of getting pregnant or causing your cycle to be irregular.
2) Adrenalin. The release of this stress hormone causes a decrease of progesterone sex hormone in the body. If progesterone is low, you may experience spotting pre & post cycle, and you may have more difficulty to get pregnant as the fertilised egg will struggle to implant in the uterus. Adrenalin increases when blood sugar levels drop, so it is important to try keeping Blood Sugar levels balanced.
3) Cortisol. High level of cortisol hormone is toxic for the brain and can affect the release of FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone), preventing an egg to mature and be released for fertilisation.
4) When stress levels are too high, the release of progesterone can stop. Progesterone is a female hormone that is essential for conception and key in balancing Oestrogen dominant conditions, such as PCOS, Endometriosis and Fibroids.
When progesterone levels are low, you may experience spotting pre & post cycle, and you may have more difficulty to get pregnant as the fertilised egg will struggle to implant in the uterus. Our specialised fertility reflexology treatment is extremely calming, thus it can effectively help you to relax restoring hormonal balance and stimulating eggs production.
When we are not stressed, sex is likely to be more enjoyable and women are more likely to retain sperm.
WHAT ARE EFFECTIVE WAYS TO DECREASE STRESS HORMONES & IMPROVE WOMEN'S HEALTH?
Cardio Exercise such as jogging, cycling, HIIT is among the best natural antistress as it uses blood sugar, fatty deposits, and decrease cortisol levels (stress hormone) in the bloodstream.
Try Yoga or some gentle stretches
Have “me” time - nurture yourself mentally, emotionally and physically!
Learn to BREATHE DEEPLY.
Breathing deeply activates the parasympathetic (calming) nervous system, slowing down the heart beat and oxygenating and refreshing the blood traveling to vital organs. It is your brain that initiates the breathing cycle, so making a conscious effort to breath more deeply can break any poor breathing habit pattern.
Try to consider each breath as new life, vitality dissolving stress and anxiety.
Meditation can be a great tool to develop your breathing skills. Try to listen to the guided meditations and see if they can help you to connect to your breathing, or read this 5 tips HOW TO START A MEDITATION PRACTICE.
Experiment the power of thought and start noticing what positive/negative thought patterns bring about. A simple thought has a significant impact on your mind, body and emotions. What you choose to think about yourself and your life becomes truth to you, and you have unlimited choices about what you can think! Get inspired now!
Try Affirmations, which are simply short statements helping you to create a positive mental attitude. You could try to write them down or even sing them :)
Try Visualisation to empower your mind and create positive though patterns. As Albert Einstein used to say “Imagination is more important than knowledge.”
Use Essential Oils such as:
And make you own Stress-reducing blend solution!
WOMEN'S HEALTH: STRENGTHEN THE PELVIC FLOOR MUSCLES
Here's our guide to fortifying the pelvic area with simple & effective pelvic floor exercises that can be done by anyone: men, women, safe pre&post pregnancy!
WHAT IS THE ANATOMY OF A FEMALE PELVIS AND CAN PELVIC FLOOR MUSCLES AFFECT YOUR FERTILITY?
The musculature of your pelvic area support pelvic floor organs, stabilise connecting joints, and act as a venous and lymphatic pump for the female pelvis. They create a suspension for the uterus and also influence anteriorly the vagina, fallopian tubes and bladder and posteriorly, the colon. Poor posture and possible distortion of the pelvic girdle bones may affect the reproductive and digestive system proper functioning. Therefore to improve women's health it is very important to make sure you have a strong pelvic floor.
WHAT ARE PELVIC FLOOR EXERCISES?
Pelvic floor exercises are great both for men & women, and they are particularly recommended during and after pregnancy or if you suffer from incontinence. The aim of pelvic floor exercises is to tone and increase blood, oxygen and nutrient flow to the pelvic area in order for pelvic floor muscles to be strong and supple.
Strengthening your pelvic area will help the regulation of menstruation and will improve a better elimination of the blood flow. A strong and healthy pelvic area will also make sex more enjoyable as you will have greater control over your vagina muscles.
HOW TO STRENGTHEN PELVIC FLOOR MUSCLES AND AVOID PELVIC FLOOR DYSFUNCTION:
1) Try to do this simple exercise daily:
1) Stand, sit, lie down or SQUAT! Squatting is the hardest position but it is the most effective.
To prevent using buttock and thighs instead of pelvic floor muscles, try to perform the exercises with your legs opened apart. You may practice it at home and try to put a finger in the vagina to check you are squeezing the correct muscles.
2) Breath into your abdomen by expanding your abdominal muscles as if you were filling a balloon; as you breathe out, contract your abdominal muscles to flatten it. Repeat 3 times. Don’t contract it for more than 10seconds and allow 10minutes before exercising them again. The pelvic floor consists of fast-twitch muscles which tire easily.
3) On your next inhalation, expand your abdomen while “pushing down” into your genitals, feeling the pelvic floor lowering down. As you exhale, pull up the pelvic floor. Repeat 3 times.
4) Lift and release your vagina muscles for 10 times quickly. Repeat it until you don’t feel warmth in your vagina. Don’t be discouraged if you struggle to feel these muscles for the first few attempts.
5) You may imagine bringing energy into your uterus, fallopian tubes and ovaries as you inhale and squeeze the vaginal muscles. Feel a glowing warmth spread throughout the pelvis.
2) Try a Deep tissue abdomen massage
3) Try Yoga and Pilates!!!
These disciplines have plenty of pelvic floor exercises to offer.
4) Watch this video for 5 Simple and effective exercises for pelvic floor muscles (for Men and women) to do it in the comfort of your home!
HOW OFTEN SHALL I DO PELVIC FLOOR EXERCISES DURING PREGNANCY?
Pregnancy Pelvic floor exercises can be performed anywhere, anytime so try to do them every day!
Here are some simples ideas:
do pelvic circling, tilts or pelvic floor exercises while washing the dishes, brushing your teeth, or cooking
squat every time you need to bend down
squat or sit on the medicinal ball when watching TV, chatting on the phone or working at your desk