Following are a few simple things that if taken care of can take us a long way in conceiving and delivering a healthy baby with a healthy mother:
- Diet: It’s better to switch to a healthy diet comprising lots of seasonal veggies and fruits. They provide all the necessary micronutrients that play a key role in the biology of conception. Plus the antioxidants also help to improve the ‘egg quality as well as ovulation. Caffeine in any form like tea should be reduced. If you are trying to become pregnant, no more than 2 cups should are taken in a day. Too many processed foods, those containing MSG, Ajinomoto, and other sorts of chemical preservatives should be cut down to a minimum if complete elimination is not possible. Such chemicals reduce fertility in due course of time. Drinking and smoking a strict no-no.
- Exercise: Regular exercise should be incorporated in the daily routine or at least 4 times a week. This could include brisk walking, swimming, yoga, aerobics, and even gymming. The target should be to achieve a healthy weight as per your age. Even 5 % of weight loss can change the hormonal milieu enough towards normalcy. However, too much strenuous exercise like heavy weight lifting can have a negative impact on hormone levels. Hence, balance is key. Always practice under the supervision of an instructor be it yoga or gymming. Plus, heavy exercises, jumping, and skipping should also be minimized in the latter half of the menstrual cycle that is after the 14th-16th day.
- Vitamins and supplements: Vitamins play a vital role in cellular biology and hence shouldn’t be neglected. Most important of all is Folic Acid which should be started at least a month before trying to conceive and will be continued through the pregnancy. Others include Vitamin C and D which play a subtle but key role in preventing ovulation disorders like PCOD(polycystic ovarian disease). A lot of supplements are available that improve fertility but they should be taken only after professional advice.
- Investigations: However, planning to start a family doesn’t need any intensive blood investigations but if the couple is conceiving at a higher age (more than 30 years), basic blood tests like complete blood count, and blood sugar should be done. In females in particular thyroid disorders are quite common and this hormone if deranged at the time of conception can lead to serious birth defects. Hence a thyroid profile should also be done if planning to conceive.
- Know your body: The woman who wants to conceive should be aware of her menstrual cycle, its duration, and its nature. This will help in determining the fertile days which are usually the middle 1/3 of the cycle. These days can be optimized for intercourse and the rest of the cycle be left if the couple is busy and finding time for it is not easy. Besides, a lot of ovulation detection kits are available in the market which helps to know with certainty when ovulation occurs and hence increases the chance of fertilization. Knowing your body also includes being alert about other signs and symptoms like breast tenderness, irregular periods, and pain abdomen. Sometimes, these may be the only signals of a new pregnancy.
- Genetics: There are many disorders that run in families i.e., they are genetic. Some people suffer while others are carriers of the ‘gene disorder’. One of which is thalassemia. If there are relatives suffering from any such disease in the husband or the wife’s family, a chromosomal study should be taken up.
- De-stress: Stress of any sort is a silent killer for anyone. It’s even more of a villain when it comes to the biology of conception. It has a direct impact on hormones thereby disturbing ovulation. So make your own strategies to deal with it. Read good books, meditate and take a chill pill.
- Many girls when they don’t conceive after 3 to 4 months of trying start getting anxious. This is what even makes them even farther from their target.
For more info, you can consult, Dr. Priyanka Kalra Babbar who is the Best Infertility Specialist in Greater Noida.