Infertility can affect every area of life, impacting not only a couple’s health and relationship, the persistent inability to conceive can also eat away at their self-esteem. Careers can be affected by having to take time away from work for tests and treatment and, as the majority of fertility treatment has to be paid for privately, the financial strain can add to the burden. The road to pregnancy can be a stressful one. Over time, chronic stress may hijack your attempts to get pregnant. high stress levels confuse the brain’s hormone center. We create a negative feedback loop. As a result, the brain may not send out the reproductive hormones necessary to tell the ovaries when to release an egg, thus delaying ovulation.
Most couples who face ongoing fertility issues go through times of questioning their faith. Repeated miscarriage, sub-fertility, chemical pregnancies or unexplained infertility – for any of these types of experiences, faith is the key ingredient needed to keep moving forward toward your goal of parenthood. The human quality of faith is the result of self-responsibility and building unshakable courage – a deep inner knowing that the journey ahead must be undertaken even though there are no guarantees and that not trying is simply not an option.
Mindfulness is the awareness that emerges through paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgementally to things as they are. (Kabot-Zinn)
You are what you eat, feel and think. A mind/body system. You need to look after both to turbo charge fertility.
When you are busy, on the go, getting all the vitamins and minerals you need to make a baby is not always easy. People always ask me what supplements I recommend. Until recently I’d smile and say, ‘Save your hard-earned cash!’
You have an adrenaline-activated fight/flight mechanism. Imagine the exactopposite – body and mind in standby mode. This the ‘Relaxation Response,’ researched by Dr Herbert Benson of Harvard University. Being in the zone, mind calm yet focused, sleeping well at night, clear-headed by day. Sports people achieve this mindset at peak performance. Switch to this ‘safe mode’ … and fertility levels rise!
Fertility is a continuous mind and body process, not just a one-off event. You can make changes that boost your fertility. This goes for women and men. The ‘thinking’ part of your mind occupies a fraction of your brain’s activity. Most of your brain plots physical functions – breathing, circulation, digestion, hormone production, immune system etc. Your body alters, moment-to-moment. Thoughts, moods and emotions affect hormone building. Mind and body are interconnected and communicate with each other all the time.
Every thought produces a chemical messenger affecting the immune system or the endocrine system. These impact fertility, conceiving and pregnancy. Neuroscience research shows connectivity of mind and body. Thoughts and emotions underpin biology, behaviours, choices and decisions.
What if women don’t have all their eggs in one basket? That egg germ cells can make new eggs from scratch when required? For too long women have been terrified by fear of ‘low ovarian reserve,’ measured by the dreaded AMH level. New research shows ‘egg precursor cells’ in ovaries which develop into viable eggs when conditions are right.