Many people wonder if food can improve fertility, and the answer is YES. Food is one of the determining factors to be fertile!! Eating well or eating bad will affect our eggs and sperm.
Is there a fertility diet?
Well, answering this question is not so easy … because from my point of view, it does not exist a proper fertility diet. But exist more like a way of eating.
Above all, you should know what kind of hormonal disorders you face to choose what is the right fertility diet for you.
A woman who has hypothyroidism has not to follow the exact same diet as a woman who has hyperthyroidism, or one who has PCOS may need different nutrients than another with endometriosis.
It is just for this reason that there is no perfect diet for fertility, but a way of eating according to different hormonal alteration.
Of course, if you do not present any hormonal alteration, then you can also follow some general guidelines.
Foods to boost male fertility
What nutrients, vitamins or minerals are important to boost male fertility?
The Folic Acid is not only important in women fertility. But it is also very important for sperm formation and for the formation of the internal DNA of the sperm head. Different studies also have shown that Folic acid is also important to boost sperm motility and sperm quantity.
Where can we find folic acid? In nuts, in all green leafy vegetables and legumes.
It is a very important mineral for men’s fertility. Zinc interferes with testosterone production. A necessary hormone in the production of sperm. In addition, zinc is an antioxidant (antioxidants improve sperm DNA fragmentation). Zinc also improves sperm mobility and quantity.
Where can you find zinc? In oysters, in sesame, in pine nuts, in white beans, in lamb, in almonds, hazelnuts, corn, brown rice and in mussels.
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant. It helps to improve sperm quality. Taking vitamin C is important if you are a smoker because tobacco destroys vitamin C
What can we eat to improve vitamin C naturally? Guava, black currant, red pepper, kiwi, broccoli, strawberries … and then, surprisingly, after these foods are citrus fruits (orange, lemon …), these are famous, but in fact there are other foods that contain a higher amount of vitamin C than the famous citrus.
Vitamin A has the capacity to retard the cells aging, and sperm are just other cells. Furthermore vitamin A has been shown that it is important to raise progesterone production (an important testosterone precursor).
You can find vitamin A in foods like liver, carrots, spinachs, squash or eggs.
Selenium is an essential mineral for sperm because it helps to keep the sperm “younger”, due to its antioxidant action. Also, this mineral influences on sperm mobility.
How to get enough Selenium for our body? Well, eating foods like Brazil nuts, tuna, oysters, turkey liver, caviar, mussels, sesame, eggs, brown rice, corn and coconut.
Essential Fatty Acids
Only for the Essential Fatty Acids I should write a whole post, because they are SO important for our health … and they are SO necessary … !!! But I will focus on why they are so important for male fertility.
When I speak about essential fatty acids I mean the famous Omega 3, and if I am more specific I speak about DHA, since it has already been amply demonstrated that DHA performs a necessary function on sperm formation. DHA it has been found inside the Sertoli cells (these cells are part of the sperm formation chain). The DHA also has been found on the sperm tail, so it directly intervenes in sperm mobility !!
What foods contain it in greater quantity: fish (salmon, sardines, mackerel …) and fish oils, in nuts, especially in walnuts, and also found in algae.
It is a Vitamin with a great antioxidant power.
To increase Vitamin E in our cells we can eat: vegetable oils, among them the wonderful olive oil, nuts such as walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, and also seeds, of course, the delicious sunflower seeds. And we can find also Vitamin E in avocados.
Avocados contain less Vitamine E than the other food mentioned above, but it is also VERY healthy and is a fertile food.
Foods to boost female fertility
When we talk about the foods that boost female fertility we must keep in mind that women need: For one side foods that feed their eggs and for the other foods that help to balance their hormones.
Mainly, to boost female fertility, women needs the same nutrients as men (the ones we mention above) but they need some other nutrients as well.
The Folic acid it is not only important for the correct fetal formation. It is also a key nutrient that helps to reduce the risk of abortions.
We can find Folic acid in foods like: nuts, all green leafy vegetables and legumes.
But I have to say that getting the amounts of Folic Acid needed during prepregnancy only with food is almost impossible.
So it is advisable to take a supplement that contains it, in order to ensure that we have the 400 micrograms daily that women need. Some Folic Acid supplements are: Folic Acid Gummies for Women and Solgar Folic Acid.
It is also essential for women fertility. This vitamin it has been shown to be related to the uterine mucosa (endometrium). Furthermore, Vitamin A participates in the formation of steroids. But not only that, it also acts as an eggs antioxidant and interferes with the hormonal functioning of our menstrual cycle.
We can find Vitamin A in higher doses in the liver, in carrots, spinach, squash and in eggs.
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant to improve eggs quality!
You can find Vitamin E in vegetable oils, in nuts such as walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, and also in sunflower seeds.
Selenium and Zinc
Two minerals necessary for our thyroid normal function. Also these minerals act as antioxidants for our eggs. At the same time they influence on ovulation, on ovum fertilization and they help to reduce abortion rates.
We can find selenium in foods like: Brazil nuts, tuna, oysters, turkey liver, caviar, mussels, sesame, eggs, brown rice, corn and coconut. We can find zinc in foods like: oysters, sesame, pine nuts, white beans, lamb, almonds, hazelnuts, corn, brown rice and mussels.
An iron deficiency can cause thyroid hormone alterations, pregnancy alterations, and embryo implantation problems … if you are looking for a pregnancy you have to measure iron in blood, along with ferritin, to know if you need an extra supplement.
We can find iron in red meats (beef), cockles, clams and mussels, cashews, walnuts, hazelnuts, pistachios, almonds, watercress, chard, spinach, chickpeas, lentils, peas…
Advice: It is convenient to combine eating iron-containing foods with Vitamin C containing foods in order to help our body absorve iron easily.
A great antioxidant that helps oocyte quality along with vitamin E.
It is already clear that Coenzyme Q10 is one of the greatest antioxidants that we can take to improve the natural oxidation of our cells
We can find Coenzyme Q10 in foods such us: grass-fed beef, herring, free-range chicken, sesame, pistachios, broccoli, cauliflower, oranges, strawberries, eggs, sardines, and mackerel.
It is difficult to reach an adequate dose of Coenzyme Q10 only with food. So it is convenient to take a daily supplement but in the form of ubiquinol, that is the way that your body will receive it better and it will be really effective!!!!
There are many more nutrients that help women like DHA, magnesium, inositol, melatonin, vitamin C, vitamin D (the great vitamin D), calcium, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, L-arginine … but the post will be too long. So I think I will write a second part.