Certain lifestyle habits can negatively impact your fertility. If you have been facing difficulty trying to conceive for more than a year, it might be helpful to evaluate your lifestyle choices and improve them to boost your fertility.
In collaboration with The Channel 46, Dr Apurva Satish Amarnath, Fertility Consultant, Nova IVF Fertility, offers advice on lifestyle habits that you should fix to improve your chances of conception.
1. Weight Gain
Becoming obese can affect both genders’ reproductive potential. In women, weight gain causes hormone imbalance, further inhibiting normal ovulation and leading to irregular menstruation. Furthermore, an overweight woman is more likely to experience PCOS, PCOD, and miscarriage. Obese males also suffer from low testosterone levels, decreasing their sex drive. Therefore, it is essential to maintain a healthy weight by eating healthy and following a regular exercise routine.
Cigarettes contain nicotine that ages a woman’s ovaries and damages the quantity and quality of eggs. In men, nicotine affects the movement, production, and structure of sperm in men. Some ways to help quit smoking are nicotine replacement therapy, prescription medication, and individual and group behavioural support.
3. Drinking Alcohol
Consuming alcohol can reduce a woman’s ovarian reserves and a man’s semen volume and sperm count. It also causes risks for the foetus during pregnancy. Therefore, women and men wanting to conceive should avoid alcohol to prevent its effects.
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Lack of sleep affects reproductive health. It leads to excess weight in both genders, which can cause ovulation problems and decrease testosterone levels. Nowadays, insomnia has become a common lifestyle problem. Hence, it is essential to create a night routine to help you stick to a sleep schedule. Staying away from electronic gadgets, especially phones, can help you sleep on time. Avoiding drinks such as caffeine and alcohol is also a must for a good night’s sleep.
Stress has become a part of everyone’s life, and while it may be difficult to avoid stress, one can take steps to manage it. Women trying to get pregnant should particularly take care of their mental well-being as it can eventually cause fertility problems. Trying activities such as yoga, meditation, listening to music, or massage are great ways to relieve day-to-day stress and anxiety.
Some people are dependent on caffeine to start their day. However, they might be unaware of its harmful impact on their fertility. Caffeine consumption increases the risk of miscarriages in pregnancy. Therefore, limiting caffeine intake as soon as a couple wishes to try to get pregnant is recommended. People who rely on caffeine to get energy should focus on getting sufficient sleep. They can also replace caffeine with herbal tea.
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7. Hormonal Imbalance
Hormonal imbalances are a significant risk factor for fertility problems. They are typically caused due to stress, lack of sleep, or even medical conditions such as thyroid. The treatment for hormonal imbalance is treating the root cause of the problem.
8. Sweet Food
Eating sweet food in excess can lead to serious health problems such as obesity, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and even cancer, which cause infertility. Therefore, eating a healthy diet that includes whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and other foods that boost fertility is necessary.
Exercising regularly is essential for couples trying to conceive. It not only promotes weight loss but also helps to relieve stress. However, over-exercising can cause issues with ovulation due to the suppression of reproductive hormones. Aim for 150 minutes of moderate activity per week.
10. Sexually Transmitted Infections
STIs often cause infertility. Moreover, untreated STDs are the leading cause of tubal factor infertility. Individuals with multiple sexual partners should get tested for STDs regularly to have a safe pregnancy. Some pregnancy risks of STIs include premature birth, low birth weight, pelvic inflammatory disease, miscarriage, and stillbirth.
- If you are finding it difficult to conceive for more than a year, you need to evaluate your lifestyle and inculcate positive habits to improve your chances of conceiving
- Weight gain among both women and men is one of the most prominent factors that impede the chances of pregnancy
- Nicotine in cigarettes adversely affects the chances of conception among both men and women.
- Apart from reducing a woman’s ovarian reserves and a man’s semen volume and sperm count, alcohol consumption increases risks to the foetus during pregnancy.
- Lack of sleep can affect reproductive health by causing ovulation problems among women and decreasing testosterone levels in men.
- Taking care of mental well-being is essential as it can eventually cause fertility problems.
- It is recommended that you limit caffeine intake as soon as you wish to try to get pregnant.
- Hormonal imbalances arising as a result of stress, lack of sleep, or even medical conditions such as thyroid are yet another factor contributing to infertility.
- Eating sweet foods in excessive quantities causes obesity, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and even cancer, apart from infertility.
- Following a regular fitness routine is important as it promotes weight loss and also helps to relieve stress.
- Untreated STDs are the leading cause of tubal factor infertility.
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