Diet and the Reproductive System


Fit to Be a Mom? How Exercise Affects Your Fertility
Your doctor can order a variety of blood tests to check for vitamin B deficiency. Your doctor will find out how severe the deficiency is as well as the likelihood of long-term problems caused by the lack of nutrients. Present to your audience. Intrinsic factor is a transport protein secreted by the stomach cells. The symptoms of a nutritional deficiency depend on which nutrient the body lacks. According to WHO , evidence does support the importance of calcium with vitamin D for bone health in older populations.

What causes infertility?

Nutritional Deficiencies (Malnutrition)

If you have too many fat cells, there's a good change you'll have too much estrogen floating around in your system. While many women want to be lean, it's important to remember that having some body fat is healthy and necessary to keep your body running. Staying Active Intro The type of diet that one consumes will ultimately affect how their body functions. Eating a well-balanced diet and maintaining a healthy body weight are the best tools for regulating hormones associated with the reproductive sytem and preventing any problems from occuring.

In terms of nutrition for females, what you eat or fail to eat regularely can increase or decrease your chances of getting pregnant, worsen your PMS symptoms and possibly disrupt your menstrual cycle. Overview- Importance of Staying Healthy Staying healthy can be achieved by maintaining a low calorie diet with many vegetables, fruits, whole grains and some proteins, as well as staying active. Too many calories leads to weight gain which leads to problems with conceiving a child.

Although, insufficient calorie intake and deficiencies in specific nutrients can also lead to impaired fertility, pregnancy-related problems and developmental abnormalities in babies born to malnourished mothers. Baby Boomers effect on Society Society presentation.

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Michelle Jarc, 36, a teacher in Cleveland, got the same message from her doctor after she suffered a miscarriage and tried unsuccessfully for nine months to conceive again. Although her weight put her in the normal BMI range, she was having irregular menstrual cycles. Her doctor, who suspected that Michelle wasn't producing enough estrogen, put her on Clomid a prescription drug that induces ovulation and advised her to cut back on her workouts and, for good measure, gain a few pounds.

I was obsessed with being fit and maintaining my figure. But having a child became more of a priority," Michelle says. So she cut her twice-daily exercise routine to just one to minute-a-day workout and stopped worrying about what she ate. After that, conceiving was a cinch. Today Michelle has four kids — a 5-year-old daughter, a 3-year-old son, and month-old twin boys — and is back to her prepregnancy weight and competing in 5Ks again.

Yet for sedentary women the subtle physiological changes that come from increasing exercise can benefit their odds of conceiving. Exercise improves metabolism and circulation, both of which contribute to better egg production. Regular activity also optimizes your reproductive system by stimulating the endocrine glands, which secrete hormones that help eggs grow. Plus, getting your sweat on is a known stress reliever — a good thing, because stress significantly decreased the probability of conception in one study.

All those fertility-boosting benefits could help explain why some women find a bun in the oven shortly after stepping up their exercise routine. A doctor originally put the odds for Jennifer Marshall, 30, a marketing manager in Cincinnati with reproductive complications, to get pregnant at only 0. Fast-forward through seven years of tests, surgeries, and many artificial insemination attempts: Yet eight weeks into P90X — a home DVD-based workout and nutrition program that she started because she was bored with her less intense walking and biking sessions — she found herself staring at a plus sign on a pregnancy-test stick.

Whether exercise was the ultimate catalyst, Jennifer's docs can't say. But the new routine, which helped her lower her weight to at 5 feet 8 inches, she'd previously fluctuated between and , was all that had changed recently. She gave birth to a healthy baby girl this past March. The default stance — mostly because there have been no controlled studies of exercise in women who are trying to get pregnant naturally — is that normal-weight women should work out at the "public health" dosage of minutes weekly, says Sheila Dugan, MD, chair of the American College of Sports Medicine's Strategic Health Initiative on Women, Sport, and Physical Activity.

That translates to 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity you break a sweat and are winded but can still speak in short phrases five days a week. Under- or overweight women should seek evaluation from a certified fitness professional, like an exercise physiologist or trainer, to tailor a program based on their energy input and output, Dr.

Some specialists are going beyond this generic mandate. There is no need to give up your regular runs or, say, Zumba classes. Just keep your workouts to an hour or less a day.

If your cycle is irregular or you haven't conceived after a few months, cut back further on exercise. Also, this isn't the time to train for your first competitive event or start a rigorous gym class. Aim for 2, to 3, calories a day to gain the weight that will get you into the normal BMI range, or body fat above 12 percent. If you're exercising five or more days a week, consider cutting back to three. Trim calories and gradually up your exercise to reach a fertility-friendly BMI. Aim for 60 minutes of cardio five days a week, and strength-train for 30 minutes three times a week.

You probably already know you should stop drinking if you think you could be pregnant. Drinking during the early stages of pregnancy and possibly even before conception has been linked to premature births.

As for whether it's safe to drink later in pregnancy, the jury's still out. Many doctors say a small amount of alcohol is OK, but the CDC and Surgeon General say it's best not to indulge since there is no proof that it's not harmful to the baby.

Breastfeeding It's a myth that you can't get pregnant while breastfeeding, but at the same time, it's true that women who are still nursing one child may have trouble conceiving another one. Otherwise, it may be better to wait at least a year and a half before having another child, anyway: Thing is, you can overdo it: It's not just an issue that affects very thin athletes, either. A study published in Fertility and Sterility found that normal-weight women who exercised vigorously for more than five hours a week had a harder time getting pregnant.

The most obvious sign of a potential problem is a change in menstrual cycle, says Dr. Injectable birth control Once you stop taking most forms of hormonal birth control, you can get pregnant within a month, says Dr. Depo-Provera, the injectable birth control. Doctors recommend women stop using injectable birth control several months before they hope to get pregnant. Schlaff, "but subclinical, undiagnosed hypothyroidism is certainly a recognized problem as well, and we know it can have subtle effects on fertility without a woman knowing it.

Caffeine If you're addicted to venti lattes, some studies suggest you may have trouble getting pregnant. A study from the Nevada School of Medicine found that caffeine interferes with the muscle contractions that help eggs travel from the ovaries and through the fallopian tubes to the womb, while a Danish study revealed that drinking five or more cups of coffee a day may cut a woman's chances of successful in vitro fertilization by half.

That said, other studies suggest caffeine plays no role in fertility. Medical conditions Health issues such as polycystic ovary syndrome, endometriosis, and uterine fibroids can affect a woman's chances of getting pregnant or successfully carrying a pregnancy to term. Women with autoimmune disorders such as lupus or rheumatoid arthritis may also have trouble conceiving, since their bodies may reject a fertilized egg or attack her partner's sperm.

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