Saturday, June 9, 2012

Boosting your fertility when you're an old duck

So, I promised a post on boosting fertility over a year ago. Now that I am starting to plan for BB2 it is a good time for me to revisit what I learnt before.

I suppose I should write a disclaimer before I begin. I am not a doctor, I don't have scientific proof as to whether any of what I am about to write will boost fertility - these are just things I read about and tried. I have no proof of cause and effect - but I got pregnant on the second month of trying. It would be nice to do the same again.

I guess the journey really began in about 2003 when I was diagnosed with PCOS. I read some literature that a doctor recommended, learned a little about insulin resistance and looked at my diet. I had been vegetarian for about 25 years at this stage of my life so my animals fats were low, but I could see how I had been compensating for this in my diet with carbohydrates. So, I began to eat a better diet, lower in carbs.  Two books that really helped with this were The PCOS Diet  (I don't own a copy of this and I can't be sure which one of the many available on the market that I read), and a great recipe book, Turn Over an New Leaf , which I do own and still love!). 

I got results I think. I didn't get a second scan to show the cysts, but I did have other tests in 2007 that suggested I had normal fertility.

When I started seriously thinking about becoming a Choice Mum to the point where I thought I might give it a try, I bought Sarah Dobbyn's Fertility Diet. I would totally recommend this book to anyone trying to conceive. It kick started a lot of things for me. It tells you things to avoid - and yes there is the expected drinking alcohol and smoking, but Sarah has also researched into many foods - who would have thought that peas were a contraceptive!!! She also lists fertility foods and drinks too, and herbs...

Sarah's book was the first place where I read that growth hormone is linked to fertility, and that fasting is a way to boost growth hormone. She also talks about the need to detox and cleanse your body. As a result of this book, I called in at Samui Detox for a 10 day fasting detox on my way from Australia to the UK when I relocated. Samui Detox is a place I would highly recommend too. I came away from there feeling sooo much healthier. Few people to choose to take a holiday where they will fast and cleanse and detox, in fact to most people a holiday is about over indulging on everything, but if you want a truly rejuvenating break, try this! I liked it so much I went back for another week at Easter 2010 for a second detox, just 7 days this time, and also to focus on the SMC choice one more time just to be sure, this time with the knowledge that Donor Daddy was available.

Obviously, I decided to go for it.

I then looked in to herbs that Sarah recommended, and having read about them all with my own body in mind, I chose to take Dong Quai, Chasteberry and Wild Yam.

I also consulted a Chinese Doctor. My situation was a very new one to him, but he was supportive. Having looked at my tongue and taken my pulse, he said, "I give you good eggs." I didn't really understand what he was doing or what my potential problem could have been until much later, when I read of other people's infertility issues. Until I started with him I ovulated on day 9, meaning my eggs could have been immature. After two months my ovulation had moved to day 14, and then day 16. I guess he helped!

I got pregnant on that second cycle on which I ovulated on day 16.

So, that was last time. When I was young and free and single, and had some spare cash.  This time I am a single mum on a tight budget. So what can I do?

My action plan is to:

Avoid (or limit as much as possible)
Alcohol
Aspartame
Caffeine
Fried food
GM food
Junk food
Meat
Peas
Rhubarb
Soya
Sugar
Tonic Water

Fast
Carry out one or two short one day fasts at home. Evidence suggests that even a 24 hour fast can significantly boost hGH

Detox
Avoid things above, drink more water, nettle tea, and take my Vital Greens.
If I am brave enough, after a fasting day and lots of cleansing teas, a salt water flush and a liver flush

Exercise
I have been regularly working out for over 30 mins a day on my Wii. I plan to keep this up, improve if possible.

Lose weight
Losing between 5 and 10% of your body weight is also supposed to help. I am trying!

When will I begin?
Well, now I guess - but I'll ease myself in. I have started on the vital greens,  and I am about to have a cup of nettle tea, but there is an open bottle of wine in the fridge that I can't see wasted. I'd like to try a short fast in the next couple of weeks, if I can find a day when we have nothing on. I need to slowly wean myself off caffeine, and since having BB I eat more sugar than ever before, so I will be working on reducing that too. I might read Sarah Dobbyn's book again too if I get a chance, just to get me all inspired!

I'll keep you posted!

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