Things that make you feel Tired or Sluggish

photo courtesy of madamenoire.com

photo courtesy of madamenoire.com

Fatigue is certainly a common symptom of pregnancy, but if you know you are not pregnant and are feeling unusually sluggish anyway, you may be uncertain what to do.  First and foremost, if you are not feeling well, it is important to contact your physician and schedule an appointment.  While discussing things with your doctor, he or she may bring up some of the following common causes of fatigue.

1)      Dehydration– The average adult human body is comprised of 50-65% water, and this liquid is vital to keeping things functioning as they should.  Moderate dehydration can actually result in a loss of three percent of your total body weight, which can make you feel lightheaded as well as impact your ability to concentrate.

2)      Cell Phones and Tablets– Technology has made it so simple for us to check our e-mail, perform a quick internet search, or watch a funny video anytime of the day or night. However, you should consider keeping your bedroom a gadget-free zone.  Using your cell phone or tablet before bed increases your brain activity, making it more difficult to fall asleep. Once you are asleep, these very same gadgets could wake you up again with their ringing and beeping.

3)      Medication– Be sure to bring a full list of the medications and herbal supplements you are taking, along with their dosages, to your appointment.  Your doctor can let you know if any of them have the side effect of decreasing your energy level.

4)      Gym Habits– Working out has the benefit of reducing the amount of cortisol, a stress-producing hormone, in your body.  However, if you perform aerobic exercise for too long, your body will actually ramp up cortisol production instead.

5)      Iron Intake– In order for oxygen to move around your body efficiently and eliminate waste from your cells, you need at least 18 milligrams of iron per day.  Without it, you can develop what is known as iron deficiency anemia, which manifests itself through fatigue.

Are You Really Infertile?

trying hard to get preg

photo courtesy of justmommies.com

Are you really infertile?  A February 2012 survey from the Guttmacher Institute found that 19% of women ages 18-29 believed they were very likely to be infertile, when in reality, this is only true of 6% of women in that age group.  From a physician’s perspective, infertility is typically diagnosed when a couple attempting to become pregnant is unable to do so after a minimum of one year of trying.  While the word “infertility” carries a heavy connotation of permanence, this is not necessarily so, as 90% of all infertility has an identifiable physical cause.

In consultation with your physician, there are many healthy and natural avenues to pursue to fight against an infertility diagnosis.  First and foremost, you can work to achieve a healthy body weight.  Research conducted at Harvard Medical School indicates 40% of ovulation failures are caused by being over or underweight.  They advise that a body fat percentage and body mass index in the 20-25 range are optimal for pregnancy.  However, you should go about obtaining this the right way, through healthy eating and moderate exercise.  Research shows that women who skip meals and engaging in intense exercise have trouble conceiving, because both of these activities put stress on the body and suppress hormone surges.

Next, consider alternative medicine.  Chiropractic adjustments can stabilize your autonomic nervous system, which allows your reproductive organs to function optimally.  These adjustments can also impact your pituitary gland, balance hormones, and correct imbalance in the muscles of your pelvic floor.  If you are feeling more adventurous, acupuncture treatments are known to improve ovarian function, regulate ovulation and reproduction hormones, and increase blood flow to the endometrium, producing a thick uterine lining.  Finally, abdominal massage can help restore your uterus to its proper position, break up scar tissue around the uterus and other abdominal organs, and increase blood flow and lymph drainage in your pelvic area.

 

Sources:

http://www.justmommies.com/articles/trying-too-hard.shtml

http://health.usnews.com/usnews/health/articles/070429/7infertility.htm

http://newbeginningschiropractic.net/fighting-infertility-naturally/

photo courtesy of justmommies.com

Foods that Boost Fertility in Women

Plenty of detailed information exists on what pregnant women should and should not ingest. However, when you are trying to conceive, the guidelines are less clear.   Read on to learn more about great foods to eat when you are trying to become pregnant.

  • Plant-Based Proteins– A study of 19,000 women conducted at the Harvard School of Health uncovered that women with a high intake of animal proteins were 39% more likely to be infertile that those with a diet higher in plant protein.  Examples of plant proteins you can add to your plate are beans, edamame, nuts, tofu, and lentils.
  • Whole Milk Products– The aforementioned study also found that one to two servings daily of whole milk or products containing this ingredient can protect you from ovulatory infertility.  However, this only applies to whole milk; skim and low-fat milk can have the opposite effect.  (The lower fat milk products have a higher amount of lactose so if you are able to tolerate it at all, the best bet would be organic whole milk products. The other thought would be soy milk but that is still a hot topic in the food world and it is said that it negatively affects fertility.)

vegetables food boost infertility

  • Leafy Green Vegetables– Dark leafy greens such as romaine lettuce, spinach, broccoli, and arugula contain high levels of folate, a B vitamin found to improve ovulation.
  • Foods High in Iron–  Studies show that women regularly taking a non-heme iron supplement were 40% less likely to have difficulty conceiving than those who do not.  One great example of a plant-based product high in non-heme iron is pumpkin seeds.
  • Complex Carbohydrates– Complex carbohydrates take longer to digest than refined carbohydrates, and therefore help keep your blood sugar and insulin levels stable.  This is important because women with high blood sugar and/or high insulin levels are 50% less likely to become pregnant within a six month time frame than those with stable levels.  When you are trying to conceive, choose dark bread, brown rice, and whole wheat pasta over their counterparts.
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids–  Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids help regulate your reproductive hormones, as well as increase the blood flow to your reproductive organs.  Salmon is an excellent source of this.  (However, not all fish is. When you are trying to conceive, you should avoid swordfish, shark, tilefish, and king mackerel.)

What Women Can Do to Increase Their Fertility

Are you trying to become pregnant and frustrated because it hasn’t happened yet?  Physicians state that if you are under 35 and having unprotected sex 2-3 times per week, there is no need to worry until you have tried for one year without conceiving. If you are over 35, the window is 3-6 months.  Regardless, when you are attempting to become pregnant, every month that goes by may seem like an eternity.  Luckily, there are some things you can do to boost your likelihood of getting pregnant.

Natural-Help-for-Infertility

  • Watch your diet and exercise.  Studies have shown that being overweight or underweight can impede a woman trying to conceive.  In one study of 2,112 pregnant women, it was found that women who had a body mass index (BMI) of 25-39 (considered obese) prior to pregnancy took twice as long to conceive as women who had a BMI in the normal range (18.5-24.9).  For underweight women with a BMI of less than 19, it took four times as long to conceive.
  • Cut back on caffeine and alcohol.  If you drink coffee, soda, or other caffeinated beverages, you are advised to stay in the range of 200-250 milligrams of caffeine per day.  Ingesting caffeine at around 500 milligrams per day is associated with lower fertility. If you drink alcohol, moderation is very important.  Studies have shown that women drinking two alcoholic beverages per day lower their fertility by 60%!
  • Read the label on your lubricant.  Because you are having sex more frequently, you may find yourself in need of a lubricant.  Be sure to check the label and verify you are not inadvertently using one that contains a spermicide.  Additionally, research has found that many commercial water-based lubricants can inhibit sperm motility.  Doctors actually recommend the use of canola oil or peanut oil instead in a pinch.

How Does My Life Affect My Lady-Comp?

ovulation-monitorLife happens – often unexpectedly. But, an interruption in your normal life does not necessarily mean your Lady-Comp is interrupted. That’s one of the many great things about Lady-Comp. It adjusts to you personally and easily fits into your lifestyle. Check out the info below for answers to questions many women have about the reliability of Lady-Comp under unexpected circumstances. Continue reading

Simple, Natural Ways Women Can Increase Their Fertility

ovulation-monitorYou are ready to have a baby.  You have a great partner, you’re financially stable, you’ve located a day care center right in your neighborhood, and you’ve even thought of names.  Your mental checklist is complete, but what about your physical one?  Did you know there are ways to improve your fertility through taking care of your physical health? Continue reading

How to Decrease Stress to Increase Fertility

Couples struggling with fertility issues have heard the saying a million times: “Relax. It’ll happen.” That may seem like a great idea, but relaxing isn’t always easy. Stress is a part of our body’s fight-or-flight mechanism. It raises adrenaline levels and increases heart rate, respiration, and blood pressure. Sometimes stress can be positive. It can initiate change, help us focus on the task at hand, and in some cases save our lives. Yet, when stress builds up, it can actually keep us from concentrating, cause illness and inhibit fertility. Here are a few ideas on to how bring your stress levels down.

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Top 6 Tips for Conceiving in 2012

Everyone is making New Year’s resolutions this season. If you’re thinking about having a family in 2012, here are our top 6 suggestions for women trying to conceive.

Get your health in order. Before you get pregnant, get a checkup. Have your pap smear done, and get tested for infectious diseases and hereditary disorders that can affect a baby. Whatever has been on your heath and dental check list, take care of it before you get pregnant. Also, make sure your partner is in good health and takes his health seriously, too. Continue reading

Enhancing Male Fertility

male-fertilityInfertility has traditionally been thought of as a woman’s issue. But since men are 50% of the initial pregnancy equation, it’s no surprise men cause or contribute to infertility in about half of all cases. What can a man do to maximize his fertility? Remember, anything that improves quality of health, like adequate sleep and nutrition, should improve fertility. Continue reading

Using Vitamin B-6 to Help Fertility

fertility monitor    Salmon is rich in Vitamin B-6.

Vitamin B-6 can play a critical role in fertility.  It can be especially helpful for dealing with the condition of luteal phase defect. Luteal phase defect (LPD) causes the menstrual cycle to be shortened to less than 10 days. Therefore, the uterine lining does not mature properly. As a result, the fertilized egg does not implant or the woman is not able to maintain a pregnancy.
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