I once visited a moms’ forum and one of the most common questions asked by TTC (Try To Conceive) women is whether prenatal vitamins really boost your chances of conceiving. This topic was interesting and after reading a number of funny comments and arguments from desperate women, I decided to conduct an in-depth study on the matter to determine the relationship between prenatal vitamins and pregnancy.
Do Prenatal Vitamins Help You Conceive?
After conducting my research, I finally realized that prenatal vitamins can’t make you conceive but they do play a key role in boosting the chances. What happens with these multivitamins is that they boost your overall health through the introduction of various ingredients such as iodine, zinc, calcium and nutrients. A combination of these ingredients and eating a balanced diet increases a woman’s chances of conceiving.
According to most doctors and medical professionals, women should start taking prenatal vitamins at least three months before conceiving. During the three months, women should take multivitamins rich in Omega-3s, Folic Acid and Vitamins to increase the chances of fertility while preparing the womb for the nine-month task of carrying the pregnancy. This approach is highly recommended, as it is among the finest of ways to prepare yourself to become a mom in the future.
Now, when a woman is preparing to conceive, there are those healthy foods that doctors prescribe as well as those that doctors recommend you to stop taking. In this part, we will highlight some of those foods you’re required to consume and those you’re supposed to avoid to maintain healthy living during pregnancy.
What to avoid when planning to conceive
According to American Society of Reproduction Medicine, women who smoke cigarettes have fewer chances of conceiving as compared to non-smokers. Smoking affects a woman’s eggs making them less fertile while exposing them to genetic abnormalities. Women who smoke a lot suffer the risk of experiencing miscarriages and ectopic pregnancies. On the other hand, men who smoke a lot suffer the risk of experiencing low sperm count which again causes infertility.
Too much caffeine
Okay, you have to relax here because I believe most people are wondering if am serious or just joking. Too much caffeine can actually cause infertility and during pregnancy, it can compromise the uptake of iron which can cause pregnancy problems. Women shouldn’t take more than 200 milligrams of caffeine when preparing to conceive or during pregnancy.
Another common habit that can cause infertility is drinking too much or being a (DDO) Daily Drinking Officer. According to studies, taking too much alcohol leads to irregular periods and abnormal estrogen which can make it hard when trying to conceive.
What you need to consume when preparing to conceive
When you’re preparing to conceive, you need to consume foods rich in minerals such as Iron, Calcium and Zinc. Zinc is among the widely known ingredients that boost fertility in women. Zinc aids in proper cell division and increases the level of reproductive hormones to all women. Iron is another useful ingredient that increases the level of hemoglobin needed for conception. Lack of enough iron in the body causes an-ovulation which leads to poor development of the embryo.
According to the American Pregnancy Association, women who have achieved the child bearing stage should consume at list 400 micrograms of folic acid a day. Recognized as a B-complex vitamin, folic acid is essential in creation of red blood cells, making extra blood required during pregnancy and aiding in the synthesis of DNA and RNA found in eggs and sperms.
There are various types of vitamins found in prenatal vitamins such as B12, B6, D, C, and E. starting with Vitamin D, studies have revealed that vitamin D boosts the formation of sex hormones and the stimulation of estrogen and progesterone which causes sperm viability thus increasing chances of fertility.
Vitamin C is another crucial ingredient in boosting fertility. According to studies, vitamin C allows women to achieve regular monthly cycles while lowering luteal defects (a condition that causes infertility).
Vitamin E, also known as alpha-tocopherol (meaning alpha=offspring, phero=bear) is another highly beneficial vitamin required for fertility. In men, vitamin E improves sperm quality while in women, it prepares the cervical mucosa to support sperms required for pregnancy.
Finally as we conclude, allow me to mention that there are two more vitamins—B6 and B12—that aid in boosting fertility and increasing chances of conception.
While there are various types of prenatal vitamins available in the market today, it’s a good idea to visit your family doctor to check your health history before advising you on what to take.
Lastly, it takes two healthy bodies to develop a healthy baby. This basically means that both parents can take prenatal vitamins and avoid alcohol and smoking to increase the odds of conceiving.