Here it is! Everything you need to know to about what to eat for fertility, whilst #ttc and preparing for pregnancy. There is so much confusing, contradictory and down-right incorrect information out there, that I thought it about time we put something together that was easy to follow and doesn’t require weighing and measuring food or counting calories. (Having said that, I will give some simple calorie advice to!). Whilst this is not specifically designed as a weight loss diet, many healthy conception dietary guidelines are the same, and sustainable weight loss may be a bonus! I have also included my top 14 essential nutrients that should be included in your prenatal, fertility & breastfeeding supplement.
This is the user friendly what, why, where from and how much guide for fertility.
“Healthy babies come from healthy parents. Let’s give your baby the best start possible”.
One of the most common questions I get asked when from my beautiful women when trying to conceive it “How many calories should I be eating to improve my fertility?” This is dependent on many factors including current weight and amount of exercise. I don’t love measuring food intake by calories (it is very ‘dietetics’), but a simple answer is about 2000 calories daily. Now, many of you will already be eating less than this, say around 1500 calories, whilst around 1200 calories is commonly recommended for rapid weight loss. If you have a healthy BMI, feel satisfied, and have plenty of energy on 1500 calories, then stick with it.
Body Mass Index (BMI), like calories, is another measurement I am not a fan of, but it is universally understood, so I’m using it here for understanding. For conception, a healthy BMI is 18-24 and should be achievable with an intake of 1500-2000 calories daily. Personally, I think 1200 calories is just too little for healthy conception. However, if obesity is an issue (BMI more than 30), then weight loss on 1200 calories prior to conception may be a good idea.
Don’t: Drink alcohol, caffeine, soft-drink. Smoke. Do drugs. Eat refined carbs, sugar, artificial sweeteners, gluten, low-fat products.
Do: Drink filtered water daily. Choose nutrient dense organic, fresh fruit and vegetables, and free range, organic chicken and eggs. Grass-fed meat. Local and seasonal produce where possible. Visit your local farmers market.
- Red meat- maximum 300g per week ( 2x 150g servings)
- Eggs- 1-2 daily
- Salmon- 150-180g, twice per week
- 5-7 cups leafy green veg daily
- 1/2 – 1 avocado daily
- 2 tablespoons oil, 1-2 times daily, including coconut/ flaxseed / olive / sesame oil
- 2 pieces fruit daily
For more information on my top 12 Fertility Foods click here
Addictions: Quit caffeine, sugar, alcohol, cigarettes, drugs. Thats all
Exercise: My best advice here is keep doing what you have always done! Once you are pregnant, you may need to reduce the intensity of your exercise.
If you do not exercise, then during preconception is a good time to start. Aim for raising your heart rate for 30 minutes 5 times per week. This can mean a fast walk or a slow jog, where you are still able to maintain a conversation.
Fertility yoga: My other recommendation is daily Mindful Pregnancy Yoga. I am currently undertaking this training and will soon be able to teach you (by June 2018!)