Zita West: How to get pregnant and have the best possible pregnancy
Unfortunately, getting pregnant may seem like an impossible task for some, with 1 in 6 people in the UK struggling with fertility issues. This can lead to stress and emotional issues for many, making the chances of getting pregnant slimmer.
It’s always hard when you are trying month after month for a baby, and it isn’t happening. It takes on average eight to twelve months to conceive. Still, it is important to look at the whole range of factors that might be affecting things across every aspect of your life.
The “fairy godmother” of fertility Zita West gives her advice on how to get pregnant and have the best possible pregnancy ahead of her seminar at The Fertility Show.
• Take a break – find time to do things that distract you and make you relaxed, going away is great but not possible for all. Although it takes discipline and time to practise relaxation techniques they are worth doing to help relieve tension, especially when you consider how much the stress hormones in the body effect fertility.
• Reassess your lifestyle -both of you need to balance your work and make time for each other. Cut out the cigarettes and alcohol, as this will deplete your body of vital nutrients needed for fertility and cut out antioxidants. Do some exercise, at least three times a week, if your body feels better, so does your mind. Exercise can help with increasing circulation and reducing anxiety – all of which is helpful if you’re trying for a baby.
• Have lots of sex – this may seem like an obvious one, but the amount of sex you have improves your chances of conceiving. You don’t have to have sex every day as sperm survives for up to 7 days, every other day is best to allow fresh sperm to build up giving the egg more chance of fertilisation.
• Don’t over think it – don’t obsess about when you are ovulating because conception can happen outside the cycle pattern. When you start over-thinking the number of days for how long sperm can survive and how long your egg is available (about a day), it's very easy to let the calendar consume when you conceive, and unintentionally add unneeded stress to the situation.
• Good vibes – getting a good night’s sleep is important as feeling tired can increase your stress levels. Having a strong mind-body connection can have a positive and powerful influence on your chances at conception so creating your own Positive Mind Plan (http://www.zitawest.com/your-own-positive-mind-plan-for-pregnancy/) can help you feel more relaxed and in control of your situation.
• Give your fertile odds a nutritional boost – whether you are pregnant or trying to conceive getting enough zinc or folic acid is essential for your body needs. Zinc makes sure that the sperm produced is good quality and it also helps to reduce the risk of miscarriage. Omega 3 and vitamin D are also great for keeping your body healthy during pregnancy.
• Feed your fertility – being underweight or overweight can affect your fertility because of the stress it puts on your whole body and the fact that your energy levels are lowered. Avoid caffeine through tea, coffee or fizzy drinks as this can lower a man’s sperm count. You don’t have to be afraid of fats but know which are the good ones, such as oily fish. Iron-rich and folate-rich foods are fantastic for boosting your fertility, such as eggs, green vegetables and baked beans.
Zita West will be speaking at The Fertility Show Manchester 25th March 10.30am