Body

My Fertility Food Guide: The diet plan that helped balance my hormones

October 22, 2016

After two failed IVF cycles, I worked with Aina Zhang, a TMI specialist at Clinique Sinocare in Montreal. She gave me a lot of hope and reassured me that it was possible to boost my fertility naturally in order to greatly improve my chances of a successful IVF cycle.

After analyzing my situation, Aina concluded that my liver was begging for a much needed detox. I learned that lifestyle habits like diet, stress and the environment affect detox organs like our kidneys and liver. This puts a burden on baby making fundamentals like our hormones, ovulation and egg quality.

We know that everything in the body is connected, yet when something isn’t running smoothly, we tend to zoom in on the problem instead of taking a whole-body approach. Whether you are trying to get pregnant naturally or using assisted reproductive technology, I strongly believe that eating healthy can be extremely beneficial in helping to boost fertility.

Along with weekly acupuncture sessions and Chinese herbs, Aina put me on a diet to improve my liver function in order to cleanse my body, balance my hormones, improve my egg quality, and finally, ensure a healthy pregnancy. She told me to work with her for at least three months before continuing with fertility treatments. I ended up working with her for five months, and during that time my cycles became clock-work and my skin completely cleared up. But more importantly, my next IVF cycle was successful and for the first time, I found myself pregnant.

I want to share my fertility food guide, because I believe it was an important factor that contributed to my healthy pregnancy. 

*Please note that this diet plan was tailored for my needs by a professional who assessed my symptoms and put me on a personalized plan that focused on cleansing my liver in order to improve my fertility. I followed a nutrient dense diet by eating cleansing foods and avoiding foods that were hard on the liver. This diet worked well for me, however I encourage you to work with a professional to find a plan best suited for you.

FUEL UP ON:

  • Warm Lemon Water 
    • Drink warm lemon water often throughout the day (aka at least 3 times a day, especially first thing in the morning) to cleanse the body and help remove toxins
    • Simply boil some water and squeeze fresh lemon juice in your cup or add a few cut-up slices
    • Or for extra flavor, click here to check out my fav cleansing tea 
    • Also drink as much water as possible throughout the day
  • Dark Leafy Greens (ex: kale, spinach, arugula, dandelion)
  • A variety of veggies & fruits
  • Healthy Grains (ex: quinoa, millet, buckwheat & brown rice)
  • Beans & Lentils
  • Nuts & Seeds (ex: flax, chia, hemp, pumpkin, sunflower)
  • Healthy Oils 
    • Use better-for you oils. Good options include: avocado oil for cooking/sautéing, coconut oil for baking, and olive oil for salad dressings and roasting
  • Poultry, Eggs & Fish

Additional notes:

  • Minimize pesticides exposure
    • Wash all produce and choosing organic whenever possible
  • Drink drinks/foods warm 
    • In Chinese medicine, there is a big emphasis on ingesting warm liquids and food. As explained to me, the body has a much easier time digesting warm liquids and food because they are already at their optimal temperature. When you eat or drink cold, the body has to work extra hard at warming everything up which can slow down organ function and lower the immune system.
    • Whenever possible, make sure food and beverages are warm, or at least not straight out of the fridge.

LAY LOW ON:

  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine 
  • Sugar – Replace with natural sweeteners like honey, maple syrup and apple sauce
  • Dairy Products – Replace milk with unsweetened almond milk in recipes
  • Processed foods – Eat whole foods instead of pre-packaged foods as often as possible
  • Red meat – okay on occasion

If you have any questions on my fertility food guide, feel free to message on the comments below or contact me here.

Peace. Love. And baby dust.

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