And if you are going to pay up to $10,000 for the Reproductive Endocrinologist and up to $5,000 for the fertility drugs, wouldn't you want to invest a small amount of time, money and effort beforehand to get the most of the IVF cycle?
It Is Possible to Be Successful After Only One IVF CycleHow?
It takes approximately 120 days for your eggs to mature from their primordial form (the form you were born with). Also, the new batch of sperm generates in 120 days.
What you eat and drink and get exposed to during those 120 days before the egg retrieval and sperm collection impacts the quality of your eggs and sperm.
I know your doctor probably told you that there is nothing you can do about improving your egg and sperm quality. He or she is right, provided you change nothing in your lifestyle and diet. It that's the case, no change will be possible.
But, as numerous studies show (including those from Harvard University) if you make some small changes to your diet and lifestyle and you ensure that you get adequate amounts of specific nutrients found in the seminal and follicular fluids -- you can greatly influence the strength and resilience of your eggs and sperm.
A Soap Bubble or a Balloon?To make this more visual, I'd like you to picture a soap bubble and a balloon. Between the two, which one is sturdier and is more likely to survive for longer?
The reason why the balloon is stronger is that the material it's made of is sturdier.
A Trillion CellsYour body with its trillions of cells is busily creating new and repairing old cells. To do this efficiently, it uses building blocks in the form of nutrients, protein, fats and carbohydrates.
Egg and sperm cells are mainly made of protein and fat. But not just any fat. The body uses fats to build your egg and sperm cells. If you eat fast food, food rich in saturated fats and trans fats, that's what your body will use.
Those fats are not what makes up healthy eggs and sperm cells. You need healthy fatty acids in the form of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, like omegas 3 and 6.
But good fats and nutrients such as zinc, selenium, iron, vitamin E, vitamin D, calcium, are not the only factors needed for improved egg and sperm quality.
To increase your IVF success rate you also need to avoid toxic substances that can harm the delicate egg and sperm cells.
Surprisingly, chemicals used in day-to-day products can decrease your egg and sperm quantity and quality. Sadly, most of your household cleaning and personal care products (ex. toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo) may decrease your IVF success rate.
How Do They Do This?
- Your skin absorbs some of these chemicals. Sometimes, you inhale or ingest them. Once in your body, they behave like estrogen increasing your risk of endometriosis, PCOS, thyroid problems and poor sperm quality.
- If your fragile endocrine system comes out of balance, all your hormones get slightly skewed. As they are all dependent on each other, by putting just one hormone out of its normal range makes a mess. It's like a cascade, a domino effect.
- Other chemicals act as free radicals in the body and damage the sensitive egg and sperm membranes and their DNA. Once the egg and sperm DNA is damaged, the embryo will not be able to survive and thrive. This is because all of the embryo's cells now carry the same DNA damage.
And This Is so Crucial for You to UnderstandThe DNA your single egg and your husband's one sperm donate at the time of conception will form ALL of your baby's cells! If that DNA is even slightly damaged, all of your baby's cells will carry that damage. This makes him/her more prone to malformations and decreasing his/her chance of survival.
Poor Egg and Sperm Quality Is the Number One Cause of a Low IVF Success RateAnd this is something you have control over in this process which seems so out of your control. It's empowering to know that you can improve your odds of IVF success rate by improving your egg and sperm quality for just 120 days before egg retrieval and sperm collection. Isn't that great?
Pregnancy really starts 120 days before conception. That's why preparing for it properly is a tremendous gift you can offer to your child. As preconception care also increases your IVF success rate, it is definitely priceless!
What are your thoughts? Would you like to optimize your egg and your husband's sperm health before IVF? Would you be willing to make those small adjustments for such a fantastic reward?
I'd love to hear your thoughts, and as always I'm right here for you if you've got any questions and if you'd like to know more about how you can prepare for IVF and increase your IVF success rate. Let me help you.
Gaskins, A. J., & Chavarro, J. E. (2018). Diet and fertility: a review. American journal of obstetrics and gynecology, 218(4), 379-389. Retrieved from: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28844822-diet-and-fertility-a-review/