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5 all natural tips to increase the chances of getting pregnant

1. Diet & Supplements

  1. Diet: Optimal nutrition is very important in conception. One of the comprehensive study to date looking at diet and  fertility is the Harvard Nurses’ Health Study which followed 20,000 women in a long-term research study. The study found that women who ate in a certain way has increased their fertility up to six fold. The study found that the women with the highest fertility ate low glycemic index (GI) whole food diet. “fertility diet” according to the study:
    1. Whole grains and other unrefined carbs rather than highly refined carbs that quick boost blood sugar and insulin
    2. Eat more vegetable protein like beans and nuts
    3. Avoid trans fats that are found in many commercial foods and fast foods. 
    4. Take a multivitamin with folic acid and B vitamins. 
    5. If overweight, lose 5-10 percent of your body weight
  2. Supplements: Prenatal supplements that include Folic acid, B vitamins, Vitamin C and D, omega 3 fatty acids, antioxidants like COQ10 and minerals like Zinc, Iron and Iodine are recommended

2. Weight

Weight: A BMI of 20-25 is associated with higher pregnancy and lower miscarriage rates than those above or below this range. A combination of a healthy diet mentioned above, daily exercise, stress management and adequate sleep can help balance the hormones to help with weight loss and vitality. In our clinic in addition to acupuncture, we work on balancing the 3 hormones that are associated with fat storage: cortisol, insulin and estrogen. When the hormone is balanced in addition to a proper diet and exercise, the body will be more efficient at losing weight. 

Tips on managing these 3 fat storing hormonesCortisol: A stress hormone produced in the adrenal glands. High cortisol levels are associated with the craving of sweets and with the storage of fat in the belly region. 

      1. Stress reduction
      2. Pain management
    1. Insulin: Produced by the pancreas, it helps us manage blood sugar by storing excess blood sugar into our body.
      1.  An average American eats about 150 pounds of sugar per year. Being mindful of what you eat is key here.
    2. Estrogen: It is an important hormone for sexual and reproductive development. However in excess, it can lead to an imbalance that can lead to weight gain, headaches, insomnia, mood swings, and irregular menstruation to name a few.  Often overlooked are xenoestrogens, a foreign type of estrogen, that causes estrogen dominance. These type of hormonal disruptors are often found in: pesticides, insecticides, heavy metals, preservatives, medications, plastics, creams and etc.
      1. We help our clients by advising them to be mindful of what the foods they  consume, and the products they apply on their skin.  We prescribe herbs to detox the liver and do acupuncture  to improve the organs function by improving blood flow and circulation.
      2. Be mindful of what you eat and put on your skin starting today.Acupressure points to improve digestive function

3. Alcohol and Caffeine

  1. Caffeine: High caffeine intake is associated with infertility and increased miscarriage rates. Even moderate coffee intake (1-3) cups can reduce fertility. In general most studies indicate that consuming over 300mg of caffeine can lead to infertility problems. It is estimated that over 20% of Americans and Australians drink more than 350mg of caffeine daily. If you are a coffee drinker and is having trouble getting pregnant, switch to a low-caffeine variety of teas. 
  2. Alcohol: Women metabolize alcohol much less efficiently than men and there are evidence to suggest that even moderate drinking (5 or few glasses per week) can reduce estrogen levels and delay conception. If you are having trouble conceiving, decrease alcohol consumption or  find a non alcoholic alternative. I recommend Kombucha to my clients!

4. Sleep

Even though the connection with sleep and infertility is not completely understood; however, it is recognized that the quality and quantity of your sleep influences sex hormones, sperm production, ovulation, immune factors, weight gain, mood and stress levels. With that said, here are some easy and natural ways to improve your sleep. 

1. Turn off your phone

In today’s society, we are almost surgically attached to our phones, iPads, laptops, etc. And while the devices keep us informed and connected, they are also harm us when it comes to our sleep.  Smartphones and other gadgets emit blue wavelengths. These wavelengths suppress the production of melatonin in our bodies. Melatonin is a natural hormone that makes you feel sleepy. Also, the light given off by your devices can actually stimulate the mind, thus causing poor sleep. So as hard as it may be, buy a regular alarm clock and turn off the phone.

2. Keep a sleep schedule

Sleep is just as important to proper health as eating healthy-wholesome foods. In other words, make sleep a priority. You don’t have to give up dinner with friends or that periodic concert, but staying out late every single night will eventually take its toll. Make a sleep schedule and do your best to stick to it.  Lack of sleep has been proven to increase blood pressure, depression, weight gain and stress. Why do this to yourself when you don’t have to? Once you set your sleep schedule, your body will react favorably.

3. Meditation

How many of us groan when we hear the word “meditation”? Meditation really isn’t difficult but people constantly tell themselves it can’t be done because they can’t shut off their minds. But what most people don’t realize is the goal of meditation is not turning off your mind or your thoughts. Meditation helps you cope better while telling your sympathetic nervous system to relax. When the thoughts come in, you should acknowledge them but do not dwell on them. That’s what meditation helps you do. And there are many different types of meditation. For beginners, guided meditation tends to work best because you are listening to somebody guide you through the journey. Why not give it a try? 

4.  Bedtime Yoga

Yoga is an ancient Indian practice that combines physical exercise, mental clarity and spiritual beliefs all rolled into one discipline. Bedtime yoga poses are very low-key and quite simple. Utilizing yoga just before going to bed can signal to your brain that slumber time is approaching. Poses such as forward bends, happy baby pose, cross-legged bends and corpse pose all have been shown to help the body prepare for restful sleep. Also for those who are a little more skilled, inversion poses like shoulder stands can help alleviate stress and calm the mind.

5. Nutrition

Besides avoiding caffeine before bed or all together, we advice some of our clients to avoid foods that contain tyramine. Tyramine increases the release of the brain stimulant epinephrine. Foods with high tyramine content include: bacon, cheese, chocolate, eggplant, ham, potatoes, sugar, sausage, spinach and tomatoes. 

In our clinic, each formula to treat insomnia is custom made for each individual for best results. Here are some Chinese nutritional tips that are safe and effective for some minor sleep impediments. 

  • For insomnia with restlessness and emotional instability: make a tea of wheat bran, licorice root and dates. Drink three times daily until symptoms are improved. 
  • For insomnia by itself: boil mulberry tea and drink 1/2 cup before bedtime 
  • For insomnia with anxiety: toast 1/4 cup amaranth in the oven until slightly brown, remove and steep in a cup of hot water for five minutes and sip for immediate relief of anxiety or before bedtime for insomnia.  

There are many other ways to fight insomnia too, but these are some of the best. Give these five methods a try and then focus on the ones that resonate with you. Over time, your body and mind will thank you and there won’t be any harsh side effects…just good sound sleep. Sweet dreams!

5. Stress

The effect of stress on infertility is not very well understood in western medicine; however, some specialist like the ones in Harvard Medical School, implied that stress has been implicated in ovulation irregularities in women, and in men, emotional stress has been attributed to abnormal sperm development. 

In Chinese medicine, the effect of emotional stress or emotional imbalances in general has a clear effect on fertility. What  makes Chinese medicine special is that we are able to detect the subtle signs and symptoms that can contribute to infertility. Up to 30% of infertile couples are diagnosed with infertility with an unknown cause. Chinese medicine shines in these types of scenarios because we understand how factors like long-term stress and long-term emotional imbalances contribute to infertility.

Tips to manage stress:

  1. Regular exercise: Not only is regular exercise amazing to keep your body in shape, exercising produces endorphins that helps with sleep and stress management. These type of excercise has been shown to help with stress management:
    1. Yoga, tai chi, pilates, and even a regular jog around the block will do.  
  2. Normal sleep patterns has been shown to help a person manage stress better.
  3. Meditation: You don’t have to be a seasoned meditator to reap the benefits of meditation. Start with a few minutes daily and gradually increase the time you are meditating. There are many different types of meditations out there.
  4. Diet:
    1. Stress can deplete the body of calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, vitamins B and E. Make sure to eat foods that help replenish those. 
    2. Limit the intake of caffeine and alcohol. Drink herbal teas like chamomile instead. 
    3. Limit the consumption of highly processed foods.
    4. Follow a fertility favorable diet like the one mentioned above.

I hope that you find these 5 natural tips helpful!

I am super thankful to have helped countless of couples conceive with the help of acupuncture and Chinese medicine. If you are interested in working with us, we have an introduction offer of 3 acupuncture treatments and and initial consultation for just 149$ (this is an amazing deal!). You will also receive:

  • How to eat according to your body type according to Chinese medicine.
  • More natural tips on fertility.
  • Chinese medicine diagnosis to help determine what may be causing infertility
  • You will learn about subtle signs  and symptoms that your body is telling you that you might not be aware of. 
Call/Text us at (707)407-5829 or email us if you have any questions. I look forward to working with you.

In health,

Dr. Emil Velasquez, L.Ac, DAOM

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About Emil Bonn Velasquez

Dr. Emil Velasquez has a Doctoral Degree in Oriental Medicine and is a licensed Acupuncturist in the state of California. He is board certified in fertility and has helped many couples conceive naturally. His other clinical focus is treating neuromuscular pain disorders and emotional imbalances.

Emil Velasquez started Malaya Acupuncture & Wellness Center in Oakland, California with a vision to help promote  wellness via the use of Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine in his community.

During his free time, he loves being active: he likes to do capoeira, a Brazilian form of martial arts, hiking with his dog Nami, reading books on positive psychology, and is constantly taking health seminars to expand his knowledge about health and medicine.

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