Food and fertility: The facts to know

Food and fertility: What you need to know

Take a look at these helpful nutritional tips that could help you get that positive result.

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If you're trying to conceive, we've got some helpful nutritional tips from Isabelle Obert, Fertility Nutritionist from Nurture Me.

What's the theory behind eating well and fertility?

Studies are now beginning to show how the health of both the sperm and the egg before they even meet can affect the outcome of the pregnancy and the health of the baby, child and even through to adulthood.

What foods are best fertility boosters?

Good quality protein foods, particularly including plant proteins are very important for fertility, so include fish, chicken, eggs and plenty of nuts, seeds and pulses. Antioxidants are essential for optimising fertility – think colour! Try and include the colours of the rainbow every couple of days ... beetroot, butternut squash, tomatoes, watercress, asparagus. If you can tolerate dairy then full fat dairy products can also be very helpful.

What foods should absolutely be avoided?

Stay off soft drinks, particularly diet drinks – in fact avoid low fat foods where possible as they are often laden with chemicals. Foods containing trans fats can also adversely affect fertility, avoid commercially baked goods, fried foods and snacks and margarines.

What are the latest rules of drinking alcohol when trying to conceive?

Current recommendations are that women trying to conceive should avoid alcohol altogether. If they choose to drink then it should be one to two units once or twice a week and to avoid drinking to excess.

Can you give us a typical day's menu that could help fertility?

Breakfast: Two poached eggs on wholemeal toast with grilled tomatoes

Snack: Piece of fruit with a palmful of almonds

Lunch: Mixed salad including watercress and spinach, beetroot, avocado and sprinkled with feta cheese and chopped walnuts and fresh mint. Dress with olive oil, balsamic vinegar and some grainy mustard.

Snack: Carrots dipped into houmous

Dinner: Baked salmon with roasted cherry tomatoes, sweet potato wedges and steamed broccoli. Finish with a small fruit salad and some Greek yoghurt with a sprinkling of pumpkin seeds.

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