How Your Diet Affects Your Reproductive Success

At least 6 million people of reproductive age in the US (that's 7.4% of the population) are struggling with infertility. For many in this group, the cause of that infertility remains somewhat mysterious, only adding to the frustration. Meanwhile, we continue eating processed foods, living stationary life styles, and enjoying all the other perks of the modern world. But our reproductive systems didn't evolve in an environment where vegetables came in cans and "work" meant sitting at a desk for eight hours a day. Actually, our bodies adapted to a vastly different environment many thousands of years ago, where fresh vegetables and meat made up the bulk of our diet.

That's why some health practitioners are starting to back the notion that what you eat effects your reproductive success. There's data to support it too: In a recent (2009) study of 223 women who were unable to conceive, 23 % of women had vitamin deficiencies (specifically, Vitamin B12). If you think about it, the correlation between diet and reproductive success is not that surprising. females have to support a fetus for nine months; a body won't take on that task until it knows it has the proper nourishment.

Iron, Vitamin E, B Vitamins, Vitamin D, and amino acids DHA and EPA are all crucial to prepping the body for conception. But don't run to the supplement store just yet. Many supplements are made with cheap fillers and low-quality ingredients, despite whatever dramatic claims might be on the bottle. The best way to prep your body for pregnancy is to eat nutrient-rich foods. Think: egg yolks, salmon and other fish, grass-fed beef, organic meats and vegetables, etc. To make it simple: eat Paleo! Your body will thank you and it can only help your chances of conceiving.