Do Certain Foods Help to Conceive?

QUESTION

Dear Nutritionist,
I was wondering if there are certain foods and vitamins to help conceive. I have two healthy boys. After having my boys I was on birth control for two years. First I tried the pill and that got me sick then I went on the shot for about 9 months and then took my self off the shot to try the patch so that I could get pregnant right away when were ready. The patch only lasted a day because it got me really sick. I took it off the second day.

I have had a regular period for two months now and have been off the shot since September of 2004. What would be your advice to help us have a baby sooner?

ANSWER

Nutritionally just ensure you are eating a healthy well-balanced diet. If you are trying to get pregnant you should be getting at least 400 mcg of folic acid daily. You may want to talk to your OB/GYN about starting a prenatal supplement to ensure you are getting all the nutrients you need for a healthy pregnancy.

Think about other lifestyle habits also, such as smoking and alcohol intake, which may both affect fertility.There are no certain foods or vitamins that help you to get pregnant but it does help to take care of yourself and adopt healthy lifestyle habits! Just be patient!

Keep in mind that each month you try to conceive your chances of getting pregnant are only 10-20% so you have to give it time and be patient. Your chances decline slightly as you get older. If you feel there is a problem or you have no success after 6-12 months (depending on your age) you should speak with your doctor or seek the help of a fertility specialist.

Good luck,
-- Kimberly, RD LD

Kimberly Tessmer

Kimberly A. Tessmer, RD LD has been a registered dietitian since 1992 and is also an Ohio licensed Dietitian. Her educational achievements include a Bachelor of Science in Technology (Dietetics) from Bowling State University in Bowling Green, OH. She currently owns and operates a consulting business called "Nutrition Focus" www.nutrifocus.net, in which she specializes and offers services in the areas of weight management, general nutrition, authoring, menu development and a variety of other services.

To date Kim has authored three books including "The Everything® Nutrition Book", "Tell Me What To Eat If I Have Celiac Disease", and "The Everything® Pregnancy Nutrition Book". In addition, Kim has written numerous articles for various health/nutrition web sites and magazines including Bally Total Fitness Magazine, Well and Healthy Women Magazine and Healthology.com, Inc as well as continuing education courses for www.care2learn.com. She is a member of the American Dietetic Association and the ADA Practice Group, Nutrition Entrepreneurs.