I. Understanding Egg Quality Importance
The commencement of the 9-month-long pregnancy journey depends not only on the release of an egg by the ovaries but also on its quality. Egg quality is the ability of an egg to transform into an embryo after fertilization. A good quality or regular egg has the proper number of chromosomes and adequate energy source to develop into a full-grown baby in the womb.
If the egg does not meet any of these conditions, then phenomena like frequent miscarriages, failed IVF cycles, and several other problems in conceiving are likely to occur. Poor quality or abnormal eggs are one of the major causes of female infertility.
A. Impact on Pregnancy and IVF
A successful pregnancy is directly related to egg quality.
Think of it this way, say you want to plant an apple tree. You have a garden with fertile soil, a good water supply, and favourable weather conditions. You have two groups of seeds that are of different quality. The first group contains good-quality seeds, and the other contains poor-quality seeds. But there is a condition that you can’t change the seeds.
Over a while, good-quality seed will grow into a healthy plant and finally become a large tree. At the same time, the other plant may die out in the initial stages due to the poor quality of the seeds.
Likewise, good-quality eggs will result in good-quality embryos. Further, these healthy embryos will get implanted in the uterus and carry your pregnancy to term.
Can you change or reverse the quality of the eggs in your ovaries? The answer is a plain No. Is there something you can do about the quality of your eggs? Look out for ways to enhance the health of your existing eggs.
II. Factors Influencing Egg Quality
Fertility experts have argued that egg quality is majorly dependent on a woman’s age, genetics, and environmental factors. Nobody can control factors like age and genetics. That is why it is impossible to change the egg quality or replace the damaged eggs, but one can work to keep the existing ones.
A. Age and Lifestyle
As a woman ages, the number, as well as the egg quality, witnesses a decline. There is no method or treatment to stop this natural phenomenon.
The decline in egg quality becomes even more pronounced around age 35. Another significant decline in ovarian reserve is witnessed around age 45.
It is a scientifically cemented fact that lifestyle does hamper your fertility. However, lifestyle should be addressed by couples in their fertility journey. Following is a list of lifestyle choices that might be causing hurdles in your not-so-smooth conception journey.
- No or less physical activity
- Consumption of alcohol
- Too much stress
- Disturbed sleep cycle
- Wrong diet
- Excessive caffeine intake
B. Environmental Considerations-:
It might shock some people, but pollution can hinder the quality of a woman’s eggs. Some experts say that medicines used to cure illness also have the potential to decline egg quality. Apart from these, exposure to chemicals like lead can also hamper egg quality.
III. Enhancing Egg Quality Strategies
You can stick to specific strategies to enhance egg quality and embark on your parental journey as soon as possible.
A. Healthy Lifestyle Choices-:
A healthy lifestyle paves the way for a healthy pregnancy. It goes a long way in keeping your reproductive system healthy.
Healthy lifestyle choices, according to fertility specialists, can be summed up in the following checklist-:
- Quit smoking
- Say no to alcohol
- Stay active
- Keep stress at bay
- Get plenty of sleep
- Maintain a healthy BMI
- Say bye to drugs
- Consume a balanced and nutritious diet
- Have a robust support system
B. Nutritional Supplements-:
Depending on the couple’s specific needs, various nutritional supplements can be taken to prepare the body for conception.
- Folic acid
This B vitamin has a significant positive impact on conception. Moreover, folic acid helps prevent congenital disabilities of the brain and spine.
Natural Sources of Folic Acid-:
- Whole grains
- Green Leafy
- Vegetables and legumes.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are healthy fats that help strike a balance between reproductive hormones. Besides this, these fats help regulate menstruation and implantation.
Natural Sources of Omega-3
- Tuna or sardines
- Fish Oil and Algal Oil.
CoQ10 is a powerful natural antioxidant that improves ovarian response. It also prevents the eggs from oxidative damage.
Natural Sources of CoQ10-:
- Fish and Meat.
Avoid self-prescription, as it may do more harm than good.
It is a sincere request that you always consult a fertility expert before taking nutritional supplements to boost fertility.
C. Mind-Body Practices-:
Understanding the connection between mind and body leads to a more profound sense of self-awareness and mindfulness. It helps deal with the changes you undergo before and during pregnancy. The best mind-body practices include massage therapy, meditation, deep breathing techniques, yoga, and general relaxation body movements.
D. Fertility Treatments-:
Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) has helped millions of infertile couples around the globe to welcome home their little bundle of happiness. Many options are available for people struggling with infertility based on their issues and medical conditions.
- In-vitro Fertilisation (IVF)– In this medical procedure, the eggs are taken out on a petri dish, and the quality can be tested. The good-quality eggs are then fertilized and implanted in the uterus.
- Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI)– In this procedure, the sperm is directly injected into the egg. With the help of ICSI, the number of fertilized eggs can be increased. It can only be performed when the male partner has no fertility issues.
IV. Nutritional Support for Egg Quality
The role of nutrition in fertility can’t be emphasized enough. The food you put inside your body can make or break your pregnancy dream.
A. Superfoods and Antioxidants-: Taking plenty of fertility superfoods and dietary antioxidants can help boost egg quality.
The Best Superfoods to Take Care of Egg Quality are:
- Beans and lentils
- Egg yolks
- Sweet potatoes
Are you looking for the best antioxidants for fertility? Well, eat that fruit!
Apples, oranges, pomegranates, grapes, kiwi, and grapefruit are loaded with the goodness of antioxidant properties.
B. Anti-Inflammatory Diet-:
It might look like a fancy word for an expensive diet, but it’s not! All vegetables and fruits have pro-anti-inflammatory properties.
You can design your anti-inflammatory diet with a colourful bowl of grains, healthy fats, fruits, and vegetables. Here’s what you can include:
- Vegetables like garlic (rich in selenium), spinach, carrot, onions, mushrooms, radish, cauliflower, broccoli, and cabbage.
- Be friends with berries like blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries.
- Treat yourself to a tropical fruit like banana, pineapple, and mango.
- Citrus fruits like orange and grapefruit work wonders.
- Dates, nuts, and seeds, including almonds, walnuts, chestnuts, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds.
- Whole grains range from barley, wheat, oats, whole rye, brown rice, and millet.
- Avocados, coconut oil, and cold-pressed olive oil are rich sources of healthy fats.
- Don’t forget to drink adequate glasses of water!
Foods containing excessive sugars, saturated fats, junk food, and highly processed food trigger inflammation in the body. The body releases a hormone called cortisol which hampers fertility. So, make sure you avoid such foods to maintain the health of your eggs and improve your chances of getting pregnant.
V. Wellness for Improved Egg Quality
A healthy mind supports a healthy body. Reread this line! The nutritious diet you are consuming, all the supplements you are taking, and the treatment you are undergoing will work more efficiently if your mind is at peace.
A. Stress Management-: Stress is one of the biggest enemies of ovulation. Too much stress can trigger the production of cortisol and prolactin. These stress hormones delay egg production by the ovaries, disrupting ovulation and fertilization. So, it becomes vital to manage mental strain.
Some of the best ways to keep your stress levels in check include meditation, breathing exercises, yoga, journaling, and listening to music.
Some of the yoga asanas that assist with managing stress and conception include -:
- Surya Namaskar
- Nadi Shodhan Pranayama
- Janu Shirasana
- Baddha Konasana
- Bhramari Pranayama
Regular practice of these asanas helps tackle mental and emotional strain but also helps stimulate the ovaries. There is an increase in the blood flow to the pelvic region. Also, these fertility asanas prepare your body for a healthy pregnancy.
B. Sleep and Exercise Benefits-:
It is proven that sleep is the best medicine. Trillions of body cells repair when you are sleeping. When this medicine is armed with the right exercises, it can bring promising transformation in your journey. Exercises like fertility yoga asanas, walking, swimming, pilates, or strength training can be incorporated into your daily routine.
These will help with stress and a good night’s sleep and help maintain a healthy BMI. If you are obese, then chances are it is going to hinder your fertility in some or the other way.
VII. Conclusion: Your Path to Enhanced Egg Quality
Take it with a pinch of salt, but you can not stop the decline of your egg count and the quality of your eggs. However, you can implement particular lifestyle and dietary changes that can be a game changer for your journey to achieve a healthy pregnancy. Remember to stay positive while trying to get those two pink lines on the pregnancy test kit.
We at Imprimis IVF never recommend taking supplements to boost fertility without consulting an IVF doctor. Seek medical expertise before making any changes in your diet or lifestyle to enhance egg quality.
Why Imprimis IVF for infertility treatment?
Our clients and we know what we at Imprimis can offer, from state-of-the-art facilities to affordable treatment with promising outcomes. Our results speak for us! Please pay a visit to our clinic and see for yourself.