I thought I’d compile a list of all the things I’ve been told or have read over the last 6 years or so that are meant to help all us couples trying to conceive, in short old wives tales, but there are also some good bits of information in here too that may actually have some effect on your ability to conceive…
Relax: “just relax and it’ll happen” – funnily enough this always comes from a smug, only took 5 minutes to get knocked up person. How the heck can you relax when you’ve been ttc for so long, and anybody in the same situation will never utter the word “relax” because they know it doesn’t happen no matter how hard you try.
Pillow under the bum: after doing the deed, whilst you’re laying there in post coital bliss, ladies get your other half to pop a pillow or two under your bottom for 15 minutes, this supposedly helps to keep the swimmers in and helps them on their journey. Alternatively lay back and hold your legs in the air, try to refrain from doing any cycling exercises though!! Whichever one you choose, do try to remain lying down for at least 15 minutes after sex, unless you suffer from urine infections and/or have been advised by a Dr to use the bathroom straight after.
Saliva: this isn’t good for conception in that saliva apparently kills sperm! Who knows if this is true, our fertility Consultant certainly never mentioned anything, but to be on the safe side whilst enjoying some foreplay use a sperm friendly lubricant such as Conceive Plus, Zestica or Preseed. KY Jelly is a no no as it’s too thick meaning the sperm can’t swim through it very well. A more organic alternative to shop bought lubricants would be to use raw egg white, yep that’s honestly another one I’ve heard about, but I’m not sure any woman in her right mind would want eggs around her nether regions!!
Honey: Honey has been a fertility booster for centuries, it’s believed that ancient Egyptians offered honey to the God of Fertility, and it is known as the ultimate food of love. Eating honey mixed with cinnamon will boost the blood to the reproductive organs, helping to improve them ready for conception to take place.
Grapefruit juice: If you can stand the taste, drink this from the day AF arrives up to ov. Grapefruit juice is meant to increase the amount of ewcm the body produces, and ewcm is needed to help get the swimmers to the right place. ~ I tried this for a couple of cycles but it didn’t do anything for me. However, I now no longer mind the taste of grapefruit, well pink grapefruit at least!
Brazil nuts: 5-a-day of these nuts throughout your cycle will apparently help to thicken the lining of the uterus, and a thick womb lining is better for implantation. Brazil nuts are a good source of selenium which is good for sperm motility and quality, they also contain vitamin E which is also good for sperm, apparently protecting them from free radical damage. ~ I love Brazil nuts so have been trying this one out this cycle, although I was quite a way through before I found out about them.
Pineapple: Pineapple contains bromelain, specifically the core, and bromelain is meant to increase blood flow to the uterus and aid implantation. The core should be divided into 5 equal portions, and one portion consumed each day for 5 days beginning the day after ovulation. Consuming pineapple too early in the cycle could alter the PH level of cervical mucus, making it more acidic which isn’t good for sperm. Note: Pineapple juice, the fleshy part of the pineapple, and large doses of pineapple are not recommended whilst TTC or pregnant as it can cause uterine contractions.
Maca (capsules): Maca is a fertility superfood from Peru, it comes in capsule or powder form, unless you’re lucky enough to live where it’s grown and have access to the plants. For women it helps to balance hormones and increase egg health, for men it helps increase the quantity and quality of sperm. ~ I tried Maca a year or so ago but found no matter when I took the capsules I’d end up feeling nauseaus so I stopped them. However, my dh now takes them, and whether they are helping his swimmers or not is a mystery!
Almonds & Walnuts: these nuts are rich in healthy oils, selenium, zinc, and vitamin E that can increase sperm and egg quality. ~ Have started eating more of these this cycle.
Hazelnuts: these are a healthy snack great for regulating blood sugar and insulin, but in ancient times it was believed that hazelnuts were so effective at increasing fertility that as well as eating them, carrying them in your pockets was enough to increase your chances of conceiving.
Pumpkin & Sunflower seeds: these are great for male fertility as they contain high levels of zinc which is vital for the male reproductive system. ~ Lucky for me my husband likes both pumpkin and sunflower seeds and snacks on them regularly.
Rosemary: wear a pouch of fresh rosemary around you neck each time you have sex, and then place the pouch under the bed when you are in labour to help ease labour pains.
Crystals/Stones: Moonstone is said to regulate the menstrual cycle, balance the emotions and aid nurturing. Rose Quartz is for love and fertility. Both are said to help promote a healthy pregnancy. Smokey Quartz increases fertility and balances sexual energy. Place the stones under your pillow at night, and during the day carry the stones with you.
A hot shower can reduce fertility: for women no it can’t as everything is going on inside the body. For men there’s a possibility that too hot a shower could have an effect on the sperm in the testes.
Don’t have a bath between ovulation and AF as the water may enter your uterus and wash the baby away. ~ Hmm who makes this stuff up!
Rub the belly of a Buddha or fertility Goddess.
Place a female statue somewhere visible in your bedroom.
Place a pair of yellow booties under your pillow.