Fertility

Folate vs. Folic Acid When Trying to Conceive

Eloise Edington  |   31 Jan 2021


Pomegranate for female fertility (& male factor too)

Following a fertility diet can be such a big part of the trying to conceive journey.

Leading up to our personal IVF treatment, we added a lot of pomegranate juice to our TTC (trying to conceive) fertility diet, so we’re keen to hear if it can help increase natural conception and IVF success rates. So we’ve asked our partner Nutritional Therapist, Kirsten Oddy, for the 101 on pomegranate fertility benefits. Can pomegranate boost fertility and is it really a fertility superfood?

Words by Kirsten Oddy, Registered Nutritional Therapist, UK

kirstenoddy.com | @kirstenoddynutrition

Over to Kirsten

Pomegranate is a fruit that has been long associated with fertility. Traditionally in many cultures pomegranates are the symbol of fertility and abundance due to its many seeds and are often gifted as presents to newlyweds – but is there any truth to this tradition, can pomegranates boost fertility?

Pomegranate Fertility Benefits for Men & Women

Pomegranates are rich in antioxidants and it is these antioxidant properties which have been shown to benefit both male and female fertility.

In women, the antioxidant properties found in pomegranates could increase blood flow to the uterus and promote healthy uterine lining for implantation.

Related Article – IVF – What to Do If You Have a Thin Womb Lining

In men, these antioxidants could improve sperm health, concentration and motility.

As well as being antioxidant rich, pomegranates include some important vitamins, especially vitamin C and vitamin E, as well as folic acid – all of which are beneficial when trying to conceive and for a healthy pregnancy.

Related Article – Fertility Specialists – Why Vitamin D is Vital for Immunity and Fertility

pomegranate-fertility

Should I Eat Pomegranate to Boost Fertility?

Unfortunately there is very little scientific evidence to substantiate these claims directly related to pomegranates. However, as we know pomegranates are rich in antioxidants and that antioxidants could be beneficial for fertility, this implies there could be some advantages of incorporating this fruit into your diet when you’re trying to conceive.

Antioxidants protect our cells from free radical damage which can not only be caused by our day-to-day bodily functions, but also from processed foods, excessive alcohol consumption, air pollution and cigarette smoke.

Related Article – Male Infertility – Calling all Fathers-In-Waiting – Everything You Need to Know about Male Factor Fertility by Clinica Tambre

Taking a dual approach is key to minimise exposure to these toxins in your lifestyle and environment whilst also increasing antioxidants from foods such as pomegranates.

But pomegranates aren’t the only foods rich in antioxidants – antioxidants are also found in abundance in other foods such as:

  • Brightly coloured vegetables

  • Fruit and berries

  • Wholegrains

  • Green tea

  • Dark chocolate

Rather than focusing on one single food to boost your fertility, ensure you’re eating a well-balanced diet that includes a variety of nutrients and antioxidants whilst taking some targeted pre-natal supplements under the care of a fertility nutritionist.

Related Article – Caffeine and Fertility – Can Caffeine Affect Fertility?

How to Eat Pomegranates

There are many ways you can incorporate this fruit into your fertility diet whilst you’re trying to conceive – no matter your reason for eating them.

Though the white, pithy part is safe to eat, it’s bitter and most people choose to discard it – the seeds on the other hand are versatile, juicy and delicious.

Here are some simple ways you can enjoy pomegranate seeds:

  • Toss them into your salad

  • Sprinkle onto your porridge

  • Add them to smoothies or juices

  • Garnish your grilled or baked meats such as lamb tagine or chicken tray bake

  • Mixed into cous-cous or tabbouleh

  • Eat them fresh from the fruit

  • Drink 100% pomegranate juice

Store bought pomegranate juice often contains added sugars – and over consumption of sugar sweetened beverages has been linked to lower fertility for both men and women. In women with hormonal imbalances such as polycystic ovarian syndrome this added sugar will have even bigger consequences.

Read Article – Conception Help – How to Treat PCOS Naturally with Nutrition

pomegranate-fertility-recipe

In Summary

Whilst there may be no direct evidence pomegranates can boost your fertility, if it brings you some comfort to add them to your fertility diet, then by all means enjoy them in moderation.

Please note: Increasing your pomegranate consumption could interact with some statin drugs used for high blood pressure and cholesterol, as well as some blood thinners. You should consult with your GP if you are taking any of these medications before incorporating pomegranate into your diet.

Kirsten is offering our FHH Readers 10% off her nutritional programmes. Find out more and book here, quoting code ‘fertilityhelphub’.

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