As a woman, your reproductive timeline is complex. A normal female has about one to two million eggs at birth and she cannot make new eggs by puberty; she has only about 300,000 although she only needs max 400-500 eggs for a lifetime. You are most fertile in your 20s; menstrual irregularity often starts six to seven years before menopause, when your menstrual cycle shortens, and infertility rises as your egg count decreases. As you become older, it takes longer to get pregnant. Your odds of getting pregnant can be as high as 71 per cent if you’re under 30 and just 41 per cent if you’re over 36. Additionally impacted are the likelihood of getting pregnant and being able to keep a pregnancy going.

Your fertility decreases dramatically throughout your 30s and 40s overall. A lot of things are beyond your control and cannot be changed. However, modifiable lifestyle choices and behaviours have a major influence on general health and well-being, including fertility. We refer to these elements as lifestyle factors. Additionally, several factors, such as age at which to have a family, diet, weight, exercise, psychological stress, exposure to the environment and the workplace, and others, can significantly affect fertility.

Your capacity to conceive may be impacted by your lifestyle choices. While many aspects of life are not modifiable, lifestyles may be changed. You can increase your fertility if you’re trying to conceive. Even though some health conditions that interfere with fertility may not be within your control, your lifestyle decisions can impact your ability to conceive. Many lifestyle factors such as the age at which to start a family, nutrition, weight, exercise, psychological stress, environmental, and occupational exposures, and others can have substantial effects on fertility, while others such as preventative care may be beneficial.

Fertility is the capacity of a woman to conceive a biological child. You may begin to question your fertility if you and your partner have been having regular, unprotected sex and you have not been successful in becoming pregnant after at least a year (six months if you are over 35). Female reproductive troubles can be caused by a variety of medical conditions. Ovulation abnormalities, which impact the release of eggs from the ovaries, are among them.

These include hormonal disorders such as polycystic ovary syndrome, and thyroid problems (hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism). Others include uterine or cervical abnormalities, such as polyps or fibroids in the uterus; fallopian tube damage or blockage, which is often caused by pelvic inflammatory disease, and endometriosis, which occurs when tissue that normally lines the inside of the uterus grows outside the uterus.

There are also primary ovarian insufficiency (early menopause), which occurs when the ovaries stop working and menstruation stops before age 40, and pelvic adhesions – bands of scar tissue that bind organs after pelvic infection, appendicitis, or abdominal or pelvic surgery.

Age is another factor. It’s possible that delaying pregnancy will make it less likely that you’ll get pregnant. It becomes more difficult to conceive as you age since your eggs’ number and quality decrease. What then can you do as a woman to increase your fertility? Quite a lot to be precise. Choosing a healthy lifestyle can help increase fertility. Establish routines, such as maintaining a healthy weight. Normal ovulation may be inhibited by being extremely underweight or overweight.

When starting a family in your 40s
What you eat matters when you’re trying to conceive
Prevent illnesses spread through sex. For women, gonorrhoea and Chlamydia infections are among the most common causes of infertility.

Steer clear of the night shift if you can. Frequent night employment may increase the risk of infertility through potential disruptions to hormone production. When you’re not working, make an effort to obtain adequate sleep if you work the night shift. While stress won’t keep you from getting pregnant, consider minimising stress and practicing healthy coping methods – such as relaxation techniques – when you’re trying to conceive.

Healthy lifestyle choices count. Avoid smoking, it ages your ovaries and depletes your eggs prematurely. If you smoke, get help to quit. Limit the amount of alcohol you drink. Heavy drinking is associated with an increased risk of ovulation disorders. If you’re trying to get pregnant, consider avoiding alcohol completely. While your fertility may not be affected by caffeine intake below 200 milligrams a day, consider limiting your intake to one or two moderate cups of coffee a day.

Be wary of over-exercise. Yes, too much vigorous physical activity can inhibit ovulation and reduce production of the hormone progesterone. If you have a healthy weight and you’re thinking of becoming pregnant soon, consider limiting vigorous physical activity to less than five hours a week.

Your diet may ultimately affect your fertility, particularly ovulation. Eating a healthy and varied diet may be a key part of maintaining good overall health. However, there are certain vitamins and food groups that could have a greater impact on reproductive health than others, so select carefully.

It has been shown that selecting trans-fats in the diet over monounsaturated fats significantly raises the risk of ovulatory infertility. There is a correlation between consuming trans-fats rather than carbohydrates and an increased risk of ovulatory dysfunction of 73 per cent.

If you’re thinking about becoming pregnant and you’re concerned about the impact of your lifestyle choices on your fertility, consult your health care provider to help you identify ways to improve your fertility and boost your chances.



Dr Abayomi Ajayi @ Punch Newspaper

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