Hey, I’m Erliza Lee. Today, I’ll be talking about the paleo diet for fertility. I’m kind of intrigued with this diet after I read about it online.
When it comes to diet, one of the biggest differences is the foods you can or cannot eat. This is particularly important when it comes to fertility.
Certain foods may negatively affect your chances of conceiving, so if you are trying to get pregnant, try to be as informed about which foods are harmful to pregnancy as possible!
Some foods that have been linked to infertility include:
- Red and processed meats
- Ultra-processed carbs
- Baked goods
- Sugary beverages
- High-fat dairy products
These foods should be limited to improve your reproductive health. Luckily, there are ways to achieve this on the paleo diet.
What is Paleo Diet for Fertility?
The paleo diet does not contain any of these food groups mentioned above, making it an ideal eating style for people looking to lose weight and maintain their healthy cholesterol levels.
Beyond these benefits, research has shown that the paleo diet may also help restore female hormonal balance, increase sex hormone production, and promote ovulation.
All of these contribute to better overall wellness during pregnancy!
Who is It for?
The classic or traditional way to eat paleolithic (or caveman) diets are designed for people who enjoy food, want to learn more about nutrition, and/or have health issues that require closer inspection of nutritional factors.
Paleo diets were created to treat disease; however, many people now use the diet as a fertility tool.
Many people begin eating paleo after watching one of the many TV show introductions of the diet. While these shows may seem entertaining and informative, some offer less-than-perfect advice including promoting potentially harmful products.
Some commercials feature ketogenic supplements like acid drops or bone broth, which are both unnecessary unless instructed by your doctor.
More common supplements such as probiotics are also often promoted without confirmation from experts.
Probiotic supplements are usually not needed if someone’s digestive system functions correctly, so before adding any to your regimen, discuss them with your GP or other healthcare professional.
Is It Hard to Follow?
Although the paleo diet has become very popular, it is not necessarily easy to follow if you are not used to eating lots of vegetables and protein.
If you are more accustomed to having bread with your lunch or dinner, then changing how you eat can be difficult at first!
The hardest part about the Paleo diet is probably going off carbs. Almost every food group contains some kind of carbohydrate, so limiting these could prove to be tough.
Many people begin to feel hungry all the time which makes it harder to keep up their diets.
Once they get used to eating enough nutrients, they can enjoy foods more than before and don’t suffer from nutritional deficiencies.
What Can You Eat?
The most important thing about the paleo diet is what you cannot eat. You do not need to worry about whether or not you will find enough food while eating this way!
Paleo foods are rich in nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and protein. Plus, they are usually just plain delicious!
Most people begin the paleo lifestyle by limiting themselves to these foods for two weeks.
After that time, women may experience menstrual changes (dizziness, cramping, heavier bleeding) as their bodies start to regulate hormones.
Men may notice thinner hair, slower growth of facial features, and lower levels of testosterone due to reduced intake of carbs.
After the initial two-week period, many people continue the diet on their own to see better results. It depends on how each person feels about the diet and individual needs.
Some people choose to stay on the diet for good because it has worked for them.
Does It Work?
The paleo diet is one of the most popular diets in America today. With its growing popularity, more and more people are talking about the benefits of the paleolithic diet.
Many claim that it can help you lose weight, improve your overall health, and restore hormonal balance to promote fertility.
Some studies even suggest that eating a paleo diet may be an effective treatment option for women with the polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), an issue where there is excess growth of immature follicles in the ovary.
However, not all experts agree that the paleo diet is appropriate for everyone’s health needs. Some warn that too much of a carnivorous (meat-eating) diet could potentially put stress on your heart or increase blood pressure.
Furthermore, some say that the saturated fat found in meat doesn’t have any nutritional value and instead may contribute to cardiovascular disease.
Unfortunately, many processed foods we eat contain significant amounts of both carbs and fats.
So while the paleo diet isn’t necessarily healthy for every person, it does offer us a way to achieve optimal wellness by limiting sugar and gluten intake and increasing consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables.
Does It Hurt?
Admittedly, giving up processed foods can be tough at times. If you notice your body is not feeling well while on the diet, give yourself grace and move on the next day!
There are many potential causes of low fertility aside from nutritional deficiencies. Many nutritionists agree that limiting sugar or eating more nutritious food does not necessarily help restore hormonal balance.
Biological processes cannot occur when hormones are in imbalance so it makes sense to address this factor first.
However, just because something may hinder hormone production does not mean it is without value. Certain vitamins like B6 and zinc play an important role in regulating hormones so making sure your body gets these nutrients can still have positive effects on fertility.
Some studies suggest that by adding certain fruits and vegetables into your diets, such as berries, kiwis, oranges, cucumbers, and spinach, you can increase levels of estrogen which could potentially reduce symptoms of infertility.
What are the risks?
Several studies show that people who eat a paleo diet achieve better pregnancy and birth outcomes than those who do not.
Researchers even found that women who ate a paleolithic (or pre-human) diet during early adulthood had higher levels of sex hormones later in life!
Furthermore, pregnant women who follow a paleo diet tend to give birth earlier due to weight loss. This can be particularly helpful if you struggle to lose weight as you go through your pregnancy.
It seems clear that choosing to eat less sugar, fewer carbs, and more nutrient-dense food can help anyone’s overall health, including fertility.
But if nutritional guidelines are too strict, then it could pose a problem for people who need their daily vitamins and minerals to survive.
For these reasons, I recommend a moderate approach to the Paleo diet for fertility. We suggest limiting carbohydrates to below 50 grams per day and limiting calories to below 2000 per day to see results.
Is it a diet I should try?
The Paleo diet was first coined in 2012 when blogger Loren Cordain published an article about how to lose weight using nutritional eating strategies that are matched to your genetic makeup.
Since then, people have made the diet their own by adding ingredients or taking away foods according to personal preferences.
Many consider the Paleo diet as being high in nutrient density but also contains a large number of various vitamins and minerals. These include nutrients like zinc, magnesium, potassium, and protein.
Some believe the benefits go beyond just weight loss and overall health. Because of this, many claim that the Paleo diet can boost fertility and correct hormonal imbalances.
However, there isn’t enough scientific evidence to back up these claims. So while we recommend giving the Paleo diet for fertility a chance, you should do so with caution until there are more studies done.
Figure out how to cook your favorite foods while still staying within the parameters of the paleo diet. There are several good food sources of vitamin D that most people in North America do not get enough of, so make sure to include some sunbaked vegetables or oils in your cooking.
Olive oil is one of the best oils you can use when baking or frying. Sunflower oil is another great option as it does not contain any hydrogenated fats as many other vegetable oils do. Coconut oil is also an excellent choice because it replaces some fat that you would normally be eating.
Should You Try Paleo to Boost Chances of Conceiving?
You should talk to your doctor about the Paleo diet for fertility. It may or may not help.