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Food is medicine and it’s definitely possible to use what is on our fork at each meal to assist us in becoming more fertile. This is exactly why I am so excited to bring you the Top 15 fertility foods for getting pregnant with vegetarian and vegan options.
Why is preconception nutrition important?
We are what we eat! Our food literally creates our cells (bones, blood, immune system, skin, etc.) It’s ideal to have our bodies running as optimally as possible before we make a grow a human.
Preconception nutrition research has shown that food and healthy nutrition are tied to fertility health in both women and men. This is exactly why I made this list of fertility foods for getting pregnant.
Fertility foods to increase chances of getting pregnant
Research shows if you’re trying to conceive (TTC), fertility foods or a fertility diet can increase ovulation, which in turn increases a woman’s chances of getting pregnant.
Top 15 Fertility Foods for Getting Pregnant:
Wild salmon, other cold water fish, walnuts and seeds
This pre-pregnancy superfood improves cervical mucus quality and blood flow to reproductive organs. The essential fatty acids and omega-3’s are essential baby’s developing brain. They also prevent miscarriage and help with implantation. Aim for 4 ounces daily or consider cod liver oil.
Leafy green vegetables
Greens purify our blood, prevent cancer, improve gut flora, improve kidney, liver and gallbladder function, improve circulation and more.
Dark greens supply a significant amount of folate, a B vitamin which prevents birth defects, cancer and promotes heart health.
Aim for 2-3 servings daily of greens like: bok choy, broccoli, lettuces, collards, endive, arugula, water cress and other wild greens. Favor cooked spinach, beets greens and swiss chard, when eaten raw may deplete calcium.
If you loathe greens, try a supplement like Health Force Greens or Sun Food Greens while you learn to love them. Keep trying, you will learn to like greens over time and the supplements will help change your taste-buds. It took me a year or so of eating 2 servings daily to like greens like kale.
Oils (coconut oil & butter or ghee)
Aim for one tablespoon each of coconut oil and ghee or grass-fed butter or two tablespoons of coconut oil if vegan. These healthy fats will keep your hormones in balance and ensure uptake of vital fat soluble vitamins, necessary for ideal fetal development.
These are loaded with trace minerals, which have vital functions at the cellular level in our body and are important for healthy metabolism and hormone function.
Bone Broth or Vegan Broth
In Chinese Medicine bone broth is considered to strengthen and nourish our essence, qi, and wei qi, as well as warm the yang and build blood. Broth is said to enter and nourish our Kidneys, Liver, Lungs and Spleen. The kidneys are linked to infertility in Chinese medicine.
Bone broth is also rich in trace minerals and iron, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus, and sulfur. Learn more about bone broth and how to make it in this post or use this shelf stable, reasonably priced brand called Kettle & Fire. If you’re working on balancing hormones, try the hormone fixer recipe!
For a Vegan option, make a Vegan Broth, which consists of simmering veggies and herbs for several hours and is very nutritious as well!
Pasture raised eggs or Sunflower seeds
Contain loads of selenium which keep the thyroid running optimally and strengthens uterine lining.
Aim for 2 eggs a day or 2 T off seeds daily
A 2012 study conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health shows a diet high in avocado and foods high in monounsaturated fats may triple the chance of success with IVF treatments.
They’re also Avocados are a rich source of plant sterols which block excess estrogen and help with progesterone production, critical for healthy ovulation and sustaining pregnancy.
Aim for 1 a day pre-conception and post partum!
Helps improve cervical fluid and follicle development. The B vitamin content help balance hormones. They’re rich in antioxidants like vitamins A and C, which prevent free radical damage to sperm and eggs.
Beans or Organ Meats
These copper rich foods are important to hormone balance and when eaten with high vitamin C foods like peppers, citrus and tomatoes, increase iron absorption. This trace mineral is growth and development as well as the function of enzymes involved in energy metabolism, DNA synthesis, and respiration.
Aim for several servings a week!
Maca contains 31 different minerals and 60 different phytonutrients. This root is a nourishing food for the endocrine system, aiding both the pituitary, adrenal, and thyroid glands (all involved in hormonal balance.) Maca has the ability to affect key hormones in both women and men without containing hormones itself. Use yellow for mommy, black for daddy.
Aim for 1 teaspoon daily
Collagen improves digestion, is great for hair, skin, nails (your baby’s too!), and cellulite, is good for joints, detoxification, thyroid function (and offsetting the stress hormone cortisol) and skin tightening (great for when your belly gets big!) It’s also tasteless, unlike the chalkiness protein powder gives, and mixes perfectly every time. One tablespoon gives 6 grams of protein and helps to balance blood sugar.
I like this brand as it’s pure and modestly priced. If you do shop, be sure to enter code RNL to save 10% at checkout!
(See this post to learn more about collagen)
Vegan option: pineapple, cucumber, kale, and banana (you could whip this up in a smoothie!)as well as sleep and managing stress are key for healthy collagen production.
Royal Jelly is a creamy substance is produced by bee’s to nourish their queen. Royal Jelly is rich in amino acids, lipids, sugars, some vitamins, fatty acids and most importantly, proteins. It contains ample levels of iron and calcium. Royal Jelly also contains acetylcholine, which is needed to transmit nerve messages from cell to cell. Regular consumption of high-quality Royal Jelly has been shown to help balance hormones.
Search around for a high-quality brand at your local trusted health food store or try this one.
Vegan option: seeds and kale chips (we love these!)
Great for strong sperm and egg quality. Protect ours cells from damage and aging. Phytonutrients in berries balance hormones and impact ovulation. Anthocyanins in blueberries help to maintain the lining of your uterus, which positively influences the ability of a fertilized embryo to implant into the uterine wall.
Technically an herb, this one is my all around fertility favorite. It’s great for adrenals and the kidneys, tones the uterus is loaded with minerals, helps prepare the body for and sustain pregnancy. It also contains K, which is important when making the decision between oral K or a shot with your newborn.
I recommend one cup of this one daily.
Dandelion Greens or Tea
Dandelion encourages bile production in the liver and is ideal for fertility cleansing toxins like hormone disrupting chemicals that can build up and stress the liver. It helps eliminate wastes and can help to improve hormones.
Aim for a cup of dandelion greens a day or 2-3 cups of tea (like this one) each week.
I hope you enjoyed this top 15 list of fertility foods for getting pregnant!