Infertility is a heartbreaking disease!
According to the National Institute of Health, a minimum of 20% of men and women cannot conceive naturally. Many are told that there is no hope other than the expensive option of Artificial Reproductive Technology. And although this reproductive technology has blessed many parents with babies, it can be like sweeping the sand under the rug, as it does not address the underlying issues of the reason why a couple can’t conceive.
Let’s look at this epidemic a bit differently.
If we were created to be able to conceive children and there is a staggering, growing number of couples who cannot, I believe there is something very wrong with our health overall.
In my practice, I saw more and more young couples who simply wanted to have a baby that appeared to be perfectly healthy individuals. However, once we began looking at their health from a holistic standpoint, we quickly realized there were underlying needs that had to be supported in order to start a healthy family.
For example, some of the many contributing factors to infertility include:
- Escalating toxins that accumulate in the adipose tissue
- Increasing age when many are deciding to have kids
- Increased exposure to Electromagnetic Frequencies and radiation
- Nutritional deficiencies stemming from processed and devitalized nutrition
- Chronic levels of stress
Naturally, I could spend days talking about all of these factors, but let’s just focus on one, which I feel is one of the most significant…the nutrient deficiency of cholesterol.
Did you know that sex hormones are made from cholesterol?
Just like this magazine published in 1984, we have been told for over the last decade or two that cholesterol is bad. As a result, we have traded our cholesterol rich breakfast of eggs cooked in real butter for cereal and bagels with a tall glass of orange juice. This is all sugar, and did you know that excess glucose (aka. sugar) can actually damage sperm?
Even worse, did you know that cholesterol lowering medications (Statins) are the number one drug sold in America?
In fact, shortly after Statins became available on the market, more and more men began complaining of erectile dysfunction. Thus, we now see men in their 30’s with erectile dysfunction.
Cholesterol is the precursor to all of the sex hormones in both women and men, and a healthy balance of sex hormones is needed to produce fertility and libido. The low-fat, low-cholesterol and low-calorie diets of most vegans, vegetarians, or chronic ‘dieters,’ severely depresses sex hormones. So, with an absence of healthy levels of cholesterol, pregnancy may not occur or sadly, may result in a miscarriage in the early months.
Now, what will happen to your HDL and LDL levels when consuming all of those cholesterol rich foods?
Good News!…it will not go outside of the healthy range!
A person’s body is able to synthesize cholesterol, and their liver will synthesize the cholesterol to help sustain them throughout the day! Plus, the intake of cholesterol rich foods doesn’t typically raise cholesterol levels. Instead, the intake of processed foods, sugars, alcohol, pharmaceuticals and recreational drugs leads to inflammation, which directly affects the cholesterol levels to push them out of normal range.
To help, here’s some facts about cholesterol, what it is and what it does:
- Cholesterol is a waxy substance that circulates in the blood with a protein called lipoprotein.
- It’s an amazing essential dietary nutrient that is vital to achieving optimal health in women, men and offspring.
- Cholesterol is a critical component of cell membranes.
- It’s the precursor to all steroid hormones and to Vitamin D.
- It is an essential part of brain function which allows us to learn and have good memory.
- Cholesterol patches up any damage done to internal organs, arteries, vessels, etc. More specifically, when inflammation, toxins or other factors cause damage to our internal system, cholesterol is sent to the site to patch up the damage done.
Now, I understand that for some, it can be a bit more complicated than just simply eating more cholesterol rich foods. It is important that a person’s body is able to properly digest and absorb these nutrients. Therefore, this is why I recommend working with a nutritional therapist to pinpoint specific needs.
However, for now, let’s look at infertility from a holistic standpoint.
One of the major jobs of the thyroid is to metabolize fat and cholesterol. The liver is also where cholesterol is synthesized, and the gallbladder is in charge of turning the cholesterol/fat into a usable form for the body. So, if the thyroid isn’t healthy, the liver becomes congested with too many toxins and the gallbladder becomes lazy due to a poor diet of low fat foods. Hence…how in the world can a person make sex hormones to conceive a baby?!
And sadly, 40% of the population have a poor functioning thyroid.
It is also crucial to understand that this not just for the woman! This is for her partner as well. A child’s DNA is split 50/50 between the male and female. Therefore, the health of both parents is crucial to a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby.
Unfortunately though, most focus primarily on the women.
Research has proven over and over again that the male’s health has just as much to do with healthy conception.
In fact, DNA fragmentation in the sperm are what determines a healthy pregnancy, and sperm are more vulnerable than eggs because they are much smaller. They are actually 1/200th the size of an egg. Sperm are also on the outside of the body, and therefore, they are much more vulnerable to damage by heat, radiation and toxins. (Eggs mature inside the body and go through the maturation process right before conception.) Therefore, the integrity and health of the sperm are going to mirror the integrity and health of the carrier.
As a whole, a healthy couple is more likely to produce a healthy baby; whereas, an unhealthy couple is more likely to produce an unhealthy baby. And even though this is a multi-generational issue, the cycle can be broken by addressing the underlying problems of infertility with a holistic approach and implementing the foundations of health through nutrition.
To help, here’s my 5 steps to improve health and prepare for a healthy pregnancy (for the male and female):
- Eat plenty of cholesterol rich foods (see below)
- Practice daily detoxification
- Focus on self-care to minimize stress and improve emotional health
- Use certified, pure and therapeutic grade essential oils to support hormone balance, thyroid balance, liver balance and gallbladder balance
- Trust that Jesus has a beautiful plan for you and your precious family’s life
Beneficial foods that can help prepare the body to carry a healthy baby:
- Fresh wild seafood – Consume 4 times per week, particularly wild salmon, shellfish and fish eggs
- Raw milk or cream – Consume daily
- Organic butter – Consume 4 tablespoons daily, preferably from pasture-fed cows
- Pastured, organic eggs – Consume 2 or more daily. Also consume additional egg yolks daily by adding them to smoothies, salad dressings, scrambled eggs, etc.
- Organic, grass-fed fresh liver – Consume 3-4 ounces once or twice per week.
- Fresh beef or lamb – Consume at least 3 times per week, always with fat
- Organic cold-pressed coconut oil – Consume 2 tablespoons per day, used in cooking, smoothies, etc.
- Lacto-fermented condiments and beverages – Consume daily.
- Bone broths – Consume daily and use in soups, stews and sauces.
- Fresh, organic fruits and vegetables – Consume daily
- Sea Salt – Consume daily
Foods and substances to AVOID, especially when preparing the body to carry a healthy baby:
- Trans fatty acids – Hydrogenated oils, margarine, etc.
- Junk foods – Chips, pastries, packages foods, etc.
- Commercial fried foods – All fast food as well
- White flour
- Sodas/Energy Drinks
- Drugs – Ideally, even prescription drugs. So, work with your doctor to develop a healing plan to get off prescription drugs.
One Final Important Note:
High cholesterol levels can be dangerous and need to be taken seriously! Do not start or stop any prescription medications without the guidance of your physician.
For a more thorough explanation of cholesterol, check out the following sites:
- Chris Kresser, LAc
- Chris Masterjohn, PhD
- Put Your Heart in Your Mouth – By: Dr. Natasha Campbell McBride
Want a healthy pre-conception meal plan that follows the above nutrition guidelines?
Check out my 30 Day Real Food Menu Plans here.
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