12 Best Whole Foods to Eat While TTC (trying to conceive)
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor and I am not giving medical advice . My site is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice.
If you are struggling with infertility, you are not alone! At least 1 in 4 couples struggle with becoming pregnant and the numbers are increasing! This is a multifaceted issue but one of the main contributors could be the rapid decline in quality whole foods in the American diet. When momma's body isn’t getting the nourishment it needs, it’s hard or nearly impossible for it to support new life.
Let’s not make food or meal planning complicated or stressful, instead concentrating on a variety of whole foods and do your best to avoid processed foods with unrecognizable label lists. Real ingredients don't come in boxes (though you can find some boxed food with wholesome ingredients. I'll post more about one's that I have found in an upcoming post.
If you are planning on trying to have a baby in the future, now is the time to prep your body. Don’t get overwhelmed, stressed or discouraged. We all know stress isn't good for the baby making! I’m passionate about making healthy choices easier! Plus, I’ll give you easy ways to incorporate these foods into your daily life in my Pro Tips under each food. My passion is helping women wherever they are in their journey. Let’s get to our nutrient dense dozen!
Garlic. Can you have too much?? Not in our house! This superfood contains B-6 which can stimulate ovulation. Garlic could help prevent chromosomal defects. It helps with blood circulation and contains Selenium, vitamin C and allicin (which increases blood flow to sex organs). It also helps the immune system, protects the heart and more…Hello superfood! PRO TIP: Eating garlic raw has the most health benefits, so try adding chopped garlic to meals toward the end of cooking or in your favorite dressings and dips.
Avocados are rich in fiber which promotes healthy digestion. They are full of vitamin B-6, C and E which is good for supporting the heath of the uterine lining. MUFA's (aka monounsaturated fatty acids) also help with ovulation. Avocado contain folate, magnesium, and potassium along with many other essential vitamins and minerals. PRO TIP: Eat an avocado a day. Smash with chopped red onions, tomato, garlic, lime and salt for a delish guac. Spread on avocado toast ( I use Ezekiel bread). You can even add ripe avocado to chocolate cakes and icings for added moisture and nutrition and you won't even notice a difference in taste!
Eggs. There are a whopping 12 grams of protein in one egg! Eggs also offer vitamin B-12 (folic acid), vitamin E, zinc and healthy fats . Choline richly found in eggs can prevent birth defects, which is why many recommend eggs during pregnancy. Make sure you are looking for pasture raised organic eggs (or gets some chickens of your own (; like I did to make sure you are getting quality nutrient dense eggs) PRO TIP: Omelets are an easy way to incorporate added nutrition to your daily eggs. I add onions, garlic, greens and any other veggies I have on hand that may otherwise go to waste.
Cruciferous veggies (ex. Cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower greens, kale) contain IC3 (indole-3-carbinol) helping our bodies get rid of extra estrogen thus helping with hormone regulation and inflammation. These superfoods contain vitamin A, C, K and folate. Best benefits when eaten lightly steamed or raw. PRO TIP: I toss them in salads, smoothies and popsicles. You can also use a lot of these veggies in stir fries and soups.
Berries contain high levels of antioxidants which protect our cells from free radical damage allowing for healthy eggs and sperm. Berries also contain lower sugar levels than some other fruits and are just downright delicious with a variety of foods. PRO TIP: Add to smoothies(especially green smoothies, for taste), healthy pancakes, nut butter and salads. Also add frozen or fresh berries to your water for added antioxidants and flavor. This is a great way to increase your water intake also! Make sure to buy organic (frozen ones when not in season) as berries are one of the top fruits sprayed with toxic pesticides.
Turmeric is an amazing antioxidant filled spice with anti-inflammatory properties. Chronic inflammation can cause a plethora of reproductive problems. Turmeric can also aid in muscle recovery after working out or strenuous activity (which can help with a healthy lifestyle while TTC). PRO TIP: Combine with coconut milk and black pepper or other healthy fat base for optimum absorption as it is not water soluble. I add turmeric to soups, eggs, turmeric & ginger shots and golden/turmeric lattes.
Liver. I know some of ya'll just made a face, but liver is rich in protein, iron and contains vitamins A, C, D, E, Co-Q10, zinc, folate, selenium, healthy fat and choline. It also contains inositol which aids in the health of ovary follicles. PRO TIP: Make sure it is organic and consume 4 ounces a week. If you can’t stomach liver, try an organic supplement instead or try mixing it in with other ground meat. You can also soak liver in lemon juice, milk or kefir, then pat dry and cook reduce the "iron" taste.
Sweet potatoes contain lots of vitamin A which aids in reproduction by stimulating ovulation. And also contains calcium and iron. PRO TIP: Chop and roast with avocado or coconut and spices (I love them with turmeric and garlic!) You can also steam, puree and add to soups and bakery.
Bone Broth chalked full of protein, healthy fat and vitamins and minerals, gelatin, balancing hormones and promotes healthy gut microbiome, combats inflammation, and helps immune system function. PRO TIP: Can be made in large batches and frozen! You can drink as is or add to recipes for a flavor boost.
Sardines and salmon This awesome protein source contains vitamin D, omega 3 fatty acids, calcium. PRO TIP: Don't over cook for moist salmon and I always cook in an iron skillet for addition iron in my diet. Make larger batches to add on top of grains like quinoa, steamed veggies or salads.
Brazil nuts, one nut can provide the selenium you need for the day (70-80 mcg's), low selenium is linked to miscarriages and preeclampsia. PRO TIP: I keep a baggie of these on had and try to consume 2 a day with any other supplements I take. Store in the refrigerated for longer shelf life.
Walnuts contain omega 3 fatty acid aiding in healthy hormone production, alpha-linolenic acid or ALA, which converts to DHA in the body which we know is important for fetal development. PRO TIP: Top salads or chop and encrust salmon and add a touch of maple syrup or honey for added deliciousness!
These nutrient dense foods will not only help increase your chances of conceiving but will help your overall health by reducing inflammation and allowing your organs (especially your reproductive ones) to function as they should. If you are thinking of expanding your family, now is the time to start thinking about taking baby steps (no pun intended) toward optimizing your health.
Please let me know if you enjoyed this post! What are your favorite fertility boosting foods? Let me know if you would like to see some recipes in the near future.
If you want to know more about natural motherhood as God designed, from conception, birth and beyond subscribe below and follow me on social!