No such thing as a fertility diet that works for everybody

We all have a unique response to foods, even to healthy foods.

The key to good health is a personalised advice on nutrition. Finally, there is a solid study to illustrate this.

Researchers gave so-called ‘healthy’ foods to a group of volunteers and measured their responses. To everyone’s surprise, there was a wide variation in insulin, blood sugar and blood fat responses to exactly the same meals among the study subjects.

This was the case even for identical twins. For example, one twin had a healthy response to eating carbohydrates but not to fat, while the other twin was exactly the opposite.

According to this paper, two genetically identical individuals should get different dietary advice. Should they follow popular internet preachers and both stick to, for example, a keto diet, one of them may get chronic inflammation that may lead to heart disease, type 2 diabetes, non-alcoholic fatty liver and obesity.

The same principles of individualising diet need to apply to fertility. It’s time to move away from fad and one-size-fits-all plans. Personalised fertility nutrition is a key to working in unison with our bodies, not against them.

For this reason, we discuss a few strategies on how to tailor your way of eating for individual fertility needs.

If we examine recommended healthy food plans for fertility, there are a few features that unite them. Most of them:

  • regulate blood sugars,
  • reduce inflammation,
  • help control weight.

As a rule, excessive weight often exacerbates insulin resistance. Therefore, it is logical that one of the ways to manage insulin levels is to normalise weight.

Firstly, when talking about optimal weight for fertility, even a modest 5% weight loss can tip the scales, also in terms of falling pregnant faster. Some researchers argue that nutrition and lifestyle to regulate blood sugars might be more important than the number of kilograms lost.

We also do not recommend extreme calorie restriction or elimination of one nutrient like fats or carbohydrates. It’s almost impossible to keep up with extreme eating regimes for a long time. Because it’s unsustainable, you will likely bounce back to usual eating habits.

Your fertility diet needs consistency. This is of critical importance when trying to conceive. If lack of consistency produces a yo-yo effect, it can sometimes lead to more damage than benefit.

Secondly, highly limiting eating plans can put a lot of stress on your body on their own accord. And physical or mental stress is the last thing you need when trying for a baby.