Ovulatory infertility is the leading cause of infertility and is responsible for about one-third of cases. But research shows that about half of ovulatory infertility cases can be attributed to diet and lifestyle. So how can you improve your diet and lifestyle to ensure you’re ovulating? Start by making sure you are including these top 10 foods for ovulation stimulation in your fertility diet.
Low GI carbs, like rolled or steel-cut oats, have been shown to improve ovulation and decrease the risk of ovulatory infertility. Plus, studies in IVF, have also shown that whole grains improve implantation, clinical pregnancy and live birth rates! Try our fertility muesli for a great start to the day.
Having up to 3 serves of fruit per day has been shown to improve pregnancy rates. Try to get a variety of different types in. Berries are a great choice as they are especially nutrient-rich and lower in sugar. Blackberries are packed with anthocyanin, a powerful antioxidant.
Leafy greens are an important source of folate in our diets. Folate became popular due to its ability to reduce the risk of neural tube defects but it has lots of other benefits too, it improves fertility, decreases miscarriage, stillbirth and gestational diabetes risk and protects against toxins.
Legumes are a really important part of a healthy pre-conception diet and one of the best foods for ovulation stimulation. They are an excellent source folate, loaded with fibre and micronutrients, plus they are amazing for your gut health! Hummus is a great way to start incorporating legumes into your diet. There’s a super simple recipe for hummus is my ovulation recipe book.
Oily fish is rich in marine omega-3s fats, DHA and EPA. They decrease inflammation and insulin resistance and have been shown to promote healthy eggs and pregnancy rates. Anchovies are a great choice as they’re very low in mercury and other toxins that can be harmful in pregnancy. An easy way to add them to your diet is simple on toast with roasted capsicum like this.
Or kefir or whole milk natural yoghurt without added sugar. These are all great sources of protein, fats, calcium and probiotics to keep your gut healthy. Some evidence shows full-fat dairy has more benefit on ovulation than low-fat varieties – plus it’s definitely more delicious and satiating!
A pseudo-whole grain (quinoa is actually technically a seed!) quinoa is a great choice of carbohydrate as it is low GI and a good source of both protein and fibre. It makes the list of top 10 foods for ovulation stimulation as it’s also loaded with B vitamins (including our favourite, folate) and fertility minerals such as zinc, magnesium and iron.
Eggs are nutritional powerhouses. They contain a nice big dose of fat and protein as well as lots of vitamins and minerals. Eggs are an especially great source of choline, a B-vitamin that most people don’t get enough of, which is essential for conception and early pregnancy.
Made by fermenting finely sliced cabbage, sauerkraut is a fantastic source of probiotics to keep your gut healthy. Cruciferous veggies, like cabbage, are important in
regulating hormone levels in the body as they help to excrete excess oestrogen. Cabbage is also high in folate.
All nuts offer an impressive range of fertility nutrients, including healthy fats. Getting enough dietary fat is important to ensure ovulation occurs. Almonds are an especially versatile nut, a great snack on their own but also easy to incorporate into both sweet and savoury dishes. Try to have some nuts every day.
If you want to know more about how you can ensure ovulation through diet, check out our Optimising Ovulation online course. This course will teach you exactly how diet affects ovulation, help you make changes to your diet in order to ensure ovulation and get pregnant faster, as well as help you regain control of your fertility journey.
Amara (Ami) is a fertility dietitian and ovulation expert. She lives in sunny Singapore with her husband and rainbow baby.
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