Pregnancy can be described as planting a seed in rich soil, nourishing it, and then harvesting the fruit. To conceive naturally, you must first make sure both of your bodies are healthy. Then, when you are pregnant, you must take care to provide for your little seedling with everything they need to grow into a strong, healthy baby.
That analogy is an excellent way to think of the naturopathic strategy for fertility and pregnancy. It explains the need for care, preparation, and attention during all stages of pregnancy. This notion helps us make sure that mom, dad and baby are all at their healthiest. Naturopathic medicine provides support at any point to help you produce rich, bountiful fruit.
Soil richness refers to a woman’s health status before she conceives. Ideally, a woman should strive to be as healthy as she can be to prepare adequately and nourish a growing baby.
Key factors a naturopathic doctor assesses:
- Health conditions that affect fertility like endometriosis
- Hormone imbalances leading to menstrual cycle irregularities
- Lifestyle factors like alcohol consumption, smoking and caffeine intake
- Detoxification of heavy metals and other chemicals that can affect fertility
- Nutrition such as ensuring adequate amounts of folic acid and omega-3 fatty acids, which support the development of a healthy nervous system in a baby
- High-stress levels which elevate cortisol and can affect hormone levels, therefore, altering the menstrual cycle
- Mental readiness and concerns surrounding pregnancy
Male preconception care is just as significant a woman’s. One crucial factor to take note of is that the cycle of sperm development takes about 64 days. That means that the quality of sperm released today will be affected by a man’s lifestyle choices up to two months prior.
Key factors influencing sperm count and its ability to swim are assessed and treated by naturopathic doctors include:
- Nutrition such as ensuring adequate amounts of vitamins A, C, E, B12, folic acid and minerals selenium and zinc, which are all essential for high-quality sperm production
- Lifestyle factors such as alcohol consumption, smoking and caffeine intake
- High-stress levels which elevate cortisol and can decrease testosterone levels and negatively affect sperm production and libido
- Detoxification of heavy metals and other chemicals that could affect sperm production
- Addressing other underlying health concerns influencing fertility
The nine months of pregnancy are comparable to the process of a seed growing into a big, healthy tree. Just as a seedling needs nourishment to grow, so does a pregnant woman and her growing child. Just as plants need to be adaptable to their constantly changing environment, each woman’s pregnancy is a unique and individual experience. A naturopathic doctor can support a woman’s changing needs throughout her pregnancy journey.
Common issues in pregnancy that naturopathic medicine can treat include:
- Morning sickness
- Prevention of neural tube defects
- Miscarriage prevention by ensuring optimal hormone levels
- Gestational diabetes
- Iron deficiency anemia
- Urinary tract infections
- Back pain
- Breech position
- Labour and delivery preparation
- Labour induction