Improving Fertility

It is helpful to get a full blood profile (which includes iron levels and thyroid function) and a salivary test to diagnose hormonal imbalances. A naturopathic consultation can also help find any nutritional deficiencies you may be unaware of, educate you in your lifestyle choices and prepare you for pregnancy. Please also keep in mind that infertility is defined as difficulties in conceiving when you have been trying for a 12 months of failed trying.


Many times females have difficulty conceiving due to the fact that their hormones just aren’t in sync with their ovulation times. Consider beginning a diary which charts your days of ovulation, premenstrual symptoms, temperature, the first day of your period and mucus discharge, as this can give clues as to what is happening with your cycle and when you are ovulating.


  1. Menses is the first day of your period is considered day one of your cycle.
  2. Follicular phase days 5-14
  3. Ovulation phase is around day 14 – 16. This is the phase that you would expect to ovulate (release an egg from your ovary) and hence would have the best chance of falling pregnant, however as the actual day of ovulation is difficult to judge, you should be aware that you might fall pregnant 3 – 4 days either side of ovulation. This is of course if you are having a regular 28- 29 day cycle. One of the best ways to judge that you are ovulating is the amount and type of vaginal mucous produced. Fertile mucous is like uncooked egg white – clear, slippery and stretchy. Another way to tell is by taking your temperature every day with a fertility thermometer. At ovulation your temperature will increase by 1/2 a degree. If you buy a fertility thermometer it is likely to come with all the information you need to understand how to do this.
  4. Luteal phase days 15-28


  • Are your zinc levels adequate?
  • Consider doing a preconceptive liver detoxification
  • Balance hormones
  • Address nutritional deficiencies
  • Avoid alcohol and smoking
  • It is so important for you not to be too stressed while pregnant and in the preconception stage! If this feels impossible – at least you can try to rebalance your life in little ways. If you are very tired you really need to try and find the space and nurturing your body needs. Can you do simple things to give back some energy to yourself such as: getting a massage, going for a walk, doing a yoga class regularly? Little lifestyle changes can dramatically turn your stress around. The Bach Flower Rescue Remedy is also a lovely formulation which you can use throughout the day to help with feelings of stress and anxiety. You can obtain the drops or spray from your local health food store or pharmacy
  • It is ideal to do some preconception preparation before conceiving. This includes a cleanse or detoxification as well balancing hormones and addressing any hormonal deficiencies such as B vitamins, essential fatty acids, Zinc, Iron, Folic Acid and Iodine
  • See a Healthcare professional who will provide you with the information and support you require regarding blood tests, hormonal profiles, nutrient deficiencies, managing stress, balancing hormones, liver detoxification and preconception work, male reproductive support, emotional support and herbal medicines


  • Are your zinc levels adequate? Long periods on oral contraception can decrease your levels of zinc, a mineral essential for successful conception and foetal development. Many health food stores will do a free zinc tally test for you to determine your zinc levels. Take your partner along too, as zinc is just as important for the male reproduction and development of healthy sperm
  • Folic acid is a B-group vitamin which is essential for your baby’s development in the first three months of pregnancy and should be taken as a supplement three to six months before conception to reduce the incidence of neural tube defects such as spina bifida. Supplementation of at least 500mcg/ day is extremely beneficial, although some Doctors / Health Professionals recommend much higher doses per day if there is a family history of neural tube defects or a folic acid deficiency. Folic acid is found in green leafy vegetables, organ meats, cereals, grains and legumes.
  • Fish oil capsules contain omega 3 essential fatty acids are important for baby’s brain development and up to 80% of Westerners are deficient in this important nutrient
  • Assess your iron levels. Extra supplementary iron should only be given if there is a proven requirement and this is best detected by having your blood haemoglobin (Hb) and ferritin levels tested regularly. Prenatal check ups will routinely test for your Hb levels and appropriate dietary changes or additional iron supplements will be prescribed as required by your health professional
  • It is ideal to do some preconception preparation before conceiving. This includes a cleanse or detoxification as well balancing hormones and addressing any hormonal deficiencies such as B vitamins, essential fatty acids, Zinc, Iron, Folic Acid and Iodine
  • The herb Vitex may help to improve your chances of falling pregnant by helping to regulate your cycle
  • For males the herbs Tribulus, Ginkgo, Horny Goat Weed and Saw Palmetto may improve the mobility and motility of the sperm.