When most of us think of fertility treatments, we imagine diagnostic testing and high-tech procedures. The idea that choosing certain foods could influence your chances of becoming pregnant sounds more like folklore than medical advice.
But in a society blessed with many medical advances, many often overlook the natural tools available to us to help us with our fertility and pregnancies.
Researchers are increasingly interested in examining the role nutrition plays in improving fertility and supporting healthy pregnancies. While many women don’t start getting serious about eating healthy until after they’re pregnant, there’s increasing evidence that diet matters long before conception.
Here are two foods that might help your chances, and a recipe:
Quinoa: This grain is a complex, gluten-free carbohydrate with fertility-boosting folic acid, fiber, and zinc. Unlike refined carbs (think: processed flour, white bread, white rice, and sugary snacks) which can disturb your menstrual cycle and reproductive hormones, the complex carbohydrates found in whole grains, such as quinoa, can keep blood sugar levels stable and help regulate ovulation. Quinoa is known to support a baby’s brain development too.
Raspberries: This fruit is chock full of antioxidants — molecules found in certain vitamins and nutrients that fight free radical damage in your body. Raspberries can also help support your fertility — and your partner’s — by protecting sperm from oxidative stress. Raspberries, and other berries, are also high in vitamin C and folate, both of which are essential to female fertility and early baby development.
Curried quinoa mango salad (with raspberries)
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
3/4 cup of quinoa
1 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 mango peeled and cubed
3 green onions, chopped
Raspberries to your liking
Sliced almonds to your liking
Bring chicken stock, quinoa, curry powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper to a boil in a saucepan over high heat.
Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the quinoa is tender, about 15-20 minutes.
Once done, scrape the quinoa into a shallow dish and allow to cool to room temperature.
Stir in the mango, green onions, and sliced almonds.
Serve either at room temperature or cold.
Sprinkle raspberries on top to taste.