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Diet and Exercise Vs. Fertility Treatments

diet and exercise

With each passing day, obesity is becoming a BIGGER problem all around the globe. Almost all of us are aware of the common health problems that come along with obesity. These include heart disease, stroke, type-II diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, cancer, migraines, mental illness and an overall decrease in quality of life. But, what people are not talking about is the role obesity is playing in infertility and how diet and exercise can help. 

Why Does Obesity Reduce Fertility?

Obesity harms fertility in both men and women. It lowers the body's ability to function efficiently — resulting in heaps of inflammation and imbalances within the body.  In a new scientific review (1), published in the Journal Human Reproduction Update, researchers tried to answer this question; Are diet and exercise the most effective method of weight loss for improving fertility?

Are Diet And Exercise The Best Fertility Improvement Strategies? 

  Observing the outcomes of 50 years of scientific research and over 40 studies, researchers came to the conclusion that diet and exercise, as a fertility intervention, is the simplest, cheapest and most effective way for women to improve their fertility! They did not come to clear conclusions on the effectiveness of diet and exercise for improving fertility in men compared to medical fertility treatments. They found women who began a calorie restricted diet consisting of a large reduction in refined carbohydrate intake (think sugar, bread, cereal, pasta, pizza etc...), and a regular exercise routine, had higher rates of pregnancy, and improvements in ovulation and weight loss, compared to control groups undergoing only traditional medical fertility treatments. This is an astounding finding considering how expensive medical fertility treatments are. Before pursuing high-cost fertility treatments, it might be a better option for you to work on improving your fertility through diet and exercise. For this process to be most effective, I recommended working with professionals. It will be more cost effective and you will see better results.

Diet And Exercise Are Only Part Of The Solution — Let’s Dig A Bit Deeper

In my case, I see many patients that I know have methylation problems. I have many patients who try, unsuccessfully to lose weight. Even though their diet is impeccable and they exercise, it is not enough to overcome their methylation issues. Once I work with them on improving their methylation, through finding out what their body needs, my patients see a greater benefit from their diet and exercise routines. Some clues that you may have fat metabolism issues might be: floating stools, elevated or low cholesterol, nausea when you eat fat, can’t lose weight even though your diet is really good and you exercise, constipation or diarrhoea. If you would like to see my webinar on this, here is the link.    

What Are The Next Steps On Your Fertility Journey?

In summary, this research suggests that before moving forward with expensive fertility treatments, you are better off making dietary improvements and starting a regular exercise routine. If you have a hard time losing weight, even with an impeccable diet and regular exercise, you may be suffering from fat metabolism issues due to disturbed methylation! Reach out to me, or join some of my online courses, for more information on how to combat methylation concerns and achieve a healthy pregnancy!


(1) Best, D., Avenell, A., & Bhattacharya, S. (2017). How effective are weight-loss interventions for improving fertility in women and men who are overweight or obese? A systematic review and meta-analysis of the evidence. Human Reproduction Update, 23(6), 681-705.    
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