About 10 to 15 percent of the couples in the world suffer from infertility. Lifestyle factors play an important role in fertility. Lifestyle factors are ways of life and modifiable habits that can influence one’s well-being and health, which includes fertility.
Lifestyle factors could include; weight, psychological stress, smoking, alcohol and caffeine consumption, etc. One should consider changing the bad lifestyle habits prior conceiving a child. We will look at how lifestyle factors could affect one’s fertility.
It is shown that ovulation is heavily affected by excess body weight. Recently, a study also shows that excess weight also decreases the chance of pregnancy, and increases the probability of experiencing a miscarriage. Having an unhealthy weight can cause hormonal imbalances and create a problem in ovulation. It is the same with men, obese men are 3 times more susceptible to reduced quality of sperm.
It is suggested that before you attempt for conception, to exercise regularly, even it is as simple as walking for 30—45 minutes a day or swapping sugary drinks and alcohol for water.
If you are currently pregnant, maintaining healthy weight gain is also very important, as excessive weight gain is linked with a number of pregnancy complications; high blood pressure, blood clotting, gestational diabetes, and risk of miscarriages. And also, babies born to overweight mothers have increased risk of long-term health problems, and obesity in the future. Trying to lose weight during pregnancy is not recommended, as it will negatively affect the IQ level and the growth of the baby. However, it is definitely possible for the overweight women to gain less pregnancy weight than women with a normal weight with, without affecting the offspring,\
Stress is one of the most well-known conditions in societies nowadays. It could be physical, social or psychological. Moreover, nowadays, women also work not any less than men, pursuing a career, dream, and financial stability. While there is nothing wrong with that, stress that is resulted from shouldn’t be ignored.
Infertility itself could result in stress as well. It could take place in different forms, such as; societal pressure from family and other people, failures, treatments, diagnosis, etc.
In a research, it was shown that women who scored the highest level of stress had ovulated 20% less eggs than those who were less stressed.
Acupuncture and counselling are proven to help reduce the symptoms of stress and helped improve depression, anxiety and stress. A study from University of York consisted of 755 people with moderate to severe depression, concluded that both acupuncture and counselling have lowered down the depression scale from an average of 16 out of 27, to 9 for acupuncture and 11 for counselling. Secondly, it is scientifically proven that acupuncture combined with five elements of music could reduce the severity of depression in female patients, according to NCBI publication.
Cigarette contains more than 4000 chemicals in it and the effects are associated with a number of potential health complications such as cardiovascular diseases, lung cancer, and also a possible decrease chance in infertility.
Men who smoke tend to have lower total sperm count, motility, density, normal morphology, and lower semen volume. In women, research showed that reduced ovarian reserve is higher in women who smoked than in non-smokers women with the same age, and similar fertilization and pregnancy rates. It is highly recommended to stop smoking prior to preparing to conceive, and also during pregnancy, as it may lead to miscarriage.
Sources of caffeine vary from tea, filtered coffee, to energy drinks. Australia citizens are known with their love for coffee, especially here, in Melbourne. While drinking coffee is enjoyable, the amount of caffeine consumption should be closely monitored as it may affect the fertility rate.
The women who miscarried or had a stillbirth in their study had an average of 145 mg of caffeine per day, and women who had live births consumed an average of 103 mg per day, indicating that there may be a narrow window for caffeine to impact fertility.
Nowadays, almost everyone has their cell phone on them at all times. The time spent on the screen has also increased dramatically over the years. It is true that cell phone has increased the effectiveness of the communication system these days. However, it does not come without negative effects.
A number of studies have shown negative effects of radiofrequency electromagnetic waves (RFEMW) created by cell phones on fertility. The usage of cell phone has also been associated with decreases in progressive motility of sperm, its viability, and sperm count, and an increase in abnormal sperm morphology. One study evaluating 52 men demonstrated that men who carried a cell phone around the belt line or hip region were more likely to have decreased sperm motility compared to men who carried their cell phones elsewhere or who did not carry one at all.
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