4 Dietary Tips For Endometriosis Diet To Get Pregnant
Endometriosis is a chronic, inflammatory disease affecting many aspects of women’s lives. It occurs when the endometrial lining grows outside the uterus and can cause extensive tissue damage. Common symptoms of endometriosis include abdominal and pelvic pain, bloating, heavy and painful periods, fatigue, painful intercourse and in many cases, infertility. It is estimated to be responsible for up to 50% of infertility cases.
It is now broadly accepted that diet can play a vital role in helping to reduce the severity of endometriosis symptoms and therefore improve fertility, mainly through reducing levels of inflammation in the body. This means many women with endometriosis can naturally increase their chances of falling pregnant.
Here are some dietary tips that you can use to improve your chances of getting pregnant with endometriosis.
1. Follow the Mediterranean diet
The Mediterranean diet, commonly referred to as the fertility diet, is one of the most highly researched dietary plans due to its many great health benefits and anti-inflammatory foods.
The Mediterranean diet encourages the consumption of vegetables, fruit, whole grains, nuts and seeds, seafood, poultry and olive oil. Consuming highly refined grains, red and processed meats, sugar and sweetened beverages, and processed foods are discouraged.
The Mediterranean diet is often recommended to help improve reproductive disorders due to its well-documented ability to reduce the inflammatory processes in the body. As a result, adherence to the Mediterranean diet has been found to significantly reduce symptoms of endometriosis, such as period pain and cramps and pain during sex.
2. Omega-3 fats and vitamin D
Current evidence on endometriosis shows that the symptoms are often due to oxidative stress within the body. Oxidative stress also plays a crucial role in infertility. Increasing your consumption of antioxidants in the diet may help lower levels of oxidative stress and reduce the severity of endometriosis symptoms.
Omega-3 is an unsaturated fatty acid renowned for its powerful antioxidative abilities. As mentioned above, fish is a central component of the Mediterranean diet and is beneficial in reducing pain associated with endometriosis and improving fertility. Oily fish such as salmon, tuna and mackerel are rich sources of omega-3. Current guidelines recommend 2-3 serves of oily low-mercury fish per week to boost your Omega-3 levels.
Vitamin D is another important antioxidant. A review of the evidence surrounding the effects of Vitamin D showed that it assisted in reducing chronic inflammation and improving reproductive outcomes in women with endometriosis.
90% of vitamin D is produced from UV sunlight exposure to the skin, and only <10% is from natural food sources. If you’re tested vitamin D deficient, you may require a vitamin D supplement. When choosing a vitamin D supplement, look for vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) as it is more effective at raising and maintaining vitamin D levels in the body.
3. Avoid trans and saturated fats
Trans fatty acids are a form of fat that is particularly detrimental to health. These fats have proinflammatory effects, increase the risk of chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and some cancers, and increase the risk of infertility. A higher intake of trans fats has been associated with an increased risk of endometriosis. Similar findings have been reported regarding animal fat consumption, which often contains high amounts of saturated fat.
Common dietary sources of trans fats that should be avoided include butter, deep-fried and takeaway foods and ready-made pastries and desserts. Foods such as coconut oil, lard, butter, cream and ice cream are all high in saturated fat and consumption of these should also be limited.
4. Keep active and healthy
Maintaining a healthy weight and exercising is essential for your health and fertility. Research shows that regular physical activity may be beneficial to reduce endometriosis’s inflammatory and painful nature. Furthermore, it also induces anti-inflammatory effects and antioxidant properties and lowers estrogen levels.
Need more help? I’ve worked with many women and couples to create a personalised pre-conception nutrition plan tailored to your health conditions and nutritional needs.
With all my love ,