By Paul J.O'Brien B.A., N.C.E.H.S., Dip. Acu., Adv. Dip. OBB, Cert Clin. Med, Cert.CHM, M.AFPA, M.ETCMA, M.C.Th.A.
Natural Fertility Boosters don’t have to be expensive supplements or weird plants and herbs with seemingly magical properties – (I’m looking at you Turmeric – which is contraindicated in pregnancy by the way – see my Facebook post for more on that!). And while it is important that you have a personalised plan that addresses your specific reproductive needs here are My Five Favourite Natural Fertility Boosters that you can do for free, right this second!
Yep – I’m deadly serious. One of the single most impactful things you can do to increase your fertility naturally is to simply take a few minutes and practice some deep breathing. Not only is this one of My Five Favourite Natural Fertility Boosters, this is one of the most important lessons I teach my clients, be it for weight loss, for strength development, to treat auto-immune diseases and even cancer. Breathing.
You can stop eating, even stop drinking water for a number of days, but you can’t stop breathing for more than a few minutes. It is THE most fundamental function of the human body. Breathing literally gives us life. From biblical references to modern science, breathing is the most important thing we will ever do….yet how many of us even pay attention to how we breathe….?
The truth is not that many…and even when we do we probably don’t assign it much importance. Far too often we breathe quite shallowly, only from our chests, rarely expanding our lungs or their full capacity, rarely using the muscles of inspiration and expiration. We let stagnant air settle in the bottom of our lungs, and cheat ourselves of life giving and life enriching oxygen.
From the spiritual arts of India to Christian prayer and from the martial arts and medicine of the East to modern science, breathing is the foremost focus of health and power and it is one of those Natural Fertility Boosters. Learning to breathe correctly is one of the first skills I teach my 1-on-1 coaching clients to help them get pregnant, it is one of the first skills I teach my martial arts students and it’s one of the first skills that I teach my fitness clients. It is, in fact, the very first exercise I teach anyone.
And while my clients get a far more advanced version of this…I’d like to share with you the basic technique now!
You can perform this either standing up or lying down. Lying down often helps when first learning this technique as you will be able to feel how your body moves with greater ease, so we will start from there.
You can practice this anytime you like, but I highly recommend doing so 1st thing in the morning before you get out of bed. Then anytime you wish to re-energize yourself and increase you mental clarity feel free to practice this again.
This breathing technique is the MOST IMPORTANT aspect of the natural fertility boosting exercises I teach. Breathing deeply increases blood and oxygen supplies, releases stress, lowers blood pressure, calms the nervous system, flushes the lymphatic system, increases and aids digestion, focuses the mind, releases pleasure neuro-chemicals, generating a better mood, reduces the workload on the heart and increases lung efficiency, strengthens the immune system, and a whole lot more. You can see why it’s the first thing on my Natural Fertility Boosters list.
This is a strange one – but this makes SO much sense from a Traditional Chinese Medical Perspective.
Perhaps the most famous doctor of the Tang Dynasty, the Golden Age of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Sun Si-miao famously said,
“when a person is sick, the doctor should first regulate the patient’s diet and lifestyle. In most cases, these changes alone are enough to affect a cure over time”.
In fact, Sun Si-miao went as far as to say that, it was ONLY if the changes to diet and lifestyle were not enough should internal medicine (herbs) and acupuncture/acupressure be utilised.
One of the fundamental teachings of TCM is that the Stomach is thought of as a large pot under which a steady fire burns. Once food is ingested it is “rottened and ripened” in the stomach and turned into a warm soup. According to Chinese medicine, this warm soup of the stomach is 100°F, keeping in mind that human body temperature is 98.6°F. As such we can draw one of our first conclusions on the basis of how to approach food.
If what we eat helps create such a warm 100° soup in the stomach benefits our digestion and whatever hinders or impedes the creation of this 100° soup in the stomach injuries and impairs digestion. As such the best food and source of nourishment is warm, cooked food. Cooking food breaks the substance down and “pre-digests them”, making it much easier to digest the food and absorb its nutrition internally.
This is one of those really important Natural Fertility Boosters – as damaging the Stomach and Spleen by eating cold foods can lead to the first pattern of infertility I talk about in my free guide, “The 9 Reasons You Can Get Pregnant…and how to fix them!”
Cold food, by contrast, damages and weakens the Stomach/Spleen. It takes energy and time to warm cold food to the point where it can be digested by the Stomach/Spleen.
Often times those from a Western background see this as a positive – cold water, for instance, is drunk in an attempt to lose weight – the body burning calories in order to heat the water. And this is true, but the calories are minimal if they can even be noticed scientifically.
In the meantime, the Stomach becomes tight and constricted and the energy of the body is lost. It takes energy and Qi to warm and transform cold food and as such one does not nourish the body, but draws energy from it, lowering the metabolic rate and leaving one weaker and depleted. There are far more effective ways to lose weight (and that can be vital in getting and staying pregnant, as it impacts your hormonal health).
By contrast eating warm foods requires less energy and Qi to be expended on digestion and thus, one gains greater energy from the food itself, and that means everything you eat becomes more supportive of getting pregnant. You can see why this is high on my list of Natural Fertility Boosters…
Of course, those students of Western Nutrition and Raw food enthusiasts jump up and down in protest over this – hurling scientific and undisputed facts such as enzyme and vitamin destruction through cooking.
They then draw very erroneous conclusions confusing and infer incorrect information from these facts to support their argument as they fail to see the difference between gross and net absorption…I teach more about this in my 1-on-1 coaching programs, but right now, I want to move on as I realize this article is getting long and we still have three more of my free and easy Natural Fertility Boosters to go!!!!
You’ve heard this a thousand times already I am sure. You may have even tried it a few times, but your mind doesn’t magically go blank, it’s boring and you can’t do it. I totally get that. I felt the same way and it’s like we have the same problem – we got taught wrong!!!
But meditation is one the single most important things you can do for your whole health, not just your fertility.
In 2009, at the Center for Functionally Integrative Neuroscience at Denmark’s Aarhus University, Peter Vestergaard-Pulsen led a team seeking to explore the effects of long term meditation on brain structure. They found, as they report in their paper, also in Neuroreport:
“Using magnetic resonance imaging, we observed higher gray matter density in lower brain stem regions of experienced meditators compared with age-matched nonmeditators. Our findings show that long-term practitioners of meditation have structural differences in brainstem regions concerned with cardiorespiratory control. This could account for some of the cardiorespiratory parasympathetic effects and traits, as well as the cognitive, emotional, and immunoreactive impact reported in several studies of different meditation practices.”
All of these are key biomarkers for increased healing and activates our bodies Natural Fertility Boosters. There were also a number of key studies done by Dr. Herbert Benson of the Mind-Body Institute, part of Harvard University’s Medical School. Dr. Benson has found that the relaxation response triggers increased activity in the parts of the brain called the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for the body’s “rest and digest” functions.
Further, meditation decreases activity in the sympathetic nervous system, the body’s “fight or flight” response. Not only does this result in physical relaxation and improved blood flow to the, but also helps manage pain, allows the patient to relax into the healing process and not be held back by the negative physical effects of stress.
When the body is in the “rest and digest” mode, it can concentrate its efforts on healing at the cellular level, by regenerating cells, repairing others, and restoring normal functioning to the area.
So how can you use meditation as one of our Natural Fertility Boosters? I teach progressive techniques to achieve a profound sense of deep relaxation using meditation to my 1-on-1 clients, but, for now, try this simple 5-minute method. This is a variation of a common meditative practice that has millions of adherents across the world who have paid thousands to learn this –
This is a variation of a common meditative practice that has millions of adherents across the world who have paid thousands to learn this –
Sit or lie in a comfortable position and repeat a special key word mantra for about 5 minutes twice a day. It’s literally that simple. The guru’s claim that the mantra is a special chosen, magical word specifically for you, divined by them through special insight and that it must never be revealed or it will lose its power. This is of course, utterly untrue.
Pick any word you like. Don’t worry about it.
The technique itself is very simple and effective.
The goal of this mantra based meditation is to not concentrate, nor even say the mantra clearly. You’re not saying it out loud, so you don’t need to clearly pronounce it, the idea of it alone should be enough. This is just a word to keep the other thoughts that fall into your head at bay. If other thoughts enter the mind, and they will (though less so with practice), do not try to push it out or become angry with self-recrimination. When you become aware that we are not thinking the mantra, then we quietly come back to the mantra.
This is just a word to keep the other thoughts that fall into your head at bay. If other thoughts enter the mind, and they will (though less so with practice), do not try to push it out or become angry with self-recrimination. When you become aware that we are not thinking the mantra, then we quietly come back to the mantra.
If you forget the mantra, don’t worry about it. Don’t strain to remember or repeat it. Take it as it comes and it may change, becoming faster or slower, louder and quieter in the mind, clearer or fainter. Its pronunciation may change, lengthen or shorten or even may appear to be distorted or it may not appear to change at all. Regardless, just take it as it comes, neither anticipating nor resisting change.
This meditation is best performed upon waking and again in the afternoon, before food and at least an hour after eating. Be consistent with your time – make it the same time EVERY day. This will give you a structure and routine to your day which in itself is remarkably beneficial.
These days, when performing such a meditation I rarely use a specific mantra but instead key into a relaxing trigger – a thought, memory, sound or image that relaxes me. For me, I think of the sound of rain hitting my parent’s conservatory window when I was a child or the sound and feeling of my cat as it lay sleeping, gently purring on my chest as I read.
Exercise is really important to whole body health in TCM and even more so when trying to get pregnant. And is a key part of my Natural Fertility Boosters protocol. As we you’ll learn one of the functions of the Stomach/Spleen is to support the body and the physiological expression of this is in the fascia and soft tissue. Fascia is a continuous network of moist membrane that wraps our muscles (soft tissue) and connects the whole body holding everything comfortably in place. It supports and contains the body and without it our muscles would have no tone and we would collapse in a saggy heap, thus the physiological expression of the Stomach/Spleen supports and contains the whole body.
When the fascia and muscles of the body are relaxed and without tension and constriction the body can move easily and smoothly. Our limbs have a full and easy sense of motion and our organs are all supported and nurtured. When the Stomach/Spleen is healthy, the fascia attains this relaxed state and we are “at home” in our bodies, capable of expressing ourselves fluidly through movement.
The Stomach/Spleen is a vital organ and system that needs to be in harmony with the whole body to provide total health, and as such is vital for our physical and mental function. As such exercise is very beneficial to the Stomach/Spleen which we need to produce healthy menstrual blood, have the energy to support conception and maintain pregnancy, to provide the nutrients and building blocks of life and so much more.
But the wrong exercise can be very damaging. For instance for most women trying to conceive I advocate they avoid running – this can put pressure on the uterus and destabilise the womb. Popular forms of exercise like Bikram Yoga should also be avoided – as the fluid loss from the intense heat, can thicken and damage blood and Yin fluids needed to get pregnant.
So what is the better option?
I recommend Isometrics. This is a fast, practical and powerful form of exercise, based on Chinese medical classics. You can learn a simple 30-second whole body routine (that lowers blood pressure, strengthens the muscles, stomach and spleen, burns fat and is one of my Natural Fertility Boosters – here.
This seems like the simplest of the Natural Fertility Boosters I recommend, but can be the hardest. I see it all too often women struggling with fertility feel ashamed, thinking that this problem is something to hide, so they retreat from friends and family.
There is nothing to be ashamed of.
The truth is, so many couples today experience difficulties in conception that it is likely your friends and family members have faced their own struggles to get pregnant. Rather than isolate ourselves we should seek support and comfort from those who care for us and have likely faced similar difficulties.
And you can, and should, talk to me.
Because I can help.
I can show you how some women fall pregnant so easily, and how you can do the same
I can identify why you may not have been able to conceive as expected and identify the imbalances that have been preventing conception, and I can show you exactly what steps you need to take in order to address these issues.
I will explain your entire diagnosis; I will talk you through some of the physical therapies and action steps that you can take. I will talk to you about neurology and blood work that can be done and explain what nutrition might be useful in helping to get the right nutrients and enzymes necessary for reproduction in your specific case, we’ll do this and so much more.
I will give you a clear cut, no-nonsense answer as to why you haven’t been able to conceive, and I will outline a personalized treatment plan for you to take you through the steps that you can take to majorly improve your health, and to get in the best possible state in order to have a baby so you waste no more time.
If you’re trying for a family or planning on going through IVF, ICSI IUI, or have been through failed rounds, from poor egg growth, fertilization failure, sperm quality issues, miscarriage etc, and want to give this round the best possible shot of success and dramatically improve your fertility and reproductive health, to have a happy healthy baby, then …
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