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What to Avoid When You're Trying to Conceive

Team AckoFeb 8, 2024

So you’ve finally decided to take that big step of trying to become a mom! We’re sure you’ve started doing your medical check-ups and your research. It’s time to get your body in the best shape it can be, and you probably have plenty of points on what you need to do.



However, there are a number of things that you need to avoid too while trying to get pregnant. Here are the main no-nos you need to keep in mind:

No smoking

Smoking has been specifically shown to affect fertility in both men and women. Smoking can also damage the DNA of your baby. If you stop smoking now, it will improve your chances of conceiving. During pregnancy, smoking is a huge risk factor for serious complications.

No alcohol

You may feel that you can indulge yourself a little with drinks until you actually get pregnant. But this is not the case. Drinking more than one or two units of alcohol once or more times a week can negatively impact your fertility and cause imbalances in the hormonal system that controls reproduction. Your partner should put down the glass too. Alcohol can reduce levels of the sex hormone testosterone and cause erectile dysfunction.

Keep the caffeine to a minimum

You don’t need to cut out your morning cup of coffee completely. However, experts suggest capping it at 200 milligrams a day. But keep in mind that it's not just coffee – chocolate, sodas, energy drinks, and some cold and pain medications also have caffeine.

Avoid junk food

This is a crucial time to ensure that you’re in great shape. Good health can enhance your fertility. So, swap your favourite fast food with plenty of folic acid-packed veggies, legumes and pulses to give your body the kick start it requires.

Avoid high fluctuations in weight

It is imperative to stay at a healthy weight when you’re trying to conceive.

Being extremely overweight or underweight body can cause you to have irregular or missed periods. Being extremely underweight could even make you stop ovulating altogether. Obesity dramatically increases the risk of pregnancy complications such as preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, birth defects, and the need for a c-section.

Avoid excess stress

Medical evidence shows that chronic or high anxiety levels can negatively affect your reproductive system. Actively look for ways you can reduce stress in your life. This could include yoga, meditation, or listening to your favourite music. If you feel that your stress levels could be affecting your health and your ability to conceive, you should talk to your doctor about ways to deal with the stress.

Don't wait too long to start a family

The chances of you getting pregnant will start diminishing as you get older. If you're in your late 30s, you are 30 to 40% less fertile than you were in your early 20s. Talk to your doctor about your age and your conception chances, so that you are fully informed and can make a decision accordingly. Men should keep this in mind too, as guys over 50 are less fertile.

Don't overdo it with the physical exercise

If you are overweight, some regular exercise will be good for you to help shed those extra pounds. However, excessive physical workouts are not the best idea at this juncture. Right before you conceive, is definitely not the time to be training for a marathon or lifting massive weights. If you're just beginning a workout program, don’t push yourself too hard. Vigorous exercise might cause hormone changes that make it hard for your ovaries to make or release eggs.

Avoid intense running, aerobics, swimming, or biking. Consult your doctor before starting any new exercise.

Disclaimer: This content is for informational purposes only, based on industry experience and secondary sources. It is not a substitute for professional advice. Please consult a qualified expert for health or insurance-related decisions. Content is subject to change, refer to current policy wordings for specific ACKO details.



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