Last week we discussed Basal Body Temperature (BBT) and its importance, particularly with regard to pre-conception. You may be wondering how to raise your Basal Body Temperature and thankfully there are many ways you can support your body in this way.
BBT is a reflection of metabolism. In the clinic, I often see women trying to be ‘healthy’ with restricted eating and excessive exercise. A lack of nutrition and physical stress to the body is not conducive to fertility and will not help your BBT. What’s more, dieting plays havoc with your thyroid function. I have recently seen a greater number of women choosing diet products, shakes, pills and similar. Please do not do this if you want to be in good health, to look after your thyroid gland and when preparing for conception!!
If you have noticed low morning BBT readings, you may also experience symptoms such as cold hands and feet, constipation, fatigue, menstrual irregularities or pain, thin hair and/or dry skin. These indicate a potential low metabolism and/or underactive thyroid. The thyroid gland is an important component of the endocrine (hormonal) system and it is therefore crucial for it to function well for optimum reproductive health.
By enhancing metabolism – which is reflected in your BBTs – your fertility will dramatically increase. The BBT is a reflection of the hormone progesterone and this is crucial for maintaining a pregnancy and for the healthy development of the foetus.
How to raise Basal Body Temperature, increase your fertility and the chances of maintaining a healthy pregnancy:
1. Eat within a set ‘window’ of 10 hours. Don’t eat late at night. E.g. eat your breakfast at 8am and your dinner by 6pm. This will boost your metabolism no end.
2. Eat little and often. Small, frequent meals will keep your body well-fuelled and your digestive fire stoked.
3. Eat lots of nutritious food. Tons of fresh fruit and vegetables with meals and as snacks will provide your cells (including eggs and sperm cells) with vital vitamins. Enjoy unrefined carbohydrates such as root vegetables, especially when in season. Remember to include lots of unprocessed fat for hormonal health. Do not deprive yourself by feeling you can only eat leaves and raw carrots. Indulge in lots of healthy, nutritious and yummy foods.
4. Avoid processed foods.
5. Get as much deep, uninterrupted sleep as you can. Have a relaxing evening routine and get to bed by 1opm.
6. Exercise regularly but choose your exercise carefully. Yoga (particularly yin or restorative yoga), pilates, walking and swimming are fantastic and will help to support and strengthen both your body and mind. Avoid intense exercise or ‘bootcamp’ type classes or anything that places a lot of stress on your body. This increases the stress hormone cortisol, which interferes with progesterone production.
7. Practise de-stressing and relaxation practices. Whether that be through non-intensive hobbies, creative outlets, meditation, yoga, walking or massage. Ensure to make this a key part of your daily routine.
If you would like further personalised help and support ahead of conception, please get in touch or book a Fertility Massage treatment and consultation.