Fertility is one of the top concerns for women today, whether they are in their 20s or 30s, or now even their 40s. According to the CDC, over 10% of American women have impaired fertility – that’s over 6.7 million women. At Parsley Health we take a holistic approach to fertility, which means we focus on optimizing your body’s overall health before you want to get pregnant.
Think of your pre-fertility year as an amazing opportunity to improve your overall health and well being. Now is the time to focus on you, reset, identify and address underlying health issues and find your highest expression of balance. There is no better way to head into pregnancy than that.
At Parsley we test for nutrient deficiencies, toxins like heavy metals, genetics with implications for pregnancy like MTHFR, and of course hormones, including forgotten hormones like Cortisol DHEA and Insulin which can have a much bigger impact on fertility than estrogen and progesterone. You might also do a test like Counsyl, a genetics screen for common inherited diseases, which your OB typically runs as part of your annual visit.
At Parsley we often guide you through a 30 day elimination diet cutting out common inflammatory foods like gluten, dairy, grains and sugar. Often women are shocked at how their sleep and energy change when they change their diet, not to mention they lose weight and their menstrual cycles become regular. We also help you restore nutrients you are low on like magnesium, B vitamins.
Detoxification is a process that really begins month 2 of our program and can take as many as 3-6 months. It includes reducing exposure from heavy metals like mercury from seafood and metal dental fillings as well as using natural supplements like B-vitamins, liver-stimulating bitters and even metal binders to lower the body’s total toxin burden.
It also includes resolving digestive issues – if you’re not pooping regularly or have a lot of gas and bloating then you’re not detoxifying regularly either.
Finally it includes an environmental detoxification – now is the time to get rid of cleaning products makeup and moisturizers with chemicals like phthalates and parabens, oxybenzone, BPA and BPS. If you stop using toxic products when you get pregnant, it’s often too late as you have stored those toxins already in your tissues.
This is the time to focus on you and your overall health and wellbeing, not to fixate on getting pregnant like your life depends on it. Stress is one of the number one drivers of digestive issues, autoimmune disease, PMS and irregular cycles, and, infertility. If you are chronically stressed and anxious, not sleeping well and exhausted, you need to begin to learn stress management tools like mindful breathing, yoga and meditation. You’ll need these tools once you’re a mom more than ever so now is the time to begin to practice them. At Parsley our health coaches teach you to meditate and give you resources like apps and yoga videos that help you build relaxation into your daily life.
(And stop other unnecessary supplements). By now we are 6 or more months into the program on average, and you might be ready to start “trying” – a word I can’t stand because it adds stress. I prefer that you start “not, not trying” so that your conception feels effortless, not like another task the success or failure of which you will be judged upon! Anyway… supplements to keep are probiotics, magnesium, fish oil and Vitamin D and in some cases other supplements as directed by your doctor for your particular situation. From there start a high quality prenatal.
A good prenatal has the right kind of B-vitamins for you (the methylated kind if you have MTHFR genetic variations like I do), high quality sourcing of ingredients, and appropriate levels of key nutrients like DHA fatty acids which feed the baby’s growing brain, Vitamin A, Iron and Folic acid. Do not buy supplements at the grocery store, or take the samples your OB gives you for free – I can’t tell you how many women have shown me prenatals their OB gave them that contain toxic dyes and chemicals!
From custom testing protocols to heavy metal chelation, Parsley Health is your partner in creating the right care plan for your needs.