Dr. Neha, Fertility Consultant, Nova IVF Fertility East, Patna
• Impacts of diet and exercise
A balanced diet and exercise are the two most important things you can do at any age to stay healthy. A balanced diet includes enough calories and nutritional intake to maintain a healthy weight. Physical activity is any form of exercise that consumes energy. People of all sizes and abilities can benefit from sports activities. Some sports activities are better than nothing. A diet rich in unsaturated fats, whole grains, vegetables, and fish has been linked to improved fertility in women and men. Although the current evidence on the effects of dairy products, alcohol, and caffeine is inconsistent, saturated fat and sugar are associated with poorer fertility outcomes in women and men.
• Excess weight and obesity
Excess weight and obesity are connected to insulin resistance and decreased levels of sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG), a protein involved in regulating sex hormones. One study found that women who were obese were much less likely to conceive within one year of stopping contraception than women in the normal weight range.
For men, obesity is also associated with lower fertility which includes hormone problems, sexual dysfunction, and other health conditions like type 2 diabetes and sleep apnoea resulting in lower testosterone levels and erectile problems.
• Major Lifestyle Factors that need to be improved for Women’s and Men’s fertility
Obesity prevention strategies are beginning to receive attention, but to see real progress, positive changes must outpace negative factors. Prevention policies must address some key behaviours, and the role of primary care nurses is at the center of their implementation: –
• Restrict processed foods (refined grains, processed meats, and foods rich in sugar, saturated fat, and salt) and drinks.
• Increases physical activity.
The healthy impulse of men is useful. A physically active man who exercised at least three times a day a week is more fit and active is likely to have good quality sperm compared to men who isn’t. It has been shown that physical activity provides a protective effect on fertility, compatible with weight loss of obesity.
Nutrition plays a key role in improving fertility for both male and female fertility. Food choices can positively affect reproductive function in several ways. Certain foods are believed to help reproductive efforts, boost the health of a woman’s eggs and a man’s sperm, and provide crucial nutrients for hormonal function, production, and balance. Healthy food choices are essential to build up nutrient stores and supply all the building blocks necessary for fetal growth and development.
A person’s weight is usually related to their eating habits and activity level. If it is lower than 18.5, it is considered underweight, between 18.5 and 24.9 is normal, higher than 25 is overweight, and more than 30 is considered obese. Weight has important effects on health, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and infertility. Therefore, weight is an important factor that needs to be improved.
• Reproductive timeline
The age of men or women is a factor that affects fertility. Due to factors such as the pursuit of education, many couples choose to postpone childbirth. Male and female fertility rates peak and then decline over time, so the fertility calendar may be an aspect to consider when determining the ideal time to start a family. As men age, testosterone levels begin to decline, leading to hypogonadism. However, if testosterone is used to treat hypogonadism, it will inhibit spermatogenesis. Semen parameters began to decline steadily at the age of 35, semen volume and exercise capacity decreased, and the shape may become increasingly abnormal. After age 40, male sperm DNA damage increases significantly, and athletic ability also decreases, hence fertility experts suggest that one must start their family planning sooner