Fertility Experts: Winter Waistlines a Swelling Problem for Indianians Trying to Get Pregnant

Tuesday, January 22, 2008 General News
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INDIANAPOLIS, Jan. 21 In the wake of New Year resolutionsand American waistlines bulging ever outward, Indiana fertility experts aretargeting lifestyles and diets as worsening culprits in preventing couplesfrom conceiving.

Reproductive specialists say that January is traditionally a milestonemonth for infertile couples, in terms of making resolutions both to trim offholiday-related weight gains and to conceive some time in the New Year. Inaddition to requiring a perfect balance of reproductive hormones, healthy eggsand sperm, the fertility equation demands more attention than ever onmaintaining healthy nutrition. The best chances of pregnancy, they say,includes a diet of the good fats found in whole dairy products plus regularexercise, as well as eliminating the obvious evils of nicotine, alcohol, anddrugs.

"More and more research is supporting the idea that lifestyle and diet area probable hindrance to fertility, and this is the time of year to beparticularly focused on diet," said Laura Reuter, M.D., medical director atMidwest Fertility Specialists, the largest single group of reproductiveendocrinologists in Indiana. "At the same time, it's becoming more of anecessity for us to preach the gospel of a healthy diet and regular physicalactivity, which is not always easy in the midst of winter."

"Recent research is unlocking more of the complex puzzles of diet andactivity often surprising patients as to just how delicate the proper balancecan be," said Laura Tritt, registered dietitian for Organic Health Services, areproductive wellness center that works closely with patients of MidwestFertility Specialists. "For example, low iron, too much or too little bodyfat, or even too much exercise can impair fertility," said Tritt.

The analysis of 17,544 married women participating in the ongoing Nurses'Health Study II found those with the highest fertility scores: ate less transfat and sugar from carbohydrates; consumed more protein from vegetables thanfrom animals; ate more fiber and iron; took more multivitamins; had a lowerbody mass index (BMI); exercised for longer periods of time each day; andconsumed more high-fat diary products and less low-fat diary products.

The "fertility diet" is characterized by higher consumption ofmonounsaturated fat rather than trans fats, which is found in natural foodslike nuts and avocados, and olive oil.

Women should also opt for vegetable protein rather than animal protein,low-glycemic carbohydrates like whole grains, moderate consumption of high-fatdairy, multivitamins, and iron from plants and supplements, Chavarro andWillett's team reports.

About Midwest Fertility Specialists

Founded July 1, 2004, Midwest Fertility Specialists is the largest singlegroup of reproductive endocrinologists in the state of Indiana servingpatients in Carmel, Ind., Fort Wayne, Ind., Noblesville, Ind. and Champaign,Ill. Midwest Fertility is a member of IntegraMed America, an exclusive networklimited to the highest performing infertility practices in larger metro areasaround the United States. Nearly one out of every four IVF procedures in theUnited States is performed in an IntegraMed practice. For more information,visit http://www.midwestfertility.comThe latest research includes: -- A recent Harvard Medical School study suggests food and exercise choices may lower risk by almost 80 percent for those with ovulatory disorders. -- In February 2007, Human Reproduction reported that women who consumed one or more servings of whole-milk products a day were 27 percent less likely to experience infertility caused by a failure to ovulate than those who ate less than one serving a week. Additionally, those who ate two or more servings a day of low-fat dairy food were almost twice as likely to fail to ovulate as women who ate less than one serving a

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