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Sunday, March 29, 2015


Getting Pregnant Naturally May Be Possible Over 40

I have a firm belief belief that couples should look into natural options before starting expensive and sometimes dangerous fertility procedures.  I continually regret jumping into IVF treatments since I eventually got pregnant naturally well over the age of 40 but only after exhausting an exorbitant amount of money and emotional energy.
Among things mentioned in the article below, there are things you can do to improve egg quality.


In Women Over 40, IVF May Not Address The Root Cause Of Infertility

I also like the fact that Dr. Mercola (and Iva Keene in this article) states that IVF doesn't address the root cause of infertility.  There are some suggestions to decrease your exposure not only to toxins and environmental estrogens, but also to avoid things that you may be allergic to.

Read more:

Dairy products account on average for 60-70 percent of estrogens consumed. Humans consume milk from cows in the second half of pregnancy when cows estrogen levels are high. We usually associate dairy and drinking milk with calcium, and never think about what else we may be consuming along with the calcium (and dairy, by the way is not the best source of calcium). Here is a list of hormones that have been found in cows' milk:
  • Prolactin
  • Somatostatin
  • Melatonin
  • Oxytocin
  • Growth hormone
  • Lutenizing releasing hormone
  • Thyroid stimulating hormone
  • Estrogens
  • Progesterone
  • Insulin
  • Corticosteroids and many more 


Tuesday, March 24, 2015


I frequently write about women and couples who get pregnant over 40.  It's certainly not that uncommon contrary to the popular media.  But what about pregnancy over 50?  Can it happen naturally.  I have a number of cases of pregnancy over 50 on a new page on my website.  Most of these cases were surprise pregnancies and their spouse was also over the age of 50.  Read more here:


Saturday, March 21, 2015


Pregnancy Over 40, Spring and Fertility

Since spring has sprung and, along with it (at least where I live), some very nice weather, I thought I'd share an article that connects spring with everything from elevated moods to increased fertility. Read more:

Scientists know that when seasons change, the retina — the part of the eye connected to the brain by the optic nerve — naturally reacts to variations in the amount of daylight. This triggers hormonal changes.

Particularly important is the adjustment in melatonin, a hormone that affects our mood and how we sleep. As a result of light changes, the body naturally produces less melatonin during spring, causing a lift in mood, a reduced desire to sleep, an increase in sexual appetite and a need to eat less.


New findings published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, by researchers at the University of Massachusetts medical school, have also proved that activity levels rise as the days get longer. After analysing the exercise habits and food intakes of almost 600 men and women over a year, Professor Yunsheng Ma found that most subjects gained up to 2lb (1kg) in winter; they ate lots of carbohydrate and exercised little. Come spring, however, activity levels soared and calorie intake dropped. It seemed that the only reason for this was the change in season.

This is partly a psychological effect but also physical. Evolutionary biologists believe that our bodies are programmed to be more active as the hormone mix changes with more light. Released from the chemical messages that make us withdraw in winter, the body feels energised, ready to hunt for food and to give birth.

Spring is also the time, supposedly, when a young man’s thoughts turn to sex. And it is true that men are more fertile at this time of year than any other. Ironically, though, this is because levels of actual sexual activity seem to drop in spring. The less sex men have, the more they save up their sperm and the greater their sperm count when they do have sex.

Professor Michael Smolensky, a chronobiologist from the University of Texas specialising in the relationship of biology to the rhythms of hours, days and months, says that statistics indicate that sexual activity in human beings is much greater in autumn,. “When we look at couples who have kept sex diaries and single males who have kept their own data, sexual activity is rather low in spring,” Smolensky says.

This fits with studies that have shown conclusively that levels of testosterone, the male sex hormone, are higher in late summer and early autumn than spring, so that’s when men have the greatest sex drive and when conception rates are high.

But sperm counts do peak in March, April and May. Smolensky says: “In sexually active males, sperm count is affected by two factors, environmental temperature and sexual activity. When men are sexually active, sperm count goes down; when they’re not sexually active, they’re not using it, so it goes up.” That could explain Smolensky’s findings that there are more unplanned babies conceived during spring than any other time of year. There are more sperm around, so despite less sex, one’s more likely to hit the mark.

Spring not only improves our mood and energy levels, it can protect our teeth and bones. On the first few sunny days of spring many people feel the urge to take off those winter togs and do a bit of prancing in the sunshine. This is in response to the fact that for several months our bodies have been starved of vitamin D, essential for healthy bones and teeth. And we make it only when our skins are exposed to sunlight. We’re craving a top-up. 


Thursday, March 19, 2015


Pregnancy Over 40, The Light/Dark Connection

I frequently write about the importance of sleep and paying attention to the balance between light and dark on your body's cycle.
 This article does a good job of explaining the importance of light during the day and the earth's natural rhythms. Read more:

When you are in sync with the earth's natural rhythms and cycles you can boost your fertility. If you work against nature's rhythms as many of us do, then you may be harming your delicate fertility balance.

Your biological clock is intimately linked to your reproductive system by utilizing the same hormones that trigger ovulation and sperm maturation. Therefore both women and men are affected by respecting or ignoring their natural rhythms.

See Also: Inositol and Egg Quality(

Importance of Bright Light

Getting adequate sunlight or other full spectrum light during the day is key to optimum fertility for many reasons. Vitamin D is created in our bodies when we are exposed to sunlight and Vitamin D deficiencies have been linked to infertility.

Adequate sunlight also helps regulate circadian rhythms which allow you to sleep better at night. Regular exposure to the sun also helps you maintain a strong immune system which is necessary to maintain a healthy pregnancy. Women who get more sunlight also have consistent and stronger menstrual cycles.

Finally, bright light prevents your body from overproducing melatonin which suppresses fertility. This might explain why it is easier for women to conceive in southern regions and during the summer months. 

Boost Your Fertility While You Sleep by Sheryl Lyon

Monday, March 16, 2015


Woman Conceives Naturally at 47

Here's another one!
 Here's another story of a woman who got pregnant by surprise at the age of 47.  So all you "youngsters" in your early 40's, it certainly happens!  Read more:


From the article:

Becoming pregnant at age 47 wasn't a worry for Robin Brussel. "I enjoyed every minute of being pregnant," she said.
Still, it was a surprise. "I thought I was going through pre-menopause," she said. "It just happened."
Brussel, now 48, gave birth in December to a 6-pound, 10-ounce boy named Noah she carried for 39 weeks. He was a cesarean birth, as were her four older children, ages 18 to 28. Noah was the first child born to her and her husband, Mark Brussel, 56. They've been married nearly four years.
 from St. Louis Today

Friday, March 13, 2015


Luteal Phase Defect and Vitamin C

I have always associated vitamin C with the immune system.
 This article, however talks about how vitamin C may also play a role in regulating hormones which may hep with conditions like luteal phase defect.  Luteal phase defect is when your hormones fall too fast in the second half of your cycle.


From the article:

A number of factors can cause luteal phase defect. Recent findings have suggested that oxidative damage may play a role, and antioxidant levels, such as vitamin C, vitamin E, and glutathione, were found to be significantly lower in women with luteal phase defect and recurrent miscarriages than in healthy women. The potential benefits of antioxidant vitamin supplementation have not been previously explored.

One hundred fifty women with luteal phase defect seeking medical attention for infertility were enrolled in the current study. Levels of estrogen and progesterone were monitored for three menstrual cycles. The participants were randomly assigned to receive 750 mg of vitamin C per day or no treatment beginning at the onset of the third cycle of the study. During the third cycle, progesterone levels increased significantly in women receiving vitamin C but did not change in women receiving no treatment. Estrogen levels also increased in the treatment group but not the untreated group. Moreover, there was a significantly higher pregnancy rate in the vitamin C group than in the untreated group: 25% of the women receiving vitamin C became pregnant within six months of starting treatment, while only 11% of untreated women became pregnant in the same time period.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015


The expression "unexplained infertilty" means that the medical community has no idea why you're not getting pregnant.
 If you're trying to conceive over 40, your age is a neat a tidy "explanation" for your failure to conceive or an explanation of recurrent miscarriage.

Unexplained Infertility Means The Doctors Have No Idea Why You're Not Getting Pregnant

How did I deal with this? Well in an odd sort of way, part of my motivation to get pregnant naturally came from these "naysaying" doctors. I was going to prove them wrong.

How Dare You Tell Me I'm Too Old To Have A Baby!

 I would frequently think to myself, "How dare you tell me I'm too old to have a baby --- you just wait - you don't know who you're dealing with". Nobody actually came right out and said I was too old, but the message was there.

It's funny, but when I did finally succeed, one of the doctors who was quite negative about my chances of getting pregnant was bouncing off the walls with excitement. I think they really do want you to succeed and as more of us do, perhaps their attitudes toward older women will change.  You have to realize that Reproductive Endocrinologists (or fertility doctors) see the worst cases, they approach each couple with pessimism.

Unexplained Infertility May Not Exist

Here is an article about how the diagnosis of unexplained infertility may actually not mentions that perhaps it should be changed to "undiagnosed infertility". Read more:



We have presented evidence that the non-diagnosis of UI is, at best, highly subjective and inaccurate and, at worst, non-existent. Indeed, were it to be preserved, one would, at a minimum, have to accept the notion that a diagnosis of UI always has to be seen as provisional and subject to revisions. Any serious attempt to improve the didactic terminology in the field of reproductive medicine, would, however, suggest that there is no longer a place for such a diagnostic entity. A better effort should be undertaken to develop reliable tools to diagnose, hitherto often undiagnosed, conditions of endometriosis, tubal disease, premature ovarian ageing and immunological infertility, which are often misdiagnosed for UI. Diagnostic terminology should be based on evidentiary diagnostic findings and not on their absence.

Even the best, and most accurate, diagnostic approach will leave some patients without a specific diagnosis. We would argue that such patients should be considered ‘undiagnosed‘, rather than have a formal diagnosis of UI attached to them. After all, they do not have a diagnosis! 


Saturday, March 07, 2015


Explanation of How Chromosomal Abnormalities Result In Miscarriage

Miscarriage and Recurrent Miscarriage

Wow... the more I read articles like this one, the more I realize how much of getting pregnant and staying pregnant involves luck.
My site:
 The study mentioned below looked at egg formation and the arrangement of chromosomes. It isn't a perfect process and getting the right number of chromosomes almost seems like a "hit and miss" process. Read more:

During meiosis, fibres called microtubules attach themselves to the centre (kinetochore) of the chromosomes. The microtubules act like fishing lines and once a chromosome is 'caught' it is pulled to the opposite side of the cell from its partner.

But, before the microtubules hook the chromosomes, the researchers noticed that they herd them together into the centre of the cell. Despite this repositioning, almost 90 per cent of chromosomes were let off the hook only to be re-caught.

See Also: Miscarriage Over 40 (

"We saw that they [the microtubules] have to go through several tries before getting the connection right," says Ellenberg.
Third time lucky

In fact, some chromosomes were released up to six times, though most averaged three. Ellenberg says this means that the pathway that corrects the errors by uncoupling the chromosome and the microtubule is therefore heavily used and thus more prone to making mistakes — resulting in too few or too many chromosomes in the egg.

"Our findings provide a plausible explanation for the high rate of errors during egg formation."

Ellenberg adds that their observations make error correction proteins good candidates for age-related infertility.

"They form the basis to focus our future work on age-related female infertility, as it seems very likely that a component of the pathway that corrects these errors will be involved. The individual proteins that make up the machinery to correct the errors may simply not have a sufficiently long life-span to function well in very old oocytes," he says.



Trying To Have A Baby, Birth Control Pills May Give Ovaries A Rest

I know, taking birth control pills seems counter-intuitive when you're trying to conceive.
 But, birth control pills may give your ovaries a needed rest so they can start producing again. Although longer term use of the pill may be needed, I recall fertility clinics using birth control pills to give the ovaries a chance to lay dormant before they started up with fertility drugs. If you get ovarian cysts, the pill can also help your ovaries clear up before trying to conceive. Endometriosis can also be helped by birth control pills because the monthly surge of hormones is put to rest so the endometrial implants which are outside the uterus are not bleeding and causing more adhesions.  Read more about birth control pills and other natural remedies for endometriosis:
Endometriosis and Fertility(

Thursday, March 05, 2015


There seem to be hypnotherapy practitioners popping up everywhere and probably for good reason.  The mind body connection is so important in all aspects of our lives including our reproductive system.  Although I did not undergo hypnosis when I was trying to conceive, I did practice meditation and visualization (learn more about my meditation and visualization program here:,  I also created what I call "vision boards"  where you make a collage of pictures to help your mind focus on your desired outcome.  When I embarked on my all natural pregnancy protocol, I did not want to rely on paid professionals because we had already spent so much on fertility treatment.  But for anyone interested, this article from Psychology Today explains more about how hypnosis can help you conceive:

1. Hypnosis at the time of embryo transfer yielded pregnancy rates that were double those of the controls. (Eliahu Levitas, et al., “Impact of Hypnosis during Embryo Transfer on the Outcome of In Vitro Fertilization—Embryo Transfer: A Case-control Study,” Fertility & Sterility, 85 – 5 (2006): 1404 – 1408.
2. Hypnosis can be an ultimate mind/body awareness activity and can reaffirm your femininity.
3. Hypnosis or self-hypnosis allows you to feel back in control because of your active participation.
4. Post-hypnotic suggestions can enhance receptivity.
5. Hypnosis can take you under the turbulence to an “infertility-free zone.”
6. Hypnosis can support medical treatment, holistic care and even natural conception.
7. Hypnosis is relaxing.
8. Hypnosis can calm fears.
9. Hypnosis can heal heart ache.
10. Hypnosis can become a safe haven which is renewing and revitalizing.
11. Hypnosis can help you remember who you really are.
12. A hypnotic trance can convert stumbling blocks into building blocks for navigating the emotional rubble created during the journey.

pscychology today

Tuesday, March 03, 2015


It seems like all the things we hear over and over for our general health also seem to apply to our reproductive health.  If you are trying to conceive, your partner may want to go easy on the saturated fats.
The type of fats you eat can affect fertility
Although the study demonstrating the link between dietary fat and poor sperm count was small, it still indicates that what men eat and what types of fat they eat is significant.

 I spend a lot of time talking about what women should be eating, however, what men eat may affect their fertility...specifically their sperm count.



 Sperm Count May Be Reduced By Saturated Fat
Saturated fat isn't very heart healthy and according to this article, it's not very sperm healthy either.   They types of fats that are good for sperm are the kinds found in fish and other foods like nuts and avocados that are high in the good fats. Read more:

From the article:

Researcher Dr Jill Attaman, said: 'We were able to demonstrate that in men who took in higher amounts of fats, such as saturated fat and monounsaturated fat, there was an association with decreased sperm concentration.

'But polyunsaturated fat - those seen in fish primarily - was associated with improved sperm morphology and motility.'

Morphology relates to the size and shape of the sperm and is an indicator of fertility.

The research was carried out on 91 men seeking fertility treatment but Dr Attaman said she would expect to see a 'similar pattern' in the general population, although this would need to be studied.

The men were asked how often they ate certain foods, what types of oil they used in cooking and baking and the types of margarine they consumed.

Of the group, 21 men also had levels of fatty acids in their sperm and semen measured.

Overall, those men in the highest saturated fat intake group took in 13 per cent of their daily calories as saturated fat, while those in the lowest third took in 8 per cent.

The study concluded: 'Men in the highest third of saturated fat intake had 41 per cent fewer sperm than those in the lowest third.

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