Increase the Nutrient Density of Your Diet with Fall Harvest Vegetables

by Margaret Eich, MS, RDN

When we talk about a fertility friendly diet, we emphasize the importance of nutrient density - in other words, maximizing the vitamin and mineral content of your diet. What does that mean for your diet? It means eating whole and real foods and minimizing refined and processed foods, which have had most of their nutrients removed. The fall is an excellent time of year to practice focusing on nutrient density, as there is such a wide variety of produce in season. Here's a sampling of what's in season now, and what fertility friendly nutrients they contain:

Butternut squash, pumpkin, carrots, and sweet potatoes

These orange vegetables are rich in beta-carotene that gives them their orange color. Beta-carotene is the plant form of vitamin A, which acts as an antioxidant and may be helpful for neutralizing free radicals that would otherwise damage eggs and sperm. You may have heard that vitamin A can be toxic at high levels during pregnancy. This is true, but does not apply to beta-carotene. Only pre-formed vitamin A from animal products and certain supplements has the potential to cause birth defects when intake is too high. Beta-carotene is better absorbed from food when served with fat. Roasted vegetables with some fat or drizzle olive oil over steamed vegetables.

Leafy greens

As the hot summer days give way to cooler temperatures, leafy greens become more widely available again at farmer's markets. These include spinach, chard, and kale. These leafy greens, like the orange vegetables, are a great source of beta-carotene. You can't see the beta-carotene, because the orange is masked by the green chlorophyll. These greens are also a great source of vitamin C, which is a potent antioxidant. Vitamin C may also help support progesterone levels in those with low progesterone. Vitamin C may also help prevent DNA damage to eggs as they mature.

Leafy greens are also good sources of folate, important for preventing neural tube defects. Leafy greens also provide magnesium. Magnesium deficiency has been linked to infertility in some studies.

Cruciferous vegetables

The cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and kale are also in season in the fall. These vegetables are a good source of magnesium, folate, and indole-3-carbinol, a phytonutrient that may help balance estrogen levels. Cruciferous vegetables are best eaten cooked. Try roasting broccoli in the oven, or sauté kale with mushrooms for a savory side dish.

Blogs

My Rainbow Baby, Jack

My Rainbow Baby, Jack By Anna Pyne, LAc MSOM FABORM It is with such gratitude in my heart and soul that I can share with you, that I delivered Jack Fitzgerald Pyne on July 22nd 2016. He was born at 9 ...
Continue reading "My Rainbow Baby, Jack" »

Massage for Two!

Massage for two! By Meredith Nathan, LMT, Director of Massage Let's be honest...massage reaches a whole new level of amazing when you're prego. The benefits for mama-to-be are far reaching, ...
Continue reading "Massage for Two!" »

Remaining Hopeful

Remaining Hopeful By Christine Davis, LAc., MSOM The process of struggling to achieve something you really want can take a toll on you! If you have been trying to conceive for some time, maybe a lot ...
Continue reading "Remaining Hopeful" »

Eating Seasonally: Benefits of Eating Root Vegetables

Eating Seasonally: Benefits of Eating Root Vegetables By Shawna Schwalb, MS, LDN The leaves are stunning. Red, gold, orange, maroon piles crunch under your feet as you walk in the fall in Chicago. ...
Continue reading "Eating Seasonally: Benefits of Eating Root Vegetables" »

Hands On Women's Wisdom: Thankful

Hands On Women’s Wisdom: Thankful By Meredith Nathan November is a month that draws our focus towards thankfulness. It is a time to reflect on what we are grateful for, and to pause and ...
Continue reading "Hands On Women's Wisdom: Thankful" »

This Fertility Warrior's Best Weapon: Breath

This Fertility Warrior’s Best Weapon: Breath By Mollie Ewing An important mentor during my fertility journey once used the phrase “Fertility Rambo,” referring to the women who after ...
Continue reading "This Fertility Warrior's Best Weapon: Breath" »

L-arginine: A supplement for thin lining and low sperm count

L-arginine: A supplement for thin lining and low sperm count by Margaret Eich, MS, RDN L-arginine is a supplement that may be helpful for a few specific situations in female and male fertility. First, ...
Continue reading "L-arginine: A supplement for thin lining and low sperm count" »

You never know how strong you are until strong is the only choice you have

You never know how strong you are until strong is the only choice you have By Michelle Johann, LPC Navigating the world of infertility, I never felt like more of a failure. It was such a frustrating ...
Continue reading "You never know how strong you are until strong is the only choice you have" »

Acupuncture: Our team approach

Acupuncture: Our team approach By Stacy Dunn, Acupuncture Director If you’ve seen multiple acupuncturists, you know that techniques among practitioners can vary greatly. But why is there so much ...
Continue reading "Acupuncture: Our team approach" »

Increase the Nutrient Density of Your Diet with Fall Harvest Vegetables

Increase the Nutrient Density of Your Diet with Fall Harvest Vegetables by Margaret Eich, MS, RDN When we talk about a fertility friendly diet, we emphasize the importance of nutrient density - in ...
Continue reading "Increase the Nutrient Density of Your Diet with Fall Harvest Vegetables" »

Hands on Women's Wisdom: Just Breathe!

By Meredith Nathan, LMT One of the most profound self-care exercises I’ve seen to enrich the health of the abdominal and reproductive organs is also the simplest. We’ve all been doing it ...
Continue reading "Hands on Women's Wisdom: Just Breathe!" »

Understanding the Link Between Myoinositol and Fertility

What is myoinositol? Myoinositol (MI) is a form of inositol, which is a member of the B vitamin complex. MI is naturally found in foods including whole grains, beans, nuts and fruit. Myoinositol is ...
Continue reading "Understanding the Link Between Myoinositol and Fertility" »

Hands On Women's Wisdom: The Two Week Wait

Meredith Nathan, LMT ***BREAKING NEWS*** We are proud to announce that Pulling Down the Moon's FEM Protocol has been reviewed and approved by the NCBTMB (National Certification Board for ...
Continue reading "Hands On Women's Wisdom: The Two Week Wait" »

Recent Study Shows Acupuncture Helps Women Conceive Faster

A recent study published in the journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine found that women who used weekly acupuncture in addition lifestyle modification achieved pregnancy almost ...
Continue reading "Recent Study Shows Acupuncture Helps Women Conceive Faster" »

Simple Strategies for Optimal Hormone Health

by Beth Heller, MS Every other day a new food achieves “stardom” for its ability to clear toxins from the body. While there’s an element of hype to the detoxification craze, science ...
Continue reading "Simple Strategies for Optimal Hormone Health" »

Stress and Infertility: The Chicken or The Egg?

by Meredith Nathan, Pulling Down the Moon Massage Director 'Just relax and you’ll get pregnant…’ Well-meaning friends and family offer advice like this with the best of ...
Continue reading "Stress and Infertility: The Chicken or The Egg?" »

Mother's Day Yoga for Fertility

by Mollie Ewing, RYT "A mother is not defined by the number of children that you see, but the love that she holds in her heart." -Franchesca Cox Women struggling to have a child know that ...
Continue reading "Mother's Day Yoga for Fertility" »

Self-Care Fertility Massage Techniques

In this video Pulling Down the Moon's Massage Director, Meredith Nathan, demonstrates 3 self-care exercises for building blood in preparation for conception. Meredith is the creator of the ...
Continue reading "Self-Care Fertility Massage Techniques" »

Seasonal and Local Snapshot: Rhubarb Rules for Fertility and Beyond

It’s May in the Midwest and that means rhubarb! This leafy vegetable (surprise - rhubarb is not a fruit!) explodes from early spring soil every year, making it one of the few perennial ...
Continue reading "Seasonal and Local Snapshot: Rhubarb Rules for Fertility and Beyond" »

Infant Girls of Moms with PCOS Show Signs of Syndrome

A new study conducted at Northwestern University found that the infant daughters of women with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) show markers of the disease. In this study, data revealed that baby ...
Continue reading "Infant Girls of Moms with PCOS Show Signs of Syndrome" »

Hands On Women's Wisdom: Hormone Imbalance

In my practice over the last 12 years, I’ve seen hormonal imbalance in many forms, time and time again. Whether manifested as Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), endometriosis, fibroids, ovarian ...
Continue reading "Hands On Women's Wisdom: Hormone Imbalance" »

A Yellow Tutu? Well Something About Endo Has to Make You Smile

by Meg Gibson, L.Ac. As March begins and the weather starts to change there’s a sense of hope in the air. Hope that spring and warmer weather will be here soon, flowers will start to bloom and ...
Continue reading "A Yellow Tutu? Well Something About Endo Has to Make You Smile" »

Yoga for Sweeties

Why Yoga Makes Sense for Sweeties Back when Matt and I were in the midst of our fertility journey we started a very special tradition. Wednesday nights we would meet at Moksha yoga in Chicago after ...
Continue reading "Yoga for Sweeties" »

Yoga Pose for February

Heart-Opening Yoga for Valentine's Day by Mollie Ewing, RYT February is the perfect time to practice heart opening poses in honor of Valentine’s Day and American Heart Month. Heart opening ...
Continue reading "Yoga Pose for February" »

Client Corner: Unexpected Miracle

My husband and I are like so many couples our age. We were married in our early thirties and knew we wanted to focus on our careers and travel as much as we could before trying to have children. We ...
Continue reading "Client Corner: Unexpected Miracle" »

Questions or Comments

Join Our Email List