herbal health

5 ways to improve sperm health

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Recently, we attended a seminar on Sperm Health at the Toronto Reproductive Acupuncture Clinic to learn more about improving sperm health and how important this is when trying to conceive.

Improving sperm health is so important when trying to conceive whether or not you are undergoing fertility assistance. Often when talking about fertility and conception the emphasis is placed on the health of the egg and/or uterus. This can put a lot pressure on people with these organs and make them feel solely responsible for challenges in trying to conceive and guilty when it doesn't go quite as planned. It was refreshing to see a seminar focused on sperm health! 

Improving sperm health can be both simple and accessible since you can do this mostly through lifestyle changes. Here are a couple of easy to implement strategies to improve sperm health:

1) Eat foods high in zinc

Foods high in zinc, such as pumpkin seeds or oysters, can boost testosterone and promote sperm count and motility.

2) Eat foods high in antioxidants

Eating foods high in antioxidants, such as almonds, walnuts, or pomegranate juice, help improve overall health and increase blood flow (meaning better erections).

3) Ejaculate often

Out with the old, in with the new - based on an Australian study frequent ejaculation decreases sperm DNA damage and maintains fertility range. Pretty easy, right?

4) Have good oral health

A 2014 study linked poor oral health and periodontitis with low sperm count! 

5) Use sperm friendly lubricants

Enough said! 

Naturopathic strategies (acupuncture; herbs and supplements; nutrition and fitness planning; etc) can be extremely beneficial for reproductive health. Individualized health and wellness support is essential in trying to conceive and can have positive impacts on the overall experience.

We are thrilled to find resources like the Toronto Reproductive Acupuncture Clinic! We encourage you to check out everything they offer, whether you are just starting trying to conceive or hoping to complement your ongoing fertility care! 

At Spectrum we understand how challenging this journey can be and offer emotional support and provide education and information to help you have the best experience during this time. Fertility Doula support is for anyone who could benefit from support throughout their conception journey. Contact us to learn more about how we can support you in your fertility journey.  

Love, 

The Spectrum Team

Tea for Two...!

Red Raspberry Leaf Tea

Have you ever wondered how you can give your uterus a good workout to prep for childbirth? How could a uterus even pump iron? It's not like there are W.O.D's for your uterus???

BUT ...

There is a way to help your uterus have effective contractions! Yep, that's right! Have you ever heard of Red Raspberry Leaf tea? Herbs are quite powerful and can have both positive (and negative) impacts on pregnancy. It is always wise to confer with an herbalist or naturopath regarding any herbal supplements that you would like to consume. But Red Raspberry Leaf tea is one of the few teas that are actually recommended before, during and after pregnancy!

What's special about Red Raspberry Leaf is it is a uterine toner and when consumed it will help you have effective contractions. It won't put you in to early labour, but will help ensure that when your uterus is doing what it does best, it's doing it well! It is also considered to help improve sleep during pregnancy, nausea and leg cramps because of it's high concentration of magnesium, potassium, iron and b-vitamins.

Just as Red Raspberry tea helps us during labour, it also helps us in those early postpartum days as our uterus tries to contract down to it's original size.

Some other teas that have benefits for you and babe include:

Dandelion leaf tea helps minimize jaundice in babe.

Nettle Leaf tea which is high in iron, calcium, vitamin K, and folic acid. Vitamin K helps with postpartum bleeding, and folic acid, as we know from our prenatal vitamins, is vital to our little one prenatally.

Milk Thistle tea a great liver detoxifier, and has been shown to increase breast milk, and is also known to interfere with prostate, breast, and endocervical cancer cell growth.

AND

Fenugreek tea is one of the most common herbs known to help increase breast milk supply. However, it is known to stimulate the uterus and is not recommended prenatally.

As mentioned earlier, it is important to discuss the use of herbs with your chosen health care provider both prenatally and postpartum.

And when you're ready to get your uterus to the 'gym' with a cup of warm tea, you can channel Hans and Franz (this is a special treat for those of you who grew up in the 70s/80s and would stay up late as a kid just to watch Saturday Night Live)!