Do you eat a balanced diet? Really?

what to eat to get pregnant, best fertility foods

What you eat affects your chances to get pregnant

From the perspective of someone who has dealt with vitamins and hormones for over a decade, I am convinced that it is not a good idea to rely on the claims of the food industry that eating “a balanced diet“ will provide all the nutrients that our bodies need. What does a “balanced diet” mean, beyond being a phrase?

Who feels they know what their individual needs are?

Who is telling us what to eat, and based on which evidence?

Our lifestyle has changed radically over the past hundreds of years and our eating habits have become completely disconnected from anything practiced by humans before. We buy our food in the supermarkets as if it were the most obvious thing in the world. It seems unbelievable that the first European supermarket only opened up in England in the middle of the last century!

Although several decades seem like an awful long time, it is in fact just a blink of a moment when considered from the perspective of human existence on Earth.

Regardless, the fact whether we buy our foods in the supermarkets, thrive on processed food, or believe to eat healthy by being vegetarians, vegans, or whatever else, our collective eating habits are just a recent fashion trend, an evolutionary experiment run by a crowd without much theoretical knowledge, without proper controls, and without a person in charge.

My two cents.

Further readings:

  • Eaton SB, Konner M, Shostak M. Stone agers in the fast lane: chronic degenerative diseases in evolutionary perspective. Am J Med. 1988 Apr;84(4):739-49.
  • Juhl M, Olsen J, Andersen AM, Grønbaek M. Intake of wine, beer and spirits and waiting time to pregnancy. Hum Reprod. 2003 Sep;18(9):1967-71.
  • Konner M, Eaton SB. Paleolithic nutrition: twenty-five years later. Nutr Clin Pract. 2010 Dec;25(6):594-602.
  • Matorras R, Ruiz JI, Mendoza R, Ruiz N, Sanjurjo P, Rodriguez-Escudero FJ. Fatty acid composition of fertilization-failed human oocytes. Hum Reprod. 1998 Aug;13(8):2227-30.
  • Pontzer H, Raichlen DA, Wood BM, Mabulla AZ, Racette SB, Marlowe FW. Hunter-gatherer energetics and human obesity. PLoS One. 2012 7(7):e40503.
  • Selesniemi K, Lee HJ, Muhlhauser A, Tilly JL. Prevention of maternal aging-associated oocyte aneuploidy and meiotic spindle defects in mice by dietary and genetic strategies. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2011 Jul 26;108(30):12319-24.
  • Sofi F, Abbate R, Gensini GF, Casini A. Accruing evidence on benefits of adherence to the Mediterranean diet on health: an updated systematic review and meta-analysis. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Nov;92(5):1189-96.
  • Ströhle A, Hahn A, Sebastian A. Latitude, local ecology, and hunter-gatherer dietary acid load: implications from evolutionary ecology. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Oct;92(4):940-5.
  • Ströhle A, Hahn A. Diets of modern hunter-gatherers vary substantially in their carbohydrate content depending on ecoenvironments: results from an ethnographic analysis. Nutr Res. 2011 Jun;31(6):429-35.
  • Toledo E, Lopez-del Burgo C, Ruiz-Zambrana A, Donazar M, Navarro-Blasco I, Martínez-González MA, de Irala J. Dietary patterns and difficulty conceiving: a nested case-control study. Fertil Steril. 2011 Nov;96(5):1149-53.
  • Twigt JM, Bolhuis ME, Steegers EA, Hammiche F, van Inzen WG, Laven JS, Steegers-Theunissen RP. The preconception diet is associated with the chance of ongoing pregnancy in women undergoing IVF/ICSI treatment. Hum Reprod. 2012 Aug;27(8):2526-31.
  • Vujkovic M, de Vries JH, Lindemans J, Macklon NS, van der Spek PJ, Steegers EA, Steegers-Theunissen RP. The preconception Mediterranean dietary pattern in couples undergoing in vitro fertilization/intracytoplasmic sperm injection treatment increases the chance of pregnancy. Fertil Steril. 2010 Nov;94(6):2096-101.

 

2018-06-19T09:21:26+00:00 October 27th, 2013|Tags: , , , |

About the Author:

Darja Wagner, a PhD cell biologist combines her knowledge of cells, hormones and vitamins to help women with infertility issues. She is the author of the blog "All About Egg Health: How to Get Pregnant After 35". Darja helps women to apply latest advances in reproductive biology to maximize egg quality for higher chances of conception, in either a natural way or by means of assisted reproductive technology.