Naturopathic fertility care is a two-pronged approach. We seek to both improve the body’s overall health, as well as target specific problems of the reproductive system. In many cases, women are not only suffering from difficulty achieving pregnancy, but may simultaneously be affected by digestive problems, allergies, immune dysfunction, metabolic problems, and/ or nutritional deficiencies. In these cases, the success of fertility treatment will be dramatically enhanced when other underlying problems are addressed.
Naturopathic fertility care may include treatment using diet and lifestyle counseling, nutritional supplementation, herbal or homeopathic remedies, and acupuncture. As the cause of infertility varies depending on the fertility diagnosis, as well as other underlying conditions, the treatment protocol is individualized to meet each patient’s needs.
Diet and lifestyle counseling powerfully impact metabolic and immune function, and would be a foundation for women suffering from polycystic ovary syndrome and endometriosis. These women also benefit from acupuncture, which is used to regulate the menstrual cycle, improve ovulation, reduce stress, and decrease inflammation. Select nutritional and herbal supplements act as antioxidants and regulate hormone levels, thereby improving ovarian function and enhancing hormones such as progesterone. Antioxidants protect the developing egg cell from oxidative damage, resulting in a healthier egg cell at ovulation.
Acupuncture has been shown to improve the success of treatment in women undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF), improving pregnancy rates and live birth rates (1).
1. Zheng CH, Huang GY, Zhang MM, Wang W. Effects of acupuncture on pregnancy rates in women undergoing in vitro fertilization: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Fertil Steril. 2012 Mar;97(3):599-611.