Beginning your fertility supplement journey can be intimidating. With a seemingly endless variety of supplements out there, it can feel overwhelming to decide which ones to try, let alone which are best for your own body. Luckily, with a little bit of research, you can narrow down which supplements are key for supporting your own fertility. Here, we’ll break down some of the most popular fertility supplements for women to help you determine which products to incorporate into your own routine.
Before we get into it, a reminder that it’s essential to check in with your primary care doctor and/or OBGYN about starting any form of fertility supplement to ensure you’re providing yourself with the right nutrients.
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Prenatal vitamins are often recommended to start taking within a few months of when you plan to conceive (obviously, this depends on what your doctor advises you to do). Prenatal vitamins are like multivitamins made especially for mommas-to-be: they include important nutrients that support a baby’s development in the womb. They also often include nutrients that pregnant women give a majority of to their babies, so prenatals are a good form of support for both mother and child. While they don’t directly increase fertility, they help to provide embryos with an environment that’s supportive to a fetus’ growth.
DHEA, short for dehydroepiandrosterone (thank goodness, because whew, what a mouthful), is a hormone that occurs naturally in the body. It is produced by the adrenal glands, located above the kidneys, and primarily aids in creating other hormones, including the reproductive hormones estrogen and testosterone. DHEA is typically at its highest levels of production in your mid-20s but tends to decrease rapidly with age. As such, DHEA supplements can support fertility by increasing DHEA hormones in the body and thereby aiding the production of estrogen and testosterone as well. DHEA has also been shown to support women with diminished ovarian reserve, which reduces the quality and count of eggs in a woman’s ovaries. Given this, DHEA can be helpful to older women, as well as women undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF) in their attempts to conceive.
DHEA supplements typically come in a capsule or tablet form with a recommended starting dosage of 25 milligrams one to three times a day. (Again, be sure to consult your doctor on the right supplement dosage for you).
Coenzyme Q10, also known as CoQ10, is an antioxidant that is produced naturally by the body. CoQ10 acts to support cell growth and maintenance. CoQ10 exists in the mitochondria, which act as the powerhouse of the cell. However, levels of CoQ10 decrease in the body as we age, as does our ability to absorb CoQ10. In tandem with the body’s reduction in CoQ10, women tend to see a reduction in egg production and quality as they age. As such, it can be helpful for those trying to get pregnant to add CoQ10 supplements to their regime to support the development of healthy egg cells in the body. CoQ10 has been shown to be especially effective when combined with DHEA supplements.
CoQ10 supplements typically come in softgel capsule form, and can be easily taken with meals. While there is no set clinical dosage for CoQ10, it’s typically recommended at a starting dosage of 100 milligrams taken one to three times daily, or as recommended by a healthcare provider.
Additional Fertility Supplements
In addition to DHEA and CoQ10, there are a variety of other supplements that have shown benefits in aiding fertility outcomes.
Zinc is a mineral that helps to drive DNA synthesis and cell division. In reproductive cells, zinc supports the regulation of hormone function and cell differentiation, so egg cells are healthy. Zinc also supports the immune system, ensuring that your body is in tip top shape to be the happy home of a fertilized egg.
Studies have shown that low vitamin D levels can lead to lower fertility levels in women attempting to conceive. As such, it can be helpful to supplement your diet with additional vitamin D3 to help increase your fertility overall.
Vitamin K helps to regulate hormonal function, as such it’s essential to supporting reproductive health. Taken with vitamin D3, vitamin K can aid in preconception health.
When starting out on your journey to conceive, it’s essential to consider what supplements are best for you to take to aid in your reproductive health. Often, it can be helpful to take a combination of supplements, like DHEA, and CoQ10, along with various vitamins and minerals to make sure your body and hormones are in tip top, baby-making shape. Of course, it’s paramount to consult your doctor before adding any supplement to your preconception routine. Now that you know the basics of fertility supplements, which ones do you think you’ll try?
Tiffany is a Medical Student and also works as a fitness coach in part-time. She is also a writer and writes on health and fitness articles. Tiffany loves to engage with users and help them provide various useful information on General Health. She provides researched-based information and also featured on various blogs and magazines.