If you’re trying to get pregnant, you may have considered vitamins and herbal supplements to increase your odds of conception. Chinese herbs have been used for more than 2,500 years for a variety of health problems and synthesized vitamins have been around since 1935.
But before popping an abundance of vitamins or herbs, you should take a minute to ask yourself, “Are they worth it?”
CoQ10, also known as ubiquinone, is a substance and antioxidant already present in body cells. It generates energy which the body needs for cell growth and maintenance.(1)
CoQ10 is important for egg development and as women age, mitochondrial function within the egg can decline. CoQ10 supplementation in older women could improve oocyte and embryo quality, based on studies with mice.(2)
According to WebMD, Coq10 supplements taken for six months or more could help improve sperm motility in men. (3)
There are not enough studies to say that CoQ10 definitively improves one’s fertility, particularly for women. However, there is also no evidence that it’s harmful to take, so giving it a try still may be prove to be beneficial.
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is essential for healthy bones, muscles, the heart, lungs and the brain.
Vitamin D levels can have a direct correlation on one’s fertility health and could cause issues for those with polycystic ovaries, uterine fibroids and improper semen parameters. This can be especially true if vitamin D levels are too low.(4)
There is limited research on the long-term effects of high vitamin D consumption which is considered to be 2,000 IU daily or more.
Herbal Supplementation and Acupuncture
Chasteberry, also known as vitex, is a popular herbal supplement made from the fruit of the chaste tree. Acupuncture is a practice that involves inserting needles into the body in order to access pressure points.
According to American Family Physician, vitex could improve luteal phase defects as well as menstrual irregularities and PMS.(5)
According to WebMD, acupuncture could stimulate egg production and improve blood flow, ultimately enhancing the lining of the uterus, which helps with implantation after fertilization.(6)
Nausea and upset stomach, dry mouth and dizziness have been reported when taking vitex. Evidence that it may help to improve infertility is only preliminary. (5)More studies should be conducted to prove that vitex is beneficial to one’s fertility health.
Acupuncture may not be the cure for all fertility problems, specifically structural defects. Additionally, treatment success may also depend on the acupuncturist and their experience.(6)
Conventional health experts are not yet convinced that acupuncture increases conception odds, but many do agree that it can help individuals relax and cope with stress.
While not every vitamin or herb is right for all couples, it could be worth talking to your physician about some of the above to learn what might be best for you.
The Stork® OTC is one over-the-counter, non-invasive product that may help. Using cervical cap insemination, The Stork® OTC captures sperm and delivers a sperm score concentration to the cervix that is 3.23 times higher than that which occurs via natural intercourse, according to their clinical study.
To learn more, visit: http://www.storkotc.com/
- Coenzyme Q10 – Topic Overview, ByHealthwise Staff, Retrieved April 6, 2017. http://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/heart-failure/tc/coenzyme-q10-topic-overview#1
- The aging oocyte – can mitochondrial function be improved?, By Yaakov Bentov, M.D. and Robert F. Casper, M.D., Retieved April 6, 2017. http://www.fertstert.org/article/S0015-0282(12)02443-0/fulltext
- Coenzyme Q10 Helps Sperm Movement, By Jennifer Warner, Retrieved April 6, 2017. http://www.webmd.com/infertility-and-reproduction/news/20040112/coenzyme-q10-helps-sperm-movement
- The Role of Vitamin D in Reproductive Health – A Trojan Horse or the Golden Fleece? Filip A. Dabrowski, Barbara Grzechocinska and Miroslaw Wielgos, Retrieved April 3, 2016. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4488777
- Chasteberry, Beatrix Roemheld-Hamm, M.D., PH.D., Retrieved April 6, 2016. http://www.aafp.org/afp/2005/0901/p821.html#afp20050901p821-b24
- The Ancient Art of Infertility Treatment, Colette Bouchez, Retrieved April 6, 2016. http://www.webmd.com/infertility-and-reproduction/features/ancient-art-of-infertility-treatment#1