Having IVF treatment is physically, mentally, and emotionally challenging. It’s a rollercoaster of emotions that can bring joy and sometimes disappointment. IVF is different for every woman and couple, and it can be overwhelming, especially if it’s your first IVF procedure.
Joy of Life® Surrogacy has put together this guide to help you prepare both physically (and mentally) for your first IVF treatment, whether you’re planning to be a surrogate mother or going through the process for other reasons, to help your procedure run as smoothly and successfully as possible.
Preparing for IVF: 5 Tips to Follow
Preparing your body for the IVF procedure is important as it can help the success rate. Before the IVF treatment, you want the eggs and sperm to be in a healthy condition, so implementing healthy habits and changes into your lifestyle is one way to increase the chances of success.
1. Eat a Balanced Diet
Eating a balanced diet, along with fertility-enhancing foods should be the foundation of improving your health prior to IVF treatment. Your body needs enough nutrients to keep healthy. Being overweight or underweight can negatively impact the success of the IVF, so speak to your clinic about their preferred guideline to prepare for treatment.
The recommended diet contains protein, magnesium, calcium, iron, and potassium with a focus on low-fat foods and high protein. Of course, your five-a-day is important, and fruits like strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries provide antioxidants, while dark leafy greens supply nutrients like iron and calcium.
Foods such as eggs, beans, nuts, and avocado have also been shown to boost fertility. It’s best to avoid foods that are high in sugar and processed.
2. Take Vitamins
Speak to your fertility clinic about the best vitamins for you. Vitamins can help the success rate of the treatment, and while prenatal supplements are good, high-quality multivitamins are even more beneficial.
3. Reduce Your Caffeine Intake
For coffee-lovers out there, unfortunately, we recommend that you reduce and limit your coffee to just one cup a day. Drinking and consuming too much caffeine can have a negative effect on your IVF cycle, so if possible it’s best to avoid it completely.
Of course, caffeine isn’t only in coffee, but it’s also in green and black teas and chocolate too. Check the labels on soft drinks also as they can contain caffeine. While decaf beverages like tea and coffee are better, they still contain chemicals that have been used in the decaffeination process so cutting out all tea and coffee before IVF can be really beneficial.
4. Don’t Smoke or Drink Alcohol
Smoking and drinking alcohol hugely decreases the success rate of IVF, so another way to prepare for your procedure is by stopping smoking and drinking, as you would in pregnancy.
There has been researching to show that nicotine makes eggs immune to fertilization and can age your ovaries. If you do get pregnant through IVF, then you still need to quit smoking and drinking as it can cause harm to the unborn baby. Alcohol also has serious effects during the IVF procedure, as alcohol consumption can reduce the success rate by up to 50%.
5. Avoid These Chemicals
While we’re on the topic of avoidance, it’s also good to steer clear of certain chemicals. Hair salons, for example, use chemicals that can be harmful, so if you have a hair appointment it’s better to book in a well-ventilated salon.
We suggest that you avoid using cosmetics, moisturizers, and soaps that contain parabens, triclosan and benzophenone, nail varnish, and food packaging material with BPA and other phenols.