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Adopt a Healthy Lifestyle

1. Eat well: This means both of you eating a well balanced diet but not over-eating. What you eat it can have a profound effect on your health. Take prenatal supplements to ensure adequate levels of nutritional support.

2. Take plenty of regular exercise but do not overdo it: High levels of exercising such as endurance training can cause delays in conception. Also watch out for those steroid based supplements offered during weight training and bodybuilding programmes, they can be particularly harmful for male fertility where they can knock out sperm count!

3. Refrain from smoking or taking recreational drugs.

4. Refrain from drinking alcohol.

5. Avoid any exposure to toxic chemicals.

6. Consult with your doctor or pharmacist before taking any medications or treating infections.

7. Limit caffeine intake. New research indicates even relatively small amounts (several cups of coffee a week, for example) can increase miscarriage risk.

8. For women, make sure that you are Rubella immune. If you take a blood test before you get pregnant, for example, your doctor can tell you if your body contains certain antibodies that guard against German measles. If you lack the antibodies, you can get a German measles vaccination three months before you become pregnant to give the live virus time to leave your system before the virus is exposed to a pregnancy.

9. If you have a family history of birth defects, or disease, talk to your physician. He or she may recommend a visit with a genetic counsellor.

10. Try to rid your life of excessive stress and tension.

11. The key to natural conception and pregnancy is to do the following:

For the woman: Check your fertility, start a course of vitamins, identify when you are about to ovulate and have intercourse at the right time.

For the man: Check your sperm concentration, start a course of vitamins, abstain from intercourse or masturbation for at least 3 days before your partner is expected to ovulate. Have intercourse with your partner just before or at the time your partner is ovulating. Work together to optimise your chances of success at conception.

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