(Photo by Elizabeth Lavin)
Last week our D Moms Daily wellness expert Dr. Kate Naumes talked safe beauty for expecting moms. Today she’s back addressing preconception care and why it’s essential for making healthy, happy babies.
If you’re thinking about becoming pregnant, your health in the months prior to pregnancy is more important than you might think. Preconception care is important for making healthy, happy babies. If a woman is in optimal health before conception, she increases her chances of having a full-term pregnancy and a successful delivery with minimal medical intervention. Cases of premature births, low birth weight, and health problems in newborns and infants could be prevented with proper preconception care.
According to an article in Midwifery Today, the health of the mother and the father prior to conception is reflected in the health of the pregnancy, delivery, and the new baby. As a further benefit, women who have gone through a guided detoxification program before conception have an easier time during the third trimester.
A licensed naturopathic doctor can work with you to set the stage for a healthy pregnancy. If you have already been trying to get pregnant for over a year or have been told that you have infertility, you may particularly benefit from working with a holistic practitioner. Just how effective is preconception care? The Foresight Study implemented a program of integrative preconception care for 300 couples struggling with infertility. Within two years, 89% of these couples that had previously been declared infertile had conceived naturally without the help of IUI or other similar fertility interventions. Of those who had experienced a previous miscarriage, 83% had given birth to a healthy baby within three years of the study without experiencing another miscarriage.
Targeted naturopathic medicine can address reproductive and fertility problems in both the father and mother-to-be. A naturopath can recommend specific nutrients and herbs, such as chasteberry and dong quai, to enhance fertility. Boosting your partner’s health and fertility also improves the health of the new baby. Adequate supplementation of zinc, vitamin C, and the amino acid arginine may increase sperm count if his levels are low. Additionally, vitamin E can protect sperm cell membranes.
Naturopathic care can enhance your health in preparation for maximum fertility by:
- Balancing hormone levels, which can stimulate regular ovulation.
- Identifying sources of environmental toxicity, including exposure to estrogenic compounds which can reduce fertility.
- Ensuring optimal nutritional intake.
- Teaching fertility awareness techniques.
- Bringing down stress levels to prepare the body for pregnancy.
A naturopathic approach can be especially important for women over 35 who want to be first-time mothers or are trying for another child and for anyone who desires a happy pregnancy and a delivery free of medical complications. Naturopathic care works with the natural physiology of your body to prepare for a healthy pregnancy and give your baby the best start.
Dr. Kate Naumes, ND runs a Holistic Wellness practice in uptown. When she’s not doing her best to get vitamin D by playing outside with her son, she’s counseling her clients about creative and tangible ways optimize their health. She also provides pre-conception and infertility counseling, newborn and pediatric wellness education, as well as ongoing well-woman and menopause support. Learn more at naumesnd.com.
Disclaimer: Dr. Kate Naumes, ND holds a Doctorate in Naturopathy and a Certificate in Midwifery from Bastyr University. The state of Texas does not license Naturopathic Doctors. As such, she holds her license in California and acts in Texas as a wellness consultant, not as a physician.