How is your Challenge going? Have you been improving your nutrition? Have you been able to take steps to kick that sugar monster to the curb?
Today we are talking about the beverages we consume on a daily or weekly basis.
Did you know that what you drink daily can have an impact on your fertility health as much as what foods you eat?
Let’s look at different beverages and how they relate to our health.
Staying hydrated is vital for maintaining optimal body function and flushing out toxins. Most doctors recommend drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water today. If you exercise, you should make sure to drink more, usually a glass before and after a work out.
Adequate water intake can help with not only overall health, but your fertility health as well. It is even recommended to put lemon in your water for additional health benefits.
Purified water is best. You can obtain a filter for your refrigerator or kitchen faucet. I try to have a glass of water with me at all times. If you are on the go, carry an ice-cold water container with you. This is the best way to overcome the bad habit of relying on soft drinks.
A common saying is that caffeine is a good slave but a bad master. Caffeine can provide a lift of energy and mood but it is important to have it in moderation.
Used in excess, caffeine depletes the body of B vitamins and raises blood glucose by overstimulating the adrenal glands. This can trigger the insulin response causing fatigue and the craving for more caffeine.
For some women, caffeine can cause PMS. According to some studies, caffeine in amounts larger than 300 mg per day (about 2-3 cups of coffee) can delay achieving a pregnancy. Higher intakes increase these risks. Large amounts of caffeine have also been linked to an increased risk of miscarriage.
Caffeine can be found in coffee, soda, chocolate, and tea. If you are currently consuming large amounts of caffeine, it is recommended that you use a step-down approach to kick the habit. Gradually decrease your caffeine intake over 2 to 3 weeks to avoid headaches.
Marilyn Shannon recommends consuming phytonutrient containing teas such as green or white teas if you need some caffeine.
As discussed previously, sugar-laden soda has no nutritional value. Because it is liquid sugar, it is absorbed quickly into the bloodstream, especially if consumed on an empty stomach. This causes a rapid insulin response that we know over time can lead to insulin resistance.
Artificial sweetened beverages are not any better. These drinks can still elevate insulin which can impact ovarian function.
I had a very bad addiction to diet coke for a most of my adult life. I would recommend doing a step-down approach for this as well if you consume a lot of soda. Drink sparkling water, kombucha or tea as an alternative to soda.
Even moderate consumption of alcohol can affect fertility. Research has shown that women who consume 5 or less drinks a week have had lowered fertility. More than 5 drinks a week can have a greater negative impact on fertility.
Alcohol depresses the adrenal gland and slows the release of hormones produced by the adrenal glands. This may directly impair egg health and libido.
Alcohol also contains a lot of sugar and we know what negative impact sugar can have on our fertility health. Here is a great article on alcohol and fertility from Natural Fertility Info website.
If you choose to consume alcohol, do so in moderation. And it goes without saying to drink responsibly.
“Fertility, Cycles & Nutrition” by Marilyn Shannon was a great resource for this challenge today. I cannot recommend her book enough.
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