It’s one of the richest sources of folate providing 108mcg in just ½ cup. Our folate requirements increase from 400mcg per day to 600mcg per day for at least one month before conception to ensure there’s plenty available to help form your baby’s spine. Even if you’re taking folate supplements, you still need to ensure that your diet is rich in this important nutrient.
Wholegrain low GI carbs help to moderate insulin levels, which in turn have a domino effect on other sex hormones such as oestrogen and progesterone. Bread is also a great source of iodine and folate, which are some of the most important pre-conception nutrients in your diet.
Milk and dairy
Dairy foods are good sources of important vitamins and minerals such as calcium, magnesium and vitamin B12. Furthermore, research has found that women who consume the recommended three serves of dairy per day are more likely to fall pregnant than those who don’t.
Extra virgin olive oil
A diet rich in these good monounsaturated fats helps to optimise fertility by reducing inflammation. Olive oil is also a great source of vitamin E which acts as a powerful antioxidant to stimulate the ovaries. Check that your olive oil is within the ‘best before’ date and use to drizzle over salads instead of dressings.
One study found that swapping 25g of animal protein with 25g of plant based protein each day improved fertility by 50%. So aim for at least two meat free days each week. Try adding chick peas to salads, stir fries, soups or curries.