To many people, the idea of gorging on spinach and mung beans in an effort to get pregnant seems like a crazy concept only be advocated by herbalists and hippies. But what if we told you there might be some science behind it?

Too fat or thin?

It is not news to most of us that being severely over- or underweight might interfere with your ability to get pregnant, as both these issues can cause your menstrual cycle to become erratic, or stop altogether.

If you are trying to get pregnant, you don’t necessarily need to be at your ideal weight, but if you think you are either above or below it to an unhealthy degree, then it might be an idea to rethink your diet and exercise regime.

Sugar is the enemy

We know sugar can help pile on the pounds and recent studies have found it can even cause lines and wrinkles as it breaks down collagen in the skin, but did you know it can also have a damaging effect on your hormones, which in turn can be putting a strain on your fertility?

Sugar consumption will drive insulin levels through the roof before they drop down dramatically. The body tries to even this out be releasing cortisol and adrenaline and high levels of cortisol in the body for an extended time will affect levels of progesterone, the hormone required for ovulation.

Sugar can also cause inflammation which can be a worry for women suffering from menstrual conditions that can affect fertility such as endometriosis.

As health officials and government ministers alike campaign for urgent methods to tackle the obesity epidemic and other health problems resulting from over-consumption of sugar, David Cameron announced last month that he didn’t rule out the necessity of a sugar tax.

The advice from a fertility expert

No one is suggesting you should go on a crash diet – in fact, that’s the very opposite of what you ought to be doing. The best thing to do is to take a good look at your diet and try to increase the amount of fruits, vegetables and whole grains, whilst perhaps reducing the amount of processed sugars and things that you can see have a negative impact on your mood or your health.

Try to exercise regularly to get your body fit and ready to carry a baby, but also for the positive effect that exercise has on your mental wellbeing.

If you would like more advice on how best to prepare you body for conception, a member of the team here at IVF Chelsea will be happy to help.