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IVF - Natural products

(7 Posts)
Rainbowdreams2 Sat 06-Aug-16 21:47:48

Hi all,
I am going to be starting IVF, hopefully very soon. I am trying to eat as healthy a diet as possible with no alcohol, caffeine, refined sugars etc, which is fine, but I have also read on the internet that to increase my chances of successful IVF, I should only use natural beauty and cleaning products as the chemicals in these products effect my chances.

Has anyone else heard this, or am I being over cautious?

bananafish81 Sat 06-Aug-16 22:32:01

The book 'it starts with the egg' has a few chapters about it, and some more alternative (woo) therapists will advocate for not using plastics etc. Personally I think using nail varnish or tupperware is going to make absolutely no difference whatsoever to the outcome of my cycle

It's science and luck that will get me and keep me pregnant. Not my choice of beauty products or household cleaners

Obviously a healthy diet is a sensible idea, but eating exactly the right things can become yet another thing to beat yourself up with

FWIW I was really focused on eating high protein, low sugar, green juices, no caffeine etc in the run up to my first and second IVF cycles. My egg quality was rubbish

In the run up to my third cycle, because I wasn't expecting to be able to start stims so soon after miscarrying (and I had rationalised that as long as I was technically still miscarrying, I could eat chocolate biscuits for every meal), my diet was absolutely shit. I'd been eating complete crap, and went out and got absolutely shitfaced one Saturday night, not knowing I was going to be starting stims 5 days later

I asked my Dr if we should delay the cycle as my lifestyle hadn't exactly been optimal. He said it wouldn't make any difference - that egg quality was determined by two things: my age, and the ovarian environment created by the stims.

My third cycle I had spectacular egg and embryo quality - we did genetic testing and we know I got one normal embryo from the first two rounds, but 6 genetically perfect embryos from our third

So do eat healthily and look after yourself. But don't beat yourself up with things you think you 'should' be doing. If it makes you feel better, sure. But don't emotionally blackmail yourself into thinking you've harmed the outcome of your cycle by using your favourite hair makeup or cleaning the loo with bleach

Good luck

Rainbowdreams2 Sun 07-Aug-16 12:39:07

Thank you for your reply bananafish, I think I am overthinking everything and am feeling quite frightened.

Sounds like you have been having a really tough time and wish you all the very best of luck in your journey.

Bear2014 Mon 08-Aug-16 10:37:50

We just had a failed IVF cycle. The reason it failed was that my egg quality was terrible. I produced 15 eggs, and only 1 fertilised. Because of this, I'm going all out for the next few months in preparation for another fresh cycle. We replaced all of our cleaning products with Method brand ones, and I've swapped to all fragrance-free, no pthalate shampoo etc. We've also thrown away all plastic stuff from our kitchen (chopping boards, measuring jugs) and replaced with wood and glass, and I'm not eating any canned foods. It sounds extreme but it's actually a fairly easy thing to do and egg quality is such a stumbling block for me, why not try it.

Also started CoQ10, which I had very annoyingly not previously heard of.

Good luck with your cycle!

bananafish81 Mon 08-Aug-16 10:55:03

Rainbow good luck!

I took all the egg quality supplements for 3 months+ before my first two cycles - only for about 6-7 weeks prior to my third as I only restarted them after my miscarriage

(I followed the supplements advice in the book religiously - DHEA, CoQ10 as ubiquinol, melatonin, high dose vitamin D, C and E, omega 3 etc)

I didn't get rid of plastics but I really watched my diet and tracked my food to aim for 40-60g a protein a day and under 40% carbs

I did fertility meditations and acupuncture and all the associated woo, before and during my first two cycles, tried to be all relaxed and zen.

The third was 8 weeks after a MMC and 2 weeks after a hysteroscopy to remove retained products (whereby I had been technically pregnant but with no baby for 6 weeks after the ERPC).

I had eaten complete and utter shite for these 8 weeks and was about as stressed as you can imagine. I didn't know I was going to be able to cycle again so soon, so wasn't in 'prep' mode

As I say, my egg quality on my first two cycles was absolutely rubbish. My third cycle the egg and embryo quality was brilliant. We have 6 genetically perfect embryos on ice.

It was the stims which made the difference to my egg quality - the hormonal environment within the ovary whilst stimming.

The vitamin and eating right helped me to feel like I was doing everything I possibly could. I didn't want to look back and think 'if only I could have tried harder'. But really it was emotional blackmail - find whatever balance works for you.

bananafish81 Mon 08-Aug-16 10:55:42

And sorry about your BFN Bear flowers

Good luck to you too x

Bear2014 Mon 08-Aug-16 11:06:15

Thanks Bananafish. And hugs to you about the MMC, my last cycle was also after ERPC and it's a hideous rollercoaster.

My consultant said that she would try me on Gonal F next time not Menopur, and see if it suited me better. We would also do ICSI not IVF. With any luck that might even turn it around for us. But no harm trying all the other stuff too, as long as you don't turn into an obsessive weirdo and stress yourself out ;o)

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