Stress Reduces Fertility

The Effects of Stress on Fertility

There’s nothing worse than people saying ‘stop getting stressed’ when you are trying for a baby and nothing seems to be happening. Its very natural to get anxious and worried about fertility issues. However there are plenty of things you can do to help yourself, in supporting your nervous system, looking after your hormonal system and removing those underlying patterns of anxiety.

stress and fertility

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Stress, in whatever form, tends to rob the body of vital nutrients and in doing so strains your nerves and your hormonal system but the worst affected are usually the adrenals. Due to our ancestral conditioning when we are affected by any for of stress our bodies go into ‘fight or flight’ mode. Energy and resources tend to be diverted away from non-essential activities such as sperm making or maturing eggs and become focused on areas such as muscles, circulation and adrenals to keep you alert and ready for action.

If you are continually exposed to stress then your adrenals will become over-worked and start to suffer. Since the adrenals are linked to all the other endocrine glands they will start to have a knock-on effect.  The reproductive organs, ovaries and testes, will cease to work as effectively because from  the body’s viewpoint they are not as essential as the other glands which keep us alive, so they get shut down. The thyroid and pancreas are next likely to suffer, and so it goes on like a deck of cards. So you can see how easy it is for stress to affect fertility.

Combating the effects of stress

Good Hydration
Dehydration can create stress in the body, and stress itself can have a dehydrating effect, so it’s a bit of a vicious circle. So it is necessary to try and stay well hydrated. As well as drinking regular and sensible amounts of good quality water, consume water rich foods such as fruit and vegetables – raw or lightly cooked, salad items, soups and stews. Foods that your body finds difficult to digest can also have a dehydrating effect, for example, gluten, sugar, dairy and any foods you might be intolerant to such as the nightshade family. Since essential oils and fats are required to ‘hold’ water in the body it might be worth taking an omega-3 supplement, especially if you do not regularly consume oily fish, nuts and seeds.

Adrenal support
Vitamin B5 is required for adrenal support. This can be found in mushrooms, cauliflower and egg yolks. Alternatively you can supplement with Calcium Pantothenate. You might also want to consider a glandular adrenal supplement.

Blood sugar and energy levels
Adrenal depletion can lead to unstable blood sugar levels. This can show itself as loss of concentration, energy dips, irritability, sugar cravings etc. Blood sugar levels tend to be regulated by hormones produced by the pancreas. Keeping these hormones in balance therefore relates back to adrenal balance. You can help to maintain blood sugar at a more steady level by making sure you eat a small amount of protein with your carbohydrates regularly throughout the day.

Thyroid support
If your hormone imbalance has reached the thyroid, then more bodily functions will be affected. There may be a drop in core body temperature which will affect your ability to digest and utilise food and nutrients. Your thyroid regulates many bodily activities and so an imbalance can affect your energy levels, temperature, heartbeat, weight, hydration, acid-alkaline balance and hence the balance of reproductive hormones and thus your ability to conceive. Iodine is the main nutrient required by the thyroid and this can be found in sea vegetables, kelp etc. or taken as a supplement.


  1. Want to be a Mum? How to get pregnant quicker and more successfully says:

    […] Click here to read more on the effects of stress      and another article on how stress affects fertility […]

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