How to Increase Your Chances of Conceiving and Preventing Miscarriage
For an increasing number of couples, the joy of achieving pregnancy
results in a devastating situation in which a miscarriage occurs with
the loss of a pregnancy, usually in the first trimester. Miscarriages
occur in about one-sixth of all pregnancies, and many of them are due
to a disarrangement of chromosomes during cell division. This usually
doesn’t happen two times. However, some patients are plagued by repeated
miscarriages. In these cases, miscarriages may be due to hormonal imbalances,
abnormalities of the uterus, genetic abnormalities or exposure to endocrine disruptor's.
Numerous synthetic and natural substances have endocrine-disruptive effects.
In many couples there’s an immunologic cause for multiple miscarriages.
A simple blood test can be done to look for abnormal antibodies which attack
the early placenta as it tries to develop its root system into the wall of the uterus.
For most causes of miscarriage, there’s a cure or a corrective procedure available.
Is Your Body Baby-Friendly?
Dr. Alan Beer explains for the first time ever why "unexplained" infertility,
IVF failures and recurrent miscarriages
happen. This book shows how the immune system can behave in
a way that prevents a pregnancy from continuing. High levels of Natural
Killer cells, genetic compatibility between partners and blood clotting
problems are all significant causes of reproductive failure.
Autoimmunity either inherited
or environmentally triggered—is a major reason for the increase in infertility
and miscarriage today. In addition to medical treatments, there are
also natural ways that the immune system can be moderated to create
a more "baby-friendly" environment. For the first time, readers will
be able to see that their reproductive problems have a root cause and
that in many cases, they can be addressed with immune therapy and possibly
by making certain changes to their lifestyle.
Risk of Miscarriage Linked to Antidepressants
Women who take the popular antidepressant Prozac while pregnant might negatively affect the development of their babies.
Prozac in Pregnancy Toxic to Fetus, as researchers found
some of the consequences included babies that were born lighter and
sleepier than normal. Respiratory problems were another reported consequence.
A report revealed that the effects of taking the drug were more likely
to happen in utero exposure during the late stages in gestation.
The report involved the study of Prozac, known generically as fluoxetine.
Although the studied toxicity of this drug was considered to be reversible,
long-term studies have yet to be performed to observe residual effects.
Experts also found that Prozac could affect sex drive in both adult
men and women, and it was discovered that the drug was getting into
the blood of newborns through breast milk. It was also reported that
mood disorders in women of childbearing years was common and statistics
showed that 15.6 percent of women met the qualifications for major
depression while in their third trimester of pregnancy. Researchers
suggested further examination of how and why antidepressants could trigger
the production of new brain cells, which could affect a fetus or newborn
in ways that haven’t yet been explored. CNN April 28, 2004
A research published study in CMAJ (the Canadian Medical Association
Journal) reports that
expectant moms taking antidepressants may
increase their risk of having a miscarriage by 68 percent, Canadian
researchers report. Antidepressant use is common during pregnancy, with
up to 3.7 percent of women taking the drugs during the first trimester.
Stopping treatment can lead to a return of depression and other symptoms,
and previous studies of the medications' effects on the fetus have been
small and had contradictory results. But the Canadian case-control study
on more than 5,000 women found that by controlling for other factors
associated with miscarriage, taking antidepressants known as selective
serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) during pregnancy led to an increased
risk of miscarriage.
Dr. Mercola - "Depression is a serious condition that needs
to be taken seriously, especially among pregnant women because of the
possible health risks that can be caused to the developing fetus or
later to the newborn child. But drugs are rarely a wise choice for pregnant
women. There are much safer alternatives where you won’t have to risk
negatively altering the development of your baby and any other long-term
health effects. Here are some simple and virtually non-toxic therapy
options: The use of omega-3 oils
is an absolute must with pregnant women.
Infertility Chemical Found in Perfumes
The Cosmetic Toiletry and Perfumery Association condemned the report
as inaccurate. It said: "Consumer safety is the first priority for the
cosmetic industry and consumers can have complete confidence in the
cosmetic products they use, and in the regulatory framework which ensures
cosmetic safety." Numerous studies on rats and mice have shown phthalate
exposure causes genital abnormality. The latest research was conducted
by a Swedish government-accredited laboratory for Health care Without
Harm, a US-based organization representing 300 consumer pressure groups
around the world.
Researchers at the Analycen lab analyzed 34 leading brands of cosmetics
and found more than three-quarters contained phthalates, which help
prevent loss of fragrance. The investigation found other forms of the
chemical in Tommy Girl perfume, Impulse Body Spray, Nivea Deo Compact,
Sure Ultra deodorant, Shockwaves hair mousse and four hair sprays including
Elnett Satin, Pantene Pro-V Extra Hold and Vidal Sassoon.
Per Rosander, who wrote the report, said: "What we know about these
chemicals is that they cause damage to the reproductive system. That
is why they have been classed by the EU as reproductive toxins."
Sharpe, of the Medical Research Council's Human Reproductive Sciences
Unit in Edinburgh, said: "If you wanted to produce a list of environmental
causes of the reproductive health problems in boys, phthalates would
be pretty near the top of the list."
Actor Julia Sawalha, who played Saffy in Absolutely Fabulous, supports the Women's Environmental Network,
a backer of the Swedish research."
Chemicals that pose a risk to fertility do not belong in cosmetics,
and manufacturers should be made to list ingredients," she said.
During both the conception process and throughout pregnancy it is important
that hopeful moms maintain their physical wellbeing and as well as their
psychological health. This broad field of women’s health includes psychological
issues surrounding mood, stress and relaxation, as well as physical
areas such as infertility, nutrition, morning sickness, labor and delivery
SOY AS A MALE CONTRACEPTIVE
Kaayla T. Daniel, PhD - "In September of this year, researchers
from the Harvard School of Public Health presented evidence at the 63rd
annual meeting of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine showing
that soy phytoestrogens can seriously lower
a man’s sperm count.
This is old news to Weston A. Price Foundation members. Over the
years, we’ve often reported on research that links soy consumption to
poor sperm quality, lower testosterone levels and sagging libidos. Dr.
Chavarro and colleagues studied 100 men whose partners were having trouble
getting pregnant. Semen analyses showed that the men with the highest
levels of soy food intake, approximately a half serving per day-had 41
million sperm per milliliter fewer than men who did not consume any
soy-that’s 41 million fewer sperm per milliliter on just one-half cup
of soy food per day! The researchers used a questionnaire listing 15
soy-based foods to determine soy consumption over the preceding three
The ability of phytoestrogens to prevent reproduction in animals
has been known about since the 1940's. There is a wealth of evidence
that shows that mammals exposed to estrogens during critical periods
of sexual development can suffer a drastic reduction in fertility.
There is also strong evidence that soy phytoestrogens such as genistein
can inhibit 17-b-hydroxysteroid oxidoreductase, an enzyme which is required
for the synthesis of testosterone and the development of the CNS-gonadal
axis. There is also evidence that the soy isoflavones genstein
and daidzein are genotoxic to human sperm. It is quite possible,
therefore, that phytoestrogens, along with other
endocrine disrupting compounds such as DDT,may contribute to the worldwide decrease in male fertility.
Artificial Sweeteners Interferes with the Fertility Process
James Bowen, M.D. told the FDA years
ago "Every known metabolite of aspartame is of marked or questionable
toxicity and patently unsafe for human use." In Aspartame Murders Infants
he said: "At every point in the fertility process
aspartame (NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonful, Canderal, Benevia, etc.) destroys.It ruins female
sexual response and induces male sexual dysfunction. Beyond this, aspartame
disrupts fetal development by aborting it or inducing defects. And if
a live child is born, aspartame may have heinously damaged the DNA of
the baby cursing future generation."
- "I have observed severe
intellectual deterioration associated with the use of aspartame
product (NutraSweet, Equal/Spoonful, Canderal, Benevia, etc.)
It was usually manifest as great difficulty in reading and writing,
obvious problems with memory and grossly impaired orientation to
time, place and person." H. J. Roberts, M.D.
- "Aspartame has a profound effect on mood and cognition....depressed mood, anxiety,
dizziness, panic attacks, nausea, irritability, impairment of memory
and concentration." Ralph Walton, M.D.
Infertility and Birth Defect Linked to water Fluoridation and Chlorination
Scientists from Imperial College, London University, will carry
out the research after doctors in Norway, Canada and the United States
reported higher levels of birth defects in areas where chlorine is used,
compared with drinking water treated by alternative methods. A Norwegian
study of 141,000 births over three years found a 14 per cent increased
risk of birth defects in areas with chlorinated water. Scientists have
already found an association between chlorine and an increased risk
of bowel, kidney and bladder cancer, but it is the first time that a
link has been found with higher levels of spina bifida.
Infertility in women was
found to increase with water fluoridation.
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) scientists reported a close correlation
between decreasing total fertility rates in women between ages of 10
and 49, and increasing fluoride levels. They also reported that a review
of all of the animal studies done to date shows that fluoride adversely
affects fertility in most animal species.
Mercury Reduces Fertility
German scientists say Mercury Amalgam Fillings (the 'silver'
fillings in your teeth) reduces fertility In a cell culture experiment, mercury affected hormone production at
low concentrations. A link has been found between mercury and hormone
disturbances, immune disturbances, recurrent fungal infections, hair
loss and allergies. The differences are large. Allergies and hair loss
are 2-3 times as common in the high- mercury group. These recent results
confirm earlier findings from Heidelberg on mercury and fertility. According
to the researchers, mercury exposure
leads to hormone and immune disturbances
that can reduce fertility. In a cell culture experiment at the Tuebingen
University gynecological clinic, mercury affected hormone production
at low concentrations. The concentrations were so low that cell vitality
was otherwise almost unaffected.
Ultrasound - More powerful, more dangerous, more unethical
Ultrasound equipment bombards a fetus for up to one hour with megahertz
radiation. This radiation, which cycles millions of time per second,
can cause mutation and bleeding in the intestinal cells of rodents.
Swedish scientists say
routine ultrasound scanning of pregnant women
may be causing subtle brain damage in unborn babies. Approximately
half of all pregnancies in the U.S. result in prenatal or postnatal
death, or an otherwise less than healthy baby.33 Many wonder if routine
exposure of America's fragile unborn to megahertz radiation might be
a factor, among others, of this shocking national statistic. Is fetal
ultrasound exposure playing some part in the national epidemic of delayed
development in infants, plus learning and behavior difficulties suffered
by millions of our school children? Exposing the unborn to ionizing
X-radiation at airport checkpoints is an even more dangerous game of
New research has raised doubts over the safety of ultrasound scans
used to view fetuses in the womb. Scientists have called for further
research to determine whether safety limits should be reviewed for the
tests, which are also used to check internal organs in children and
adults. Since the early 1990s, when American researchers showed that
ultrasound tissue heating can cause bleeding in mouse intestines, ultrasonographers
tune the power of scans to reduce heating. The latest discovery, by
scientists at University College Dublin, is the first to find that scans
create changes in cells. Patrick Brennan, who led the research, said:
"It has been assumed for a long time that ultrasound has no effect on
cells. We now have grounds to question that assumption." The researchers
gave 12 mice an eight megahertz scan lasting for 15 minutes. Hospital
scans can last for up to an hour, using frequencies of between three
and 10 megahertz. According to today's New Scientist, two significant
changes in the cells of the small intestine were detected in scanned
mice compared with unscanned mice. Four and a half hours after exposure,
the rate of cell division had reduced by 22 per cent and the rate of
programmed cell death had approximately doubled. Mr Brennan believes
there will be similar effects in humans.
ISSUE 1476 Thursday 10 June 1999
Link found between food packaging and miscarriages
Scientists in Japan have found evidence of a
link between recurrent miscarriages and a chemical widely used in food packaging. Women with
a history of miscarriages were found to have higher levels of the compound
in their bodies. The scientists admit that their findings are based
on a small preliminary study, but say further research into the chemical's
effect on human reproduction is "definitely warranted". The compound
is called bisphenol-A or BPA. It is used in plastic food containers,
cans and dental sealants. Research suggests it leaches from products
and is absorbed in low concentrations by the human body. A separate
study last month suggested it might be a contributing factor to women
developing breast cancer.
Hormonal problems, in either partner, are readily treated herbally.
Whilst not containing hormones themselves, some herbs stimulate the
glands concerned, bringing about production of the right proportions
of hormones and in their right sequence in the menstrual cycle to promote
conception. Vitex agnus castus is the key to success here. Research
carried out in the University of Gothenburg in Sweden, found that although
it does not contain the hormone progesterone, it affects the pituitary
gland in such a way that it corrects and regulates the secretion of
progesterone from the ovaries. Vitex also corrects any hormone deficiency
of either oestrogen or progesterone.
Chamaelirium luteum also has the effect of correcting hormonal imbalances.
In Britain, the most frequent use of this remedy is for female infertility,
as well as impotence on the part of the man. Herbalists have been known
to warn people of the potency of this plant should they not want to
conceive! It is an effective tonic to the uterus and ovaries, and is
useful to redress almost any imbalance in either male or female reproductive
systems. It helps to prevent miscarriage, uterine hemorrhage and over-relaxed
conditions of the uterus, even to the extent of prolapse.
Boosting Fertility Naturally
A study conducted by the University of Surrey showed that couples with
a previous history of infertility who made changes in their lifestyle, diet
and took nutritional supplements had an 80 percent success rate.
Glutathione's Role for Sperm Quality and Male Fertility
A decrease in levels of reduced glutathione (GSH) during sperm production
has been shown to cause disruption in the membrane integrity of spermatozoa
as a consequence of increased oxidative stress.
levels of spermatozoa are shown to be decreased in certain populations
of infertile men. At the 94th Annual Meeting of the American Urological
Association, andrologists presented strong clinical evidence that men
diagnosed with infertility have high levels of oxidative stress that
may impair the quality of their sperm.
Compared with a control group, the infertile men in all groups had significantly
higher levels of ROS and lower levels of total antioxidants. In some groups,
higher levels of ROS were associated with lower sperm counts and defective
sperm structure, while lower antioxidant levels correlated with reduced sperm
movement. Their results supported previous evidence showing that oxidative
stress can decrease a sperm's life span, its motility, and its ability to
penetrate the egg cell. Up to 40% of men with male infertility without
a known cause have higher levels of free radical activity in their bodies. Because
men with high levels of ROS have a seven-fold lower likelihood of inducing a
pregnancy than men with lower levels, researchers recommend that
treatment for infertile men should include strategies to reduce oxidative stress
and improve sperm quality.
In a double-blind cross-over study of 20 infertile men, treatment with
glutathione led to a statistically significant improvement of the sperm quality.
The study concerned men in whom the sperm quality was
poor due to unilateral varicocele or germ-free genital tract inflammation
- two conditions in which ROS or other toxic compounds are indicated
as causative factors. Treatment with glutathione was found to have a
statistically significantly positive effect on, among other things,
sperm motility (in particular forward motility) and on sperm morphology.
The findings of these studies indicate that glutathione therapy
could represent a possible therapeutic tool in cases where ROS or
exposure to toxins is the probable cause of male infertility.
Male infertility is associated with increased
oxidative stressand low GSH levels.
Elevated GSH levels may enhance the quality of sperm and increase
fertility. And GSH also feeds hair follicles and may prevent or delay
hair loss especially that suffered as a
side-effect of cancer chemotherapy. Many complicated factors play a part
in the infertility that affects about one fifth of American couples.
Ovulatory dysfunction accounts for 20%, tubal dysfunction for 3o% and
abnormal cervical mucus for 5 % . These are all female problems. But
male sperm disorders account for 35% of cases. The problem may be low
sperm count or another abnormality of the sperm, such as impaired swimming ability.
A growing body of evidence implies that oxidative stress may cause loss of sperm function. Sperm generate an excess amount
of oxyradicals and these reactive oxygen molecules may lead to lipid
peroxidation (oxidation of fatty substances) in the cell wall of the
sperm itself. This leads to poor movement characteristics of the sperm
and their impaired ability to fuse with the female's ova or egg. This
understanding has opened doors for the development of innovative techniques
in the treatment of male infertility.
Patients with idiopathic male infertility were compared to fertile
volunteers by measuring oxidative stress,
antioxidant activity and glutathione levels.
Urologist I. Alkan and his team found significant differences among
all parameters of both groups, suggesting that oxidation may cause infertility.
Similar studies conducted by F.R. Ochsendorf at the Center of Dermatology
and Andrology in Germany support these findings.
A group of reproductive biology scientists led by D.S. Irvine in
Edinburgh, Scotland, is raising GSH contents in male
infertility patients. In a paper entitled `Glutathione for male infertility,'
he showed that GSH seems to act at the epididymis and during sperm formation
as well as improving the function of ejaculated spermatozoa. Another
German team headed by T. Oeda experimented with NAC (N-acetylcysteine)
and showed that it reduced oxidative stress and improved impaired sperm 4
Magnesium Deficiency, Infertility and Miscarriage
A small clinical study of infertile women as well as
women with a history of miscarriage found that low levels of magnesium may impair
reproductive function and increase the risk for miscarriage. The authors
of the study suggest that one aspect of the treatment of infertility
(particularly in women with a history of miscarriage) should include
magnesium along with selenium. More research in this area is needed.
Magnesium is nothing short of a miracle mineral in its healing effect
on a wide range of diseases as well as in its ability to rejuvenate
the aging body. Symptoms of magnesium deficiency may include agitation
and anxiety, restless leg syndrome (RLS), sleep disorders, irritability,
nausea and vomiting, abnormal heart rhythms, low blood pressure, confusion,
muscle spasm and weakness, hyperventilation, insomnia, and even seizures.
Approximately nine out of ten people will show dramatic improvements
in the state of their health when they restore their magnesium levels
and the very best way to do that is with
ancient minerals magnesium drawn from an ancient inactive seabed
2 miles beneath the earth in Europe. With such “brine solutions” one
can simply apply the concentrate to the skin or pour it into ones bath
water and one will have a medical treatment of primordial priority.
Nothing short of a miracle is to be expected in ones health status if
one is ill when one increases the cellular levels of magnesium.
Homeopathy for Infertility
Jacob I. Mirman, MD - "Since
homeopathy is meant to treat the whole person, it affects the reproductive organs just as surely
as all the rest. If there is no irreversible pathology there it
will create conditions favorable to reproduction, since this is what
those organs are meant to do. This fact is well known among homeopaths
and stories of making babies in infertile women abound."
developed much of its popularity in the United States and Europe because
of its success in treating people with cholera, scarlet fever, yellow
fever and other infectious diseases that were ravaging populations.
Homeopathy also provides many valuable medicines in treating people
who suffer from accidents and injuries. When these medicines are used
in conjunction with conventional first aid procedures, the risk of long-term
damage from an injury can be significantly decreased and the healing
process can be noticeably enhanced.
Jacob I. Mirman, MD - "Since homeopathy is meant to
treat the whole person, it affects the reproductive organs just as surely
as all the rest. If there is no irreversible pathology there it
will create conditions favorable to reproduction, since this is what
those organs are meant to do. This fact is well known among homeopaths
and stories of making babies in infertile women abound."
Homeopathy can offer good health to women in all stages of their
lives from infancy through old age. It is beneficial for the full range
of emotional, mental and physical problems that a woman is likely to
experience, and can help her through the transitional and developmental
milestones of her life. Homeopathy is truly a friend to women. It is a comprehensive
system of medicine which is able to meet the needs of people in all
facets of their lives, and through all of life's transitions. By strengthening
the immune system and helping to balance the mind and the emotions,
homeopathy can help women achieve the higher purposes of their lives,
and feel their very best.
Mary Aspinwall is a Registered Homeopath who worked extensively in
Europe from 1995 and is now based in Ventura, CA. She is currently
writing a book on clients’ experiences of how homeopathy helped them
overcome difficulties in conception, pregnancy, birth and post-partum.
If you would like to share your inspiring story with others or work
with her on fertility or other issues, you can contact her at www.ojaihaven.com
Gabrielle Traub, M. Tech (HOM), CCH, HD (Hon) is a classical homeopath.
Due to her overwhelming success in helping women, Gabrielle was invited
to join a traditional medical OB-GYN clinic, where she has been practicing
alongside a traditional OB-GYN and endocrinologist for the last 8 years,
specializes in women’s health. Gabrielle has assisted a number of natural
births including the natural delivery of twins. Gabrielle teaches homeopathic
childbirth classes for expecting parents, midwives and doulas and is
currently writing a book on homeopathic treatment for Infertility. Gabrielle
graduated from 6 year homeopathic program in South Africa, which included
training in hospitals and rural clinics. She dedicated a year to research,
conducting double blind clinical trials on anxiety and difficulty concentrating,
including ADD and ADHD. She is nationally certified by the Council for
Gabrielle produces and hosts the popular alternative medicine radio
show “Vital Force” and is on the teaching faculty of four colleges.
Gabrielle practices in San Diego, California and offers telephone consults
for those living out of town and abroad. To make an appointment, visit
www.DiscoverHomeopathy.com or call 858-531-5279
Glyconutrients, Nutrition and Fertility
Dr. William Albrecht writes in
"Soil Fertility and Animal Health ", that it takes a fertile healthy
soil to grow healthy nutritious crops to sustain healthy productive
animals or people
Dr. Jerry Tennant, M.D. says that marine phytoplankton is a
rich source of glyconutrients,
and contains almost everything one needs to sustain life and to restore
health by providing the raw materials to make new cells that function
normally. Marine phytoplankton has been called "the most nutritionally
dense foods on the planet". Containing a wide range of trace
elements, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, chlorophyll, enzymes and
cellular materials, marine phytoplankton micronutrients promotes and maintains optimum
health by boosting and supporting all systems within the body.
Its antioxidants and unique polysaccharides can
halt the genetic mutations that can lead to cancer. Both high levels
of saccharides and adaptogens increase energy and stamina by improving
our ability to consume and use oxygen. Adaptogens also improve cardiovascular
health by strengthening the heart and
The initial section on general nutrition is a great guide to healthy
eating with valuable tips about shopping and preparation. (I found Shannon's
information about essential fatty acids particularly helpful.) The subsequent
chapters hold invaluable information about the role that different
vitamins (like B6, folic acid) and minerals (like magnesium and
selenium) play in regulating and enhancing a woman's cycle and her fertility
(including topics like controlling PMS and handling menopause). Table
V, on recommended supplements, has become my personal "bible" for vitamin
supplementation - something I never "believed in" before reading this
book. As Shannon suggests in chapter 15, I hired a local (Chicago-area)
nutritionist to help me with supplements. She read Shannon's book for
the first time at my request and confirmed my opinion that this book
is excellent. For example, not only does Shannon list recommended daily
amounts for vitamins and minerals in her Table V, but she also tells
you in a separate column what the latest research shows about toxicity,
i.e., at what amount this vitamin or mineral may become harmful.
Nature's Answer to Infertility Problems?
Bee Pollen stimulates ovarian function.
The best results were obtained with a pollen supplementation of 2 parts per 100 in the ration, and
with the substitution of animal proteins with pollen in a proportion
of 5 parts per 100. The intensity of ovulation increased. Parallel to
this increase in ovulation, pollen also improves the ability of eggs
to withstand the incubation period. The best results were obtained with
a quantity of 4 parts per 100 of pollen added to the ration, resulting
in an increase in the percentage of eggs in respect to the control group.
The application of bee pollen is recommended whenever the end result is
obtaining eggs for reproduction.
Phytotherapeutic approaches to infertility.
There is much that herbs can contribute to supporting fertility, but
there is no 'wonder cure' here. The suggestions given here will help,
but the practitioner is encouraged to be creative and intuitive in remedy
selection. Each individual woman and man will have plants that suit
them best. Identifying them is part of the skill of the good herbalist.