Chickpeas and Fertility

A patient came in recently with recommendations from another doctor. These recommendations included avoidance of chickpeas. This was a surprise to me as I believed legumes in general to be supportive of fertility.

chickpeas

So off I went to do my research. Long and behold I found a study concluding that chickpeas were in fact estrogenic.

If I had stopped there, I would believe that this estrogenic activity could have a negative impact for our fertility patients. Or even recommend them for patients with a thin lining.

But I didn’t stop there. I read the entire research paper.

It said that when rats were fed 50-100mg of the isoflavones extracted from chickpea sprouts, significant estrogenic effects were observed.

A 540ml can of chickpeas is about 410g. In 100g of chickpeas, you’ll get about 10mg of isoflavones. So a can of chickpeas has about 40mg of isoflavones.

Take home message? An entire can of chickpeas does not have a dose high enough to create these effects.

The average Canadian women is 70kg. She would need to consume 3500mg of these isoflavones to have these estrogenic effects and she would have to consume it daily for at least a month. That would be 87 cans of chickpeas.

By all means ladies, continue to enjoy your chickpeas! And remember, just because they cite a research paper, doesn’t mean that it’s sound advice. Check into things for yourself.

Yours in Health,

Dr. Kerri Fullerton ND & Dr. Whitney Young ND

Exercise and Fertility

 

smashed scale

Overweight and obese women are often told to lose weight in order to improve their fertility. They are told to eat less and exercise more with the focus on losing 10% of their body weight.

They leave doctor’s offices feeling ashamed, frustrated and angry. Do these doctor’s believe that they’ve never tried that before?

We want to let these women know that they can stop focusing on the weight loss part and just focus on the exercise part.

A study published in Reprod Biomed Online, July 2014 found that obese women who exercised regularly before IVF and ICSI had not only higher pregnancy rates but also higher live birth rates.

What’s key here is that it wasn’t that these women exercised and lost weight, because they didn’t. They had a stable BMI – their weight didn’t change!!

This is so empowering for these women – they can stop weighing themselves and just move their bodies. If they move, they are successful. Nice.

Please share this with anyone you know who needs to hear this. Give these women hope and action.

Yours in health,

Dr. Kerri Fullerton ND & Dr. Whitney Young ND

 

 

Breech Babies Turn 30% More With Our Therapy

baby bump

Dr. Whitney’s 1st baby bump back in Sept 2013

At our clinic we often use the Traditional Chinese Medicine Technique known as moxibustion to help turn babies from breech into the proper birth position. Now, there is scientific evidence proving its effectiveness published in 2013 “Acupuncture and Medicine” journal. 3 arms of the study were compared:

  1. True moxibustion plus regular prenatal care was compared with
  2. Sham moxibustion (done on an ineffective point)and regular prenatal care and also compared with
  3. Regular prenatal care

This study found that the moxibustion performed helped turn the baby 30% more often. This is great evidence supporting our therapy we have been using since day 1.

If you are pregnant and between 32-35 weeks gestation, consider coming to the clinic for our acupuncture intake session with your partner. Here is the protocol you will follow:

  • Call or email us to book a special Acupuncture Intake appointment
  • Come with your partner or a friend who will learn the technique
  • During your appointment get a moxibustion treatment and instructions
  • Leave with instructions and supplies to perform at home daily 20 minutes a day for the next 2 weeks

After you have your beautiful baby, come on back in for a well baby check and let us help you with the numerous questions you will have.

Yours in Health,

Dr. Whitney Young ND & Dr. Kerri Fullerton ND

Meditation improves women’s fertility struggles

meditating mama

We see our fertility patients struggling with depression, anxiety, anger towards their bodies, and hopelessness. As part of our ‘Fertility Tranquility’ program at Rooted, we teach our patients the importance of taking pause to calm the mind.

Research published in Fertility and Sterility supports our efforts.  They concluded that women who completed a 10-week mindfulness program “revealed a significant decrease in depressive symptoms, internal and external shame, entrapment, and defeat”. How can you begin your mindfulness program?

  • Start with just ten minutes per day. Set a timer.
  • Sit so that your back is straight.
  • Pay attention to your breath. Don’t try to change it, just notice what it’s doing.
  • You could also download an app such as Insight Timer or go to calm.com to use Guided Meditations.

Fertility is a journey filled with unexpected moments. Give yourself a tool to handle the waves without drowning.

Want to know more about our program? Book yourself a Free Fertility Assessment today.

Yours in Health,

Dr. Whitney Young ND & Dr. Kerri Fullerton ND

Hypothyroid and Miscarriage link

The thyroid gland is often under a flurry of controversy, especially in the world of fertility.

Here are two studies to support the treatment of subclinical hypothyroid – when TSH is within normal range but greater than 2.5 mU/L – to aid in the prevention of miscarriage.

Maternal subclinical hypothyroidism, thyroid autoimmunity, and the risk of miscarriage: a prospective cohort study

– this study found that women with subclinical hypothyroid and/or autoimmune thyroid conditions were at a greater risk of early miscarriage

TSH levels and risk of miscarriage in women on long-term levothyroxine: a community-based study

– Conclusion: “The majority of levothyroxine-treated women have early gestational TSH levels above the recommended targets (>2.5 mU/L) with a strong risk of miscarriage at levels exceeding 4.5 mU/L. There is an urgent need to improve the adequacy of thyroid hormone replacement in early pregnancy”

If you are in the pre-conception stage of things, natural methods may be successful at treating sub-clinical hypothyroid. If you are already trying to conceive and your TSH is high normal, then it may be wise to consult with your MD about thyroxine.

Does this create more questions for you? Why not book yourself a Free Fertility Assessment with one of our Naturopathic Doctors? Whether it’s a stand alone visit for you or you decide to continue to work with us, we know that you will leave with good information to help you move forward.

Yours in health,

Dr. Kerri Fullerton ND & Dr. Whitney Young ND

 

 

Hypothyroid affects fertility

Our fertility patients often arrive at our office already knowing that there is a link to hypothyroid and infertility. The frustration usually comes from having some thyroid tests done, typically TSH and maybe T4, and it coming back within normal range and then doctors investigating any further and don’t consider treatment necessary.

Here is a study published in Endocrinology that explains why more testing is warranted, and maybe even treatment. This study found:

  • Infertile women with subclinical hypothyroidism treated with T4 Thyroxine had a shorter duration of infertility
  • 84.1% of they thyroxine group became pregnant while the untreated group remained infertile
  • 42% of all patients had anti-thyroid antibodies identified
  • TSH values ranged from 3.1 – 13.3 before treatment and were reduced to 0.02-3.75 after treatment (median values of 5.46 pre treatment and 1.25 post treatment)

In another study investigating subclinical hypothyroidism, thyroid autoimmunity and miscarriage rates, subclinical hypothyroidism was defined as a TSH higher than 2.5.

What does this mean for you?

Ask for further investigation with regards to your thyroid antibodies if you are struggling to become pregnant. If you TSH values are at the high end of normal, ask your doctor to try a course of thyroxine with you.

An Ontario ND can do further blood work for you if you cannot get it done through your regular doctor but cannot prescribe thyroxine.

Print off the study and ask your doctor to take a look at it for you.

Want to learn more about how we can help you? Book a free fertility assessment today.

Yours in Health,

Dr. Kerri Fullerton ND & Dr. Whitney Young ND