Fertility Foods: How your diet affects your baby’s genes.
Tanya Smith R.TCMP, R.Ac
At different life stages, our bodies need different nutrition to meet the metabolic demands. Infants need different nutrition than teens who need different nutrition than pregnant women who need different nutrition than elders. Throughout our lives we need to keep adjusting our diet to meet these changing demands.
When we are preparing to get pregnant, we can think of it as switching our diet from an adult appropriate diet to one that will properly nourish a developing egg or sperm.
As a community, our ancestors fed the men and women who were of childbearing age the most nutrient dense foods available to help them prepare for conception. These would have been the precious organ meats from the animals they hunted, the harvest from the sea that they gathered or traded for and the eggs from fish or fowl that they foraged.
In modern times, we can adopt a similar strategy as we prepare for conception. Eating nutrient dense foods both improve our fertility and help to grow healthy, well-formed children.
Our eggs and sperm go through a 3 month development cycle from the time they start growing to when they are mature and ready to be used. In this time, our eggs and sperm are awash in the nutrients from the food we eat. As they develop, they are gathering information about the environment they will need to adapt to.
A good example of this is the father’s sperm. The father makes a one time donation of genetic material that makes up half of the baby’s genetics. But the sperm didn’t just grow that day, they have been developing inside the man for the last 3 months. Everything he ate, smoked, drank, thought and experienced provided a chemical soup from which the sperm gathered information about the environment. This led to the sperm turning some genes on and others off.
The father and mother’s preconception nutrition is an important way to help ensure a baby has a healthy start in life. Eating nutrient dense foods along with plenty of root and leafy vegetables for at least 3 months prior to conception will help send a message to the egg and sperm to turn on their healthiest genes and pass them on when they join to form a baby.
Arvigo Techniques of Mayan Abdominal Therapy:
Tina Torii B.A, RMT
ATMAT treatments are beneficial for both men and women as it helps to change the homeostasis and hemodynamics of the pelvic bowl. For women, it can help with period pain, fertility enhancement, digestive issues and prolapse to name a few. For men, it can help with digestive issues as well as prostate health.
After spending a week in the woods of New Hampshire with an a amazing team of practitioners, I am excited to share with you the Arvigo techniques of Mayan abdominal therapy during pregnancy. If you have been coming for preconception massage, you can safely benefit from ATMAT during pregnancy and postpartum.
Arvego Mayan Abdominal Therapy specifically works on the belly and low back effectively helping to ease pregnancy discomforts and the birthing process. Traditional massage therapy is recommended early pregnancy. ATMAT may be safely integrated at 20 weeks and beyond.
Here are the specific recommendations for preconception to postpartum:
Preconception: recommendations are at least once a month for 3 months (between menses and
ovulation/transfer). You will learn the self-care massage to optimize your continued care. Vaginal
steams are also recommended for ART ( if possible the morning of retrieval and transfer ).
First 20 weeks: Regular massage can be done but no belly work until past 20 weeks.
20-37 weeks: ATMAT pregnancy massage can be done at any time at this point and a pregnancy specific
self-care massage is taught (recommendation is once a month)
38 + weeks: ATMAT for preparing the body for birthing (recommendation is 2x/week if possible)
Postpartum: vaginal steams may be done 1 week after birth. Abdominal massage may start 6-8 weeks
after birth or 10-12 weeks after caesarian and self-care massage 12 weeks postpartum.
I am eager and looking forward to making a difference by working with you from preconception to pregnancy and beyond
Feel free to contact me and book an appointment.
You can check our website as well as the Arvigotherapy.com site for more information on Arvigo therapy.
Aik Kim Heng Hon.B.Sc, R.TCMP, R.Ac
Chances are you have probably heard of the health benefits of Turmeric and may have considered including it in your diet. In recent years, turmeric has gained the recognition of the scientific community for its anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and antioxidant qualities. It is credited for its abilities to reduce inflammation in the colon, wound healing, reducing joint pain, etc. Turmeric has long been used in Chinese cooking and as a medicinal herb in Chinese medicine. My father uses turmeric in his Chinese Malaysian-style curry, which has always been a popular dish in the family.
As a practitioner, I have noticed more patients taking it as supplements. Interestingly, I found in the six years I spent living and completing my medical training in China that while Chinese are certainly familiar with turmeric, it hasn’t gained the kind of popularity I observed in western mainstream media. The differences can partially be explained by emphasis on holistic approach in Chinese medicine and dietetics. Western medicine and nutrition theory focus on the analytical and quantitative categorization of foods. This categorization is based on material food components such as carbohydrates, fat, protein, vitamins, and minerals. The Eastern view, on the other hand, follows the qualitative, holistic concept of yin and yang and how thermal nature of foods and herbs influence the body. Thermal nature is of principal value in Chinese dietetics. They are used to describe its effect on the body, for example, a thermally warm food is better suited to a person with a cold constitution to restore balance. Turmeric is a thermally warm spice that is not suitable for a person with a hot constitution; typically, his or her tongue will be bright red with a yellow tongue coating. At minimum, turmeric should be balanced by combining it with other food or herbs that is cooling.
I have noticed my patients taking turmeric and it is throwing off their thermal balance. In my experience many Chinese herbs are fabulous for healing but they are not all suitable for everyone. Chinese dietetics is about restoring balance and there are other anti-inflammatory herbs that are cooling and better suited for a person with warm constitution. The simple balancing of hot and cold can have many health benefits when we adhere to this simple principle in the art of living.