A poor lifestyle can cause infertility. Hence, by making appropriate lifestyle changes, you can increase your chances of having a child
India is home to over 1.3 billion people. However, the prevalence of infertility is also quite high pegged at somewhere between 3.9 to 16.8%. About 15% of couples are dealing with infertility worldwide. This is a staggering number. Infertility affects both men and women with the majority of cases caused by genetic factors, which cannot be treated. Then other biological causes need medical intervention. Another factor, which is often overlooked, which can also cause infertility is a poor lifestyle. Poor diet, a lack of physical activity, smoking, and drinking alcohol, which make you susceptible to numerous diseases, can make you infertile too. However, the good news here is that, unlike other factors that need medical intervention, with making some lifestyle tweaks, you can easily minimise your risk of infertility as far as lifestyle is concerned. And on what lifestyle changes one needs to make, this is what Dr Hrishikesh Pai, Consultant Gynaecologist & Infertility specialist attached to Mumbai’s Lilavati Hospital, has to say.
(Photo Credit: Freepik)
Before we look at ways to prevent infertility with lifestyle changes, let’s first understand the issue. Infertility refers to the biological inability of a person to contribute to contraception, Dr Pai said. This is when a couple is termed infertile:
(Photo Credit: Freepik)
According to Dr Pai, you should make the following lifestyle changes to prevent infertility:
Nutrition is a big determinant of your overall health, which includes your reproductive health.
Just like diet, enough physical activity is also crucial for good health. To reduce your risk of infertility:
Excessive weight gain or obesity is another lifestyle factor behind infertility.
Smoking is not just injurious to the lungs, but to your reproductive health as well.
Just like smoking, alcohol consumption is another component of a poor lifestyle. Binge drinking and chronic alcohol abuse affect fertility in both men and women and can make it difficult for them to conceive not just naturally but through infertility treatments as well.
Certain drugs, western, herbal, and recreational, are also known to cause infertility.
Hence, whenever you are on such medicines, it’s always better to consult a gynecologist (or andrologist) to slash your risk of infertility.
Exposure to environmental toxins can also lead to infertility. Hence, try to stay away or reduce your exposure to environmental poisons such as pesticides, heavy metals, lead, toxic chemicals, and ionizing radiation.
Also read: Are Delayed Marriage & Childbearing Causing Infertility In Indian Women? Doctor Answers
A fast-paced lifestyle is characterised by a lot of stress and a lack of a consistent sleep cycle. It can also have an impact on a person’s fertility. Hence, to reduce your risk:
All these can help alleviate stress and induce better sleep.
Regular health check-ups can lead to the early diagnosis of certain diseases that can affect fertility.
However, if you are not able to conceive over six months or longer, then you must see a doctor. With proper diagnosis, the exact cause can be treated that can increase your chances of having a child.
(With inputs from Dr Hrishikesh Pai, Consultant Gynaecologist & Infertility specialist attached to Mumbai’s Lilavati Hospital D Y Patil Hospital, Navi Mumbai & Fortis Hospitals in New Delhi, Gurugram & Chandigarh)
Photo Credit: Freepik
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