As a woman approaching 30, I’m starting to think about fertility. I don’t necessarily have the urge to be a mother immediately… or maybe even ever? But the reality is, pregnancy at age 35 and beyond is considered “geriatric pregnancy” or “advanced maternal age pregnancy.” Putting aside the fact that I cannot believe 35 constitutes “advanced age” in any way (!!!), that tidbit of information means I need to start being mindful of my fertility over the next five years, just in case. If you’re in a similar situation, read on.
Right now, the after-effects of hormonal birth control are my biggest concern. I started taking The Pill at age 15, switched to an IUD at age 27, and have been completely off of birth control for about a year now… but the effects still linger. Some experts say the artificial hormones from hormonal birth control (like The Pill and IUD) continue coursing through the body for two to three months after you stop, while alternative sources argue a woman’s natural hormones could be affected for up to seven years after discontinuing BC.
There are also claims that long-term use of hormonal birth control can lower your chances of getting pregnant in the future. One study at Boston University’s School of Public Health discovered that users of oral contraceptives exhibited a temporary delay in fertility, compared to women who opted for hormone-free birth control methods, like condoms or diaphragms. Still, other research says long-term birth control use has zero impact on future fertility. It’s all pretty confusing — but I’m the kind of person who’d rather be safe than sorry. My first step toward getting my body (maybe) baby-ready? A “Birth Control Cleanse.”
I recently discovered this natural solution from Premama Wellness, which is basically a prenatal multivitamin in a glass. One order of Birth Control Cleanse features 28 packets of powdered vitamins and nutrients designed to “naturally promote the breakdown and removal of excess hormones and environmental toxins stored in your body,” according to the brand, as well as regulate your cycle. Ingredients include chasteberry (a natural source of progesterone that balances hormones), vitamins C and E (which scavenge environmental aggressors and excess hormones), folic acid (to ease PMS and prep for future pregnancy), and iodine (which regulates thyroid function, and thus, hormone function).
Of course, a vitamin-spiked “cleanse” isn’t the only way to rid the body of artificial hormones and boost fertility. There’s always the good, old fashioned way: A healthy, clean lifestyle.
To help me make the right choices for my overall fertility, I just downloaded Fertile Alchemy’s Fertile Life 90 Day Transformation Starter Guide, which is packed with information on how to take a healthy, holistic approach to aiding in fertility and balancing hormones. There are no products involved — it’s simply a suggested meal plan, exercise plan, and lifestyle guide to help point you in the right direction. The significance of 90 days? That’s apparently how long it takes, at minimum, to fully prepare the body for pregnancy.
On the Fertile Alchemy plan (which you can download for free here), a typical day includes lots of fruits and veggies, fresh smoothies, herbal infusions, and bone broth — all super nourishing. Exercise is factored in, too, with suggested yoga flows that correspond to different points in your menstrual cycle and weekly strength training. What I love most about this plan is its focus on mind, body, and soul; Fertile Alchemy considers daily journaling and meditation to be just as essential to the overall health of the womb as green juice. (After all, they significantly cut down on stress, a key factor in hormone regulation.)
Although there’s no strict, scientific evidence to back up the need for a “birth control cleanse” or a “fertile lifestyle plan,” I can’t see any downsides. I mean, at the very least, I’m treating my body right with veggies, vitamins, and yoga. And at the most, I’m giving it the things it needs to support another human life. I’d say that’s the definition of a win-win.
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