Many women are told there is little they can do to improve fertility after 40, but the latest scientific research defies that old assumption.
The primary reason for age-related infertility is the decline in egg quality and quantity that occurs around age 40. Yet there is actually a lot we can do to support egg health and counteract some of the effect of age.
That is because the growth phase before ovulation is a critical time during which many things can happen that affect the quality of the egg, both positively and negatively. These include harmful effects from common toxins, as well as protective effects from added antioxidants and other nutrients. As a result, there is a brief window of opportunity in which you can make a difference to your egg quality.
My book, It Starts With The Egg, gives detailed guidance on how to improve egg quality, with different plans tailored for women with age-related infertility, diminished ovarian reserve, and those with endometriosis, PCOS, or a history of recurrent miscarriage.
For women over 40, the primary goal is supporting energy production in the egg. Developing eggs need to be able to produce a tremendous amount of cellular energy in the few months before ovulation, in order to correctly process chromosomes. If this process goes wrong, the egg will end up with an extra or a missing copy of a chromosome. These chromosomal abnormalities are the main reason why it takes women over 40 longer to conceive (whether naturally or through IVF), and why there is a much higher risk of miscarriage.
The latest research shows that there are many strategies to support energy production in developing eggs, and thereby reduce the proportion of eggs with chromosomal abnormalities. This includes supplements such as CoQ10, melatonin, alpha-lipoic acid, DHEA, and others. (The book includes a detailed chapter on each supplement, to help you determine which supplements may be right for your unique circumstances.)
Supplements are not the only piece of the puzzle, however. It is also important to reduce exposure to certain common toxins, improve sperm quality as much as possible, and to make specific dietary changes that support egg quality. It Starts with the Egg provides a comprehensive guide to all the steps you can take to improve egg quality and fertility after age 40, to give you the best possible chance of bringing home a healthy baby.
** To read some of the success stories from women who have applied the strategies in the book and seen significant improvements in egg quality and quantity, please visit the book page on Amazon.