Lacy Phillips, my dear friend and guru all things holistic was a huge support for me during and after my pregnancy. Her knowledge of herbs guided me though my pregnancy free from any adverse effects and she provided me loads of herbs post pregnancy, helping to prevent any sign of postpartum.
I have been referring anyone who asks me about pregnancy and fertility assistance but wanted to get some recommendations for food to eat, herbs to take and information to read. I sat down with Lacy Phillips of Free and Native and she shared some of her fertility tools that every woman should know.
L | Fertility can be a very unique and specific journey from person to person and even women to women. I find that most of the clients that seek me out tend, for the most part to need a little hormone balancing which entails rebalancing heir endocrine system, balancing blood sugar levels, and detoxifying excess estrogen through micronutrients and herbs. Though one's protocol might vary immensely from another's, here are my top X fertility tools that can benefit any women - from those preparing their bodies for pregnancy two years in advance to those extending their fertility into their early forties.
Endocrine Balance | This is, in my opinion, the most important tool for every woman the day they start menstruating. Your delicate but reliable endocrine system hinges its success on these factors to ensure that you have balanced hormones, regular cycles of menstruation and ovulation and optimal metabolism.
Eat organic produce and animal products - pesticides are xenoestrogenic and conventional farming often uses hormone treatment in their practices. Excess estrogen is your main culprit in PMS - which is unnatural and women should not suffer from symptoms in any capacity, PMS is a symptom that your hormones (disruption in estrogen to progesterone ratios are imbalanced).
Eat Cruciferous vegetables - they contain a bioactive compound diindolylmethane (DIM) that naturally detoxify excess estrogen from your liver. I recommend a diet generous in cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, etc) two weeks leading up to your cycle.
Break up with soy - soy is incredibly estrogenic and leads to excess estrogen in the body. If you are a soy lover, stick with fermented versions of soy such as tamari, miso or tempeh.
Keep your blood sugar levels stable - proper adrenal function is paramount in proper endocrine function, thyroid function and metabolism. Blood sugar stability is the most important element to keeping adrenal function optimal - aside from managing stress. Achieve this by eating protein with every meal (plant, eggs, nuts, fish or animal). Eat within 90 minutes of waking and every 2 1/2 hours after. Stop eating 3 hours before bed. Ditch processed foods, refined sugar (try to limit non-refined sugar as well) as these contribute to rapid blood sugar spikes and crashes - therefore creating an imbalance in your blood sugar levels which means the release of cortisol (stress hormone) throughout the day to try and help rebalance.
Fats, fats, and more fats – I have so many women that come to me seeking fertility and they are so deprived in fats that I’m astonished. Fat does not cause fat. It satiates hunger and is the building block for making hormones. If you don’t want to gain weight, stop eating sugar. But for the love of being a healthy hormonal woman, make sure you have a fat with every meal. And switch them throughout the day. Ensure that you are getting long and short chain fatty acids. My favorites are (coconut oil, avocado, grassfed organic butter, nuts, olive oil and fatty fish). Cooking with the fat isn’t enough either! Drizzle extra on the dish.
Ditch your toxic beauty products – your skin is your largest organ and anything you apply to it is absorbed into the blood stream within 60 seconds. Many conventional beauty products are incredibly endocrine disrupting and xenoestrogenic.
Woman Code | any woman with a heartbeat and menstruation age should run out and buy this book. It's a staple that teaches women what to eat on a micronutrient level based on your four hormone cycles in one month. It's also my go-to when coaching clients on fertility, irregular cycles and so much more.
Daily Herbal Infusion | I customize these differently for each client but I believe that they should be a staple for every women. They ensure that women are getting the many minerals that are so very depleted from our produce and water. It is also the most ideal way to incorporate key fertility herbs such as vitex and Dong Quai extracted at their highest bio-available potency.
Here is the recipe :
TEA OF THE FEMININE
Two Parts Nettle Leaf | abundantly nutritive, nettles also strengthen the body against environmental pollutants, and combat seasonal allergies. Nettles contain vitamin B, C, E, K, beta-carotene, calcium, silica, and more—providing energy. They also improve circulation and tone muscles, tissues, arteries, and skin.
Two Parts Red Raspberry leaf | a highly nourishing reproductive tonic providing nutrients that tone the entire genitourinary system. Rich source of iron, manganese, niacin, and a wonderful endocrine tonic when energy is low.
Two Parts Alfalfa | aids in the body’s assimilation of nutrients. Contains vitamins C and K, folic acid, iron, manganese, zinc, digestive enzymes, and is very rich in chlorophyll.
One Part Milky Oats | nourishes hair, skin, and nails with its high silica content. Calming and nutritive for our overstressed and overworked world. And oats also help to relieve insomnia.
One Part lemon balm | an herb that helps the mind, body, and spirit adapt to change. Lemon Balm relieves nervousness, improves concentration, and lightens the mood.
PROCESS | source these dried herbs from fresh organic local retailers or Mountain Rose Herbs (www.mountainroseherbs.com). Part can equal a tablespoon all the way up to a cups. It’s based on proportions to your mug or storage jar of choice. If desired, mix these into a large blend in a jar, and use 1 tablespoon of your herbal blend per each cup you are drinking.
To make a tea, simply steep for twenty minutes. To make a very dense water-soluble infusion (which I recommend), pick your jar of choice. Add 1 tablespoon of blend per cups the jar holds. Pour boiling water, cap, and steep for 4 hours.
Enjoy 2-3 cups of either your tea or infusion daily, and be an active part in this wonderful shift on a very deep and nourished level.
Fall in love with Lacy and get more great holistic health information on her beautiful blog Free + Native