Infertility can be stressful. But, ironically, if you’re TTC (trying to conceive), you should be doing all you can do keep your stress levels at a low, manageable level.
Research has shown that emotional stress can affect gut bacteria. Scientists refer to the ‘gut-brain axis’, a pathway through which signals from the gut can affect neurotransmitters in the brain, and vice versa. Research remains early, but a person’s microbiome and mental state appear to be able to influence each other to some extent.
Thankfully, there are some simple ways to lower your stress, which will have positive implications for your fertility.
Walking, stretching, swimming, skipping – how you choose to raise your pulse is up to you, but just make sure to get in some form of exercise a few times a week. It can provide surprisingly quick relief whenever stress levels are soaring.
Nourish your body
A healthy diet can lead to a healthy mind, so treat your body to the best (healthy) foods you can afford. So that means in with the fresh produce and out with over-salted, heavily processed foods.
Whether it’s side-spitting YouTube videos, cheesy jokes or a laugh-out-loud film, factor in some chuckle time. Just by laughing, you can trick your nervous system into making you happy – or at least into thinking that you are.
Listen to music
Playing relaxing music has a positive effect on the brain and body, can lower blood pressure, and reduce cortisol, the hormone linked to stress. Break out the panpipes!
The concept of ‘mindfulness’ has become something of a buzzword recently – and for good reason. Whether it’s yoga, Pilates, tai chi, meditation or breath work, all of these systems of mindfulness incorporate physical and mental exercises that can help prevent stress from escalating and becoming a long-term problem.
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