The best approach to cases of infertility is to see a fertility specialist for evaluation, to check if there’s an underlying medical condition that requires treatment.
In addition to this, lifestyle changes such as quitting smoking and drinking, or exercise can help to optimize one’s fertility.
Also, a diet rich in nutrients has been seen to play a major role in improving the chances of getting pregnant.
Sweet potatoes are well known for their nutritional benefits. The bright orange root vegetable is packed with vitamins and nutrients that are of great health benefits. Among these benefits is the ability of sweet potatoes to boost fertility.
Some of the ways sweet potatoes can help boost fertility include:
1. Regulate hormone production
Hormone imbalance is one of the causes of fertility problems. Maintaining the balance of progesterone to oestrogen in the body is essential for a healthy body function.
In cases of oestrogen levels being either low or too high, an increased progesterone production is the key to hormonal balance.
Foods that are high in vitamin B6, such as sweet potatoes, will help increase the body’s progesterone production, thereby balancing hormones.
2. Regulate menstrual cycles
Sweet potatoes are high in beta-carotene, the plant-based precursor to Vitamin A which gives food its orange colour.
When beta carotene is absorbed into the body, it is converted to vitamin A which is then used for many body processes including reproduction.
Foods rich in beta-carotene are known to improve ovarian and adrenal health. They help protect against conditions related to oestrogen-dominance such as endometriosis, fibroid, breast cysts, heavy menstrual bleeding and ovarian cancer.
3. Improve cervical fluid and follicle development
One serving of sweet potatoes contains 700% of the US Recommended Daily Amount for vitamin A .
Vitamin A, a powerful antioxidant, is known to promote healthy and fertile cervical fluid, and also assists in the development and maturation of follicles in the ovaries .
4. Build the immune system
A weak immune system or certain immune system disorders may affect your chances of getting pregnant. A weakened immune system can render the body more susceptible to diseases that affect fertility.
Foods that are high in Vitamin C, such as sweet potatoes, can help to build up the immune system. Just 7 ounces of sweet potatoes has 65% of the daily amount of Vitamin C.
5. Alleviate symptoms of PCOS and Endometriosis
Sweet potatoes are rich in antioxidants, which are known to be anti-inflammatory.
Therefore consuming foods high in antioxidants will help in reducing symptoms inflammatory disorders such as PCOS and endometriosis.
6. Stabilize blood sugar
Women whose diets have a very high glycemic load (a measure of how quickly or slowly food raises the blood sugar level) are more likely to have ovulatory infertility than those whose diets have a lower glycemic load.
Complex carbohydrates such as sweet potatoes have a low glycemic load and are good for fertility. These good carbs are digested slowly and have a more gradual effect on blood sugar and insulin as opposed to the bad carbs.
Consuming sweet potatoes can therefore control blood sugar
7. Source of calcium and iron
Sweet potatoes are rich in both calcium and iron. Two studies have shown that calcium plays a role in conception.
The first study showed that it is a key nutrient in triggering growth in embryos; the more the calcium in the surrounding fluid, the better it is for the embryo.
The second study shows that minerals such as calcium help to create an alkaline environment in the reproductive tract and helps sperm in thrusting towards the egg.
Also an Iron deficiency has been linked with infertility, because iron helps improve egg health and promotes healthy ovulation.
8. Reduce stress
Stress, which can be a consequence of infertility, is also a cause of infertility. Research has shown that when a woman is stressed out, her chances of getting pregnant are greatly reduced.
That’s because stress can affect the functioning of the hypothalamus — the gland in the brain that regulates the hormones that tell your ovaries to release eggs.
Sweet potatoes are rich in magnesium and potassium. These are very important minerals that reduce stress, promote calmness and good mood, and also balance the nervous system.
These fertility benefits, in addition to the fact that sweet potatoes are oh so delicious, are good reasons to indulge!