In Chinese medicine, an analogy we like to share to help you optimize your fertility, your egg and sperm so that they can reach peak fertility potential, is in the Chinese proverb that says, “Nourish the soil before you plant the seed.”
If you can think of a time where you’ve had a plant that looked like it was ready for the garbage because it was neglected, and rather than throwing it away, you chose to add water, maybe move it from the hot sun light and off to the side and add a little fertilizer, the plant was able to regain its vigor and give off fruits and flowers.
Well, in this case, you didn’t change the roots so it wasn’t like a donor egg. All you did is improve the soil which this plant was in and it was able to regain its vigor and give off fruits and flowers. This plant always had the potential to give off fruits and flowers, but because the soil it was in was suboptimal, it wasn’t able to reach its peak fertility potential.
So for the eggs and sperm, it’s that cellular environment and we want to support your soil so that your egg has that the environment to mature in. At the time of conception (whether it’s in the bedroom or and IVF lab), we want your egg and sperm to be at its peak fertility potential.
Using the above-mentioned metaphor, if you have weeds, rocks or contaminated soil, then we want to use supplements and techniques to help the liver detoxify these weeds, rocks or contaminated soil (in the form off endocrine disruptors, chemicals or toxins). We want the soil to be the right pH, which is why we need to regulate your hormones so you can have balanced hormones.
We also want to bring down the inflammation because it leads to accelerated biological aging and degenerative diseases such as premature fertility decline. This inflammation, which I whimsically call, “inflamm-aging,” can cause this accelerated biological aging. If the soil is depleted in nutrients, then the fruit one contain those nutrients so I won’t be able to grow those foods.
This is where some Chinese medicine practitioners do their fertility audit to check to see what nutrients and things may be missing (such as hormonal imbalances) and this is where they use diet, supplements and herbs to supplement the soil. Everything that’s being done is about nourishing that soil. We want to get blood flow to the reproductive system, which is similar to nourishing the soil.
As a woman ages, the blood flow to the reproductive system declines, so we use techniques such as acupuncture, low level laser therapy also known as cold laser or photobiomodulation, stress reduction techniques and fertility massage to bring blood to the reproductive system. When blood is flowing to the follicles, then we get more nutrients, oxygen and hormones and this helps the follicles that contains the egg reach its peak fertility potential.
In general, this is the kind of approach that Chinese medicine uses. It’s the healthy baby approach, which involves healthy eggs, healthy sperm plus healthy uterine environment. Everything we’re doing is to prepare the soil, that cellular environment, so when the egg goes to its maturation process, especially those last 100 days, it’s in an optimal environment that can help support follicular maturation. And so when you conceive naturally or through an IVF procedure, your building blocks, in this case, the eggs, sperm and the uterine environment are at their peak fertility potential.