For most of us this week, it was back to work and back to routine with all the self-promises to live and feel better at this time of year!
However, in this first week into January, maybe you have already broken your New year's resolutions. Still, if you're planning to try for a baby at some point in 2020 it's even more important to make lifestyle resolutions you can stick to, so here are three easy and achievable New Year's resolutions that can make a real difference to your fertility.
Reduce or quit alcohol
Alcohol is a big lifestyle change you can make for your fertility, and it's a common one at this time of year as many people take part in Dry January.
Current NHS advice is that men drink no more than 14 units of alcohol a week, spread evenly over three days or more, as excessive alcohol intake can negatively affect sperm quality. While women planning a pregnancy are advised that it's safest not to drink alcohol at all.
Lose or gain weight
Did you know that losing – or gaining - weight is one of the single biggest things you can do for your fertility?
That's because studies have shown that BMI and fertility are linked. Being significantly over or underweight can make it harder to conceive for both men and women due to how it affects egg and sperm quality. It can also impact your chances of success if you do need fertility treatment.
That's why we have a BMI limit of 35 for IVF and encourage patients to be within a healthy range BMI if they're trying to conceive and before starting fertility treatment.
Check your BMI online now here and see if you could do with making some changes.
Stopping smoking – and that includes e-cigarettes or 'vaping' too as these still contain nicotine – is a huge breath of fresh air for your fertility. If you smoke, it affects your egg or sperm.
In men, smoking can affect sperm count and increase DNA fragmentation rate. A high level of DNA damaged sperm can be the cause of fertility problems, miscarriage, and failed IVF.
In women, smoking can affect your ovarian reserve (how many eggs you have left), how soon you start the menopause, ovarian function, and egg quality, leading to difficulty getting pregnant and lower IVF success rates.
The good news is that quitting smoking is a great way to start your fertility plan, as it'll start to improve as soon as you stop.
Fertility health advice and support
As one of the UK's leading IVF fertility clinics, we have been helping to create families for over 30 years, giving us expert knowledge to help you start your journey. If it's time for a family in 2020, it's time for our support!
The NHS has some useful lifestyle advice here if you're looking for ways to increase your chances of getting pregnant.
Last updated: 31st January 2020