Whether TTC, or simply wanting to eat healthier we wanted to have a special place on our blog where we could share our fertile food adventures. Over the years of going through infertility we have poured over research on “fertile foods” and have collected a cache of recipes. Those who know Chris and I personally, know we are foodies and have a passion for cooking. So a regimented “hippie diet” just wasn’t gonna work for us. If we have to submit to the agony of no wine/beer for several months and food that is as filling as eating 1 small grape, we knew we needed to kick it up a notch!
Kale and other leafy vegetables, such as spinach, collards, cabbage, etc. are abundant in folic aicd. Folic acid is not only paramount in brain, heart, and spine fetal development, but it also is a big contributor in helping reduce some of the most prominent fertility issues in women such as ovulation issues and egg production.
Kale also has a chemical compound cammed DIM that has been known to help rebalance hormone defects in women as well as it binds to environmental toxins in some foods to help the body excrete them more readily. Aside from being a vitamin haven with A, C, and K vitamins, if you eat raw Kale you get trace minerals such as calcium and potassium. Chop it up and throw it in your next salad!
- 1 bunch of kale
- 1 tablespoon olive oil (I use flavored ones like lemon or garlic)
- 1 teaspoon seasoning salt
- Pepper to taste
- Pinch of red pepper flakes if you are feeling spicy
- Prehear oven to 350 F (175 C). Line a non-insulated cookie sheet with parchment paper.
- With a knife or kitchen shears, carefully remove the kale leaves from the thick stems and tear into bite sized pieces. Wash and thoroughly dry kale. Drizzle olive oil over kale and sprinkle with seasonings.
- Bake until the edges brown but are not burned, 10-15 minutes.
More Omega 3s Please!
Being that I have problems with implantation (despite great embies, all the moons aligning directly, summer solstice, etc.) in my fertility diet regimen, I focus on foods that will help make the dull stars in my fertility universe shine brighter. There is nothing better than a biscuit with bacon on top of sausage, eggs, cheese, more bacon (drooling yet?) for a suitable breakfast. But I have found Nature’s Path Pumpkin and Flax Granola a fertility fav which is pretty darn tasty. Not to mention it is jam packed with fertility friendly foods. This product/recipe is super duper high in Omega 3s: Oats, Pumpkin Seeds, Flax Seeds, Cinnamon, Walnuts, the list goes on and on. If you prefer the easy route just buy it! This is the brand I really like.
If you get in the Betty Crocker mood here is the recipe to make it from scratch!
Pumpkin Flax Granola Recipe
This takes a little longer to cook than your average granola due to the amount of liquid in the recipe. Be sure to rotate the baking pans and stir every 10 minutes so that it cooks evenly and doesn’t brown on top.
6 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup flax seeds
1 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
1 cup sunflower seeds
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup sunflower oil or any other good quality oil you prefer
Preheat oven to 350 F/ 180 C
Finely grind flaxseeds in a coffee/spice grinder, then stir together with oats, walnuts, seeds, salt, vanilla, oil, fresh ginger, spices, pumpkin puree and maple syrup in a large bowl.
Spread mixture evenly in 2 large shallow baking pans (1 inch/2.5 cm deep) and bake in upper and lower thirds of your oven, stirring and switching position of pans every 10 minutes, until golden brown, about 50-60 minutes total.
Cool granola completely in pans on racks, then stir in dried fruit (if using)
Makes about 10 cups of granola.
Other Things To Do With Pumpkin Flax Granola
Yogurt Parfaits for 2
2 small tubs of low fat vanilla yogurt
1/2 cup of blueberries or any other fresh berries on hand
1/4 cup of pumpkin flax granola
In a small bowl, layer yogurt, granola and berries and enjoy for breakfast or a healthy dessert.
2 cups granola
2 tablespoons creamy almond butter or other creamy nut butter
1 tablespoon coconut oil or butter
1-2 scoops protein powder
2 tablespoons sugar free syrup
1/4-1/2 cup raisins or other dried fruit (optional)
In a large saucepan, melt the nut butter with the coconut oil or medium-low. Whisk until smooth.
Add the protein powder and sugar-free syrup and mix well. Add enough water to thin it out to a thick but pourable sauce, about 1/4 cup water.
Stir in the granola until evenly coated.
Press the granola in an even layer in the bottom of a loaf pan lined with foil or parchment paper. Refrigerate for at least an hour.
When completely cool, cut into bars.
Omega 3s for Me!
So why Omega 3’s you ask? Here’s what I have read, Omega fatty acids are wonderful for helping with infertility and just overall good health in general, especially your heart. It is important to pay attention to what your diagnosis is and the foods you put into your body and make sure you are counter balancing your deficiencies with foods high in what lacks … no brainer right? The problem is some of these foods are not on the top of “gotta have it” list at the grocery store. Of course, there are supplements that you can take to up your Omega-3 input, but any bottle that advertises that they have a formulation with “No Fish Burps” just sounds kind of gross to me. So, here are some foods that are rich in Omega 3’s: flaxseed, walnuts, salmon, sardines, soybeans, basil, pumpkin, halibut, shrimp, tofu, snapper, scallops
The benefits are endless ...
- Reduces inflammation (Inflammation, disrupts implantation).
- Increase the blood flow to the uterus.
- Reduce sensitivity to the hormone prolactin, which can suppress ovulation.
- Increases CM, which is needed to help the sperm reach the egg.
- Helps your cycle to become normalized
- Male infertility- studies now link Omega 3’s to help increase the population of sperm-town You-S-A from Sammy the single sperm to Sammy and his Million-Billion buddies
- If you are pregnant, it helps with brain, heart, and eye development of your precious cargo.
* Disclosure* I am not a nutritionist, but I have read up on this ad nauseum so consider me just passing on the book of knowledge.
Salmon with Lemon and Fresh Basil
4 Salmon fillets (try to stick with wild caught, stay away from farm raised, they add hormones which can disrupt all of the awesome hormones we get to take!)
Coarse Salt and Pepper
2 cups packed fresh basil leaves, sliced chiffonade ßsliced crosswise
1 large shallot, sliced thin
Lemon zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons of lemon juice from the zested lemon
1 tablespoon of olive oil
Lemon slices for garnish if you want to get all fancy and stuff
Preheat oven to 325 F. Season your salmon with coarse salt and pepper to taste and arrange in a 9 x 13 dish. In a small bowl stir together all ingredients except the salmon. Pour over top of the salmon and refrigerate for 20 minutes. Cook for 25-30 at 325 F or until flaky. BAM! Jam packed with Omega 3’s, lowfat and delicious.
Chris’s note: Okay, I like salmon as much as anybody, but don’t overdo any one recipe for fertility. Candace and I try to change up what we are doing to make this awesome escapade we are on more enjoyable. There is something of a deflating feeling to know that we are getting ready to eat slammin’ basil salmon for the fifth time this week. Other ways to integrate this delicious fish kale-sriracha wrapped salmoninto your fertility regimen include making bronzed salmon,blackened salmon (for those that like it spicy), or a super good. So, before buying 8 pounds of basil, check the blog soon for other ways to have your friend salmon grace your dinner table.