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4 ways to thicken your endometrium through nutrition

Thin endometrium? Upcoming embryo transfer? This one is for you!


When it comes to implantation and embryo transfer, a thick endometrium (uterine lining) is important. Often medical techniques are used to support the thickening of the endometrium but there is also research highlighting some key things that we can do with diet to support this as well.


1. Wholegrains

An interesting study found that women who had a higher intake of wholegrains had a greater chance of implantation after IVF (1). Research has found that for every additional serve of wholegrains per day, uterine lining increased by an average of 0.4 millimetres. Including grainy breads, quinoa, oats, and brown rice (for example) is a great start to eating more wholegrains and spreading them across each of your meals/ snacks during the day is an easy way to do this. Alot of women don't eat near enough the recommended wholegrain intake for fertility so this one would be an important one to look at in your own diet.


2. Oily fish

Oily fish is one of the best sources of omega 3 which is great for increasing blood flow to the uterus, which is important for thickening your endometrium. Omega fatty acids have been researched in varying amounts and ideal dosages often look quite different depending on if the goal is sperm health improvement or egg health so have a chat with a fertility dietitian to determine the most effective dose for you.


3. Vitamin E

Vitamin E is a key nutrient when it comes to fertility and there are some studies that suggest vitamin E supplementation may assist in thickening your uterine lining (2). Vitamin E is available from foods but the amounts used in research studies are typically much higher than what you can get from your diet. Vitamin E is a supplement that must be discussed with your dietitian or healthcare professional before starting as long term use between fertility and pregnancy can be disadvantageous- but the correct dose at the right time can be incredibly effective.


4. L-arginine:

L-arginine is another supplement that is commonly used to increase the thickness of uterine lining, and also has a small amount of research supporting it’s use (3,4). L-arginine is an amino acid that helps the body build protein and its also known for opening blood vessels to increase blood flow. This one also should be started after a discussion with your dietitian as excessive supplementation has been shown to potentially impair egg quality so generally should be avoided 3 months prior to egg retrieval or when actively trying naturally to conceive.


If you are thinking of trying or are currently trying for a baby then speaking with a fertility dietitian is a must. Not only does nutrition and lifestyle have the potential to impact significantly on your time to conception, but also your experience of pregnancy and the heath of your future baby. Book your first initial consultation with me today to get started on your journey to pregnancy: HERE.





References:

  1. Gaskins AJ, Chiu YH, Williams PL, et al. Maternal whole grain intake and outcomes of in vitro fertilization. Fertil Steril. 2016;105(6):1503-1510.e4. doi:10.1016/j.fertnstert.2016.02.015

  2. Maryam Eftekhar, Nasim Tabibnejad, Afsar Alsadat Tabatabaie, The thin endometrium in assisted reproductive technology: An ongoing challenge, Middle East Fertility Society Journal, Volume 23, Issue 1, 2018, Pages 1-7, ISSN 1110-5690

  3. Cesare Battaglia, Michela Salvatori, Nicoletta Maxia, Felice Petraglia, Fabio Facchinetti, Annibale Volpe, Adjuvant L-arginine treatment for in-vitro fertilization in poor responder patients, Human Reproduction, Volume 14, Issue 7, 1 July 1999, Pages 1690–1697, https://doi.org/10.1093/humrep/14.7.1690

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