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Infertility is on the rise and only lifestyle is to blame

Infertility is a growing problem across the world today. Defined as the inability to conceive after a year of trying for a baby, it is no longer a distant urban phenomenon, restricted to urbanites or women alone. In India too, there has been a huge spike in the number of couples experiencing difficulties conceiving and struggling with infertility.

Infertility is Becoming More Common with Young India

As per an Indian Express report in 2010, nearly 30 million couples in India were afflicted with the problem of infertility and other reports suggest that there has been a rise of almost 30% in cases of infertility, in both men and women, from 2007 to 2012 alone. Because of how complex this problem is, identifying the exact cause is like looking for a needle in a haystack. Over the last few decades, our lifestyles have seen some huge shifts. There has been a significant increase in stress levels and lifestyle shift, with greater risk factors like consumption of drugs and alcohol. This has made millennials a lot more vulnerable to various medical problems.

How our Lifestyle is Affecting Fertility

Major lifestyle changes that we have experienced over the past decade have had a major role to play in plummeting levels of fertility.

  • Smoking and Alcohol

Smoking and alcohol consumption are two of the biggest lifestyle factors that lead to infertility issues. Both habits are known to adversely affect sperm count and motility in men. Female smokers are affected with poor egg production, while alcohol takes a toll on the reproductive health of women, making it even harder to conceive.

  • A Sedentary Lifestyle

The sedentary lifestyle with deskbound jobs is the hallmark of our generation, and has been tied to numerous lifestyle diseases. In addition to increasing the risk of infertility and other chronic conditions, it also increases the risk of obesity, which in itself is tied to a plethora of health issues. Obesity increases chances of ovulation irregularity and PCOS in women. It can also trigger changes in levels of hormones crucial for conception, leading to difficulties in getting pregnant.

  • Rising Stress

Prolonged exposure to stress not only contributes to hormonal imbalances in the body, but it also affects the flow of blood to the uterus in women, leading to conception issues. In men too, stress wrecks havoc on the hormones needed for sperm production – lowering sperm concentration and sex drive.

Conventional Treatments are Effective but Expensive

Conventional medicine has little to offer in terms of treatment for infertility, other than medications and diagnostic tests. Clomiphene is usually the first line of treatment in women with fertility issues. However, it carries with it the risk of side effects like stomach problems, dizziness, and headaches. With the rates of success not being too high, this treatment does not prove to be very reliable.

There are also many injectable fertility medications available that stimulate the release of hormones to help in conception. Again, these cause side-effects and complications that are almost impossible to avoid.

Advances in medical treatments in recent years have made it possible to develop new lines of treatment like ICSI (Intracytoplasmic sperm injection) and IVF (In Vitro Fertilization). These methods employ specialized micromanipulation tools and equipment to fuse the sperm and egg cells artificially. One of the main issues with these fertility treatments is the high cost, which makes them inaccessible to most people. More importantly, the success rates of such treatments are rather low, making it necessary for couples to go in for several sessions, further increasing costs.

Can Lifestyle Changes Help?

Lifestyle modifications can have a greater impact on wellbeing than you’d imagine, and this also affects fertility levels. Studies have shown a clear link between lower fertility levels in men and high stress levels. Meditation, yoga and physical exercise can help in this context by alleviating the stress and anxiety. Fertility experts also recommend following a healthy and balanced diet and including a good amount of fruits and vegetables. Most importantly, you need to cut back on your alcohol intake and quit smoking, as all of these have a role to play in conception-related problems.

What is Ayurveda’s Solution?

There is an easier and more holistic alternative to dealing with these rising rates of infertility. Ayurveda is one such approach, as it takes a holistic path to address both the mental and physiological aspects of infertility. For both men and women, reproductive health depends on the health of their reproductive tissues. In traditional Ayurvedic medicine, experts use a combination of herbs to restore both physical and emotional wellbeing in an effort to boost fertility levels by influencing reproductive hormones.

Ayurvedic Herbs That Help

  • Restoring Mental Wellness

Ashwagandha, Shatavari, Jatamansi and Devadaru are potent herbs that are known to promote mental wellness by restoring emotional balance in the body.

  •  Relieving Stress & Anxiety

Ashwagandha is also known to promote relaxation. Jatamansi too is a powerful anxiolytic that helps relieve stress in the body.

  • Restoring Hormonal Balance

Ashoka, Lodhra and Nagkeshar are herbs known for improving endocrinal functions and correcting hormonal imbalances in the body, thus boosting fertility.

  • Improving Reproductive Functions

Ashoka is also known to have a stimulatory effect on the reproductive tissues. Amalaki and Guduchi are other age-old herbs that improve reproductive functions.

Ayurvedic Options Available for female infertility

One of the best Ayurvedic solutions for boosting female fertility is M2-Tone tablet or M2-Tone syrup. Clinically tested and proven to boost reproductive health, M2 tone contains powerful estrogenic herbs like Ashoka and Lodhra, which improve ovarian function. With other ingredients like Ashwagandha, Jatamanasi, Shatavari and Devadaru, this comprehensive formulation relieves anxiety and tension, also reviving imbalanced female genital and reproductive functions. Nagkeshar corrects hormonal imbalances by regulating endocrinal functions. This female reproductive health modulator thus improves reproductive health and promotes fertility naturally.

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About the Author : Dr. Charak
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