What To Eat After An Embryo Transfer [& Foods To Avoid]
It’s normal to be a little nervous before your embryo transfer. The key is to understand how to thoroughly prepare for it so you can feel more at ease and confident about what’s ahead. A central part of preparation is being conscientious about what you’re putting into your body.
Sticking to a well-balanced diet not only helps you look after your uterine health and hormone levels but can also enhance your chances of IVF success. Here’s what you should eat after your embryo transfer.
Best Foods after Your Embryo Transfer
A helpful way to remember the central nutrients required in your IVF journey is by thinking of the Mediterranean diet. Research shows a Mediterranean diet can increase your chances of IVF success. It consists of healthy fats, leafy vegetables, and zinc- and folic acid-rich foods.
Let’s pick apart the nutrients in the Mediterranean diet and discuss how each helps maintain an optimum balance of hormones and energy levels required for a smooth IVF treatment.
Also referred to as B9, folic acid is vital to the synthesis of DNA, production of red blood cells, and brain and immune function.
Research has linked dietary folic acid intake with IVF success. In addition, studies indicate folic acid is linked to a lower risk of congenital heart and neural tube defects in babies. The CDC recommends women take 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid every day.
Here are foods that carry folic acid:
- Whole grains (e.g., brown rice, oatmeal, popcorn, barley)
- Citrus fruit (e.g., oranges, grapefruit, berries)
- Leafy greens (e.g., spinach, mustard greens, turnip greens, Brussels sprouts)
- Sunflower seeds
- Beans (e.g., pinto beans, black beans, chickpeas)
Zinc is pivotal to cell division and progesterone production. It helps balance out hormones and may thicken the endometrium, which helps nourish and sustain the embryo.
Zinc-rich foods include:
- Nuts (e.g., peanuts, cashews, pecans)
- Dairy products
- Seafood (predominantly oysters)
A research study found that women who consumed a high amount of monounsaturated fats were three times more likely to have a live birth.
Overall, healthy fats that are derived from fish and plants are great options for your fertility diet. We need fat in our diet to support a healthy hormonal balance and control inflammation. Moreover, fish is loaded with protein and iron, which promote fetal growth and physical changes you undergo during pregnancy.
Healthy fats include:
- Fatty fish (e.g., salmon, canned light tuna, pollock, catfish)
- Whole eggs
- Chia seeds
- Olive, canola, and peanut oils
- Nut butters
If needed, you can enhance your nutrient intake by taking the necessary supplements. Be sure to consult with your doctor before taking any.
Foods to Avoid after Your Embryo Transfer
Avoid eating foods that contain:
- Saturated Fats: As we discussed earlier, sticking to healthy fats is key to maintaining hormonal balance in your body. Eating a lot of saturated and polyunsaturated fats can reduce the chances of a successful IVF. Saturated fats can be found in pastries (biscuits, cakes, etc.) and processed meats (sausages, bacon, salami, etc.).
- Simple Carbohydrates: Simple carbs contain high amounts of sugar, interfering with the body’s hormonal balance. Simple carbs include white flour, white rice, and sugary drinks and snacks. Go for whole grains instead.
- Mercury: Though fish is a good part of your diet upon embryo transfer, it’s important to stay attentive to mercury levels. For example, albacore tuna has more mercury content than canned light tuna, so be sure to opt for the latter.
Be sure to also avoid alcohol, caffeine, and sugary drinks. Soda and energy drinks have been linked to lower fertility.
Lean on Future Family
If you have any questions regarding your IVF treatment, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Future Family. Our goal is to eliminate the barriers of cost and complexity so you can focus on building the family of your dreams. We are happy to offer IVF plans beginning at $300 per month, and fertility specialists who can provide the personal care you deserve.