New studies have suggested that Fasting Ramadan (a form of Intermittent Fasting Diet) helps the body prepare for conception.
Fasting sets the scene for the body to balance its hormones while maximising the liver’s ability to do its cleansing job. It also allows burning of excess fat and lowering stress levels, all of which could be damaging to human reproductive ability. It has also therefore been suggested that fasting increases fertility in women and boosts their chances of conception.
Other researchers have even claimed prevention of age-related decline in egg quality and quantity in other species with caloric restriction.
Speaking in the publication Gulf Today, Dr Salem El Shawarby, Consultant & UK Subspecialist in Reproductive Medicine/IVF Medical Director of Fakih IVF, Abu Dhabi, said, “Leading a healthy lifestyle in general is vital for fertility. Couples should focus on healthy food rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, high fibre products, and drinking good amount of fluids for adequate rehydration especially for those observing Ramadan in Iftar and Suhoor.”
“Overweight women and men should make every effort at losing weight by healthy diet and exercise, and if needed seek dieticians’ help. Avoiding smoking cannot be overemphasised as always.”
“There is no contraindication to fertility treatments in Ramadan, unless there is a known pre-existing medical condition that does not make fasting safe in general. Also, there is no scientific data to suggest any significant effects on the cycle outcome, as simple modifications in the timing of medication, clinic appointments, and related procedures may be all what is required during this time.”
However, women who are at risk, or may over-respond to fertility injections, would be advised not to fast. Proper discussion with the treating clinician for individual advice is paramount in such cases,” he added.