Treat and Boost Fertility with Avocados and Olive Oil

For women trying to get pregnant through IVF treatments, a new study finds that eating avocados and olive oil might boost their chances of success.

Dr. Jorge Chavarro and colleagues at the Harvard School of Public Health in the US looked at how intake of different types of fats affected success of IVF treatment in 147 women, mostly in their 30s. 

Findings revealed that diets rich in foods typically eaten as part of the Mediterranean diet, including sunflower oil and nuts and seeds, tripled the chances of success for women having the fertility treatment.

In contrast, women who ate mostly saturated fat, found in dairy products and red meat, produced fewer good eggs for use in fertility treatment. High saturated fat intake has already been linked to lower sperm counts. 

The study was presented on July 3 at the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology in Istanbul.

"The best kinds of food to eat are avocados, which have a lot of monounsaturated fat and low levels of other sorts of fat, and olive oil," said Chavarro. He said the study was small and more research is needed before clinical advice can be given to women. "While these results are interesting, this is the first time to our knowledge that dietary fats have been linked to treatment outcome in IVF."

Another new study presented at the same conference found that women who reported drinking five or more cups of coffee a day at the start of IVF treatment reduced their chance of success by 50 percent. The Danish researchers described heavy coffee drinking as being "comparable to the detrimental effect of smoking."

Tips on How to Be a Beautiful Bride

 Want to be more beautiful on your special day? Follow this simple tips on how to be a beautiful bride on your wedding day:

Bridal beauty tip 1: Exfoliate

It’s often hard to keep up with a skin routine, especially while you’re planning a wedding. To compliment your moisturiser and ensure that your skin stays lovelier for longer, make sure you leave extra time to exfoliate daily. Skin continually produces new cells and, as the new cells appear, the dead ones tend to sit on top making it appear dry and dull. When this happens, there’s not much point in moisturising. Why waste your expensive body butter on dead skin cells? Try buttering up after you’ve buffed the old cells off, and you’ll be silky smooth by your wedding day.

Bridal beauty tip 2: Have sex

Getting down and dirty is the ultimate beauty booster. Just 15 minutes a day spent doing the deed with your husband-to-be leaves your cheeks flushed; your lips lusciously red; and your skin glowing and beautiful – what every bride should look like. Studies have shown that regular romps increase blood flow and bring essential nutrients and oxygen to the skin, which flush out harmful toxins and make us appear younger. Plus, the stress-busting effects of sex with bid farewell to any bridezilla tendencies.

Bridal beauty tip 3: Ditch the alcohol and cigarettes

You may think alcohol and cigarettes calm your wedding jitters, but they don’t do our skin any favours. Smoking allows a staggering 4000 toxic substances into the body during every puff, and too much alcohol causes skin to dry out and eyes to become puffy – not the best look for any bride. Quit smoking, and only drink in moderation to improve your skin’s elasticity and reduce puffy eyes. This is a sure-fire way to make you look beautiful in time for your wedding day.

Bridal beauty tip 4: Rest

The phrase “beauty sleep” is famous for a reason; sleep really does make you beautiful. While you may find yourself up late writing wedding invitations, lack of sleep leaves us looking and feeling a bit worse for wear. During periods of deep sleep our cells renew themselves, and if you have trouble getting your beauty sleep, try and relax. Add a few drops of aromatherapy oils to your bath, try deep-breathing exercises, and avoid caffeinated drinks before you head to bed – the perfect solution for a stressed bride.

Bridal beauty tip 5: Groom your eyebrows

Few things can change your look as quickly and drastically as nicely plucked brows. The right brow shape can really frame your face and compliment your favourite features, whilst bushy brows distract attention away from your best features. There are many different ways of removing your brow hair too: plucking, threading, tweezing and waxing – just find the way that suits you best and you’ll be wedding photo-ready in no time.

Bridal beauty tip 6: Strengthen your hair with protein

Glossy locks are the key feature to any bride, so to care for your tresses ensure you’re getting enough protein in your diet which reinforces the keratin in our hair to make it healthier and stronger. Boost the natural protein in your hair by eating protein-rich foods such as eggs, nuts, seeds, shellfish and meat for stronger, healthier locks. Not only will having stronger hair wow your wedding guests, but it will also make it easier for your hairdresser to achieve the perfect wedding hairstyle.

Bridal beauty tip 7: Enjoy the simple things

It’s a beauty tip that we’ve heard time and time again, but it’s true: we are what we eat, and being healthy on the inside makes us even more beautiful on the outside. This tip is pretty straight-forward; drink plenty of water to flush out harmful toxins in your skin and increase skin’s elasticity; get plenty of exercise to sweat out the toxins; and eat all of your fruit and vegetables for vital nutrients that will make your skin glow – simple, easy ways to boost your bridal beauty.

Bridal beauty tip 8: Wear mineral makeup

Don’t clog your pores up with a thick, heavy foundation that won’t allow your skin to breathe. Instead, opt for kinder ways to cover up imperfections on your wedding day such as mineral makeup or BB creams. Most mineral powders even help to prevent spots whilst BB creams moisturise your skin and even out skin tone without clogging your pores – the perfect bridal beauty solution.

Bridal beauty tip 9: Go for a brisk walk

A brisk walk is an excellent way to boost your circulation and get beautiful glowing skin. Walking improves your sleep, targets your inner bridezilla and helps to counteract wedding nerves. This will all reflect in your complexion as you appear happier and healthier. You might be able to get rosy cheeks from a pot of blusher, but you won’t get the beautifully natural glow of flushed, healthy skin by using a makeup palette.

Bridal beauty tip 10: Protect your skin

It’s important to protect your skin whatever the weather, particularly if yours is sensitive and you’re planning a wedding in the sun. Too much sun exposure can dry the skin out, causing it to look dull and flakey – not to mention the wider health implications of sun damage. Similarly, in colder weather when we rely on central heating, our skin will suffer just as much. To help prevent dry skin, make moisturising a regular part of your routine.

Health Clues in Your Smile

Good teeth can do more than keep your dental bills low—they can help protect you from a whole host of health problems. The following are 5 good reasons why you should take great care of your chompers. 

Heart Disease and Stroke
A variety of studies have established that inflammation and bacteria in the mouth and gums can find its way into the bloodstream, leading to thickening of the arteries and increasing the risk of a heart attack; while fatty plaques that build up on the inside of the vessels can break off, go to the brain and cause a stroke.

Need further convincing? One recent study published in the British Medical Journal analyzed data from over 11,000 adults and determined that participants who reported brushing their teeth less frequently had a 70% increased risk of heart disease versus those who brushed twice daily. So do your heart a favor and brush up on good dental hygiene.

Doctors have long known that Type 2 diabetics have an increased occurrence of periodontal disease, but it turns out preventing gum infections may stave off diabetes in the first place. A recent study out of Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health that followed 9,296 nondiabetic participants over 20 years found that people who had higher levels of periodontal disease had twice the risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared to those with low levels or no gum infections.

Although further research is needed to determine the exact reason, one theory proposes that serious oral infections can lead to low-grade inflammation throughout your body and that inflammation may destroy your ability to process sugar.

Respiratory Infections
Keeping your mouth clean and healthy can also help keep your lungs protected according to a recent study in the Journal of Periodontology. In a pool of 200 participants aged 20 to 60, researchers found that patients suffering from a respiratory illness such as pneumonia, acute bronchitis, an upper respiratory infection, or COPD had poorer periodontal health than those in the control group. The reason for this association likely lies in the bacteria caused by periodontal disease, which forms in the upper throat. From there it can easily be inhaled into the lower respiratory tract and can obstruct breathing or develop into more serious lung-related problems.

Breast Cancer
As science continues to discover a very clear link between oral health and overall health, more and more studies are being conducted that explore different parts of the body. The latest study out of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden suggests that women may be over 11 times more likely to develop breast cancer if they have missing teeth and gum disease. Since this is one of the first studies of its kind, more research needs to be done to back up the results, but so far they seem to be on track with the current findings that poor dental hygiene can directly affect your general health.

Pregnancy Problems
If you’re pregnant or thinking of getting pregnant it’s more important than ever to stay on top of your oral health. Due to hormonal fluctuations and the increased blood flow throughout your body during pregnancy, you are more likely to notice changes in your teeth and gums. According to the American Academy of Periodontists, about fifty percent of pregnant women develop gingivitis, a condition that leaves gums inflamed, bleeding, swollen, or tender. Left unchecked it can lead to periodontal disease, a serious infection that could create problems in the delivery room. While research is still being done, several studies suggest there is a direct relationship between infected bacteria in your mouth and premature deliveries, low-birth rate, and preeclampsia. To be safe, be diligent about brushing, flossing, and visiting your dentist, and make sure to alert her to any pain or problems that pop up over the nine months.

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