Balancing your hormones is one of the best ways to achieve optimal fertility naturally, and DHEA is one of the hormones that help you do it. Some exciting new research shows that this hormone can help you feel better, increases your fertility, and can even help your child's health.
What is DHEA?
DHEA, or dehydroepiandrosterone, is a primary hormone used by the body to create testosterone and estrogen. It's one of the hormones that help your body maintain balance.
Unfortunately, DHEA decreases about 80% through adulthood. After about the age of 30, your body just isn't making DHEA like it's supposed to. This affects your sex hormone and the ones in your brain, like serotonin, dopamine, and the critical neurotransmitter acetylcholine.
In supplement form, it's typically derived from soy or wild yams. In most cases, high-quality supplements use better ingredients and have exceptional quality and more consistent quantities.
Much of the research into this hormone has focused on heart health, bone density, muscle strength, weight loss, depression, and adrenal problems. DHEA works very well at helping the body maintain natural hormone response and restore a healthy balance to your body.
But, with some of the research coming out regarding fertility and sexual function, this is one hormone you want to keep your eye on.
Why DHEA Helps Fertility
Some small studies showed that women have a better chance of producing a successful conception and pregnancy using DHEA supplements than those who don't. In particular, in vitro fertilization seems to benefit significantly from DHEA supplementation. In some studies, it doubled the number of successful pregnancies and gave a six-fold increase in live births.
More and more treatment facilities are using DHEA to help increase the implantation of IVF eggs. What's confusing for many researchers is that they can't identify exactly how DHEA relates to fertility. The closest they can come up with is balancing regular hormones and giving the body the best chance for recognizing a successful pregnancy.
But, it is also essential for development. We already know the DHEA is helpful in fetal and infant brain development. Some preliminary research shows it also helps regulate hormones in the mother and baby, although this is not extensively studied for ethical reasons.
How Can You Naturally Get More DHEA
Unfortunately, no food source exists for DHEA. It's made exclusively by your body. But, wild yams contain a substance similar to DHEA that is then refined and synthesized in a lab. You can then purchase the supplements.
You can give your body the best chances of producing DHEA by eating certain foods. Naturally fermented soy and eggs can help your body with the raw materials to produce DHEA. Primrose oil and fish oil also have good quality fats to produce the hormone.
Your body produces DHEA Most abundantly in the morning, so using your supplement in the morning gives your body the best chance of utilizing the pre-hormone best. Some controversy exists over whether DHEA is best used as a topical cream or oral supplement. Although serum levels of DHEA are better with a topical cream, research shows there is no difference in the androgen hormones following supplementation comparisons between cream and oral supplementations. Pretty much, that means it doesn't matter which one you take because they produce equal results.
In general, eating a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables and with plenty of fats is your overall best source for helping your body produce DHEA. In some notations, proper hydration is also crucial to the synthesis of DHEA, so be sure to drink plenty of water.
Otherwise, supplementing DHEA is your best bet. The supplements that have a good quality rating come from manufacturers that put more effort into quality than quantity. Some supplements will include other helpful nutrients such as Vitamin D, which can help improve your mood and help regulate hormone production.
If you're looking to increase your fertility using natural methods, DHEA is one of the supplements you should look into. Besides improving all your overall health, you'll help your body balance hormones to give you and your baby an overall better chance at a successful pregnancy and birth.