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Male Fertility – the lifestyle burden isn’t just on women

10 Feb

Male Fertility

Ok guys, this one’s for you!  I’ll keep it short and sweet. Here are factors that may affect male fertility that you might not have thought about.

The quality of sperm is a measure of both the sperm’s genetic integrity and its capacity for fertilizing an oocyte (egg). Poor sperm quality has been associated with abnormal sperm motility (movement) and the inability to complete the processes of fertilization. The following may negatively impact sperm and may have other negative effects on male fertility:

  • Oxidative stress – think alcohol consumption, the standard american diet, and lack of exercise

  • Being overweight – not only does this affect your sperm’s ability in the fertilization story, but it may affect your future child’s health!

  • Smoking cigarettes or marijuana

  • Steroids

  • Cocaine

  • PRESCRIPTION DRUGS – especially those used regularly

  • Certain antibiotics, especially when taken the 4 months before trying to conceive

  • Specific pesticides and chemical solvents

  • Sedentary jobs

Please remember that optimizing your fertility holistically isn’t just about the woman.  It’s about both people optimizing their fertility to increase your odds in any given attempt. GO TEAM!

If you need help, schedule an appointment today.

Invisible Documentary Viewing

19 Aug

invisible documentary viewing

 

In one of the most genius ideas of the summer, our D Moms Daily wellness expert Dr. Kate Naumes, ND has launched a monthly documentary viewing series at her office on the Katy Trail.

The next viewing takes place this Saturday, August 24 at 6 p.m. featuring Invisible, filmmaker Roz Mortimer’s beautiful and thought-provoking film that follows Inuit mothers and the challenges they face as harmful chemicals from their food begin to surface in their breast milk.

Space for the viewing is limited, so be sure to RSVP to frontdesk.naumes.nd@gmail.com if you’re planning to attend!

Build Your Own Wellness Library

13 Mar

Wellness Library

 

These days, the amount of wellness related books out there competing for your eyeballs is staggering. Every book can be a rabbit hole leading towards another set of rabbit holes, and on and on…  So while this list of some of my favorite books is by no means be exhaustive, I do want to highlight a few books that I’ve found to be particularly eye opening, as well as a few that I return to over and over again.

Herewith 7 of my go-to reads grouped by “heart,” “mind,” and “body,” plus a bonus book:

Heart

  • The Omnivore’s Dilemma
    This book is an exquisitely organized exploration of my ‘Why?’ In exploring the food chains that sustain us, Michael Pollan asks questions that have profound political, economic, psychological and moral implications.
  • The Big Oyster: History on the Half Shell
    In his history of New York City (via the renowned oyster beds of the Hudson River), Mark Kurlansky raises interesting points about city planning, human impact on our environment and how we might live more sustainably. I’m hoping he’s working on one about water and Texas.

Read more of Dr. Naumes’ favorite reads over at D-Magazine’s D-Moms Blog.

Green Products for Mom on “D-The Broadcast”

8 Mar


Dr. Naumes shares her favorite Green Products for Mom on “D-The Broadcast“.

Fertility Optimization and the Benefits of Naturopathic Care

17 Sep

Naturopathic Fertility Optimization

Naturopathic Medicine’s approach to improving fertility focuses on establishing healthy hormone balance for both partners, minimizing the body’s reaction to stress, ensuring optimal nutritional status for the mother-to-be, establishing a healthy exercise routine, and teaching fertility awareness techniques to better understand the optimal fertile times in a woman’s cycle.

The Foresight Study, conducted in England, shows the effects that proper preconception care has on fertility. Out of 300 couples who had previously been declared “infertile”, over 89% were pregnant within 2 years, without the assistance of IUI or other similar fertility interventions.

Naturopathic doctors are highly trained in both the Western and Eastern medical systems. Naturopathic Doctors have the ability to integrate a western diagnosis with nutrition, exercise, herbal medicine, acupuncture and Chinese medicine, as well as counseling and stress management techniques.

A study by the department of obstetrics and gynecology at Stanford University to determine the impact of nutritional supplements containing vitex, green tea, vitamins, and minerals on female fertility found that the supplement group helped improve women’s menstrual cycles. Herbal medicine can also be used to regulate menstrual cycles, normalize hormones, maintain a pregnancy, prevent miscarriage, improve sperm quality and help with stress. Herbs can be very effective but like any therapy may have side effects or drug interactions. For this reason it is recommended that you consult a licensed Naturopathic Doctor.

It is well known that infertility causes stress, and stress reduction may, in turn, improve fertility. Stress may lead to the release of hormones and influence mechanisms responsible for a normal ovulatory menstrual cycle through its impact on the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis.  Many Naturopathic Therapies successfully address stress.  Naturopathic Medicine also addresses environmental toxicity and its potential impact on fertility.

With Naturopathic Fertility Services from Dr. Naumes, you will learn more about how to positively impact nutrition, body composition and environmental exposure to substances that can decrease fertility and harm a developing baby for both partners. Your family will benefit from the simple, non-invasive, cost-effective tools that naturopathic medicine has to offer.

References:

1. http://www.foresight-preconception.org.uk/

2. Al-Inany, H. (n.d). Issues of bioequivalence and cost (vol 78, pg 438, 2002). Fertility And Sterility, 78(6), 1356.

Natural Solutions for Helping Prevent Mosquito Bites

19 Aug

Name of Expedition: Panama Canal Zone Participants: Seth E. Meek, Samuel F. Hildebrand Expedition Start Date: 1911 Expedition End Date: 1912  Purpose or Aims: Zoology (Fishes) Location: Central America, Panama, Canal Zone  Original material: album print Digital Identifier: CSZ33983

As you may already be aware, the Texas Department of State Health Services has commissioned aerial spraying of the chemical Duet. The most up to date information regarding the spraying can be found at the City of Dallas’ website.

The City of Dallas has issued the following recommendations:

  • Minimize exposure. Avoid being outside, close windows and consider keeping pets inside while spraying occurs.
  • If skin or clothes are exposed, wash them with soap and water.
  • Rinse homegrown fruits and vegetables with water as a general precautionary measure.
  • Cover small ornamental fish ponds.
  • Because the chemical breaks down quickly in sunlight and water, no special precautions are suggested for outdoor swimming areas.

—————–
Now, everyone knows that taking precautions to reduce the risk of mosquito bites and possible disease spread is very important, but excessive exposure to synthetic, chemically-based insect repellents can cause long term harm.  Furthermore, the most common ingredient used in commercial insect repellents, DEET (N,N-Diethyl-meta-toluidine), is not recommended for use on children under two months of age or on pregnant women.

If you do use DEET-based repellents, read the label and make sure you use them according to the manufacturer’s’ guidelines. A certain amount of DEET can be absorbed through your skin and into your bloodstream, and in large doses it can make you seriously ill. DEET can act as an irritant, and has been reported to be the cause of seizures, insomnia, mood disturbances and impaired cognitive function. The NHS and the Health Protection Agency (HPA) say that products containing 50 percent DEET are safe to use while pregnant, however we don’t know much about the possible harmful effects on the developing baby.

Beware of misting systems that contain permethrin, a neurotoxin that is dangerously toxic to cats, and potentially dangerous to humans. Also of concern is the new Off! Clip-on, which contains the chemical Metofluthrin, known to cause severe neurotoxic symptoms in dogs, rabbits, and rats. To minimize your exposure,  replace any old air filters in your home in addition to using an additional air purification system, if you own one.

Fortunately, there are many safer options to help ward off the pesky suckers:

  • Wear protective clothing that is loose-fitting and light in color.
  • Avoid wearing bright or floral patterns.
  • Use unscented shampoo, soap, deodorant, laundry detergent, etc.
  • Refrain from wearing perfume.
  • High quality garlic capsules can work wonders in preventing mosquito bites.
  • Use mosquito netting when outside for prolonged periods, especially over strollers, baby carriers and car seats when the baby is sitting in them outside.
  • Eliminate standing water around your home.
  • Plant mosquito repellent herbs such as rosemary, lemon balm, lavender, basil and catnip.

Try one of the following more natural mosquito repellents:

  • Skeeter Screen’s Patio Eggs and reed diffusers utilize bug-deterring essential oils to repel mosquitoes over a space of about 200 square feet.
  • Adults and older children can apply undiluted vanilla essential oil to pulse points (wrists, neck, ankles) to repel mosquitoes with a pleasant smell.
  • A homemade repellent can be made using a low (2-4 percent) dilution of essential oils such as eucalyptus and/or lemon eucalyptus with a base, such as jojoba, or almond oil mixed in a spray bottle.  This can be applied to children over the age of two and is safe for pregnant women.  Spray only on children’s clothes away from their eyes, like the backs of shirts and shorts and on socks and shoes.
  • Cinnamon and peppermint are also effective in warding off mosquitoes. Cinnamon can burn, so it is not advised to use with small children.
  • Look for safer repellent sprays available for purchase that contain P-menthane-3,8-diol (PMD). PMD is the active ingredient in oil of lemon eucalyptus and is in the most widely-used Chinese insect repellent, quwenling.  Repel Lemon Eucalyptus Insect Repellent Lotion and Spray Lotion, Survivor Lemon Eucalyptus Insect Repellent, Off! Botanical Insect Repellent are good choices. However, PMD is roughly half as effective as DEET, so reapply as necessary.
  • Repellents that contain picaridin, a plant-derived compound, have an excellent tolerability profile, in contrast to DEET. Picaridin is odorless, non-sticky, and non-greasy; it also does not irritate skin, stain fabrics, or degrade plastics. Look for Sawyer Insect Repellent, Cutter Advanced, and Cutter Advanced Sport.

The risks and benefits DEET, Duet and other pesticides will likely be debated for some time. In the meantime, at least for Dallas residents, the aerial spraying continues. Have further questions? Schedule an appointment to set up a cleanse to optimize your detoxification system so that your body can best eliminate DEET and other environmental toxins. As Alejandro Junger MD so beautifully explains, “cleansing is turning up the intensity and effectiveness of the detoxification system.”

written by Kate Naumes ND and Andrea Kavanaugh