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Infertility cases are rising in India: 5 natural ways to improve your chances of getting pregnant

Of the total recorded cases of infertility in India, approximately 40-50 per cent are said to be due to female bodily conditions. © Shutterstock

Infertility affects about 10 to 14 percent of couples in India, with more cases in urban areas. Read to know the factors that affect fertility and how to improve your chances of getting pregnant.

Infertility is becoming to be one of the most common health issues facing young couples. Estimates suggest that infertility affects about 15 20 percent couples globally. Infertility is defined as not being able to get pregnant despite having regular, unprotected sexual intercourse for at least a year. It may result from an issue with either male or female, or a combination of factors that prevent pregnancy.

According to studies, infertility levels are rising faster in developing countries than in developed countries. Inadequate healthcare, unsafe abortions or untreated infections of the reproductive organs are cited as some of the reasons behind rising infertility cases in developing countries. In India, infertility affects about 10 to 14 percent of couples in the country as reported by the Indian Society of Assisted Reproduction. The cases are higher in urban areas where one out of six couples is infertile.

Reasons for Infertility in India

Of the total recorded cases of infertility in India, approximately 40-50 per cent are said to be due to female bodily conditions. Another 20 per cent are linked to abnormal sperm conditions and the rest are classified as unidentified factors. Multiple factors affect the fertility of an individual, including age, sedentary lifestyle, obesity, smoking, pollution, stress, medical conditions, etc.

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Age is one of the most prominent factors. Fertility usually starts to drop after the age of 32 in women, and after 50 in men. Recent trend and analysis suggest that increasing number of Indian women in the Metro Cities are delaying their pregnancy owing to their career and competitive jobs. Another cause of infertility among Indian women is their lifestyle choices, with sedentary lifestyle and addictions being the major culprits here.

Smoking is major factor leading to infertility. Women who smoke do not conceive as efficiently as non-smokers and they are also at a greater risk of miscarriage. Smoking can also decrease sperm quality in men. Obesity and sedentary lifestyle are also linked to increased risk of infertility in both females and males. Women with lifestyle issues like obesity and diabetes are more likely to suffer from infertility than the heathy peers. Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), premature ovarian failure, damage to fallopian tubes, fibroids, widespread use of emergency contraception, surgical abortions are other common factors for infertility in women.

5 natural ways to boost fertility and get pregnant faster

A balanced diet and lifestyle changes can help significantly boost your fertility. Here are a few natural ways to increase your fertility and become pregnant faster.

Eat antioxidant-rich foods: Antioxidants fight free radicals in your body, which can damage both sperm and egg cells. Foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains are loaded with antioxidants like vitamins C and E, folate, beta-carotene and lutein.

Stay active: Regular exercise can do wonder to your health, including increased fertility. However, excessive high-intensity exercise can have the opposite effect. Exercising too much may disrupt the energy balance in your body, and negatively affect the reproductive system.

Keep stress away: Too much stress can decrease your chances of getting pregnant. Stress can lead to hormonal changes and reduce your chances of conception.

Maintain a healthy weight: Both underweight and overweight are associated with increased infertility. So, lose weight if you're overweight and gain weight if you're underweight.

Avoid Excess Alcohol: Studies have linked high alcohol consumption to infertility in women. Therefore, it is advisable to reduce or avoid alcohol to improve your chances of getting pregnant.

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