Sue Bedford (MSc Nutritional Therapy)
All types of berries help to support fertility due to their high antioxidant content but Raspberries have been linked in studies to protecting sperm from oxidative stress. Raspberries contain a high level of Vitamin C which is a key nutrient in male fertility. They also contain magnesium, which is involved in the production of testosterone helping to give male fertility a further boost. In a study conducted by the US Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, it was found that men over 44 with the highest intake of Vitamin C had 20 per cent less damage to their sperm DNA than men who did not eat Raspberries.
Raspberries supply vital folate to women, which is essential at various key stages of female fertility and early embryo development. They are also packed full of vitamins and antioxidants which are vital to egg health as-well as to health in general.
Raspberries support both male and female fertility as they help in the management of obesity. This is important as it is the key to balancing sex hormones. They have one of the lowest GI (Glycemic Index) of any fruit, meaning their sugar is released into the bloodstream slowly and so therefore Raspberries help to balance blood sugar levels, which is important when trying to conceive.
Dark chocolate containing 70% and above cocoa is a good source of antioxidants, magnesium, fibre and iron- providing protective benefits re insulin sensitivity, heart health and blood pressure. When it comes to fertility dark chocolate can help support male fertility as it is a rich source of the amino acid L-arginine which in studies have been linked to improving sperm count and motility. This amino acid can also support female fertility and has been linked to helping increase the flow of blood to the ovaries and uterus.
Raspberry Smoothie (makes 2 smoothies)
300 g packet of Frozen Raspberries
200g tub Natural live yoghurt
240 ml of chilled milk of your choice
2 squares of grated dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids and over)
Combine the raspberries, grated dark chocolate, yoghurt and milk in a blender and process until smooth. Add some seeds of your choice – Enjoy!
Why not make into a smoothie bowl and sprinkle with pomegranate seeds, blueberries, strawberries and pumpkin seeds for that extra nutrient boost?
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