Sara contacted us last fall with this story of how she unexpectedly prepared her body for conception with the Whole30 program. This post is part of an ongoing series of Happy, Healthy Preconception, Pregnancy, and Postpartum stories from our HMHB community. Do you have your own Whole30 or Happy Healthy Preconception story to share? Send us an e-mail.
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In Sara’s Own Words
Whole30 has a special meaning to our family. In January 2014, I completed my first Whole30 alone while my husband traveled most of the month. I was intrigued to try the program after reading It Starts With Food and learning more about the impact of food on hormones in the body. At the time, we had a two-and-a-half-year-old daughter and a seven-month-old son, both conceived via fertility treatments. Our doctors could give us no clear reason as to why we struggled to get pregnant, and curiosity got the best of me.
I embarked on a Whole30, seeing it as a way to challenge myself and hoping to be inspired to do it again when the time came to try for a third child. As fate would have it, we miraculously got pregnant on our own shortly after I completed my Whole30. While we can’t confirm the reason we were able to conceive naturally, my husband and I, along with our fertility agree that it most likely helped us to become healthier and increased our chances for conception. We are so blessed with the miracle of conceiving our youngest daughter with no fertility treatments. We are forever thankful to Whole30 for the ways it has impacted our family!
Launching Project: Whole Family
Fast forward to the summer of 2015. With a pool in the backyard we swam, hosted parties and celebrated every occasion. That meant indulging in snacks, alcohol, and sweets without giving much thought to the food we were eating. We were in a food and drink rut, and we wanted to get back on track. I mentioned the idea of doing another Whole30 and my husband was excited to join me this time. We didn’t stop there. We invited our family to be a part of the program, thus creating Project: Whole Family. Out of the group of nine who completed the program, only two of us were Whole30 veterans. Everyone else was new to the program. We hosted a kick off dinner to discuss Whole30, share our tips and tricks and swap recipes. From there we ventured through an amazing 30 days of working together in a way we had not done before.
I believe this Whole30 experience changed some lives in our group. In 30 days, our Project: Whole Family group lost more than 100 pounds Not to mention the non-scale victories: better sleep, more energy, slayed sugar dragons and busted cravings. Most importantly, everyone is now educated about what they are putting into their bodies. We all read labels, share new products, experiment with new foods and are eating Whole30 compliant more often than not just because good food feels good. Our new smaller pants feel good, too. Whole30 has given us so much, from a fateful baby to a family-wide appreciation for making better choices. I’m looking forward to the day when Project: Whole Family conquers the program again in 2016.
While these tips are all designed to improve general health in preparation for conception, often even the most dedicated lifestyle efforts aren’t enough to help couples conceive. According to RESOLVE.org and the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, you should seek the care of a specialist if you are unable to achieve pregnancy after 12 months of unprotected intercourse (if the women is under the age of 35), or six months if the women is more than 35 years of age. You should also seek the care of a specialist if you have had more than one miscarriage. For more information, support, and resources, visit http://resolve.org.