Of course, if you have an underlying medical issue like endometriosis or a very low sperm count, sipping virgin margaritas on the beach is not going to help you get pregnant. For couples struggling with physiologically caused infertility, advice to "just relax" or "take a vacation" can be hurtful and frustrating.
But if you've been trying to get pregnant for less than a year and have no infertility issues, then a procreation vacation could be a great way to escape the pressures of your everyday life, reconnect with your partner, and celebrate your decision to add to your family.
"Taking a break from the stresses of daily life with cell phones and intense schedules is a terrific idea," says Dr. Laura Reuter, MD, a reproductive endocrinologist at Midwest Fertility Specialists in Carmel, Indiana. "Making time for these opportunities allows a couple to recharge emotionally."
Pumpkins for Pregnancy
In addition to helping couples get in the baby-making mood with relaxation and romance, the resorts also offer special amenities they claim will aid fertility. At the Westin, we drank sea moss elixirs and sampled as many bowls of pumpkin soup as we wanted. According to Caribbean lore, the vitamin A and beta-carotene in pumpkins promote fertility and help maintain successful pregnancies. The conception package at the Marco Island Marriott in Florida offers chaste berry aromatherapy massages and red clover and raspberry teas. But do they work?
"There is no evidence that pumpkin soup, sea moss, chaste berries, or red clover and raspberry teas will assist in conception," says Dr. Adamson. The purported conception aids won't hurt, however, so drink up and enjoy yourself.
The main things you can do to boost your fertility include quitting smoking and improving your diet by avoiding trans-fats, eating more vegetable proteins like beans and nuts, and increasing your consumption of whole grains. Body weight is also an important factor. "Being either underweight or overweight can alter the complex hormonal feedback system, possibly preventing ovulation altogether," says Toni Weschler, author of the book Taking Charge of Your Fertility, 10th Anniversary Edition: The Definitive Guide to Natural Birth Control, Pregnancy Achievement, and Reproductive Health. Aim for a BMI between 20 and 24.