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Holistic fertility therapy not only is compatible with modern medicine, some doctors prescribe it. Here's a quick review of some the holistic fertility therapies most commonly used by couples trying to conceive.

Acupuncture is sometimes recommended by assisted reproduction clinics to help couples deal with the incredible stress of going through the process of in vitro fertilization. It is difficult to run scientific studies of the efficacy of acupuncture as a method of treating infertility because the recipients of acupuncture definitely know they are receiving it, and there could be a placebo effect. Dr. Paul Magarelli, a fertility specialist at the Reproductive Medicine & Fertility Center in Colorado Springs in Colorado and acupuncturist Dr. Diane K. Cridennda report, however, that doing acupuncture about 30 minutes before and 30 minutes after in vitro fertilization (IVF) reduces spontaneous abortion rates and results in about 7 per cent more live births. Since IVF can cost up to US $125,000 and acupuncture costs about $100, most Aspiring parents consider it to be a good investment of money. The only scientific studies of acupuncture are as a tool for increasing the success of assisted fertility. Traditional Chinese Medicine, of course, has used the technique for centuries for treating many different kinds of illnesses.

Herbal medicine is not for everyone - or every time. Dong quai and vitex, for example, are effective for lowering estrogen levels in women. Sometimes lower estrogen levels result in easier implantation of the fertilized egg in the lining of the uterus--but since estrogen is important to the embryo during the first few days of pregnancy, the herbs must only be taken for 10 days during each menstrual cycle. If they are taken all the time, they can interfere with the pregnancy they are taken to achieve. Vitex also lowers testosterone levels. This is helpful for women who have PCOS, but devastating for many men. Taking chrysin (a passionflower extract), on the other hand, helps maintain testosterone levels. This is helpful for men seeking to become fathers but detrimental to women trying to become mothers. Seek the advice of a knowledgeable herbalist the first time you use any herbal medicines.

"Fertility yoga" sometimes gets astonishing results. It is not necessary to be able to twist yourself into a pretzel to benefit from yoga. Sometimes the exercise that makes a difference is nothing more strenuous than holding your hands over your head, or standing on one foot, even if you have to prop yourself up against a wall. Couples seeking to conceive are most likely to get good results from fertility yoga from a sympathetic instructor who realizes the purpose of the exercise is conceiving a child, not mastering poses.

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