Fertility of woman and man General

Improving oocyte quality – timelines

In a previous blog post, important lifestyle factors that have a positive impact on oocyte quality were discussed. But how long should you stick to these recommendations to have an optimal effect?

Research shows that for strong deleterious environmental factors, such as e.g. a mild chemotherapeutic regimen, a  recovery period is required. De Ziegler et al. likened that effect to the olive tree, when the limbs succumb to a frost but the trunk survives to branch once again.

They advise to stick to the recommendations for 3 -6 months before pregnancy or in vitro fertilization (IVF), respectively. During this time, it is important to acknowledge the critical importance of mitochondrial energy supply for chromosome segregation and cell division. To support this, studies suggest that supplementing coenzyme Q10, a mitochondrial cofactor, can make a major difference. Again, it is most desirable for any supplement to be taken for 3 to 6 months.

In summary, 3 – 6 months is the timeline during which a woman planning for pregnancy should try to stick to recommendations to effectively support oocyte quality. This is also time during which additional supportive measures such as supplementation with coenzyme Q10 make sense.

De Ziegler, D., Santulli, P., Seroka, A., Decanter, C., Meldrum, D.R., and Chapron, C. In women, the reproductive harm of toxins such as tobacco smoke is reversible in 6 months: basis for the “olive tree” hypothesis. Fertil Steril. 2013; 100: 927–928

About the author

Dr. rer. nat. Birgit Wogatzky

For many years now, biologist and nutritionist Dr Birgit Wogatzky, has been focusing on the special needs of fertility patients. For the readers of this blog, she sums up interesting novel information and developments from current research projects regarding lifestyle and nutrition of fertility patients.

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