Do fertility cleanses really work?


Thinking of trying a fertility cleanse to boost your chances of conceiving? Don't skimp on the fresh fruits and veggies.
Thinking of trying a fertility cleanse to boost your chances of conceiving? Don't skimp on the fresh fruits and veggies.
Pixland/Thinkstock

When a couple is trying to conceive, the last thing they may expect is a lengthy process.

As in most things in life, timing is everything. Couples have to consider a woman's ovulation cycle, among other factors. But what if the issue is infertility?

In the U.S., about one-fifth of couples of child bearing age are considered infertile, meaning they've tried unsuccessfully to conceive for a year or more [source: Page].

With the miracles of modern medicine, many people having a hard time getting pregnant may consider treatment options. Assisted reproduction technology, like in vitro fertilization and other procedures, have helped women get pregnant since the early 1980s. But assisted reproduction technology, or ART, is often costly and time-intensive. In addition, there are associated health risks, like preterm delivery and low birth weight [source: CDC].

If you're trying to get pregnant and ART is out of the question, there may be a simpler solution -- an increasing trend that could deliver a simpler approach.

Cleanses are nothing new and have been around for ages, similar to the concept of fasting. With a fertility cleanse, the idea is to rid the body of as many toxins as possible to prepare it for conception.

The question is, of course, do they work? While little medical research points directly to the effectiveness of a fertility cleanse, research has linked toxins to a number of human ailments, including infertility in both men and women [source: AFA].

And note that as with any treatment, conception is not 100 percent guaranteed. Of the many self-proclaimed experts on fertility cleanses, not one can make the promise that a cleanse will guarantee successful conception. But there are numerous first-hand accounts of women who have successfully conceived following a fertility cleanse.

On the next page we'll consider if a fertility cleanse would be right for you.