Do all-natural fertility drugs really work?

Working Fertility from Both Sides

In addition to herbs, there is an all-natural approach you may wish to discuss with your physician. In fact, it's directly aligned with the earth's most readily available natural medication: food. According to the Harvard Mental Health Letter, a study of 18,000 women out of the Nurses' Health Study points to a healthy approach to fertility and well-being, including a diet that highlights the following strategies:

  • Relying on vegetable protein over meat
  • Choosing whole milk over skim
  • Seeking out iron from plant products
  • Sticking to water as your beverage-of-choice over sodas
  • Taking a multivitamin with folic acid

Before a woman changes her eating habits, though, it's important to remember that infertility isn't a women's-only club. In fact, the Mayo Clinic states that 20 percent of infertility cases result from male infertility alone, and 30 to 40 percent result from fertility issues of both the male and female. Have no fear, though. There are all-natural fertility treatment options out there for men, too.

Let's look at a few examples from Dr. Gallenberg for the Mayo Clinic, who discusses coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), L-carnitine and vitamin E. Gallenberg, who is also quick to remind us that herbal treatments aren't regulated by the FDA and can interact with other medications, mentions these options as a few that have been involved in limited studies.

For example, she mentions that some research shows that coenzyme Q10 may help pump up a man's sperm count and the sperm's motility, even if additional research is needed. For L-carnitine, Gallenberg refers to one study that connected it with getting that sperm moving when combined with another amino acid, acetyl-L-carnitine. And what about vitamin E? One study has shown that vitamin E could have a hand in helping men with low sperm counts increase their chances of impregnating their partners, while other studies report this may not be true [source: Gallenberg].

Even though the full verdict is out on all-natural fertility drugs, that doesn't mean they shouldn't be a part of the conversation with your physician. You never know how your own scenario will play out, and it can be hard to ignore a tactic that's been in use for centuries. With professional guidance, men and women can approach their infertility challenges with eyes open to the options before them -- including those coming from the ground.

Related Articles


  • American Pregnancy Association. "Infertility and Chiropractic Care." (March 14, 2011)
  • Berkley, Mike. "Treating Infertility using Acupuncture." American Pregnancy Association. May 2007. (March 14, 2011)
  • Berkley, Mike. "Treating Infertility with Herbal Medications." American Pregnancy Association. August 2006. (March 14, 2011)
  • Burgess, Kelly. "Chinese Medicine and Fertility." iParenting. (March 15, 2011)
  • Coleman, Naomi. "Complementary therapies to help boost fertility." Daily Mail. (March 15, 2011)
  • Darling, Susan, LAC, DIPLOM, NCCAOM. "Enhancing Male Fertility with Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine." Resolve: The Natural Infertility Association. Winter 2010. (March 14, 2011)
  • Gallenberg, Mary M.D. " Fertility herbs: Do they enhance fertility?" Web MD. April 1, 2010. (March 14, 2011)
  • Harvard Mental Health Letter. "Follow The Fertility Diet?" May 2009. (March 15, 2011)
  • Mann, Denise. "Herbs and Fertility Don't Mix." Web MD. Aug. 10, 2000. (March 14, 2011)
  • Mayo Clinic. "Infertility." June 27, 2009. (March 14, 2011)
  • Mayo Clinic. "Male infertility." June 10, 2010. (March 14, 2011)
  • MSN. "7 Home Remedies for Male Infertility." (March 15, 2011)
  • National Institutes of Health. Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development. "Infertility/Fertility." (March 14, 2011)
  • Natural Fertility "How to Use Fertility Herbs To Enhance Your Fertility Naturally." 2009. (March 15, 2011)
  • Ryan, Caroline. "Hypnosis 'doubles IVF success'." BBC News. June 29, 2004. (March 15, 2011)
  • Web MD. "New Trends in Infertility Treatment." 2006. (March 15, 2011)
  • Wellsphere. "When Should You Stop Taking Fertility Herbs?" Oct. 4, 2010. (March 15, 2011)