Today, more and more couples are focusing on advanced collegiate degrees and establishing a career before they make the decision to start a family. This pushes the average age of beginning parenting higher and subsequently has increased the number of couples with fertility related issues. But is age actually the cause of increasing fertility issues or is it something more subtle?

If we add to increased age, the constant increase in environmental exposure to toxic chemicals that effect hormone function, the increased use of birth control pills in the last 20 years and the increase in individual stress levels, it makes sense that infertility is a very common condition that Dr. Shaw treats with nutrition. If you have been trying to conceive for 12 months without success, a diagnosis can be made of “Infertility”.

The Functional Medicine Clinical Nutrition approach to treating infertility is directed toward finding out “why” there is a problem and using diet change and vitamin therapies to correct the problems. This approach is coupled with the education on proper tracking of a hormone cycle to assure accurate timing for optimal fertility.

A hair analysis will be used to rule out very common heavy metal interfering factors with infertility. This test will also show us very important mineral imbalances that should be corrected prior to conception. Also, functional hormone assessment can be used to pinpoint imbalances in the regularity of the cycle.

In working with a Functional Medicine, Certified Clinical Nutritionist you will hear the word “functional” quite a bit. What we are referring to is that not all problems show up in your blood work, and there may be a more subtle change in your system that is not bad enough to raise the red flags for your medical doctor. Dr. Shaw specializes in working with functional changes in your body to correct symptoms. Infertility is a perfect example. Most patients who treat in our office for infertility have already worked with a reproductive endocrinologist but have not turned up the answer “why,” leaving them with a diagnosis of “unexplained infertility”.

An common infertility patient in Dr. Shaw’s office will present with subtle hormone changes, a functionally slow thyroid, a number of mineral imbalances and stress triggers all at the same time. When the combinations of those four functional imbalances are corrected, optimal fertility is restored. With optimal heath as a foundation, fertility potential sky rockets. It is important to note that 50% of the time fertility related issues are due to the male partner. There are expensive sources of toxin and hormone changes that can occur to decrease sperm production and health of the sperm.

It is important to note that when your medical history and health related goals are explored, your consultations are held directly with Dr. Shaw, not an untrained individual, a staff member, a questionnaire or a computer program. You will not be signing up for a “program” and paying money up front for services not yet rendered. Your health care journey in our office is unique to your specific needs. We look forward to working with you to identify where your fertility challenges are coming from.— Dr. Conan Shaw  Functional Medicine, Certified Clinical Nutritionist, Pittsburgh PA

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