A few years back, a patient came to me with severe polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), which was causing her a heck of time conceiving a second child. When she asked me if Chinese medicine could help her, I replied that acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine could enhance her fertility, help resolve the PCOS, and return balance to her body, mind, and spirit. Though she was skeptical for sure, we started treatment with weekly acupuncture and daily Chinese herbs. We also increased her daily intake of fat-soluble vitamins with chlorophyll, butter, organic certified liver, and much more.
Within about eight months, she and her husband were overjoyed to learn she was pregnant. She couldn’t believe it. Toward the end of her pregnancy, she came in because the baby was breech, and she wanted to have a vaginal birth. Once again, she was very skeptical. I treated her three to four times with specific acupuncture points to turn the baby, and I recommended that she do daily home moxibustion treatment on the same points. Within two to three weeks, the baby shifted position and was no longer breech. She had a vaginal birth, even though her first child had been delivered by cesarean.
But what about good nutrition? Does it have anything to do with fertility? We know from Dr. Royal Lee and Dr. Weston A. Price that the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, F, K1, and K2 support healthy endocrine hormone production, particularly when we consume them from nutrient dense sources like butter, ghee, chlorophyll, certified organic calf liver or buffalo liver, cod liver oil, wheat germ oil, and fermented foods (nattō, hard cheeses, and sauerkraut, to name a few).
In fact, vitamins A and E were known as anti-sterility vitamins because they supported optimal fertility. And when women took fat-soluble vitamins for three to six months before conceiving, it was thought to prevent miscarriages. When we introduce fat-soluble vitamins into the wisdom of traditional Chinese medicine, we create a nontoxic approach to enhancing fertility. I believe that every woman who wants to bring a child into the world should know these methods. The nutritional insights of Dr. Lee and Dr. Price support the fertility of the mother and help prevent miscarriage. This wisdom also helps parents give their baby a strong foundation for health, both as a child and as an adult.
Here’s another beautiful story. A woman in her thirties came into my clinic. She’d been unable to conceive and desperately wanted a child. I treated her with acupuncture weekly and suggested she obtain a flat rock about the size of her hand.
By now you’re probably thinking, “What the heck is Larry talking about?”
I told her to take the rock and place it in the oven at 350°F for twenty minutes. Afterwards, she was to carefully wrap the rock in a towel (to avoid burning herself) and place it on her lower abdomen. My goal was to warm up her “lower heater” because it was very cold to the touch. She did this every day for about fifteen minutes. (I learned this technique from one of my old Japanese medicine teachers.)
Six months later, my client was pregnant, and she eventually gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. When I saw her again with her baby, she told me that she passed the rock method on to a friend to help her conceive. I was glad to hear that she paid it forward.
Even before Dr. Price crisscrossed the world to study the diets of indigenous societies in the 1930s, our daily consumption of fat-soluble vitamins had already dropped off significantly. Those traditional cultures, however, consumed much more of these diamonds in the rough. As Dr. Price documents in his classic book Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, traditional cultures also experienced fewer fertility problems, less heart disease, and wonderful dental health.
Over the last forty to fifty years, it seems our American culture has become fat-phobic. Many of us think fat is the cause of heart disease, obesity, and other health issues. But now we’re starting to come full circle, and it’s time to carefully reevaluate how this belief became an accepted “truth.”
Is it possible that turning away from fat-soluble vitamins and consuming excessive amounts of refined sugar and processed foods has contributed to infertility and miscarriage problems? Obviously, there are other factors to consider, including the total body burden of the endocrine-disrupting chemicals we all carry now. That’s worth knowing about in our day and age, but I’ll save it for a future blog post.
Lastly, I recall a male patient of mine. He and his wife already had a boy, but they truly wanted a second child. We weren’t concerned about the wife, but the father needed some support. He had some gut issues because he’d been regularly exposed to glyphosate (an herbicide found in products such as Roundup) while he was a boy. Every year, it was his job to walk through the fields applying glyphosate to the crops on his parents’ farm. We worked on healing his gut with acupuncture and nutrient-dense whole foods.
But here’s the magic: the father came in twenty-four hours before he and his wife conceived their next child. Using moxibustion and a needle, I treated the acupuncture points called “Door of Infants” and “Great Brightness” on the kidney meridian (which is connected to the water element). I combined that with the Conception Vessel point “First Gate.” These points are treated within three to four days of conception to enhance fertility and harmony. Today, the family has a second beautiful, healthy son.
Image from iStock/Halfpoint.