April 15, 2016

By  Steve Hoffman

A patient of mine who was seeking help with fertility told me that her OBGYN said she was in a growing segment of the population that was made up of women in their mid to late 30’s, who were having difficulty getting pregnant. I’ve thought about that statement and wondered why this has happened in our society. The simple answer is that many women are waiting longer to get married and start a family and that as women get older, their fertility decreases. I believe this is happening because many women want to go to college, have their own careers and be fulfilled in ways that were almost not possible 60 or 70 years ago. That these opportunities are available now speaks to the progress we have made as a society, and while there is still work to be done, we have come a long way. The problem, at least for women trying to get pregnant in their mid to late 30’s, is that, quite naturally, it becomes more difficult to have children as they get older.


So yes, in both Chinese medicine and western medicine, as women age, their natural reproductive ability wanes. There are, however, some other factors at work here. Stress is known to be a big factor that affects fertility. Read Acupuncture For Stress Relief Professional women are under more and different kinds of stress than they were years ago and this has a measurable impact on fertility. Time for proper exercise to keep the body in an optimal state is also limited by long hours and work weeks. Diet and nutrition are big keys to fertility and if you are eating on the run, while not choosing such great food under stress, there is going to be a negative effect on fertility. So, while age is probably the greatest factor in fertility, these other factors that come along with the desire to have a career and maybe put off having a family, also have an impact.  Oh, and by the way, I don’t want the men to feel left out! Acupuncture and Chinese medicine can help with male infertility issues, and many of the same factors just discussed affect men as well.


Since there are other factors at work when dealing with fertility, there are things you can work on to help increase your chances of getting pregnant. Reducing and/or finding ways to help your body deal with the effects of stress is a great place to start. Proper exercise can help not only put our bodies in a more optimal state but can also help reduce stress. Eating a variety of whole foods is also a great way to increase your chances.  I have listed below some foods that are known to increase fertility:

  • Black Beans
  • Seaweed
  • Millet
  • Wheat
  • Black Sesame Seeds
  • Black Chicken
  • Black Soybeans
  • Chestnuts
  • Walnuts (less than 1 oz./day)
  • Mulberries, Raspberries, Strawberries
  • Marrow (soups, etc.)
  • Asparagus (root)
  • Eggs

If you have never made bone broth or marrow soups before, I have provided some links below with information, recipes and even a source for pre-made bone broth soup that you simply reconstitute:

Using Homemade Bone Broth for the Treatment of Infertility

How To Make Beef Bone Broth

Bone Broth: Can Food be Medicine? Part I

Bone Broth: Can Food Be Medicine? Part II

Already made:

Brew It Yourself Bone Broth


Studies have shown that acupuncture increases fertility rates. Many fertility clinics have acupuncturists on staff because they know that it works. The increase is accomplished by increasing blood supply to the uterus, regulating hormones and reducing stress. At Princeton Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine, Steven Hoffman, a Licensed Acupuncturist, also provides a comprehensive and customized plan including dietary, exercise and lifestyle advice that is right for your individual needs. Oh, and that patient? She has a two-year-old daughter now and is thinking about having another child. Call and speak to Steven today, the call is free and the gift of a child is priceless.

Princeton Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine

Our patients know just how effective treatments are for these and a host of other problems. Steven Hoffman, a New Jersey Licensed Acupuncturist and Diplomate in Oriental Medicine, will provide you with a thorough intake and evaluation and a clear, comprehensive diagnosis and treatment plan that will insure that your goals are met or exceeded. Do you want to move past these or other problems? We will help you thrive not just survive!

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