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Could a three course fertility meal help YOU get pregnant?

A recent article where I discuss fertility, published by the Mail Online. Link to the original article at the bottom. By Natalie Corner for MAILONLINE.

Nutritionist says dining on hummus, salmon and yogurt can boost your chances of conceiving

  • Nutritionist Celia Cooper works with couples having fertility treatment

  • She encourages anyone trying to conceive to take a close look at their diet

  • Food rich in Vitamin E and folic acid, iron and zinc are all crucial

  • Butternut squash, chickpeas, fish, seeds and berries are all ingredients

  • Salmon contains selenium which helps maximise sperm production

Eating a healthy, balanced diet with all the right vitamins and minerals is essential when you're trying to fall pregnant.

Now, Celia Cooper, a nutritional therapist with one of the UK's leading fertility clinics has devised a carefully-selected three course dinner that could boost your chances of having a baby.

The menu consists of a starter of butternut squash hummus, rich in zinc and folic acid, salmon that contains essential fats that benefit the reproductive system and natural yogurt for dessert to provide calcium, important for a healthy pregnancy.

'For anyone who is thinking about conceiving it is worth taking a close look at your diet,' Celia says.'Nutrition is vital and that's why I'm often called in to help couples put together meal plans with the hope of filling their bodies with the right vitamins and minerals.'For a starter, Celia, who works at Reproductive Health Group in Cheshire, suggests butternut squash hummus for its antioxidant and protective properties.

Celia says: 'Butternut squash is a great source of beta-carotene and also contains some B vitamins including folic acid and vitamin C.

'Folic acid, as most people are aware, can help to prevent spina bifida but along with vitamin B12 it is also required in the production of DNA and RNA.


Serves 6 to 8


  • ½ medium butternut squash, halved (approx 250g)

  • 2 tsp olive oil

  • ¼ tsp cinnamon

  • ½ tin organic chickpeas, drained

  • 1 large clove garlic, crushed

  • 1 ½ tbsp light tahini paste

  • 100ml light stock

  • ½ lemon, juice only

  • ¼ tsp ground cumin

  • Pinch cayenne (or to taste)


Preheat oven to Gas 5/190C

1. Rub one teaspoon of olive oil over the flesh of the squash and sprinkle over the cinnamon. Then bake face down for 30-40 minutes until soft. Scoop out the flesh and discard the skin.

2. Place in a small processor and add the remaining ingredients. Pulse until smooth (unless you like chunky dips!). More stock or tahini may be added if you wish.

Serving suggestion: Serve with half an avocado and a couple of finely milled oat crackers

'Chickpeas are low in fat and a good source of protein. They also contain folic acid, iron and zinc. If served with avocado this will add Omega 3, B vitamins and vitamin E.

'Vitamin E is another powerful antioxidant and plays a protective role in the body benefiting both men and women. It can combat free radicals and prevent abnormal clotting.

'Nutritional therapist Celia Cooper encourages her clients to look closely at their diet to increase chances of conceiving.

For the main course, Celia recommends salmon with quinoa salad sprinkled with lightly toasted pumpkin seeds.

She explains: 'Pumpkin seeds are a good source of zinc, which is one of the most widely studied nutrients for both men and women in relation to fertility. It is crucial for the proper development of sperm and plays a vital role in cell division.

'Salmon will provide a good source of protein and the Omega 3 fats EPA and DHA.

'Essential fats are crucial for the reproductive system and in healthy hormone functioning. It is from these healthy fats that prostaglandins are produced. Semen is rich in prostaglandins, which is produced from these fats.

'Salmon is also rich in selenium, a mineral which can help maximise sperm production and optimum testosterone production. It also acts as an antioxidant which can help disarm free radicals that can damage cell structure.

'Salmon is also a rich source of vitamin D. A recent study found that women with sufficient levels of vitamin D were almost twice as likely to conceive, compared with the women who exhibited insufficient levels of vitamin D.

To read the complete article:

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