Smoking – give it up

As well as affecting your general health, smoking lowers the chance of conceiving and can harm your unborn child. Evidence now shows that exposure to cigarette smoke in the womb can lower the fertility of your child later in life.

Alcohol – limit how much you drink

Research has shown that alcohol consumption at the time of conception increases  the risk of early pregnancy loss. This is why the advice is not to drink at all. If you do choose to drink when trying to become pregnant then limit it to  one or two glasses of wine, once or twice a week.

IBody weight – too much or too little can affect your fertility

Being underweight or overweight can reduce your fertility. For the best chance of conceiving, you should aim to have your body mass index (BMI)  between 20 and 30.

Know your cycle

Women are most fertile during the days just before and during ovulation. If you have a regular 28-day cycle, count back 14 days from when you expect your next period to start. Plan on having sex every other day around that day - say days 12, 14, and 16..

Foods that can help ovulation

Choose monounsaturated fats (like olive oil) over trans fats (those in fast food, cakes and pastries); vegetable protein (soy) over red meat; and high-fibre, low-glycaemic foods – whole grains, vegetables, and some fruit – over refined carbs and sugars.