How your brain sends "pregnancy lockdown" signals to your body and why it will continue to do so unless you address this problem

With 15 years experience in Neuroscience and natural fertility I have found that there is one area that is consistently overlooked by other fertility professionals.


With 15 years experience in Neuroscience and natural fertility I have found that there is one area that is consistently overlooked by other fertility professionals.

Namely, how your brain sends “pregnancy lockdown” signals to your body and how it will continue to do so unless you address this problem.

During periods of physical or mental stress changes in the brain lead to a chemical called cortisol being released. Increased cortisol levels has been shown to inhibit the burst of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), which triggers ovulation. This means that if you are stressed for an extended period of time you may not ovulate every month. 

Overproduction of Cortisol due to stress can also leads to increased levels of estrogen. Elevated estrogen is a major cause of symptoms such as Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), Endometriosis and recurrent miscarriage. 

Cortisol also inhibits Testosterone. In men it is testosterone that stimulates the production of healthy sperm. So reduced testosterone can have huge consequences on sperm count and quality. 

To summarise: release of the stress hormone cortisol, upsets the balance of your fertility hormones and can dramatically reduce your fertility. 

“Several months of trying to conceive passed but no joy…. frustration set in, stress levels rose. I was finding it difficult to cope.”

Does this sound familiar? Many doctors will acknowledge the effects of stress on fertility but they don’t have any answers for it. They’ll most likely say something like “Just go home and relax” 

The link between increased stress and reduced fertility has been established scientifically, as this article shows:

www.theguardian.com/world/2014/mar/24/stress-infertility-women-us-study 

However how do we use this information to help boost fertility? Its all very well saying you need to relax but if it were that easy you probably wouldn't be reading this right now. 

Over the coming blog posts I'll talk about steps you can take to reduce your stress hormones and increase your fertility. 

In the meantime, If you'd like to find out if stress is affecting your fertility you can take this short quiz.


Best wishes, 

Michael Arnold
BSc Neurosci. Lic Ac