Ladies! Do you know what experts say is the No. 1 cause of infertility? PCOS!

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Whether you're starting to try or you've been trying to conceive with no success, having a conversation with your doctor about Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a good idea. For those of you that aren’t familiar, according to PCOS Foundation it is one of the most common hormonal endocrine disorders in women. It affects 7 million women in the United States. For some women, symptoms can appear as early as their first menstrual cycle. The kicker is most women don't know they have it because often it's difficult to diagnose, which was what happened in my case.

For example, you may have subtle symptoms such as acne, unusual hair growth for a woman (chin, facial, neck) and male pattern baldness. More obvious and problematic symptoms are irregular or missing periods, and an excess of insulin (read more here about insulin if you're interested http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pcos/basics/causes/con-2002884) Basically, too much insulin increases the male hormone testosterone and may affect your ability to ovulate.

According to the Mayo Clinic, having PCOS and not treating it may result in several dis-eases in the body, especially if obesity is an issue which include: type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart disease, infertility, uterine cancer, gestational diabetes, anxiety/depression just to name a few. Doctors don’t know what causes PCOS, but excess insulin, low-grade inflammation and heredity play a role.

Here's a study I found fascinating regarding taking medications vs. making lifestyle changes (i.e. diet and exercise)...sneak peek, LIFESTYLE CHANGES WINS!

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19463994

If you're like me, I believe a happy healthy mom and dad makes an healthy environment to create a healthy egg and sperm = healthy embryo = healthy pregnancy = health child.

Below are four steps to offset the effects of PCOS on your own:

  1. Talk with your doctor to see if you may be someone who could have this syndrome;
  2. Dietary Changes. Lose the low-fat, high-carbohydrate diets. Choose complex carbs, which are high in fiber and moves through your body more slowly so your blood sugar levels stays level. According to the Mayo Clinic, even a modest reduction in your weight – for instance, losing 5 percent of your body weight – might improve your condition. There are also supplements available that may be helpful (discuss with your doctor before trying supplement as they may not be the best option for your unique situation) Here's a prior blog of mine for some ideas of foods to start incorporating now. http://dianazic.liveeditaurora.com/service/blog/2016/11/16/curious-if-eating-certain-foods-help-your-fertility;
  3. Be active. Exercising daily helps to reduce and/or prevent insulin resistance, reduce inflammation and it's the happy drug for your mind by producing endorphins.
  4. Get support. As I mentioned, 7 million women in the USA have PCOS, so don't feel like your abnormal or broken beyond repair. I can help you implement these changes, reach out here!
Be Well,
Diana


www.dianazic.com
zicyasa@gmail.com
www.facebook.com/dianalynzic/
Pinterest: dianaziccoach

A Poem for the Trying-to-be-Mom Moms

As Mother's Day weekend quickly approaches and Father's Day not far behind that, I understand it can be SO hard to celebrate with family and friends when you’ve been struggling to conceive. (By the way, you don't have to force yourself to celebrate if you're not up to it.) Below is a poem I found on the Made for Mums website that had me tearing up but left me feeling very hopeful and positive thinking.  I hope you’ll find it comforting as well.

Also, please refer back to my holiday blog to see tips on staying well when things get tough. Click here if you need an objective/relatable ear to listen.

"With every tear that falls, there is a lost heart that calls.
It calls to say I'm here, don't despair, I will come to you
when the time is right, when you least expect me and through
the quiet night open your heart to me, accept me, I will be there
in the end.

Your wait may be long, you may get frustrated by the whole
ordeal. In the end I will be real. While others around you are
succeeding your heart goes on bleeding.

I would thank you for being patient, I would thank you for

being the kind of person who shows persistence. If it were not
for this, I may never get the chance to have an existence.
In the chaos of your day, the calm of your night, let your heart
soar and take flight.

For so many tears, for so many years you have been trying,

thinking of giving up but never doing it. In the end you just keep
on going in the hopes that I will come to you, the one who deserves me,
the one who can love me as no other can. You will be that mother that
you always wanted to be. Just you keep waiting for me."

    -unknown writer

I’d love to hear what you think about this poem in the comments section of this post and/or on any topics that may help you along in your fertility journey.

Contact me to learn how I can support you during your fertility journey; you don’t have to tackle this alone!

Until next time. Stay well.

Diana

www.dianazic.com

zicyasa@gmail.com
www.facebook.com/dianalynzic/
Pinterest: dianaziccoach


Forest Bathing: What It Is and Why It's Healthy

Wellness trends come and go, but we can always look to nature for timeless wisdom that’ll never go out of style. If you’ve taken a walk in the woods lately, you probably know what we mean. Read More

The Secret of Mother Nature's Springtime foods and why you want to eat them now!


“Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food” - Hippocrates

In Chicago spring has arrived! Weather is getting warmer, rain has begun, birds are singing, daffodils, hyacinth, wild flowers and grass are growing rapidly. It’s so amazing to see after a long winter how fast they bloom. What is also starting to surface is some of the best produce of the year. I find it fascinating how nature offers us so much detoxifying produce after a dormant winter season. If you’re like me and not interested in doing the latest detox out there on the market to improve your fertility, I encourage you to try some of Mother Nature’s spring foods. Here are a few of my favorite items to incorporate now before they're gone:

1. Ramps a/k/a Wild Leeks. These guys are only around for a month at the most, so get out and find them now! (See picture above) They are a bit pricy, but a little goes a long way, like onion and garlic. They are high in vitamins A and C. The National Institutes of Health identifies vitamin A as being essential for the immune system and vitamin C as a powerful antioxidant, meaning that it seeks out and neutralizes free radicals, the particles that attack healthy cells;

2. Asparagus. It is known for its detoxifying properties: fiber, folate, iron, vitamins A, C, E and K according to Natural Healthy Concepts. Also, in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) the kidneys govern over birth, growth, and reproduction and asparagus aids cleansing of the kidneys;

3. Lettuces. My general rule of thumb is to choose a darker leaf lettuce over a lighter leaf lettuce like iceberg, which has very little nutritional value. According to the University of California Cooperative Extension Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, most lettuces are a good sources of fiber, good source of vitamin A (darker green lettuces are a better sources than pale leaf lettuces) and vitamin C. Fiber helps to keep your elimination system working well. According to the American Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society, foods rich in vitamins A and C (antioxidants) offer protection against some forms of cancer. Along with other phytochemicals, antioxidants reduce the risk of cancer of the respiratory system and intestinal tract;

4. Spinach. The cartoon character Popeye was on to something! In the cartoons Popeye ate spinach to gain strength from the iron in spinach. Spinach is said to have twice as much energy-boosting iron as other leafy greens. PLUS it has a ton of other vitamins and minerals according to The World’s Healthiest Foods: vitamins K, A, B2, B6, B1, B3, E, C, as well as fiber, folate, omega-3 fats to name a few; and

5. Green Peas. I know they’re not everyone's favorite vegetable (maybe from growing up being forced to eat bad split pea soup from a can--ahem, Campbell's for one), but these tiny peas pack a big nutritional punch! They are known for their fiber, protein as well as being an antioxidant. They digest easily and eliminate efficiently.

There are many other veggies and fruits to try this Spring season that I haven’t listed so get out there and experiment! By eating along with Mother Nature’s seasons, you’ll know you’re eating the freshest produce possible, and you can increase that by buying local too.  We have our own built-in detox system which works well when we supply it with a good diet, exercise, and manage stress; so try Mother Nature’s cleanse before reaching out for the latest detox program on the market.

P.S. All of these vegetables are known as oxygen radical absorption capacity “ORAC” which means they decrease inflammation and oxidative stress in the body. These are foods you want to incorporate in your diet while trying to conceive.

As always, I’d love to hear your opinion on this topic in the comments section of this post or any topics that may help you in your fertility journey.

If you want support in adding these springtime goodies and other detoxifying tools, contact me here.

Until next time. Stay well!
Diana

www.dianazic.com
zicyasa@gmail.com

4 Simple Ways to Create a Healthier Home Environment

Did you know that health is about way more than what is on your plate? That’s right, your relationships, career, level of fitness, and hobbies all contribute to your well-being – it’s what Health Coaches call primary food. Your home environment is no exception! Read More

Is fear holding you back from the child you want?

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As I sit and wait patiently for 40 minutes for a mid-cycle appointment (for those unfamiliar it’s a blood test and ultrasound appointment to see how see your hormones are reacting [this can be while medicated or not], and check to see how many follicles [immature eggs or oocyte] are being produced) at my specialist’s office, I am surrounded by several other women and men waiting and I can't help but have a stream of thoughts go through my head:

I wonder why these other women and men are here?
What treatment(s) have they done?
For how long have they been on their journey?
What has worked for them?
Have they tried other approaches?
Do they have a child or children?

As you can imagine, the vibe is pretty intense and almost no eye contact is ever made in the waiting rooms. It seems to me people are embarrassed and/or ashamed to be there; so, needless to say, I do not feel comfortable making polite conversation with them to ask these questions. Then, the most interesting question popped into my head, is it possible to become “attached” or “married” to your current treatment plan out of fear from moving on to the next step?

What I’m referring to when I speak of the next step may look different to each person. It may be trying different lifestyle changes to get fertile, a different fertility treatment, egg donor, sperm donor, adoption, surrogate or moving on completely? At what point do you move on to the next step in your journey and know and feel that it will be okay?

If you’re struggling with your next step(s) or know someone that needs guidance figuring out theirs contact me here!

As always, I’d love to hear your opinion on this topic in the comments section of this post or any topics that may help you in your fertility journey.

Until next time, or if you’re ready to discuss your next step :)
Diana

Sign up here!

www.dianazic.com
zicyasa@gmail.com

Black Garlic: A New Superfood?

At first glimpse, you might not be so enthralled to put black garlic on your dinner plate. But looks can be deceiving. Does it resemble little jelly-like pebbles of coal? Sure. But its sweet, non-acrid taste and nutritional benefits might make you a believer... Read More

Valentine's Day, is it forced love in the air?



All I can think about is Valentine's Day thanks to the aggressive TV and internet ads flooding my space with what I "should do" for my significant other: jewelry, flowers, sportswear and cards. Ugh! Why do we need advertising to tell us when to send love to our significant other? Shouldn't we be expressing it every day, not just once a year? Due to the ads, it lead me to think of the significance of the heart physically and emotionally.

Recently, my dad had open heart surgery and it became quite apparent to me and my family how important of an organ our heart is and how uber important it is to have a heart healthy lifestyle.  (If your not sure what that is reach out to me!) Let's advertise more about heart healthy lifestyle on "heart day", right?!

On an emotional level, Valentine's Day can be a heart breaking day for someone without a partner.  I’m sure we've all been there once or twice before....OR, someone with a partner who isn't creative enough for them or doesn't have the funds for the present they want or expect; wreaking havoc on the holiday completely!

My suggestion this Valentine's Day wherever you are on the spectrum, focus on self-love rather than on how some one else or some object can make you happy; those are temporary.

Side note: If you're someone trying to have a child, practicing self-love on that journey is imperative!

I'll leave you with this quote from Lucille Ball “Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.”

What's your opinion on V-Day? I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Until next time :)
Diana

You can reach me at the below if you'd like to hear how you can implement self-love into your daily life! ❤️
www.dianazic.com or zicyasa@gmail.com

Has the Pressure of a "New Year, a New You" gotten to you yet? It's has me....



Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of a "New Year, a New You" to get yourself motivated to get rid of the old things, thoughts, people, etc. that weigh you down and focus on good things ahead; but if you're like me (Type A personality: impatient, outgoing, ambitious, aggressive, competitive) I want everything already done by now (February 1st) and be working on something new! I know crazy; I’m working on this ;) So, needless to say, my "New Year, a New You" is a large one! Grow my businesses (health coaching and yoga biz), get pregnant, network more, and, oh, make money so I can eat (exaggerating, but you get the picture)!

So if you’re like me, keep reading below for some tips on how I keep moving forward without losing my Sh$%. I hope it helps some of you Type A's out there! Also, a free 12 minute audio mediation I created for you to try!

If your looking for one-on-one-guidance with your 2017 goals Click here to schedule an appointment. 

1. Keep eating well. It’s February and you may have fallen off the eating well bandwagon, but it’s not too late to get back on board! I truly believe you are what you eat. It’s so important for the mind and body to stay nourished with good foods! See my prior blog which can apply to people that aren’t trying to be fertile as well. Also, provides the 2016 Dirty Dozen.
http://dianazic.liveefdditaurora.com/service/blog/2016/11/16/curious-if-eating-certain-foods-help-your-fertility

2. Meditate. I know, I know, it’s quite the popular thing to say now, but it's real. Taking some quiet time each day to sift through your thoughts from the day really helps to clear the mind and keep the thoughts moving, think bad thoughts out positive in! Also, I find it helps me sleep better.

If you're someone who's trying to get prego (you or your partner) keeping stress at a minimum is best for the body. Meditation of all types has been known to help stressed out individuals. See study from the Mayo Clinic for more details: http://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/meditation/in-depth/meditation/art-20045858

Side note: If you're not ready for any of these options just yet, I recommend a meditation coloring book (yes, you can color as an adult, I won’t tell).

3. Set daily goals. If you're like me, you'll need guidance each day to keep you from getting stuck on one project or from trying to do too much in one day and being exhausted, or getting nothing done at all. My recommendation is choosing three goals/tasks that NEED to be done that day; once those are complete, feel free to add others. This should keep you focused and free from being overwhelmed before you even get started. (If you are having trouble, or want help, with setting goals, well, this is where my services can help you!)

4. Keep moving! Last but not least, exercising daily does wonders for our minds (of course our bodies too!). It helps to turn on the “happy chemicals” in our brains called endorphins. If you’re in the Northern Hemisphere like myself, sun is limited this time of year, so exercising is a must to improve your mood. According to a study from Harvard Health Blog: “We are governed by circadian rhythms, our body’s natural clock that helps regulate important functions including sleep/wake cycles and mood. These rhythms can be thrown off by the winter season.”

What tools have you found to keep you sane while you're becoming the "New You"? I'd love to hear from you!

Click below on my website link to schedule an appointment or sign up for my monthly newsletter!
www.dianazic.com

Free 12 minutes of meditation!

Image courtesy of cuteimage at FreeDigitalPhotos.net






5 Examples of Everyday Mindfulness (That Aren’t Meditation)

Mindfulness has entered our everyday conversations in a powerful way. But what does it really mean? Jon Kabbat-Zinn, the creator of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), defines it as such... Read More

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