• Cervical Mucus: Essential for Natural Fertility

    by  • January 5, 2013 • Healthy You, Natural Fertility Series • 10 Comments

    Cervical Mucus: Essential for Natural Fertility

    Let’s talk cervical mucus, shall we? Okay… I know this may seem to be a little on the TMI side of things, but trust me…it is such an important part of natural fertility {for several reasons I might add} and our perfect design as women. Let’s take a look at what cervical mucus is, why it is so important to natural fertility and how to improve it naturally.

    What Is Cervical Mucus

    A woman’s body is designed with amazing perfection by our amazing Creator. As our bodies prepare for ovulation {and eventually conception}, our cervical mucus (CM) changes to create the perfect environment for the sperm and egg to meet. Without it, conception is almost impossible.

    You may have noticed, after your period, a discharge in the lining of your under-britches that seems to change in consistency or color throughout the month. What you are seeing is the oh-so-important cervical mucus, also called CM, which we are going to talk about. Your cervix produces different types of mucus based on the particular phase you are in during your fertility cycle. The most observed types of CM are dry/tacky, sticky, creamy, wet and stretchy/egg white mucus.

    Progressive CM Chart

    In the instance of a typical fertility cycle, the first 3-4 days after your period, you should notice that your “downstairs” dries up or feel tacky. This is considered “hostile” CM, basically a desert environment for sperm. As your body gets closer to ovulation, you should notice a change in the consistency or texture of CM – creamy and kind of wet. While this type of CM isn’t necessarily hostile, it still isn’t the best CM for fertility. During your “fertile window” you should notice a clear-ish, stretchy CM that resembles egg white. This is the most fertile CM mucus, sometimes referred to as EWCM. This is the type of CM that allows conception to occur. After your fertile window is over, you should see only creamy or tacky discharge until your period comes again {or positive pregnancy test for those trying to conceive}.

     

    Why Is Healthy Cervical Mucus So Important

    As you might have guessed, cervical mucus is essential for conception. Let’s use a little illustration. Imagine your body as soil that you want to plant a seed in. In order for that seed to grow, it must have the perfect conditions. It must be fertile; warm and moist. If you tried to plant the seed in soil that was dry and hostile, it wouldn’t grow. But if you planted it in moist, fertile soil, the chances of growth are increased. Make sense? Of course it does!

    That is how your cervical mucus works. When you have a sticky, cloudy discharge, your body is like a hostile soil… the sperm can’t live in that environment. But, when your fertile window opens and your fertile, stretchy EWCM is present… it nourishes and protects the sperm, allowing them to reach the egg at the time of ovulation. If you don’t have healthy, fertile cervical mucus, your chances of conception are slim.

    Not only is CM vital for conception, it also aides in a fertility charting method called Ovulation Charting. This method is one of my personal favorites when it comes to charting my cycles. Why? Because it doesn’t cost a thing, you don’t have to rely on a previous month’s data, and you don’t need any extra tools to help you. I won’t go into too much detail, that’s for another day… But the basic idea is to observe your CM throughout the day and record your observations at the end of the day. You will notice the changes in CM, which allows you to know where you are at in your fertility cycle.

    And lastly, healthy CM really helps ease the art of baby making. The more natural lubrication your body creates, the more fun and comfortable your love making will be. ;) Enough said.

     

     What If You Don’t Have Fertile CM

    What If??? {Photo Source: Jeroen van Oostrom}

    Some women don’t experience fertile cervical mucus during their fertility cycle. Regular vaginal dryness is a common problem for many women, which can make cycle charting and conceiving a big challenge. There are many factors that can create or add to hostile CM including:

    • Not enough water intake each day.
    • Poor, acidic diet.
    • High stress situations.
    • Poor circulation to the reproductive organs; inactive lifestyle.
    • Hormonal imbalance. Both low progesterone and estrogen levels may alter cervical mucus production.
    • Fertility medications containing hormones.
    • Disease of the uterus or cervix, viruses of the vaginal area, or damage to the cervix or cervical cells as a result of surgery or biopsies.
    • Cervical fibroid (though rare).

    Evaluating your lifestyle and eating habits is a fantastic way to start looking into reasons why you may not have ideal cervical mucus. If you can’t pinpoint something, a trip to your women’s health care provider might be a good idea.

     

     Natural Ways to Improve Fertile Mucus

    Now that you have an idea of how important health cervical mucus is, you make want to make an extra effort to improve the quality of your CM. Here is a list of what I have done to increase and improve my CM:

    Stay well hydrated. For many women, just increasing their intake of water is all they really need to do to increase their CM. Cervical mucus is made up of 90% water, so if you are not hydrating your body your CM production may decrease. If you only did one thing on this list, this would be it! I suggest starting your morning with a quart of water, then follow-up with several glasses between meals.

    Get those essential fatty acids in daily. Eating as many foods high in fatty acids is really important. If you just aren’t able to get these through the foods you are eating, look into taking a complete fatty acids supplement which contains omega 3, 6 and 9. Essential fatty acids are important for:

    • Regulating hormones
    • Increasing the blood flow to your reproductive organs
    • Increasing fertile cervical mucus {EWCM}
    • Normalizing your fertility cycle
    • And more

    I like using Evening Primrose Oil (EPO), Cod Liver Oil and FertileCM as my supplements for fatty acids. Other supplements worth looking into are borage oil and L-arginine.

    Natural Supplements{Photo Source : tinpalace}

    Utilize herbs that have demulcent properties. Herbs that are demulcent and bitter help support healthy mucous membrane function. It also helps to combine demulcent herbs with herbs that are known to increase blood flow to the reproductive system and herbs that support hormonal balance. Some of the herbs I have at home include:

    • Licorice Root: Demulcent, promotes healthy mucous membrane secretions. Also supports hormonal balance through endocrine support.
    • Marshmallow Root: Demulcent and soothing to mucous membranes. Also supports natural health for proper mucus secretion.
    • Red Clover Blossom: Studies have shown this to increase cervical mucus, relieving vaginal dryness. Also increases circulation to the reproductive organs.
    • Red Raspberry Leaf: Strengthens wall of uterus and entire female reproductive system.
    • Ginger Root: Demulcent and an aphrodisiac, promotes healthy mucous membrane secretions. Also has a bitter compound which supports the endocrine system and promotes circulation.
    • Gingko Biloba: Bitter herb, stimulating to mucous membrane secretion. Also promote healthy blood flow and circulation to the reproductive organs.

    All of these herbs can be blended and taken in a tea, tincture or capsule form. If you use the tea form, you can count it towards your daily dose of hydration. :) My favorite herb shop, Bulk Herb Store, sells a yummy tea that includes licorice, red clover and ginger {Cough Tea}… all you would need to do is alternate that with some of their red raspberry leaf tea and you would be all set.

     

    Okay, so that was a lot to learn in one post… the take away? Healthy fertile cervical mucus is an important component to natural fertility. It is one of the best ways to start learning about how God designed us as women, charting our cycles and timing intercourse when pregnancy is the goal. Taking simple steps to improve CM is essential in getting a fresh start on natural fertility.

    Have you taken time to pay close attention to your body? What questions do you have about CM?

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    About

    Jasmine is a God-fearing, always-learning, stay-at-home-wife to the best husband in the world! In the past couple of years, her new found loves have become herbal fix ‘ems and things “all natural”! She is continually learning to slow down, enjoying the important, simple things in life…like naturally taking care of her home, husband and health. She really enjoys creating things “home-made” and showing others how to do the same! You can also connect with her on Twitter and Facebook.

    http://www.thymeandtimber.com

    10 Responses to Cervical Mucus: Essential for Natural Fertility

    1. January 5, 2013 at 11:03 am

      I have shared the last two blogs along with pinning them. You see my daughter along with three of her cousins suffer from PCOS. I pray the Lord will bless you with a little one soon, and pray that these natural products will truly be a blessing. Can’t wait for the blog that says “I’m pregnant!” Thank you for allowing others to share in this personal journey.

      Peace, <3

      • January 6, 2013 at 3:29 pm

        Joyce… thank you so much for sharing my posts and for your encouraging words! Much love!

    2. Manuela
      January 7, 2013 at 11:14 am

      Thanks for the Progressive CM Chart. I have started to chart last month and I was looking for visual aids on the internet because I can’t afford to buy a book about this. I couldn’t find very useful pictures so I was trying to figure things out by myself just from descriptions but this sure helps a lot and I know I was on the right track.
      Thanks again, and God bless

    3. BOZ
      January 8, 2013 at 6:02 pm

      I have been charting for a few months … The visual chart is extremely helpful, thank you!

      I found that Rasberry Leaf tea greatly improved my cm, but Evening Primrose Oil interfered with my ovulatory cycle. I tried EPO two different months, the months being spaced apart. Each of the two months it took it, my Basal Body Temperatures were erratic, with no biphasic pattern. When I stopped taking EPO, my cycle and temperatures returned to normal.

    4. Pingback: The Art of Charting: Keeping Track of Your Fertility Cycles | Like A Mustard Seed Blog

    5. Andrea
      March 15, 2013 at 6:24 am

      Nice article! I have an adition: a good herb to get the hormones more balanced is: vitex agnus castus…

    6. March 27, 2013 at 11:12 am

      Thank you so much for the visual! I am by no means lacking in CM, but trying to discern what’s what has been hard for me. This was very helpful!

    7. Tamara
      May 27, 2013 at 11:33 am

      Thanks for your information. God bless you in Jesus name! :-)

    8. Amber
      October 6, 2013 at 10:40 pm

      Hey Jasmine,
      I was wondering about my CM charting and stumbled across your blog, and I have to say THANK YOU. I’m gonna boomark this blog to refer to it, as you seem super down-to-earth and I love that you allow questions on important issues regarding herbal remedies and the like. Also, you are super pretty! Thanks again!
      -Amber

    9. November 10, 2013 at 4:31 am

      Very informative, I hope this will help ladies to find the best time of fertilization.

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