I’ve done it. Judging by the number of products available and on the posts on the numerous IF chat boards, almost every other woman who suffers from infertility has done it too. Why do we think that taking some magical combination of dietary supplements will suddenly get us pregnant?
The number of supplements & vitamins claimed to have some kind of fertility related benefits is maddening. Maca, royal jelly, evening primrose oil, red raspberry leaf tea, wheatgrass, I could list at least a couple of dozen different supplements that have been claimed to have fertility boosting ability.
Also, can we talk about TCM (traditional Chinese medicine)? I will write more about this later. It has ripped through the infertility community like wild fire. But how much value is there really in Eastern medicine? I feel like people are quick to forget that TCM is also responsible for this & this. And yet we are willing to believe that the same practice that preaches ground up tiger bones cures cancer somehow becomes valid when applied to infertility?
The most disappointing thing about the vitamin and supplement trade is also the most obvious. They don’t work. Every time I’m tempted to purchase bumble bee sweat pills or yellow fern flakes, I do a Google search. Most of the time I find that there has been a scientific study done and a subsequent research paper published. And surprise, surprise, there is no evidence that sparrow feather dust has any effect on fertility. Because if it did, it would have been commoditized by the pharmaceutical industry and peddled to us in a doctor’s office for big bucks, not bottled and sold on Amazon.
Even with all of this evidence and logic telling me that the vitamins and supplements are a waste of money, hope & time, I can still see myself buying some random product in the future. Why? Because I want to fix this. I want to have a baby. There’s something magical about conception that makes us think that the secret answer could be equally magical. I also take some comfort in that fertility myths, legends & magic herbs are something that all of humanity shares across time and cultures. This isn’t a 21st century phenomenon. The quest to get pregnant is as old as it gets.