Follicle stimulating hormone or FSH (follicle stimulating hormone) is produced by the pituitary gland in both men and women. Healthy FSH levels are critical to male and female fertility (among many other things). Start by going to the doctor to have your FSH levels tested, make a diagnosis of the underlying factor, and then follow the appropriate treatment plan. If you want to lower your FSH levels (this is the most common "fix" associated with fertility), your doctor may also ask you to make lifestyle and dietary changes as needed.
Method 1 of 3: Conducting Medical Tests and Treatment
Step 1. Go to the doctor for an FSH test and diagnosis
A simple blood test can show whether FSH levels are higher or lower than normal. If the test shows that FSH levels are abnormal, your doctor will run additional tests to diagnose the underlying cause before treating you.
- Normal FSH levels in men are between 1.4 to 15.5 IU/ml. Normal levels in women have a wider range because it will depend on age and menstrual cycle.
- To diagnose the cause of abnormal FSH levels, your doctor may look at a hormone panel that compares the levels of certain hormones in your body (such as GnRH and estrogen). Doctors can also perform a biochemical analysis, which looks at enzymes and other substances that affect the performance of certain glands and organs.
- In certain situations, the doctor may use radiographic methods to diagnose the cause of abnormal FSH levels, for example by ultrasonography (USG), CT scan, or MRI.
Step 2. Familiarize yourself with conditions that can affect FSH levels
FSH levels are determined by a delicate and complex network of hormones. So, there are many conditions that can affect the production of FSH in the body. This underlying condition must be recognized and treated so that FSH levels can return to normal. Some conditions that often affect FSH include:
- Aging: FSH levels in women naturally increase in their 30s to 40s as they approach menopause. High FSH levels have a negative impact on fertility.
- Polycystic ovary syndrome: This condition causes the appearance of multiple cystic follicles in the ovaries, which in turn makes the production of estrogen and androgens become excessive. If both of these hormones have high levels, FSH levels in the body will decrease significantly.
- Hypopituitarism: This condition puts pressure on the function of the pituitary gland, which greatly affects FSH levels. This happens because this gland is a place to produce FSH.
- Hypogonadism: As a result of various syndromes, reduced functional activity of the gonads (testes in males and ovaries in females) can impair FSH levels.
- Tumor: A tumor that grows somewhere (such as the pituitary gland, testicle, or ovary) can cause FSH levels to become abnormal.
Step 3. Follow the therapy program recommended by the healthcare professional
This specific treatment may vary depending on your current FSH levels, the underlying cause, and your condition (eg if you are a woman in your late 30s and trying to conceive). If you are on fertility treatment, you will need to follow a certain program (may include injections and/or pills) to control FSH levels.
- In some cases, you may be prescribed HRT (hormone replacement therapy). The HRT you should use includes medications in the form of tablets, topical gels, skin patches, or vaginal rings to regulate levels of several hormones such as estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone. This action will improve your FSH levels.
- Whatever treatment is prescribed, you should follow the instructions given by your healthcare professional. Feel free to ask questions, get explanations, or ask for demonstrations.
Step 4. Have surgery to remove the cyst or tumor, if necessary
In some situations, abnormal FSH levels can be caused by a cyst or tumor in the testes, ovaries, or pituitary gland. Be aware that most tumors and cysts are actually not life-threatening. However, by eliminating them, you can improve your FSH levels and overcome some of the medical problems you may have.
The complexity of the surgery and the possible risks may vary depending on the patient's condition. Discuss your condition and options with your healthcare professional so that you are well informed and prepared
Method 2 of 3: Taking Foods and Supplements to Lower FSH Levels
Step 1. Eat plenty of foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are needed to produce hormones in the body that can make FSH levels better. There is some evidence to suggest that increasing omega-3 intake through food or supplements can lower FSH levels in some cases.
- Talk to your doctor before trying to improve FSH levels through food, supplements, or lifestyle changes. The best option is through medical intervention, and you should tell your doctor if you are currently using other treatments.
- Food sources that contain lots of omega-3s include oily fish (such as salmon, trout, mackerel, sardines, herring, and anchovies), walnuts, flax seeds, seaweed, and kidney beans. You can also use Omega-3 supplements.
Step 2. Eat lots of dark green vegetables
Dark green vegetables contain lots of vitamins and minerals that make the endocrine system healthier, which in turn can improve FSH levels. Some dark green vegetables that you can eat include kale, broccoli, spinach, and cabbage, as well as sea vegetables such as nori (sea algae), kelp (a type of large algae), and wakame (a type of seaweed).
- Your doctor may advise you to eat at least 5 servings of these foods a day. You can set it up like this: have a kale smoothie in the morning, have a green salad for lunch, and include at least 2 servings of leafy greens or sea vegetables at dinner.
- If you are taking blood-thinning medications at this point, you may want to avoid dark green leafy vegetables. Consult a doctor.
Step 3. Include ginseng in the diet
Ginseng can support and nourish the pituitary gland and hypothalamus (both of which have an important role in FSH levels). Ginseng can be taken in supplement form. For example, your doctor may suggest that you take 2 capsules (which are 500 mg) twice a day.
Do not take ginseng more than the recommended dose because it can affect the blood's ability to prevent clotting
Step 4. Consume maca daily in the recommended amount
Maca is a vegetable in the form of tubers that grows in highlands with full sun. Maca can nourish the endocrine system, which in turn will help improve FSH levels. You can take maca supplements, and the recommended dose is 2,000-3,000 mg a day.
Talk to your doctor if you want to take a maca supplement, and ask what dosage is right for you
Step 5. Take a Vitex capsule daily, if advised
Vitex is an herb that can help control the pituitary gland, which in turn can balance hormone production in the body. Some evidence has shown that vitex can help lower FSH levels in some cases.
- You can take vitex supplements, and the recommended dose is 900-1,000 mg a day.
- Understand that vitex capsules perform best on an empty stomach. So, take this supplement in the morning before you eat breakfast.
Method 3 of 3: Lifestyle Changes to Lower FSH Levels
Step 1. Maintain a healthy weight to normalize FSH levels
A healthy weight can make the production of FSH and other hormones to be appropriate and appropriate. In some cases, being overweight can increase FSH levels, and this can have a negative impact on fertility.
- On the other hand, being underweight can, in some cases, reduce FSH levels excessively, which negatively affects fertility.
- In general, a healthy weight is indicated by a BMI (body mass index) between 18.5 to 25. However, always consult with your doctor to determine the ideal weight and the best method to achieve it.
- If you need to lose weight, work with a healthcare professional so you can focus on healthy ways, such as getting lots of exercise and eating a nutritious diet.
Step 2. Reduce stress to control FSH and other hormone levels
When you are stressed, your body releases stress hormones (such as cortisol), which unbalance levels of FSH and other hormones. Therefore, you must reduce stress so that FSH levels become better.
- You can reduce stress using various relaxation methods, such as deep breathing, meditation, yoga, light exercise, nature walks, listening to relaxing music, reading a light book, taking a warm bath, or talking to an old friend. Find the method that works best for you.
- Another important factor for reducing stress is getting enough sleep.
Step 3. Try a fertility massage to improve FSH levels
A relaxing massage can reduce stress, and some evidence suggests that reducing stress levels can improve FSH levels. However, there is no real evidence to suggest that "fertility massage" has any particular benefit. Pay attention to this before you go to a massage practitioner who is able to perform fertility massages.
- You can also massage yourself to stimulate the glands that control FSH and other hormones. Try massaging your lower abdomen in gentle circular motions for about 10-15 minutes every day.
- If you don't mind the lack of scientific evidence to support this method, try rubbing the bottom of your big toe. In reflexology, the big toe is thought to have a connection with the pituitary gland, which plays an important role in balancing hormone production in the body.
Step 4. Consider carefully if you want to undergo a fertility cleansing (fertility cleansing)
Do an internet search to find "fertility cleansing" services, both at home and in clinics, which claim to wash away excess hormones in the body. Proponents of this method claim that cleansing before trying to conceive can increase the chances of success. However, these claims are not supported by medical evidence, and any type of cleansing can pose health risks.