In our previous article "Recurrent Miscarriages - Causes of Miscarriage, Part 1", we discussed what recurrent miscarriages are and possible risk factors and causes of miscarriages.
In this 2nd article of our 3 part series, we will look in depth at one potential cause of recurrent miscarriages that can be easily tested for and addressed with natural solutions.
One potential blood clotting disorder that can contribute to recurrent miscarriages are MTHFR gene mutations. Common mutations in the MTHFR gene can affect how your body processes homocysteine, an amino acid found in the blood, which increases risk of blood clots.
People with MTHFR gene mutations may have elevated levels of homocysteine, although not everyone with a MTHFR gene mutation is affected. (Note that elevated homocysteine is considered a potential risk factor for miscarriages independently and can be caused by other factors beside MTHFR mutations.) People with MTHFR gene mutations can have a decreased ability to metabolize folic acid and other B vitamins, also.
Most doctors do not test for either MTHFR or homocysteine levels because neither has a formally recommended treatment that is solidly shown to reduce the risk of miscarriage. If you would like to find out if this can be a potential cause for recurrent miscarriages, ask your doctor to test for homocysteine levels in your next blood work up. You can also independently get MTHFR tested with this laboratory - http://www.accesalabs.com/genetic?gclid=CImFgYic07ECFYUaQgodsnkAxw
If either result comes back abnormal, a natural way to decrease homocysteine levels is to increase B vitamin supplementation. Because homocysteine can be converted in the body into a harmless substance known as cystanthionine, and this conversion is dependent on vitamins B6, B12 and folic acid, increasing intake of these appears to be one simple way of decreasing homocysteine levels in the body.
A recommended supplementation program includes 800 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid per day in addition to eating foods rich in folic acid such as spinach, asparagus and broccoli, fruits, vegetables (especially green leafy vegetables), fortified breads and cereals, lentils, chickpeas, and most beans. Adding 10 mg of vitamin B6 and 400 mcg of vitamin B12 to this each day is likely to confer additional benefit in terms of homocysteine reduction. Zen Fertility Center carries and recommends Metagenics Vessel Care as a supplement to assist in homocysteine metabolism.
For a more comprehensive program to naturally decrease your homocysteine levels, consult with a fertility acupuncturist. In our next article, we'll discuss how fertility acupuncture can help a woman have a healthy pregnancy after suffering multiple miscarriages.