Stock up on the raspberries this Valentine’s day to give fertility a boost!

By Sue Bedford (MSc Nutritional Therapy)

Raspberries are fantastic as they give both male and female fertility a nutritious boost

They have the lowest GI of any fruit, meaning their sugar is absorbed into the body slowly and so therefore raspberries help to balance blood sugar levels. This is important when trying to conceive as it is key to balancing sex hormones and if these are balanced there is more chance of conceiving. This combined with their high fibre content means raspberries are an effective way to control hunger and cravings at only a few calories.

Raspberries are an excellent source of phytonutrients, vitamin C, manganese, and dietary fibre. They are also a very good source of vitamin E, magnesium, folate, omega-3 fatty acids, and potassium.

All types of berries can help to boost fertility, but raspberries have been linked to protecting sperm from oxidative stress.

Raspberries contain high levels of Vitamin C which is a key nutrient in male fertility for sperm health and preventing oxidative stress. They also contain magnesium (which is involved in the production of testosterone) helping to give male fertility a further boost. Raspberries supply vital folate to women, which is essential at various key stages of female fertility and early embryo development in the prevention of neural tube defects. It is also thought that after conception antioxidants may decrease the risk of miscarriage.

 Valentine Raspberry smoothie (makes 2 smoothies)

  • 300g Raspberries
  • 200g tub Natural live yoghurt or greek yoghurt
  • 1 cup of milk chilled milk of your choice
  • A handful of chia seeds (these are high in fibre, omega 3 fatty acids, protein, vitamins and minerals)

Combine the raspberries, yoghurt, chia seeds and milk in a blender and process until smooth. Pour over ice if you prefer and serve in decorative glasses. Place some raspberries and mint leaves on top. Enjoy!

Dark chocolate and raspberry mousse (makes 6 ramekins)

Ingredients:

  • 300g dark chocolate (70% or above cocoa solids)
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup caster sugar
  • 500ml thickened cream, whipped
  • 200g frozen raspberries

Place the dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, making sure bowl doesn’t touch water. Heat gently, stirring occasionally with a metal spoon, for 4 to 5 minutes or until chocolate is melted and smooth. Remove from the heat. Cool slightly.

Meanwhile, place the yolks and sugar in a bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat for 5 minutes or until thick and creamy. Slowly beat in chocolate until combined.

Fold the cream into chocolate mixture. Spoon half the mixture into glasses or ramekins. Top with raspberries. Spoon over remaining mixture. Cover. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until chilled. Serve.

Don’t waste the egg whites – why not make a lovely homemade raspberry meringue

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