Autoimmune: Is it Connection to Your Unexplained Infertility, Low AMH & Poor Egg Quality?

autoimmune paleo diet Mar 11, 2022

We're talking about autoimmune issues on today's episode: Autoimmune: Is it Connection to Your Unexplained Infertility, Low AMH & Poor Egg Quality? This was my story. So I'm really passionate about sharing this message because a lot of the time autoimmune issues get linked to unexplained infertility, and people are told you can't do anything about it.

I'm here to tell you that it's complete BS, there is absolutely loads you can do about your autoimmune issue and improve your fertility all at the same time! You just have to find the root cause. A diagnosis and testing can help lead you down that path, but those are not set in stone!!


Hello beautiful and welcome to finding fertility. I'm your host, Monica Cox from finding And I created this podcast to help get you to start thinking outside of the box and realise that your infertility might have nothing to do with your lady bits rooted in functional medicine and personal experience. Finding fertility is all about looking at the whole body and finding the root cause of your infertility. Finding fertility does not diagnose, prescribe or treat any issues of infertility. But what we do is take a holistic approach and improve your diet and your lifestyle to get you steps closer to creating your dream family. Just by being here with me listening to this podcast, you're already going down the right path to making your dreams come true. Let's do this together. Hello, we are live here on IG and tick tock we are recording for the podcast. And I did a post yesterday or know a few days ago about auto immune issues. And I had a lot of questions. So I'm going to try to answer as many as I possibly can. And if you have any questions, put them into the common area. And I will get back to it. If you have to leave at any point know that this is recorded for the podcast, it will probably air in March. And over on IG, the lives get recorded so you can go back. So talking about autoimmune issues here. This was my story. So I'm really passionate about sharing this message because a lot of the times autoimmune issues get linked to unexplained infertility, and people are told you can't do anything about it. So I'm here to tell you that it's complete BS, there is absolutely loads you can do about it, you just have to find the root cause. And a diagnosis and testing can help lead you down that path. But those are not set in stone. So what I'm saying by that is when I got finally diagnosed, I had unexplained infertility for almost six years, I got diagnosed, we finally found that I had high natural killer cells, which is everyone has natural killer cells, they're there to protect us, they're there to help, you know, tackle COVID tackle any virus, you know, help fight off cancer like they're there to protect us. But when you're when your natural killer cells are on high alert all the time, this is when your body starts attacking itself because it needs something to do it doesn't, it can't tell the difference of like, Oh, that's good, or that's bad. So with high natural killer cells, if you have them, you have to understand that you are dealing with a lot of inflammation, a lot of inflammation is going on there. And it it starts to be two big issues, especially for fertility. The main Well, I mean, they're equally the same, but one is your a quality. So if you have high levels of inflammation, your a quality is going to drastically decrease. Because the inflammation is basically putting a lot of pressure on your cellular health. And as we now know and known for a really long time, but eggs are cells that are one of the biggest cells in your whole body. So we really need to be doing things to drastically lower our inflammation or oxidative stress and get those levels under control because we're damaging our a quality. And on top of that with high natural killer cells, your risk of miscarriages go up because when you release or when the embryo is created, and it goes to dig into your little beautiful lining or your thick juicy lining, that's probably what most doctors want to see.

It's a foreign agent and your body will treat it as a foreign agent if your natural killer cells are highly elevated. Now, the human design the way we are designed that most bodies know like hey, this is foreign, but we're going to let it come in because this is you know, like this is a new human being we're gonna start growing it but if your immune system is on overdrive, it will just start attacking it just like with thyroid issues. This is your immune system not having anywhere to go and it starts attacking your thyroid, which is not good because we need our thyroid for fertility. And this can stem from several different areas. One your stress levels and to your gut health. So I had some questions, questions about testing, where do you get tested for high natural killer cells? Now a there's clinics that will do it for you. So you need to find a clinic and I'm not sure everyone might be calling it a different thing. I'm not 100% clued up on the IVF scene. But when I was doing it, which was a good, like, six, seven years ago, they were calling it the Chicago tests in the Chicago test. It stems from that because Dr. Beer lived in Chicago. This is like the originator of really looking at autoimmune issues, and different genetic markers and blood markers to figure out the unexplained of a lot of people who were having these issues. So he was like The Godfather, his book is called is your body Baby Friendly, I've talked loads about this, you can find it on the podcast, you can find it in the IG live archives. And so this is where like the ideal sparked up in my head is like, Okay, this sounds really like in line with what's going on with me. And so I seeked out a clinic that was doing this controversial testing, which at the time was very controversial. Now it's getting a little bit more like, okay, we're seeing links to this, but you need to find a clinic or a doctor, that actually one believes in it, because I know that still a big issue that people aren't seeing the links between immune issues and fertility, because well, they're not connected. And when you take a functional fertility point of view, they're very, your whole body is connected. And if one thing is off, if you're genetically set up a certain way, other things can be off. So that can include your fertility. And that was my case, you know, I had all the working lady bits, I was young, I was only 27. When I started trying to conceive I was 30 when I did my first IVF. And, you know, like, people were like, Well, no, that's not related. It's like, well, something has to be working, because I have all like, not work unless something's off because I have the lady bits. And you're telling me that my husband's fine, I'm ovulating. And so when we went to do our first round of IVF, that's when it was exposed. And the only way you can find out you're a quality is through IVF. And expose that we were making really low grade in embryos. And with the knowledge and the hindsight that I have now, it's because my inflammation was so high. So getting seeking that testing is really important. For some I know, it's highly expensive, and it's not available for everyone. And I want to reassure you is that you don't have to have that testing. If you want to take a holistic approach to these things, you will need that testing and confirmation that you have high natural killer cells, if you want to use the immune suppressing drugs that come along with that diagnosis. And using IVF. I did both. I did three frozen embryos with immune suppressing drugs. And

I had two miscarriages and a live birth. So once again, it's not set in stone. And you know, especially on the last frozen embryo transfer, I had it all I had the diet I had the lifestyle I was successful before I had the immune suppressing drugs we had two embryos put back in, and I still miscarried. And I have my theories about that. But we'll talk about that another day. So testing is important if you maybe feel like you're at your wit's end, and you want to use immune suppressing drugs. But if you don't have access, or the financial resources to get these tests, know and feel confident that you can change things up with your diet and your lifestyle to really greatly improve the situation. And there's two, two ways that you can do this. And both are probably as equally important, but you got to figure out which one's the worst one for you. Right? So you might feel like your diet is not on par and you need to improve in that area. Or you might feel like hey, my diet is actually really good. I feel great, you know, yeah, like I've got that dialled in, but your stress levels are like all over the place. Or maybe you're both like I was both Not gonna lie. Like, I didn't realise I had a bad diet at the time. Because I I was just like, norm, I didn't eat loads of McDonald's, I didn't even have a high sugar diet. I wasn't jacked up on a lot of caffeine. But yeah, I definitely wasn't eating organic or a lot of vegetables. Like I could probably name all the vegetables on my tin fingers. And not because I didn't enjoy vegetables, but I didn't realise, like, how important it was to bring that variety into it. And then yeah, stress levels like super type A, like always on the go always had to be doing always have it having to be achieving ruminating about stuff over stressing about little things. Yeah, so there was a lot of work on both ends that I personally had to do. And what I see with my one to one clients, and in my group coaching programmes is that a lot of the time, especially with my one to ones you come in, and they're really highly educated about their diet. But they've been stuck in this like auto immune, right. And bringing back in a huge variety is like key for them. And then there's other people who think they're doing good, and we do a whole week's food diary. And we kind of highlight, okay, here's where we need to improve. This is where we're lacking, you're literally eating the same, like 10 to 15 foods within the week. And that's just not what we need for when we're healing. Like, yes, you'll be able to survive, you know, like, as long as you're feeding the system. But the thing is, is a lot of the times when you move into fertility issues, you have to really go to this place of nourishment and healing. And not just takes like a different level of commitment. And so you need to have that commitment. On a certain level. It's not about perfection. It's more about consistency. But the more you're consistent with things, the better chance you are going to give your body time to heal. So you got to think of and we're right now we're healing the gut, and we're healing the adrenals. And if you've like high testing, and anything else is like you have a sluggish liver, your thyroids off.

These two things are, you know, focusing on your diet and focusing on your stress levels are actually going to improve all the areas, right. So there might be specific supplementation that you need or holistic supporting you need. But everyone finding the perfect diet for them, meaning finding your food intolerances, and then adding in as much as possible, of all clean real food. That's everyone's perfect diet. And then working on those stress levels, you can do a gut health test. And this might be really important for people who feel like they're on a clean diet, and are still having normal health issues or elevated natural killer cells. Because there could be hidden parasites bugs, you have something going on in the gate. And if you do have that, like literally no amount of clean diet is going to get rid of those you really have to be targeted, and which could be holistic target. Like supplements, you can use antibiotics, for some are a mixture of both. But it's really important. Like if you feel like man, I'm doing everything, but I'm still having gut issues or I'm still off like for me, I was I went paleo for a whole year. And even though a lot of my normal health issues greatly improved, I still wasn't getting pregnant. And so that was even though I saw all these things like yeah, improving, improving. I didn't get I wasn't getting pregnant. So we went back to do another round of IVF to see okay, like what's going on. We got talked out of the immune testing at that stage because I wasn't having reoccurring miscarriages. And then we did a round of IVF we got five beautiful embryos, which was like five times more than we did on the first round. So we thought we were gonna succeed. And I literally didn't make it to day 28 Even with the medication. And that's when we demanded the testing. And even after being super healthy for a year, I hadn't high natural killer cells, and this was like, it wasn't a big shock then it was like later in life and I'm like, Damn, that's crazy. Like, I almost I mean, I started thinking okay, what symptoms did I still have that if I had the knowledge I could have said like something's off and For me, it was still some gut issues like super minor, minor gut issues that you wouldn't really think is a big issue considering that I lowered my bloating like I wasn't as constipated or how does much diarrhoea like it improved greatly. But if I looked back on kind of like, actually, the issue stuff was still there. And it was because I was consuming all these really healthy, amazing foods like tomatoes, paprika, peppers, over jeans, potatoes, but for me personally, they were, I am highly intolerant to them. And especially when my gut health is incredibly low. So even though I was improving, I still wasn't maximising my healing. And so my body was still just kind of trying to, like fight for itself, right, I was still in survival mode, and for fertility, even though people can get pregnant in survival mode. For us dealing with fertility issues, we need to get to like what we should strive to get to a place of healing and being in that healing mode for a while to just even increase our chances of a live birth. Because what I find with a lot of my clients who come to me with reoccurring miscarriages, or have immune issues and aren't getting pregnant, we get their health to like a pretty high standard, and all of a sudden their fertility clicks in. And that's great. That's a great sign we're on the right track. But what can happen is, your body's not in Thrive mode, it's still in this recovery mode. It's like okay, yeah, we can get to pregnancy. And this is where you see a lot of reoccurring miscarriages. Because we're not in we haven't completely healed yet. We don't have to heal 100%. But we want to really walk a fine line when we are healing and dealing with those autoimmune issues, because that's still a possibility until we kind of reached this threshold.

So yeah, symptoms, I have a lot of questions about, like, what symptoms should I look out for and within the formula, so this is my online group coaching programme, that's the door's always open. It's on demand. So you guys can join whenever you want to join. And there's a community that we meet two times, live every month, and then you can ask me questions. There's a whole section about goals and focusing your goals on improving these normal health issues. And I have this huge list like, like gigantic of things for you to go and highlight, okay, I have this, I have this, I have this. And actually, before you even get to that goal section, the first week is the intake forms the highly in depth intake forms that I review for my one on one clients, but I've refigure them where you do them, and then you look into the sections that you might need to improve on. And it asks you all sorts of crazy questions like Do you have diarrhoea? Do you have insomnia, like, it's so in depth, you actually, you are advised to do it with your partner to keep you honest, or do it with your mom or your dad or your best friend. Because sometimes you can trick yourself like, oh, it's not that bad. But it might be. So it's really pinpointing what areas Your body is like the weakest at the moment, and really focusing on those normal health issues for yourself. And watching those symptoms. And then just being completely honest with yourself, okay, you see improvement, maybe you were out of 10 before and like on these forums you wrinkle is actually one to five, and you have another list like a month down the line, you can do it two months down the line, you can do it and you have this list of like, okay, I was out of four and now I'm out of two. So, oh, my time check is gonna go on my Instagram, a limit myself on social media apps, just let you know. So we want to be watching our own personal, normal health issues. Okay. So as much as I can say, this is what you should be looking out for because this is what I had. It's just not going to be the same for you as it was for me. And that's something really to look out for. I had a woman in my DMs asking about like, I've done everything right. I feel really confident. I've hired help. I've got this mental and emotional score. I've got everything down. But she did some natural killer cells testing. And it was slightly elevated, like elevated to the point where her doctor felt like for fertility, he liked to see it at a certain number, not this number. So when it comes down to that, and you're still having fertility issues, I would say it's probably important to maybe look somewhere else would be my advice is not get hyper focused on this natural killer cell thing. Because I know a lot of the time we're really desperate for answers. And if there's like a smidgen of like answer in a test, then we can get really hung up about that. Now, all tests are different. I don't know her history, I don't know what test she did. So I'm not going to make a judgement on the test results. But if you feel like you're doing the right things, and I think you wanted to use immune suppressing drugs along top of that, and I think you should just should I think you should follow your heart and decide where you what is best for your journey. As into the advice of like, what else more can you do? Like, I mean, yeah, the course in my one, one, there's like a plethora of things you can do. But I just don't know like, personally what you dive into it and just feel confident it sounds like you've done loads. So feel confident in those changes that you've made. I think you even kind of broke away from a vegan diet, which is I think, personally a good thing for fertility. You don't have to be a full like meat eater. But if you are having issues, you know, totally getting away from like, well, I'm vegan, or I'm gluten free, like or I'm paleo. I did whole 30 Or even like autoimmune, like sometimes a autoimmune paleo diet is not the right diet for people. It is a very restricting diet. And I definitely advise people if you don't have to be on it, don't don't, you know, get all that nutrients you possibly can.

So, yeah, it's, that's why I'm working with a fertility health coach who kind of specialises in in all that is a really good thing to have, because it gets a set of eyes. I know right now a woman in the in the group coaching, you know, just a few of her questions that suits us. I've been able to kind of highlight okay, we'll have a look here, have a look here. I can't go super in depth, because once again, is a group coaching programme. I don't have her labs, I don't have her history, I can't really pinpoint. But we can really open up that conversation and be like, Okay, you're dealing with dehydration? Why? Let's look at why, like dehydration is not normal, that would be a health complaint that you would want to dig into, and figure out the root cause of that dehydration, especially if you're doing all the right things. And this kind of brings me on to a time time question. And this was very much her case as well, sometimes. What all the times, I feel like with fertility, we've been on this journey for so fucking long, right? Like, I don't care if it's six months to six years, it feels like eternity because you're literally lit like living in these two week wait cycles. And so when you feel like you've been doing stuff for a really long time, those are all going to add up in little ways. But the reality is, is that sometimes it takes a long time for these things to reverse themselves or, you know, improve because you haven't been doing the exact right things for you. And I'm not talking about like 100% exact, but very close. So that's my personal story, right being on the Paleo Diet greatly improved my kind of normal health issues. But so yeah, it greatly improved my normal health issues, but it was my, my healing journey wasn't enough to improve my fertility, if that makes sense. So and what I say with my clients until we find like, we feel super confident that we are on the right things the right diet, the right stress reduction, the right supplementation is super important and right more is not better. Like it needs to be targeted to what is going on with you. Because if it's not you're literally just pissing your money away. I know I did that several times. It sucks. So when you get on the right stuff, and you feel really confident, that's really when you want to be like timing anything, if you want to time things, because I know, that's just the way it is. Know that everything that you've put into place has been a great stepping stone. But until you have that right mixture, that's when it's really gonna, like, skyrocket. So for me, I can't tell you exactly when my fertility may be switched back on. I went autoimmune paleo three months before my second frozen embryo transfer. And I used immune suppressing drugs as well. So it wasn't just the diet, and I got pregnant, I stayed pregnant, and I had a live birth. Now, during his pregnancy, I was on the borderline of being insanely, like, on par with my diet. One because I didn't have the right emotional and mental support. I didn't have anyone around me that even knew, like, Coach wise, or your health care provider wise, like definitely not Doctor wise, knowing what diet I was doing. To help, like, lower my inflammation and heal my gut. So I was incredibly strict, but I know I had one. In instance, one, one thing of paprika at a restaurant. And I knew I was eating it. And a few days later, I got my last symptoms still, so I knew my gut health at that time, wasn't completely healed. And that was probably three or four months into my pregnancy. So let's say I was still a year on to paleo, and six months to seven months on autoimmune. So we're talking a year and a half. And like I had major gut health issues, let me just make this clear. This is probably not everyone's like, journey is not going to take everyone this long to heal. Like, mine were bad and bad from when I was like 1617 years old. So I had like, almost two decades,

I basically had three decades of destroying my body not knowing, right, I didn't know, maybe the alcohol I knew wasn't great for me. But, um, and so during my pregnancy, I was super strict. And obviously, after giving birth, I still continued with it. And between my first son being born and our last frozen embryo transfer, I couldn't we didn't have unprotected sex for various different reasons. And the last reason was, my husband was travelling, and he was going to places with the Zika virus, and the clinic was like it, you can't we won't treat you if you've had unprotected sex. You've been to these areas for six months. And we knew this leading up so we use protection. And so we did the last frozen embryo transfer, I got pregnant, I had an early miscarriage. And two months later, the first time that I had my that we Yeah, had sex naturally, I got pregnant. And I maintain that pregnancy without any immune suppressing support from the drugs or with a clinic. And it was actually funny because I had booked in with my midwife in the United Kingdom, I was living in the United Kingdom at the time for the pregnancy from the Frozen embryo transfer. And then I still held on to that appointment. And I like it was crazy to tell her the story because she was there for my first son being IVF as well. So I don't know how long I can't give anyone a timeframe. I know within the functional like fertility world and even the whole space is like minimum three months that you need to start from the right decisions for you and work your way there. But we definitely all say if you can give it six months and not especially if you're going into a fresh IVF trance or round, three months is minimum for aid quality. So if you feel like you're on like your last leg of the IVF giving yourself that time that three to six months to help greatly improve your aid quality is really important. When I had a DM asking about time and you she just found my account, and she's like what can I do? I'm going into a frozen embryo transfer and a week, unfortunately, other than just working on your mindset, and there, there isn't really any drastic physical change, you can do within a week, your body just doesn't work that way. So it's really important to, you know, just work on that mindset, if you're like set to go in for that transfer, or you're set to do an IVF, like, I know I've had, and this is why I made the course evergreen, because every time I did a launch, it was like a can or like, Oh, I'm about to do an IVF round, can I join, I'm like, I wouldn't advise it. Because the things that I'm going to teach you and show you need time. And so I don't want to I don't want to give you false hope, over that, like, I'm really transparent that, you know, holistic approach takes time. And within the course, we talk about time is on your side, and

I have this one beautiful one to one client that we just finished with, and she's 42. And the fertility clinics are like, literally freaking out if you wait two months, like, That's it, this never gonna happen. And I'm like, Girl, fucky, you're already 42 Like you're already in your 40s it's not gonna dramatically, dramatically change. Right? If you're talking five to 10 years, then yeah, that's a good conversation to have. But we're talking months. And I know when you're in the thick of it, because remember, I had eight years before my natural pregnancy, I know. But it's hard to think. But when you look back, and you can say, so a lot of people have been on a lot of different amazing podcasts recently, just to really get this knowledge and this wisdom out there to as many people as possible. And one of my big questions that I'm getting is like, how did you keep going? You know, like, like, Wasn't it hard to keep going. And gala course, like, at times, like really hard, really stressful. Like there was times I printed surrogacy forms and like, just didn't believe my body could do it. But when I started the holistic approach, every step, every major step we were taking, you could look at it and say that I was failing, right? I was failing, because I didn't have a live birth. And if we're only judging our journeys on that, then of course, we're always going to feel like failures. So when you switch up that mindset, and I can, and I was looking at my journey of like our second IVF, I got embryos, which the first one didn't, my first frozen embryo transfer I got pregnant, which I couldn't have never done before. And even though that didn't last, it gave me that hope back, okay, like this is really possible for me. Obviously, the the third or the second frozen embryo transfer, I had a live birth. And so from there, it was just like a matter of take walking the remaining steps, we had two remaining embryos where we were going back for them. When that didn't work out, like I thought it was gonna work out. We just continued living life feeling very rich and successful not only because we had a baby, but because I was so much healthier. My husband jumped on the diet with me. Definitely not the mindset stuff. But um, he did the diet with me. And he didn't take supplementation I know people are like, Oh, I'll get my husband to take a supplement like literally just improving your husband's diet by like 70 to 80% will drastically increase the sperm quality, he went from being fine to increasing his sperm quality by the millions. So we just felt really successful, even though maybe the outside world was looking at us and maybe thinking we were failing throughout those years. And then obviously, to get the natural pregnancy on top of that. Was that combination not like yours building up and my aim is that your journey doesn't have to be as drastic as my journey. I didn't. Instagram wasn't invented when it started. Functional Medicine was still a very kind of like under the scenes like that wasn't around. And then obviously linking autoimmune issues and gut health to fertility was just like full like people weren't even like going there. Maybe medically with the drugs but definitely not on the holistic side. So my journey was like UPS and downs and Long's because I was piecing this all together, where there's so many of us out there now, seeing the connection, not even seeing it living the connection, and then bringing in all the scientific information that we can find to back up our theories, not even theories, like well, we proved right. So, um, yeah, it's, it's completely doable. And I know a lot of times people have already spent a truckload of money on treatment. They've tried different loads of different political approaches, this was my story as well. So it is sometimes frustrating when you're like, another thing is this going to work, you know, type of thing. But

but just know, like, if you follow your gut, like, obviously, you guys come to my social media platforms and listen to my podcast, because something is telling you like, this is what I'm drawn to. And if you just follow your intuition, and that was like the thing that led me here, right, like, no one else was telling me fix your gut, your gut. So I really hope that helped everyone who has been in my DMs or asked questions on the post about auto immune issues. I know it's annoying, but if you scroll, scroll through the IG TVs, there's a lot more information on the book is your body Baby Friendly, I actually turned those episodes into podcast. So if you go through the podcast and look at the titles, there's loads and loads of information, I've talked loads about this. And obviously, you guys can reach out in the DMS. And like I said, the doors are always open to the formula, you can buy it as a monthly membership. So you can come in for a month, feel the vibe, see if the content is for you. And we do start from the basics, I just have to be honest with you is the basics. So I know everyone is at that basic level and continuing up. So if you feel like you're already there, you can buy the whole course open and you can maximise your utility that at the end of it, and yeah, like I said, the group coaching is amazing if I do say so myself. And then obviously, there's always the one to one. So if you really feel like man, I need some one to one action. There's limited spots per month, because it is so in depth and so personal. But I really hope this helps. Just believe in your body. You are literally looking at someone for almost six years could not even get a whiff of two pink lines. And I walked away with two beautiful baby boys. And not only that, I walked away with my health. I walked away with mental clarity. And I am such a better mother because of all of this. So my mission is to really like the pregnancy is the cherry on top, the baby is the unicorn, but everything that you're going to gain as a woman I feel is like the piece of the resistance. Right? So that is me. You guys have a beautiful night, wherever you are. It's almost five o'clock here in Hawaii. So if you're not in Hawaii, I know it's late if you're on the East Coast, get your ass to bed because that's her. That is one very key thing is Sleep, sleep sleep. And I'll see you guys soon. Bye. Thank you once again for tuning in to the finding fertility podcast. If you're loving this podcast, please leave us a rating in review and let us know how this podcast is supporting you to get steps closer to creating your dream family. I hope you have a beautiful weekend and we will see you next Friday for another episode of the finding fertility podcast.

Transcribed by

Let's Do This Together 💚


🦩 Get Steps Closer to Getting & Staying Pregnant with EIGHT FREE DAYS within the Fertility Formula

Connect with Monica over on:

🎙 Subscribe on your favourite podcast platform:⁠⁣⁣⁣


Anything written or said about health and diet are my opinions, that I have formed over the years, through trial and error, study, reading, listening and observing. What worked for me may not work for you. I am not a doctor, nutritionist or dietician and all medical advice should be gotten from a qualified professional. Product recommendations are based on what I used during my infertility journey or wish I had.


50% Complete

Learn THE steps you need to take to improve your fertility & prepare your body for the arrival of the baby you've been dreaming of.

🦩 Improve your egg quality

🦩 Reduce your chance of a miscarriage

🦩 Increase your chances of getting pregnant without drugs or expensive treatments