10 Ways to Boost Your Odds of Getting Pregnant

PHOTO: Here are some tips to staying fertile.
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Some women get pregnant effortlessly; others spend months or even years trying to conceive. Why? Experts concede it's still largely a mystery.

"We have hints—factors like when your mom went through menopause and how regular your cycles are—but they don't tell us everything," says Sarah Berga, MD, chair of ob-gyn and women's health at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, N.C. "So much of it depends on the individual."

That said, there are ways you and your partner could increase your chances of getting pregnant. Try these lifestyle tweaks.

How to Boost Your Odds of Getting Pregnant

Kick your soda addiction

Women who drink two or more servings of any type of soda a day have about a 16% lower fertility rate than women who don't drink any, according to a 2012 study co-authored by Lauren Wise, ScD.

How to Boost Your Odds of Getting Pregnant

Go to bed early

Research suggests that women undergoing IVF treatments see the best results when they regularly clock seven to eight hours of sleep a night.

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How to Boost Your Odds of Getting Pregnant

Be a better brusher

Gum disease can add an extra two months to the amount of time it takes to become pregnant, 2011 Australian research shows. Make sure you get your teeth checked before trying to conceive.

How to Boost Your Odds of Getting Pregnant

Exercise, but not too much

Thin women who work out vigorously five hours a week or more are 42 percent less likely to get pregnant than those who don't exercise as strenuously, Wise's research suggests.

How to Boost Your Odds of Getting Pregnant

Don't let him turn into a couch potato

Guys who watch more than 20 hours of TV weekly have a 44% lower sperm count than those who watch almost none, a 2013 Harvard study showed.

How to Boost Your Odds of Getting Pregnant

Get a handle on chronic anxiety

"If your stress levels become high enough, you'll simply stop ovulating," Dr. Berga explains.

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How to Boost Your Odds of Getting Pregnant

Try giving up gluten

A recent Columbia University study suggests that 6 percent of women with unexplained infertility have celiac disease.

"They produce antibodies that may interfere with the development of the placenta," says study author Peter Green, MD.

After subjects went on a gluten-free diet, they were able to conceive within a year.

How to Boost Your Odds of Getting Pregnant

Encourage him to lose weight

Men who are overweight or obese are more likely to have low total sperm counts and concentration, according to a study from 2013.

How to Boost Your Odds of Getting Pregnant

...And quit smoking

Lighting up leads to lower sperm quality, according to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, which is why it recommends quitting smoking if trying to conceive.

How to Boost Your Odds of Getting Pregnant

...And move his phone

Men who store phones on their belts or in their pants pockets have lower sperm counts, according to a review published by the Environmental Working Group, possibly due to the electromagnetic waves they emit.

This article originally appeared on Health.com.

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