All about your ovarian reserve -☝️ Improve EGG QUALITY VIDEO SERIES ⬆️
Welcome to the first video in my miniseries dedicated to helping you improve your egg quality. This is going to be a video series that’s dedicated to helping you improve everything having to do with your egg quality. So improving your AMH, improving your ovarian reserve, and bettering your egg quality. If you’re trying to get pregnant, often what you need to do is improve your egg quality and ovarian reserve. It’s that simple.
Especially if you’re over 35, your egg quality and ovarian reserve are so important to your fertility success. And because of how important they are. That’s why I’m creating this mini series for all of you, because the information that I’m going to share here is so valuable, so important, and I’m going to get into the details, into the nitty gritty, because I don’t want to leave anything out. So make sure you not only watch this video in its entirety, but all the following videos in this mini series.
Hi. I’m Dr. Marc Sklar, also known as The Fertility Expert and welcome to Fertility TV, your YouTube channel dedicated to helping you get pregnant. I’ve been helping couples for over 18 years from all over the world through my online programs and right here if you’re lucky enough to live in San Diego at one of my clinics. And I want to help you too. But before we get started talking about ovarian health and egg quality, I want to just let you all know that my online program, The Hope Fertility Coaching Program, is open for enrollment right now. It was closed for a little bit, but I’ve reopened it because I’ve created more space for all of you. So if you want me and my team to be part of your fertility journey, then I want to invite you to apply to see if you qualify. All you have to do is fill out the form using the link in the description below.
All right. So let’s get started talking about AMH and ovarian reserve and egg quality. This video is going to start off with some basics. I want to start off with some laying the foundation for some important information so that you understand how your body works, how your ovaries work, and what all these hormones mean and do for you and your reproductive function. So let’s talk about AMH first. AMH is a hormone that’s actually produced in the granulosa cells. Now you don’t have to remember all these details, but I just want you to understand logistically how this is done. And this is specifically produced in the granulosa cells that produce your follicles.
So that’s an important piece here as we’re talking about AMH, because that’s always an important hormone and I get lots of questions about this specific hormone when we’re talking about fertility. So AMH actually specifically tests how many follicles you have developing at the beginning of a cycle. I want you all to digest that for a moment, right? Because we’re constantly told that AMH tells us how many eggs we have left, but the reality is it’s telling us how many we have developing at this specific cycle to be used this cycle. Those are very different things. Okay?
Another way that we can see and understand how many follicles we have in a given cycle to be used and how that correlates with your AMH is your antral follicle count also can be talked about as AFC, antral follicle count. And this is determined by doing an ultrasound at the beginning of your cycle, when you start your menstrual cycle, your bleed, so on day one, two, or three, even four, you’re going to do an ultrasound and this will start to show you how many eggs or follicles you have developing that cycle.
Now, your AMH and antral follicle count should line up together, although this doesn’t always happen, which starts to show you that there’s a bit of inconsistency and incongruity, not only between the two, but in what the hormone is telling us. So AMH can be associated with how many follicles we have left, or eggs we have left in an ovary, but it’s not so cut and dry, right? I have talked about this in many other videos in the past. If you want to watch some of those videos where I dive a little bit deeper into AMH and FSH, you can check that out right here. But for the sake of this video, I just want you to understand what AMH means, what it really means, how it correlates with your antral follicle count, and what it might mean for how many eggs you have, not only on this cycle, but in the future.
I often hear that you all are told that you don’t have any more eggs left, or you only have two eggs left, or whatever that number is. Your antral follicle count on a given cycle does not determine how many eggs you have left for the rest of your reproductive life. It’s telling you how many eggs are developing for this specific cycle. Okay? I want that to be clear. So just because you go in for an ultrasound and they see X amount of follicles, it doesn’t mean that’s all you have left or the only amount you’re ever going to produce in the future. That’s what we’re seeing right now.
Now, your AMH is the same. When you get a number for AMH, it’s not telling you, this is how many millions of follicles you have left. It’s telling you that we think that this range of number in the AMH is an acceptable and okay number that tells us you have a sufficient amount of eggs or ovarian reserve to continue to keep trying moving forward in your reproductive journey. But there is no specific correlation. It’s not like if your number is two that that means you have 200 million or 2 million or whatever that number is, right? We don’t have that. We don’t understand that.
And you are made to believe that your AMH is telling you how many eggs you have left saved in that little treasure box in your ovaries. And I’m here to tell you that that’s not the most accurate depiction of the hormone. Is the hormone an important test to have done? Yes. Does it give you an understanding for how your body reproductively is functioning? Absolutely. Is it the end all, be all to your reproductive journey? No. If the number is too high, does that mean you have PCOS? Not necessarily, but it possibly could be. If the number is too low, does that mean you don’t have any more eggs left? No. It means that this is just information that we’re gathering, putting together, and then starting to look at the bigger picture together.
Part of that bigger picture is taking into account AMH, FSH, follicle-stimulating hormone, you’re antral follicle count, what do they see on that ultrasound, and your entire health. What does your menstrual cycle look like? How long is it? Do you ovulate regularly? Have you had children before? Do you have a history of miscarriage? What other health issues do you have? How are all of these things impacting your overall fertility picture? And so we have to look at that together and not just isolate one hormone and get very concerned about what your fertility future is based on that one variable.
Anytime we talk about ovarian health, AMH, egg quality, we have to talk about mitochondrial function. Okay? This is the powerhouse of the cell, the energy stores of the cell. That’s what the mitochondria are and this is crucial, crucial for ovarian health and reproductive function. Your embryo health is predicated on your cells’ ability to generate energy. And this comes from the mitochondria. This is one of the most important pieces of what we need to address in our ovarian rejuvenation and in our egg quality and ovarian reserve process.
So I don’t want you to forget about this word and term mitochondria, because I’m going to bring this up repeatedly, not only in this video as I’ve already done a lot, but in all the other videos in this mini series that you don’t want to miss, because I’m going to dive deeper into this topic in multiple areas.
We also know that as we age, mitochondrial function declines, not just for reproductive health, but for all of our overall health. That’s part of the aging process, the declining aging process, and this equates to more damage to the DNA of the mitochondria, which will affect your AMH and your FSH, which is why mitochondria is so important and restoring proper mitochondrial function is going to have such an important effect on your ovarian health and your fertility future.
So now that we’ve laid a basic foundation for AMH and ovarian health and FSH, what should we be getting tested? What lab tests should we be doing? So the most important lab tests that we need to be doing are AMH, Anti-Müllerian hormone, FSH, follicle-stimulating hormone. And with those, LH, luteinizing hormone, Estradiol, also known as E2. These are the foundational ones. I also believe that we need to have a comprehensive understanding of our overall hormonal picture. And so with that, I do think we need to have our androgens or testosterone, both free and total, DHEA tested, and I do believe we need to start to look at your thyroid as well. So your TSH in addition to that.
These are some of the basic hormones that we need to have tested. And in the next video, I’m going to talk about how you can get those things tested a little bit easier. I want the testing to be made affordable and simple and easy for all of you. It shouldn’t be so difficult to get your lab tests done, which is why I’m going to address that in my next video.
In several of my stories of hope, these are when real women who I’ve worked with share their stories with all of you, we have often talked about AMH, and that is no different than the last story last week that I shared with all of you from Tara. She talked about how she was looking at her AMH, she realized how low it was, and how much that influenced her belief in her own body’s ability to get pregnant. And we also heard that from Donna as well, how important this number, this AMH number, and egg quality ovarian reserve was as well. These are important real tests that need to be done and they give us a lot of information on what we need to do moving forward.
Now I’m not saying that you get those testing done and get all upset like Tara did. I want you to just have a real basic understanding for what it means and understand that there’s so much more that you can do about it, just like they did when they joined my program, right? You all have the ability to change these numbers, but we need to understand the numbers first so that we know what to do about them moving forward.
So what are the variables that influence these numbers? What are the variables that influence egg quality and ovarian reserve and the hormones that we’ve been talking about today? Well, there are many of them and many of them you have control over. You can influence them by changing what you’re doing, right? So the first one that I want to talk about is actually one that you somewhat can change and somewhat can’t. That’s genetics, right? We’re all born with a certain genetic makeup that was passed down to us. Now, the genetic makeup that was passed down to us, we cannot change. What we can change is the way our body handles that information. Right?
So if you think about your genetics as a bank of light switches, so some of us are born, let’s just say, in my case I have a light switch genetics that says I have hazel eyes and brown hair, right. And that I’m going to be X tall. Right? All these light switches are turned on for me, but I don’t have a light switch for blonde hair. And I don’t have a light switch for blue eyes. My dad has blue eyes, but I don’t have blue eyes, that was not passed down to me. Okay? So that’s what I’m talking about with light switches in terms of your genetic makeup.
The same thing is true for how our body functions, how we manage the environment we’re exposed to, how our body deals with the food that we take in, with stress, with environmental toxins, all of these things, right? So what we can’t change is which light switches are on our wall. What we can control is when or if they turn on or off, right? And that is controlled by your actions, your lifestyle, how you manage these things absolutely influences these genetics. So I want you all to understand that you can be proactive and address these things and this is something that is completely in your power to do.
Another variable that’s going to influence your ovarian reserve and egg quality is environmental toxins. I’ve been talking a lot about this recently and I hope that you all are hearing me. The chemicals that you are exposed to absolutely affect your health and reproductive function. They affect your body’s ability to handle stress, to deal with and metabolize the hormones that you have in your body. They also add in extra hormones that you might not want. So we need to address the environmental factors that we are exposed to. Okay? That is also in your control.
Your lifestyle, how you manage your stress, the type of diet you eat, how much you exercise, these are all within your control and things that you can address. And I’ve talked about all of these things in previous videos. If you haven’t watched them, you can just go back and check out some of those videos. What I’m also going to do is post a couple of them right here and leave those links in the description as well, so you can watch them after this video.
Three other variables that I want to talk about as well briefly, and just bring up and mention that absolutely affect AMH, FSH, ovarian reserve, egg quality, all of this, right? How our mitochondrial function, we were talking about mitochondrial health, these absolutely affect how our mitochondria function, right? This is drugs, alcohol, smoking. These all things negatively impact cellular health. They speed up the aging process. They impact your mitochondrial function. We want to minimize those things, right?
Also a big one that many of us don’t pay attention to is your digestive health, your GI function. This has such an impact on your overall health, your genetic makeup or your ability to manage your genetic makeup, and to support your reproductive function. These are all areas that we can control. These are all things that you can improve if you want to and with the right plan and you commit yourself to. These are also things that I discuss and support all of those couples and women who join my programs. These are all areas that we look at and address in a plan that I make up for all of you.
So I want you all to know that it’s possible. You can improve your ovarian health, improve your AMH, and improve your FSH if you understand what’s going on, if you have the right information, and if you create the right plan based on all of that information. I’m so excited about this miniseries, because there’s so much to cover and you can see I’ve just given you a summary and a foundation of what’s to come. I’m going to dive really deep into nutrients, into supplements, into diet, into lifestyle, things that you can be doing right now to improve your ovarian health. And I’m going to do that in this miniseries that’s dedicated to improving your egg quality and ovarian reserve, right? But you’ve got to join me for those videos. So stay tuned for those.
If you want to be proactive and get started on improving your overall health and gather more information on how your body is functioning and what your ovaries are doing, then I invite you to apply for a discovery call with me and my team to see if you’re the right fit to join my programs. It’s really simple. Just use the link in the description below to apply.
All right. The second video in this miniseries is coming out next week, but if you’re not already subscribed to my YouTube channel, then you’re not going to get notified when I put that out. So make sure you hit that bell to subscribe and get notified. If you liked this video, give me a thumbs up. If you found it valuable, I want to know why. Comment below, let me know what you liked about this video, what was helpful for you, or what you think is going to be helpful for you moving forward on your fertility journey. And I want to make sure that you all know to join me for my next video next week where I continue this topic of improving your egg quality and ovarian reserve. Until the next video, I want you all to stay safe, stay healthy, and most of all, that’s right, stay fertile.