Case Studies With Iva Keene – #35
Leading fertility expert Iva Keene discusses 4 case studies from real life fertility clients. Iva has worked with hundreds of couples from around the world and has seen it all. In her assessment of couples she analyzes over 150 health and data points which helps her uncover underlying imbalances that are contributing to fertility struggles. She discusses both female and male factor issues and talks about the lifestyle changes and health issues and how she treated them. All couples had multiple issues and went on to have healthy babies. You will feel inspired by listening to this interview. Iva drives home the point that with proper care and guidance you can restore your reproductive health.
About Episode Guest
Dr. Iva Keene, MRMed. ND. is a Swiss-Based, Australian-trained naturopath, internationally recognized natural fertility expert and creator of the award-winning NFP Program and the NFP 16-Week Fertility Coaching Program. She is a co-founder of Natural-Fertility-Prescription.com, and the author of over 100 published articles on treating infertility naturally.
The NFP programs are designed to help you address the underlying causes of infertility and improve your ability to have a healthy conception, pregnancy, birth and baby. You can find more about Iva at her website and by following her on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook.
Iva holds a Masters in Reproductive Medicine from The University of New South Wales in Sydney Australia – one of Australia’s leading research and teaching universities. This post-graduate qualification extended Iva’s pre-existing expertise and clinical experience in the natural treatment of infertility and complements her naturopathic and health sciences skills in reproductive medicine.
Iva is dedicated to educating couples about safe, effective, and affordable ways to improve fertility naturally and without IVF. In addition to her consulting and publishing activities, she is frequently invited abroad to coach and consult with clients. Iva has also presented a case study on reversing male infertility at the largest natural medicine congress in the world.
Interview with Iva Keene - Episode Highlights
I listed some of the cases Iva and I discussed. Listen to the podcast to get the full details.
Case #1: Couple in their 30’s. He had poor sperm: motility, quality, count and morphology. She miscarried. They considered ICSI but Iva asked that they continue following her protocol. Resulted in twins.
Case #2: She was 41. He was 38. Secondary infertility. History of ICSI and miscarriage. She presented with a lot of different antibodies that cause miscarriage. She had poor methylation that was making it difficult for her liver to detox toxins. She also had elevated TSH and low AMH. Three months into the program got pregnant. Had a healthy baby boy.
Case #3: She was 39. He was 48. Secondary infertility with history of miscarriages and ovarian cysts. Needed to determine what was causing the miscarriages. Found that she was gluten intolerant and that they were regularly exposed to insecticides. They also were regularly exposed to chemicals at work as well as a lot of electro magnetic radiation. Iva worked with them to address metabolic and immune issues and change their lifestyle. They continued to use the protocol to have several healthy children.
Case Study #4: She was 42. He was 46. They lived in Africa and regularly used insecticides. Had a history of Malaria and treated it with Malaria meds. They also had elevated mercury and aluminum. He had varicocele surgery and testicular reconstruction. Both had to be treated for poor methylation cycles and heavy metal toxicity. Lifestyle adjustments had to be made. They used IVF and had a healthy baby girl.
Selected Links from the Episode
0:27 Charlene Lincoln: Welcome back to another episode of The Fertility Hour. I’m your host Charlene Lincoln, and today we have a very special guest—our own Dr. Iva Keene. Iva Keene is an accredited naturopathic physician and natural fertility specialist with a Masters in Reproductive Medicine, based in Verbier, Switzerland. Iva and her team have developed award-winning natural fertility programs since 2007. She has helped hundreds of previously infertile couples have children with her prescriptive natural approach that’s tailored to each couple’s case and condition. In 2013, Iva was named by Women’s Health Magazine as one of “15 Women Who Will Change Your Health.” She’s also been featured on The Wellness Hour, Mercola.com, Pregnancy Corner, and many other health and fertility publications. So, welcome Iva. Thank you so much for being here.
Iva Keene: Hi, Charlene. Thank you so much for having me.
1:52 CL: Thank you.
IK: And thank you for the introduction.
1:28 CL: Sure. Obviously, I am a huge fan of Iva and I’ve said this before because I’ve interviewed her a few times. You know, I felt like she was very pivotal in helping me get pregnant at 41, give birth to my daughter at 42, so I’m eternally grateful. And obviously, I’m just a big fan of what she does. I really believe in, I guess, your message and how you’re helping couples all around the world, so I thank you for that.
IK: Thank you. And yes, thank you for the opportunity to be here today and discuss some cases with you.
2:04 CL: Okay, great. I love that. These are real life case studies? The clients that you’re helping.
IK: Real life.
2:12 CL: Okay. So yeah, absolutely. This is cool because this is stuff that’s happening every day to couples and we’ll see how you’re helping them how you kind of assess these different situations.
IK: Sure, yeah. So I thought we can just look over a few when you told me to prepare a couple. It was really hard to choose. I’ve got a selection of cases here so that you can understand better how the program works in different situations.
So in the first case we’re going to look at this couple was struggling to get pregnant for two years before they came to see me. She was 33 at the time and he was 32. They had one failed ICSI procedure a year before they came to see me and he was diagnosed with poor sperm quality, so poor sperm morphology, also low sperm count and poor sperm motility. His morphology, in fact, was 1 percent which is very low, using the latest World Health Organization charts where you need to have at least 4 percent for the sperm to be normal.
So this is what they were presenting with. They had a really healthy diet and I think this is important to highlight because we do have lots of people who contact us asking, saying like, “Oh, I’m really eating healthily. Why am I not getting pregnant? If diet is so important, then that should be enough.” And I think this case will illustrate that that’s not always the case. In spite of their healthy diet, they both enjoyed coffee and they tended to have 1 to 3 cups a day. Eighty percent of their food was organic which is fantastic, and they stopped drinking alcohol but in the past they used to enjoy quite a bit. And also they liked tinned tuna which we know is a source of mercury, so that was not something they were aware of.
In terms of their lifestyle, she stopped smoking three years prior to starting to work with us. So history of smoking means that there are potentially some heavy metals present in the systems that needs to be assessed first to see if a chelation product may be required. They also traveled a lot for work so they were exposed to quite a bit of radiation and they also had lots of x-rays and MRIs for various incidents and accidents in the past. So these two had to be accounted for.
So they started a program and first we had to do some investigations. We discovered that they did have some genetic polymorphisms that had to be addressed and unfortunately I’ve yet to see one genetic report where a person has everything in green, so that is no genetic mutation present. They did a hair mineral analysis to assess for heavy metal toxicities. We also looked at food intolerances and they implemented everything. I must say this couple was very diligent. I have never seen anyone follow the program this closely. They actually got pregnant. So they came to see me in January 2014. They were pregnant in June 2014 and, unfortunately, miscarried in August 2014 which of course for them was devastating, and so they had decided to plan another ICSI because they thought, “Well, this is our only chance.” I had advised them to wait for a few months after the miscarriage before trying to get pregnant again either naturally or via ICSI. Then they actually contacted me in December 2014 to say that they were pregnant again and six weeks later they had the first scan and there were two heartbeats. In September 2015, they had two twins, so a boy and a girl, so twins. They didn’t end up using ICSI which is fantastic.
But this case stuck with me especially because I remember how disappointed they were. They also did quite a few sperm analyses along the way to just measure the improvements. There were improvements but they were just small incremental improvements and they found that really frustrating and then I think it’s important to point out that when you’re using natural methods, they’re really gentle, and they do work but they work with the body. You don’t get a fast result like if you go for IVF where they use drugs and they can time everything and control everything and you have your results pretty quickly. So it pays to be patient and to stick to the program. The body is self-healing and self-repairing.
7:52 CL: Well, congratulations to them. I’m curious with the heavy metal test. What did that indicate?
IK: There were no elevated metals, so we did not need to do any chelation and since she had quit smoking, she was not going to start that again. So it means that she was obviously doing lots of other good things so that the body was able to clean itself from the metals that you do get from the cigarettes. One cigarette, I think, contains like 4000 different chemicals and out of those, you have all the toxic metals in there.
8:35 CL: Right. I’m curious, when he would get a sperm analysis, would he get a DNA fragmentation test or is it a different test that you recommend?
IK: That depends on the lab but we do ask for DNA fragmentation and we also ask for sperm antibodies. So a lot of the clinics will first just do the regular sperm analysis and then if there are abnormalities there, they’ll start looking for DNA fragmentation and for sperm antibodies. But we like to get all this information from the start so we know how to tailor the treatment.
9:18 CL: One last question. I was told to really get a thorough sperm analysis that you should go to an IVF clinic because they’re the ones that kind of do this protocol on a daily basis.
IK: Yeah, I think it’s important that you get your sperm analyzed at a proper clinic. There are lots of services that are offering sperm analysis and home tests and so on, but I think it’s crucial that you go to a place where they can really look after the sample, so the sample doesn’t get damaged or contaminated or doesn’t expire and then you get false results.
9:58 CL: Alright. Thank you. So, ready for the next one.
IK: Sure. Alright. So the next case, this couple came to see me in March 2014. I’ve selected cases where babies have been born and are doing great. She was 41 at the time and he was 38 at the time. They were diagnosed with secondary infertility and they have been trying to get pregnant for a couple of years before they came to see us. They also had history of ICSI procedures, so they had two ICSI procedures and also one miscarriage from a natural pregnancy. They had more treatments planned but would have preferred not to use them. She had lots of different antibodies that can cause miscarriages like anticardiolipin antibodies. She had elevated NK cells. Also the embryos when she did the ICSI procedures, showed DNA fragmentation. So they said that this has to do with the poor egg quality.
So before going further with more procedures, they wanted to optimize the egg quality and address the immune system so that this is not going to be an issue again. Before we did anything, first thing we did was to check for genetic polymorphism and she did have very poor methylation which was predisposing her liver to accumulating toxins and not being able to detox properly. When that happens in a person, the immune system gets involved to kind of help with the cleanup process, but the immune system can only use the only tool it has, which is to produce antibodies to fight and defend.
So with this case, what we did also is change a lot in their diet and in their lifestyle. They also used to drink a lot of coffee with sugar-white sugar. Sixty percent of their diet was organic, so still better than nothing but could have been better. They were also having lots of sugary-type breakfasts in the morning which we don’t recommend. He was just drinking beer, she was off alcohol. In addition to that, they were using just regular cleaning products, regular personal care products which we know contain lots of chemicals that can disrupt hormonal balance and can also predispose the miscarriages and interfere with sperm production as well. Her TSH as well was elevated. It was over 2 and her AMH was 1.46 which is also considered low. The sperm was okay. It wasn’t sperm donor quality but it was considered okay by the clinics. So they got pregnant in June 2014, three months into the program. They had a healthy baby boy born in February 2015. They didn’t end up using the second IVF, so she was 41 at the time of her son’s birth. Again, by making all the dietary and lifestyle changes supporting the egg health with the supplements as well as working on the immune system. We also had to do a food intolerance test, remove all the foods she was intolerant to; checked for heavy metal toxicity, addressed the methylation; support the hormonal balance and when all of this was in place, they were able to get pregnant naturally.
14:26 CL: In that case, a lot of the attention was on her, obviously. There wasn’t anything that really stood out for him except he had to make some lifestyle changes, giving up the beer.
IK: Yeah. Lifestyle changes as well as supplements. We support in every couple, just making sure that they all get the nutritional baseline, so all the key nutrients that you need for good quality egg and sperm, need to be there. Then on top of that, supporting the hormonal balance in both. This is to ensure that the body is able to produce good quality eggs and sperm. Then on top of that, if there are DNA issues or if there are morphology issues, we need to use specific herbs and nutrients to address that as well. So yeah, that was the second case.
I can move on to the third one. This couple is very dear to my heart because I’ve been working with them for, what, we connected in 2015 but stayed in touch and they have used the program also for subsequent pregnancies and they kept me informed about that. That’s really sweet. This couple, as I said, came to see me also in January 2015. At that time, she was 39 and he was 48. She had history of miscarriages, ovarian cysts. They were diagnosed with secondary infertility. They had one child delivered with a C-section. She had a couple of miscarriages following that and one chemical pregnancy. We checked for her antibodies which can predispose to miscarriages and they were all negative which was great, but the question was, what was going on? Why can’t they get pregnant?
In terms of their diet and the lifestyle, again, coffee features there. They also enjoyed some Coca-Cola which also contains caffeine and lots of sugar. I don’t think many people are aware of that. So, the soda drinks. Fifty percent of their diet was organic and their diet was okay. They were still consuming gluten, they were consuming dairy so that had to be adjusted. It turned out that she had a wheat and gluten intolerance which was quite strong. In terms of the pollution exposure, they were drinking unfiltered water, which we don’t recommend. She was using hair color, but they also working with some of the chemicals. It was their occupation. They had lots of electromagnetic radiation around them and they used insecticides because of the location. They were living in a subtropical country. So, lots of insects and it’s difficult not to just use nothing there. We had to give them suggestions for natural pesticides which are not going to be harming their health and fertility. They had to really remove all of these chemicals from their environment.
In terms of the general health, they have presented with some liver issues, gallbladder issues. There were some metabolic issues as well and immune issues. So these two had to be addressed before they could start trying to get pregnant. They got pregnant in March, so 3 months into the program as well of the same year and had a healthy baby girl. So this is after a series of miscarriages and chemical pregnancies. So yeah, what we had to do there is, first of all, clean up the diet and especially for her, given that she had gluten and wheat intolerance she wasn’t aware of, because she thought that “Surely I would know. Every time I would eat a piece of bread or a slice of pizza, I would be running for the bathroom or I’d have serious symptoms.” But she had no symptoms, so she didn’t know. By taking that out, she just improved her health and fertility and obviously the immune reaction and response, and that plus all the other supplements we prescribed and removal of all the chemicals from their environment has enabled them to have a healthy child and like I said, they kept using the program after for more children.
19:50 CL: That’s great. That’s like a good point about food intolerances. People sort of confuse food intolerances with allergies, so they think that if they eat a certain food and they’re allergic to it, they would have, just an example, like a rash around the mouth or maybe tongue swelling or something that’s quite severe that would capture your attention. But it can be quite subtle, right? And you wouldn’t really know until you completely omit that food that you’re not feeling your best but you’re just so used to it because you’ve probably been eating that food since you were a toddler, especially wheat and gluten that’s in everything. So, that’s interesting.
And you bring up about the Coca-Cola. I mean, here in America even though soda consumption is probably quite high, I think most of us are aware that there’s tons of refined sugar and caffeine. I think that message is, I don’t know, I would be surprised if people really didn’t know that. It’s maybe you choose to not think that it’s that bad or whatever. And Coke, I think, depending on the country they make a little bit different formula but here it’s like one can of Coca-Cola I think has like 35 grams of sugar. That’s like 10+ teaspoons of white sugar, which is crazy because sometimes people drink those or they drink the diet Coke which has artificial sweetener thinking maybe that that’s a better alternative.
IK: When you go to restaurants, you still so many tables with Coca-Cola and kids drinking it.
21:33 CL: I know.
IK: Sugar being served up to them. But yeah, even though some people may be aware, it’s quite interesting that you still come across people who smoke or drink Coca-Cola or soda drinks and even though a huge proportion of our clients are very health conscious people, they’re eating organic foods, they don’t have sugar, they’re caffeine-free, alcohol-free, they’re still those who do avoid those other things.
22:13 CL: Absolutely. I’m glad you brought up the insecticide because I think that there’s people also who have lawns and they don’t necessarily use insecticides but they have gardeners who come and maintain their lawns. I’ve gone to friends’ houses, they have these beautiful lawns, and you think, “I don’t think that that gardener is using natural stuff.” I mean, they’re using things like Roundup and things to control the weeds which it is effective in controlling the weeds but people just aren’t applying it themselves, but you are exposed to it so that’s something you might want to ask the person who’s taking of your garden if that’s not you.
I went to Croatia a couple summers ago. I was a little bit horrified when we went to a friend’s house and she had Raid plug-ins. I mean, I had my baby there. I was like, “I can’t even be in this house.” I’m like, “What are you doing?” But it’s totally normal there.
IK: It is. Yeah, especially on the islands in the summer because you just get so many mosquitoes and you also get those scary tiger mosquitoes they say that can carry all sorts of diseases because they come over from Africa. So people are just scared of being bitten by them and yeah, I know. The plug-in is nasty. Pesticides. I mean I know enough. I’ve seen my dad do it once but when I had my daughter, there is no way. We just used the net/a cot net and we just kept her room always in the dark and some natural repellents. And that was fine.
23:57 CL: Yeah, the natural repellents actually work quite effectively, so thank goodness for that.
IK: And they’re safe. Always think about what else can you use. I mean, those nets are pretty effective.
24:11 CL: Oh yeah.
IK: You have a net for the pram or for the cot or even for your bed. You just hang it above from the ceiling and they’re fine.
24:20 CL: Those are very fine. I’ve been in mosquito-infested areas and as long as you have your net, you feel safe. But also the natural repellents during the day or when it’s dusk and the mosquitoes come out to feed on you. I’ve got really good luck with the natural repellents.
IK: Oh, good. Yeah. Likewise. Good experience.
Alright, so moving on to the next case. Okay, this couple actually lived in Africa. So they lived in an area with lots of mosquitoes and other bugs. So they were using quite a few pesticides, insecticides and at the time when they came to see me, she was 42 and he was 46. He had varicocele surgery. He also had a testicle reconstruction after an accident and that has actually really impaired his testes’ ability to produce good quality sperm, which was tricky from the onset. They started trying to get pregnant four years before seeing me. She’s been using progesterone suppositories. She did have one miscarriage, so natural conception a few years before seeing us. Doctors were not really sure whether she had polycystic ovaries or not. There was also history of malaria, so he had malaria in the past. The treatment for malaria and some of the malaria prevention medication is basically pesticides. That’s where they use Lariam, for example, is low-dose pesticide. When I was 18, I traveled to a place where malaria was common and so I took it because back then I had no idea about what’s in these drugs. I just followed the recommendations. I had horrible side effects and it was only later when I started naturopathy and we got to pharmacology and started looking at malaria drugs that I realized that everything that was happening to me post Lariam use was the side effect of this drug. But I had no idea. And all these symptoms that I had, no one really knew what was going on. So it’s a nasty drug. Not to mention it’s like any other pesticide, it just wreak hormones. It causes complete chaos. But when you live in a place like that, it’s very difficult because you don’t want to have malaria and you don’t want to be treated for it all the time either.
So, okay. So they had on top of all of that, as if that was not enough, they had elevated mercury and aluminum. That was him as well. She also had Graves’ disease which is an autoimmune thyroid condition. So she was hyperthyroid but she was swinging back and forth between hyper and hypo, which made it very difficult for the doctor to treat it with thyroid medication. And also because of where they lived, it was very difficult for them to get all the tests done and to go to the closest European country for investigations. That was another hurdle to overcome.
In terms of their diet, they were consuming a lot of tuna as well which probably explains some of the mercury that was found in the hair. They also enjoyed a few glasses of wine. They were drinking coffee. They were eating no fruit. So, no fruit whatsoever, which is not ideal. I mean, you shouldn’t overindulge in fruit because of the fructose but you also need some especially the low GI variety. Then on top of that, they had the usual exposure to wireless; use of computers, use of cellphones. That were the highlights of their case.
Now, here too, we had to first of all deal with the toxic metals. Then before we could tackle the toxic metals, we had to make sure the methylation pathways were working so we did the genetic screen for that, for genetic polymorphisms because if your methylation is not working and you force your body into a detox, that just makes it worse because it’s like if you have a bottleneck and you’re pouring more and more stuff into that where it’s not going to make you go anywhere, it’s just that it’s piling up and creating more of a bottleneck. So we had to make sure methylation works first, then we had to optimize the egg quality and the sperm quality as much as we could. However, for him it was very difficult to follow the program because of his work. He was just traveling all the time and it was very difficult for them even to be together around the time of ovulation. So they decided that they would use IVF from the start, and they had some sperm frozen.
So they actually conceived in March 2015. They came to see me in January 2014, first time. It took him a while. But they had a healthy baby girl born in December 2015. It’s been quite a journey for them. It was a conception with IVF. But all the preparation they did has helped with that outcome and, yeah, I’m not sure if they still live in that same part of the world which they really enjoyed. So, a slightly different case. Here we really had to focus on the antibodies. We did extensive thyroid antibody work, thyroid function work which actually improved once the heavy metals have been dealt with and ovulation had improved.
31:17 CL: They’re so fortunate that they did that work. Obviously, IVF clinics aren’t going to check the heavy metals and do a gene report and find out about methylation cycles. I think that’s where a lot of couples and I know they come to you and say, “Oh, I’ve had 4-5 failed IVF cycles at this point.” That’s commonplace, right? That’s not rare.
IK: No, not at all. We do see it a lot because they’re just told, okay, well most likely the first cycle won’t work. That’s what everyone gets told. Because the doctors are also trying to get to know you and your body and see how your body is reacting to different drugs and they can then adjust the protocol for the next cycle and so they finetune it and then your chances increase and then they see, “Oh, actually we need to do this next time.” So it’s through this fine-tuning process that in the end they get it right. It’s very difficult to do that from the onset.
But for this couple, it worked because they just really worked hard on improving their egg and sperm quality. I know that this lady flew to Spain with an empty suitcase to buy frozen organic meat and veg to bring back to Africa because it was just not available there, so that they can eat healthy food. Same with personal care products, cosmetics. That’s dedication. She had to go there anyway for her work but at the same time, to work at it so hard and to really try and implement as much as you can is commendable. I always admire couples like that who really, really try to make it work, and they work really hard from their end and then they get the result, so I’m super happy.
33:28 CL: I know. I love their commitment and it paid off, obviously.
33:33 CL: That’s great.
IK: So as you can see, you can also use the program to help with IVF and IVF prep, if you had to use it.
So the next case is a case of sperm antibodies and I think it’s important to bring this up because it does happen a lot. We do see it a lot and unfortunately, the opinion by the experts is that, there’s nothing much you can do about it. You need to use ICSI, you need to get the sperm washed. You basically need to wash all the antibodies away and then you can use that sperm for ICSI. However, if the antibodies are interfering with spermatogenesis, so the maturation of the sperm over the course of its maturation time which is 76 to 90 days, then you got to wonder about the quality of that sperm even if the antibodies are washed away physically. What scarring did it leave behind? Because it was attacking it for three months. So how well could it develop if it has been under constant attack? Plus, if your immune system is in overdrive because it’s fighting something, then your adrenals are working really hard to support that so the whole body is just drained, depleted of energy and nutrients. You’ve got to wonder about that too and how well those cells have been nourished.
In any case, this couple came to see me in 2016 in July. At the time, he was 36, she was 37. He had very high DNA fragmentation. He also had a white cell count and he had a really chronic genital inflammation and infection which has caused the fragmentation, so damage to the sperm. He was put on antibodies for 60 days and anti-inflammatories. Now, that’s a very, very long time. This has obviously had a really negative impact on his digestive system. His stomach, he developed also candida and has made his hay fever and asthma worse. So had that atopic predisposition there already. After he had finish the antibiotics, six weeks after he had another sperm analysis and everything was worse, but this time he also had 72 percent anti-sperm antibodies, so that’s very high. So now, the infection was gone but because he had such a longstanding infection that went undetected, his immune system rather than just destroying the bacteria started destroying the sperm as well because the bacteria was attacking the sperm and interfering with the sperm.
So now, we had to first of all look at what else is upsetting this immune system. So if someone already has asthma and hay fever, it means that their immune system doesn’t like lots of things and is very quick to attack its own tissue. So you have to be very strict there and you have to remove everything that the person is intolerant to. So, the usual offenders are gluten and dairy. Then we also had to work on the adrenal health. We had to support his stress levels which were extremely high from his work and he was also smoking 4 cigarettes per week. It wasn’t daily but still, cigarette smoke is not ideal. In fact, I’ve had a couple of couples who were told by the IVF clinics that they will not do an IVF on them unless they quit smoking and there are no longer nicotine patches. That’s how strict they’ve gotten now because obviously they can see there is such a huge correlation between smoking and the sperm quality. She would have less than a cigarette a week, I guess just to keep him company from time to time. So that had to go straight away including all the alcohol and coffee which they both enjoyed. But they were eating 80 percent organic food which is good. So that was kind of providing the counterbalance to what was going on.
So, he was put on antibodies protocol, supporting sperm production as well as boosting testosterone. We also supported the immune system and the liver because they really did drink a lot. They had to stop smoking and start doing some meditation and some yoga just to find that balance in life and especially due to the really high stress levels. So they got pregnant naturally in May 2017. They came to see me in July 2016. It was 10 months really before they got pregnant. And yeah, so when you’re dealing with the immune system, it does take a minimum of 6 months to address it because it takes 6 months for the immunocomplexes to break down. So it’s not a quick fix. But his sperm analysis after the 6 months was normal and there were no sperm antibodies present. So the body had corrected itself. But that’s how long he had to do the program for.
It’s just important, again, that you remember with the natural approach, it takes time. It’s not a quick fix. It doesn’t take an eternity but the 4 months is a bare minimum. Most couples get pregnant somewhere between 6 months to a year. That’s where we see most pregnancies occur. Some can happen also sooner. But yeah, it’s important that you bear that in mind that when you’re doing a natural program, you are doing it for longer than just one cycle.
40:37 CL: If you really think about it, one year is a quick timeline. It just seems like all the couples that you are dealing with, as we review the case studies, questions come in on the webinar, I mean these are really complex cases. This is years of different imbalances going on and the gentleman, the inflammatory groin disease, was that kind of a rare thing or does that happen for men?
IK: Well, he had just bacteria in there. Chronic low-grade infection that wasn’t strong enough for him to have fever and general malaise. But when you have something for a long time, humans are very adaptable. You just get used to being in a certain way.
41:25 CL: He was symptomatic though. He knew that that something was going on, that he sought medical help for.
IK: Yeah. I guess when they started trying to get pregnant, they did a sperm analysis and that’s when this came up. They knew they had to address it. Luckily, they did because yeah, as I mentioned previously, the antibodies can really damage the sperm as well, so just washing them away may not be enough.
42:00 CL: Right I loved being educated on that because I know that a lot of people feel that way. “Well, you know, the IVF clinics can do so much with the sperm.” But like you said, if antibodies have been attacking the sperm for, you know, who knows how long, there’s going to be damage to it. And also, I love how you brought up the mind-body connection, how they did yoga and meditation. I know that that’s part of your program and obviously the mind-body connection, there’s more and more evidence how important that is.
IK: It’s super important. I think if you speak to any of the spiritual leaders, they say daily meditation is really the key to optimal health and well-being, but also to find that… You know, it depends. Each person is different. Some people have that spiritual side to them or questioning things and thinking about things from a different perspective rather than just the physical plane and the physical interactions and wondering about life, where it comes from, what happens after we die and people will ask themselves those sort of questions. They’re kind of more open to exploring that world and getting some answers for themselves. But yeah, meditation is fantastic. I do TM and it really makes a huge difference when I do meditate than days where I don’t have time or I tell myself I don’t have time. I need to prioritize it.
Do we have time for some more cases?
43:46 CL: Well, yeah. I think at least one more.
IK: Okay. Tough decision. Alright. I’ll go with this one. Alright. So this couple came to see me in 2016 and they’ve been trying for three years to get pregnant. She was 35 at the time, he was 37 at the time. She was diagnosed with endometriosis, low progesterone. She had irregular cycles. She had low AMH. They had one child from before, so it was secondary infertility. Then she had a miscarriage at 8 weeks in the past and then also history of cyst and polyps. She had a failed IVF and her tubes were luckily clear, so there were no issues here. She had quite a few surgeries to remove endometrial adhesions, so the adhesions from the endometriosis, and she also had lots of large cysts surgically removed. So, a lot. A lot was going on for her there. He had Gilbert’s Syndrome which is a liver condition. This is actually one case where her AMH went up after doing the program. So, went up in 5 months from 1.1 to 4.0. That was actually quite a big jump and she was taking quite a few supplements to help with that and we also supplemented with DHEA for her to get all her hormones balanced.
In terms of pollution, they were using microwave ovens daily which is not something we recommend. Also, hair color. There were lots of plastic in their home and at work. She had been exposed to a lot of fresh paint because she decided to paint the house. They were also drinking unfiltered water and they were using termite pesticides which are really nasty and I had worked with another couple who used also termite pesticides and actually they could not hold on to their pregnancy until they moved to a different place where they were not exposed to termite pesticides and they were able to have a health pregnancy. That’s how powerful it is. And there was also a history of smoking cigarettes. See? So it’s still around even though most people don’t.
So, let’s see. Was there anything else that stood out? So hay fever with breakouts and rashes and blisters for her. So again, the immune system was in quite overdrive there. Thyroid was fine. Sperm was actually fine too. The cycles were very irregular. It was very difficult for her to pinpoint when she’s ovulating and natural conception was quite difficult.
So they did a program and 5 months later, they got pregnant and then they had a beautiful baby boy who she actually shared her story with us and you can read her story on the Success Stories on our website. The boy was born on July 2017. Five months on the program, that’s how long it took for that AMH to shift and also for her cycle to regulate and body to bring everything back into balance. She was really worried because both her sister and her mother had an early menopause, so she was concerned that that would be the case for her too. So at the time she was 35 and her mother went into an early menopause at 38.
48:21 CL: It is early.
IK: Yeah. When that happens in families, you do really worry a lot.
48:27 CL: A quick question about the termite pesticide because here in the United States, I’m not a termite expert but it seems like if you have termites, they do that thing called tenting your house. My mother-in-law had it and then they fill the house with chemicals and then they tell you with all confidence that when they remove the tent, your house is fine, you can kind of move back in. Was that the situation or was it like they do something like self-application of it? It all seems kind of sketchy to me but they tell customers it’s fine, it’s not harmful to you once the air is out.
IK: I know they fumigate places. So maybe in that case, it is something that just kills on contact and then it’s gone. I’m not really 100 percent sure. I know that all those other pesticides you have which act as surface sprays which are still active three months later, you got to worry about those because you forget that you spray your kitchen with that and then you walk around barefoot and actually the feet can absorb things very quickly. I mean, do a test one night. Put a drop of peppermint oil on your foot and wait to see how quickly you’ll taste it in your mouth. It’s quite incredible. So, that suggests a quick test to show you how quickly a chemical can travel from your foot to basically your whole system for you to be able to taste it in your mouth.
50:14 CL: Okay, so we covered some great case studies. I learned a lot, yeah. Maybe we can have a part 2 because I know you have probably hundreds of case studies that we can discuss. They’re really interesting. I love how you’re able to kind of dissect things. I just don’t know anyone personally who goes in that much depth to kind of understand everything that’s going on with an individual but I guess just over the last decade or so, you’ve just seen so many different cases. You kind of know what to hone in on. And when someone starts working with you, they fill out a diagnostic form and it’s over 150 different health and data points, isn’t it?
IK: It is. It’s very long but we just need all that information to see those termite pesticides. I mean, if you don’t ask for it and do all this hard work, taking supplements, eating organic diet but then you just fumigate your whole house and then you go back in the next day, well you’re kind of, “I’m doing all the good work and wasting all your money on all the supplements and all the organic food.” So you need to be aware of all these factors that impact your health.
51:33 CL: I’m assuming but I think most people who work with you appreciate that. Because you are not the first protocol. They’ve been having struggles and challenges for a little bit and to have someone who really asks those types of questions, you feel like, “Oh, okay. This person is really going to go deep and figure out what’s going on with me.” Because most people when they come to you, they’re sort of baffled at that point, right? They’re like, “I don’t understand why I can’t hold on to a pregnancy. Why is this happening with me?”
IK: They are baffled but they can also be quite overwhelmed, you know, when we start going, “your shampoo needs to go, your pesticide needs to go. Your diet needs to change.” Initially they can be like, “Oh my God.” Basically an overhaul of everything. But that’s necessary in some cases. But yeah, they’re extremely grateful once they actually understand that that’s impacting their health and their fertility and that it makes a difference. It’s the little things you do on a daily basis that make all the difference. It’s like when you try to lose weight. If you eat carefully every day and you exercise every day, you won’t see much improvement from Monday to Tuesday. But from January to July, you will. It’s the same thing with your fertility and it’s the same thing with your health. It’s just repeating those little steps on a daily basis. This is what builds that strong, robust health and fertility every time.
52:53 CL: Absolutely. I think helping a baby today, it may be preventing cancer in your future by just being aware of all the chemicals that we’re exposed to because they really add up in our lives. Okay, thank you so much, Iva. I really appreciate it.
IK: Pleasure, Charlene. Thanks for having me.
53:11 CL: Thank you. Have a great rest of your day.
IK: Thanks. You too. Bye-bye.