How to treat low AMH and High FSH levels to boost fertility with Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture
Ovarian Reserve – What are AMH and FSH?
Every woman is born with a fixed number of eggs. This is known as her ovarian reserve. As a woman grows older, her ovarian reserve decreases until she finally reaches menopause. Anti-mullerian hormone (AMH) and follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) are two female reproductive hormones which can be measured to indicate a woman’s ovarian reserve, and therefore her fertility.
Your ideal AMH and FSH levels will depend on your age, but as a general guide, AMH levels between 22pmol/L and 40pmol/L are considered satisfactory, while AMH levels under 22pmol/L are considered low.
As AMH levels decrease, FSH levels rise, meaning that test results showing low AMH and high FSH are associated with reduced fertility.
Reasons for Low AMH
AMH decreases naturally with age, but some women are genetically predisposed to lower AMH levels, and research suggests that lifestyle also plays a role.
Lifestyle factors which can reduce your AMH levels include:
Being overweight (BMI >25)
Drinking caffeine or alcohol
Exposure to environmental toxins
Vitamin D deficiency
FSH Levels in Women
For women, follicle-stimulating hormones help to control and regulate the woman’s menstrual cycle, and is also partially responsible for the production of eggs in the ovaries.
High levels of FSH can be indicators of:
- Poor ovarian function
- Polycystic ovary syndrome
- Certain types of tumour in the pituitary gland
Low levels of FSH could mean that:
- Eggs are not being produced
- The pituitary gland is not functioning properly
- The person is under significant stress
- The person is severely underweight
FSH levels in men
It is also necessary for men to have normal levels of the hormone, as FSH controls sperm production.
High levels of Follicle Stimulating Hormone in a male could suggest:
- Advancing age (male menopause)
- Damage to testicles caused by alcohol abuse, chemotherapy or radiation
- Genetic problems, such as Klinefelter syndrome
Low levels of Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) in a male could indicate:
- Sperm is not being produced
Traditional Chinese Medicine View of FSH and AMH
Traditional Chinese Medicine takes a different view to that of western medicine when it comes to AMH and FSH levels. According to traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), we are all born with a certain amount of a substance known as jing or “essence.” The quality of your jing is partially determined by genetics, but can also be either preserved or depleted by the lifestyle you choose. Eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, and gentle exercise can all help to preserve jing, while activities such as smoking and drinking alcohol cause it to deplete quickly.
Jing is stored by your Kidneys, and like AMH, it naturally decreases with age. Jing is also closely related to Kidney-yin which plays an important role in reproductive health. Therefore as jing and Kidney-yin decline with age, your fertility does too. Traditional Chinese Medicine takes a holistic approach and looks to balance hormones and correct any imbalances at its source, increasing your fertility and in turn your chances of conceiving as opposed to just targeting FSH and AMH levels.
In TCM, Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) and anti-mullerian hormone (AMH) levels are not seen as the cause of the fertility issues, but more the result of an underlying imbalance. The aim of a TCM practitioner is, therefore, to help the body to function at its best, by restoring reproductive health and encouraging a balanced system.
How can Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Help FSH and AMH Levels?
We have treated many couples who have been struggling to conceive at our clinics: GinSen London. Take a look at some of our success stories here. After treating couples for over 20 years we wanted to share our knowledge and help other women who are struggling to conceive.
- Acupuncture can help repair hormonal imbalances and improve your reproductive potential, increasing your chances of a natural pregnancy. If you are undergoing IVF, acupuncture can optimize your chances of success while supporting you physically and emotionally throughout the process. Acupuncture may also be used to strengthen the kidneys and spleen, promoting hormone regulation and increasing the production of blood to nourish the ovaries and uterus, while reducing stress.
2. Natural Herbal Medicine: Chinese herbal medicines have a nourishing and balancing effect, normalising the function of the Hypothalamus-Pituitary-Ovarian axis. Chinese herbs nourish the spleen, liver, and kidney systems which are responsible for our reproductive health. Herbal formulas are designed to build nutrient-rich blood for the ovaries, which will better nourish the developing follicles and create better egg quality. The herbs help to improve ovarian function and cause FSH to be secreted in proper amounts at the correct times. TCM can be an effective way to restore reproductive health and balance the hormonal system, helping increase your chances of conceiving both naturally and even so, if you are undertaking IVF and looking to increase your success rate.
To help you get started we have listed some of our popular natural products which we use in our clinics below. You can find more information about each of the products and how they work on our website. Simply follow the link below. We also offer free consultation, just get in touch if you have any questions.
Natural Supplements To Help With AMH and FSH Levels