I was 37 when my husband and I decided to start a family. I was two years out from finishing residency and things were great. We tried for 6 months and with no success we were referred to a wonderful fertility doctor. After completing our testing, my doctor recommended that we try IVF. We started in Oct 2013, and had a successful IVF cycle. We were so excited! We only had three embyros that successfully fertilized and of those only one was transferred. Two weeks later we were pregnant and overjoyed! Then, we went in for our first set of labs 48 hours later, and my hormone levels were declining and we lost the pregnancy. We were reassured that this was common and not to lose heart. So we didn’t – but it was tough. We tried another cycle and were only able to retrieve and freeze one viable embryo. My hormones were not compatible for a successful transfer so my husband, doctor and I decided to regroup. It was then that he suggested in addition to changing the regimen of injectable medications I was taking to help with egg development, he wanted me to take a number of different supplements that had research supporting their efficacy. So, like so many women going through this process I scoured the internet, particularly google scholar, to find any and all information about fertility supplements, what works and what doesn’t. And oh my, the information that I found! There are so many blogs and websites out there describing what is the miracle. As a doctor, I did have the advantage of being able to weed through what was legitimate and could offer me real help with the IVF cycle. I also was able to do extensive research into studies specifically looking at how certain supplements can improve fertility.
So, here we were, my husband and I, armed with the best information about supplement research. With the recommendations of my fertility backed by my own research, we had to go to three different sources to get the supplements I needed. In total, I took 17 pills a day, and spent over $300 a month! Most of the data I researched recommended I take the supplements for at least 90 days, so I did. At the next IVF cycle, my egg retrieval number increased from one to four and all four successfully fertilized! And, they were all considered high quality embryos. Vastly, different from my two previous cycles. I underwent another retrieval cycle and then a successful transfer with both frozen and fresh embryos. We transferred three high quality embryos and one little embryo was able to make me a mother. I’m 17 ½ weeks as I’m writing this. My husband and I couldn’t be happier. I truly believe that with the help of the supplements, I was able to increase the quality and quantity of embryos my wonderful fertility doctor needed to give my husband and me a family.
So, this process got me thinking. Is there a better way? In my surgical practice, I perform weight loss surgery, and nutrition is a huge part of my patient’s success. I have a wonderful registered dietician who takes care of my patients and we were talking about everything I was doing to help with the success of my IVF cycles. It was from our discussions about supplements, how they are made and what is needed to make a quality supplement, that Principal 6 was born. Through our collaboration, we found 6 key supplements that have strong research to support fertility. We also wanted a solution to my problem of taking 17 pills and paying several hundred dollars a month! By taking these key ingredients, we were able to create a fertility supplement based on sound research, and decrease the number of pills needed from 17 to 5 and substantially decreased the price. The laboratory where our supplement was created uses only the finest quality ingredients and has strict quality standards. I’m so pleased to have a supplement that I can share with so many that want to start their own family.
– Charlotte Hodges, MD