Mediterranean diet improves embryo yield in IVF: a prospective cohort study

Reprod Biol Endocrinol. 2019 Sep 2;17(1):73. doi: 10.1186/s12958-019-0520-9.


Background: Mediterranean diet (MediDiet) had been reported to be beneficial to human health. However the relationship between diet pattern and outcomes of in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment was scarcely researched. This study was aimed to explore the correlation between MediDiet pattern of infertile women and their clinical outcomes of IVF cycles.

Methods: An observational prospective cohort study was conducted in the reproductive center from September 2016 to December 2017. Seven hundred infertile women about to undergo IVF treatment were asked to conduct a questionnaire survey. Patients were assigned to higher MediDiet adherence group or lower MediDiet adherence group according to their Mediterranean diet scores. Laboratory parameters and clinical outcomes were compared and those were different between groups were further analyzed for their relationship with MediDiet adherence.

Results: A total of 590 women were finally included in the study. According to MediDiet scores, 228 participants were categorized as higher MediDiet adherence group and 362 others as lower MediDiet adherence group. No significant differences were found in baseline characteristics between groups. Higher MediDiet adherence group showed larger number of embryos available (8.40 ± 5.26 vs 7.40 ± 4.71, P = 0.028). Clinical pregnancy rate and implantation rate were similar between the two groups. In further correlation tests and multivariate linear regression analysis, number of fertilized oocytes and embryo yield were positively correlated to MediDiet adherence of participants.

Conclusion: Infertile women with greater adherence to Mediterranean diet pattern were likely to obtain more embryos available in IVF cycle.

Keywords: Embryo yield; In vitro fertilization; Infertility; Mediterranean diet.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Diet, Mediterranean*
  • Embryo, Mammalian / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Fertilization in Vitro / methods*
  • Humans
  • Infertility, Female / therapy*
  • Linear Models
  • Male
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Rate
  • Prospective Studies
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Treatment Adherence and Compliance / statistics & numerical data