For former Biggest Loser host, Fiona Falkiner and fiancé, Sydney Swans Communications Manager Hayley Willis, IVF has been a blessing that led to them creating a beautiful family together, but it has not always been an easy journey.

The pair share son, 1yo Hunter who was carried by Fiona, and are eagerly awaiting the arrival of a second son in August after sharing the beautiful news that Hayley was expecting.

Previously Fiona – the podcast host of What The IVF? – had opened up about her “traumatic” experience with IVF, and on Tuesday she gave fans a glimpse into the alternative therapy that helped her, and Hayley, along the way.

Fiona Falkiner and Hayley Willis share 1yo Hunter together, and are eagerly awaiting the arrival of a second son in August.

Taking to Instagram to share an unsponsored video that documented her experience with using acupuncture to support her IVF experience, Fiona wrote: “We always get asked what are our tips for successful IVF and look as we have said a lot on our podcast @whattheivfpodcast sometimes you can be doing all the things and it still might not be working.

“But on our personal journeys the only this we both did religiously in the few months lead up to egg extraction was weekly acupuncture.”

Watch the video below. Continues after …

The comment section on the post soon filled with glowing endorsements for the therapy.

“Totally agree!” wrote one commenter. “I did acupuncture religiously and fell pregnant second round IUI. Can’t explain it – it just works!”

Another added: “I swear by ivf/fertility acupuncture and I believe that what’s helped me with my two sweethearts.”

What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is part of traditional Chinese medicine and consists of inserting fine needles into specific points on the skin.

Performed by a skilled practitioner, as Fiona and Hayley have undertaken, acupuncture can be a safe and effective treatment for a range of disorders including fertility and pregnancy, and is sometimes used in an attempt to bring on labour.

Some women also consider using acupuncture to prepare their body for pregnancy or support them through fertility treatment. Studies have mostly been inconclusive in terms of its success, however there is no denying that many people have found benefits to using complementary or alternative therapies to improve their overall physical and emotional health.

Acupuncture and IVF

A 2020 an Iranian study, looked into the effect of acupuncture on the day of embryo transfer on the in vitro fertilisation outcomes. The study was carried out on 186 participants who had undergone IVF treatment and found that acupuncture conducted 25 minutes before egg transfer significantly increased the IVF outcomes in women undergoing IVF compared to those who had received no acupuncture.

In Australia, acupuncture has grown in popularity as an adjunct to IVF treatment and is claimed to reduce stress, improve the quality of life while you’re undertaking treatment, and stimulate blood flow to the uterus influencing menstrual cycle and ovulation.

Fiona credited her therapist, Jeff from Mighty Goodness Health in Sydney, for helping both Hayley and herself “get to the pregnancy point!”

“I became very close with our acupuncturist Jeff who I now call a very close friend,” the proud mum shared. “He was amazing, it was amazing and we cannot recommend him more highly … He is a little bit of magic!”

If you are looking into trying acupuncture in any part of your pregnancy journey, it is vitally important to make sure you see a qualified practitioner.

And note, while some limited studies have shown that acupuncture may improve implantation rates you should keep in mind that some recent studies have not found acupuncture to be effective and complete understandings remain inconclusive.