It Starts with the Egg Book Summary - It Starts with the Egg Book explained in key points
Listen to the Intro

It Starts with the Egg summary

Rebecca Fett

How the Science of Egg Quality Can Help You Get Pregnant Naturally, Prevent Miscarriage, and Improve Your Odds in IVF

4.5 (52 ratings)
19 mins

Brief summary

It Starts with the Egg by Rebecca Fett empowers women to optimize their egg quality to improve fertility outcomes. The book provides research-backed advice on how to reduce exposure to toxins and improve nutrition to increase the odds of a healthy pregnancy.

Table of Contents

    It Starts with the Egg
    Summary of 5 key ideas

    Audio & text in the Blinkist app
    Key idea 1 of 5

    Egg quality is crucial for a successful pregnancy.

    Before we begin, a heads-up – for the sake of clarity, over the course of this Blink, we’ll be talking directly to a hypothetical person who wants to improve their egg quality. But if you’re a partner or potential donor parents following along as well, this information is equally relevant to you – so don’t go anywhere!

    Okay, let’s talk eggs. If you’ve been trying for a baby for a while, you’ll know that timing is crucial. You need to have sex in the fertile window around ovulation – only a few days every month – or your chances of conceiving are zero. Most fertility advice focuses on helping you identify and maximize that window.

    Unfortunately, when it comes to conception, the math isn’t always as simple as we’d like it to be. Sperm plus egg doesn’t necessarily equal baby. Once an egg is fertilized by a sperm it becomes an embryo. Roughly a third of fertilized embryos survive to become babies. Higher-quality eggs are more likely to survive past the embryo stage.

    So if you’re struggling to conceive, timing sex right is only part of the picture. Taking steps to optimize egg quality is equally, if not more, crucial.

    What do we mean by a high-quality egg? Well, it should have – quite literally – good genes. Before maturation, the egg is known as an oocyte, and it contains 46 chromosomes – long molecules that carry genetic information. Forty-six is kind of a magic number – every human cell contains 46 chromosomes. During meiosis – the name given to the egg’s maturation process – these 46 chromosomes consolidate into 23 chromosomes. The sperm supplies the other 23, to give your embryo its unique genetic makeup. The thing is, not every egg comes through meiosis with the correct number of chromosomes. Chromosomally abnormal eggs are known as aneuploid eggs. Even a perfectly healthy, fertile woman will have cycles that produce aneuploid eggs. These eggs usually fail to fertilize. If an aneuploid egg does fertilize, it usually doesn’t survive, and a miscarriage results. Forty-one percent of miscarriages are the result of chromosomal abnormalities.

    So, is it really possible to enhance egg quality? 

    A woman is born with all the eggs she will ever produce in her life – egg quantity is a fixed deal. And for a long time, scientists thought the same about egg quality. The conventional wisdom was that aneuploid eggs were the result of accumulated damage to the egg related to the aging process. In other words, as a woman gets older, her egg quality declines. It’s true that age impacts egg quality. But we’re now starting to understand that chromosomal damage is likely to occur during meiosis. Any errors that occur during this process can result in missing – or extra – chromosomes. Just what we don’t want. But the good news is that meiosis presents us with a window of opportunity, where we can actually influence egg quality. We can do this specifically by supporting the egg’s mitochondria. These are the cell structures that convert fuel sources into cellular energy – that’s the same cellular energy that powers the demanding process of meiosis. Supercharging the egg’s mitochondria means supporting meiosis and boosting your chances of producing a chromosomally normal egg. We’ll find out how to do that in the next section.

    Want to see all full key ideas from It Starts with the Egg?

    Key ideas in It Starts with the Egg

    More knowledge in less time
    Read or listen
    Read or listen
    Get the key ideas from nonfiction bestsellers in minutes, not hours.
    Find your next read
    Find your next read
    Get book lists curated by experts and personalized recommendations.
    Shortcasts New
    We’ve teamed up with podcast creators to bring you key insights from podcasts.

    What is It Starts with the Egg about?

    It Starts with the Egg (2014) demystifies the science behind egg quality and how it impacts outcomes for fertility and pregnancy. In bringing together a range of reputable studies, it offers evidence-based advice on how to make simple lifestyle changes that will improve egg quality and optimize fertility.

    It Starts with the Egg Review

    It Starts with the Egg (2014) is a valuable resource for anyone struggling with fertility issues. Here's why this book is worth reading:

    • Provides evidence-based strategies backed by scientific research, giving readers practical methods to improve fertility and increase chances of conception.
    • Dives deep into the impact of environmental toxins and lifestyle factors on fertility, making it a comprehensive guide for those looking to optimize their reproductive health.
    • Offers a solutions-oriented approach to fertility issues, guiding readers through various treatment options and empowering them to take control of their reproductive journey.

    Who should read It Starts with the Egg?

    • Prospective parents thinking about trying for a baby
    • Couples who’ve been trying for months without a positive pregnancy test
    • Anyone facing fertility challenges

    About the Author

    Rebecca Fett is a qualified molecular biotechnologist and biochemist. As a biotechnology patent attorney, she gained deep expertise in collating and analyzing medical data. After undergoing IVF, she turned her expertise toward helping others understand the complex science of fertility.

    Categories with It Starts with the Egg

    Book summaries like It Starts with the Egg

    People ❤️ Blinkist 
    Sven O.

    It's highly addictive to get core insights on personally relevant topics without repetition or triviality. Added to that the apps ability to suggest kindred interests opens up a foundation of knowledge.

    Thi Viet Quynh N.

    Great app. Good selection of book summaries you can read or listen to while commuting. Instead of scrolling through your social media news feed, this is a much better way to spend your spare time in my opinion.

    Jonathan A.

    Life changing. The concept of being able to grasp a book's main point in such a short time truly opens multiple opportunities to grow every area of your life at a faster rate.

    Renee D.

    Great app. Addicting. Perfect for wait times, morning coffee, evening before bed. Extremely well written, thorough, easy to use.

    People also liked these summaries

    4.7 Stars
    Average ratings on iOS and Google Play
    31 Million
    Downloads on all platforms
    10+ years
    Experience igniting personal growth
    Powerful ideas from top nonfiction

    Try Blinkist to get the key ideas from 7,000+ bestselling nonfiction titles and podcasts. Listen or read in just 15 minutes.

    Start your free trial

    It Starts with the Egg FAQs 

    What is the main message of It Starts with the Egg?

    The main message of It Starts with the Egg is the impact of egg quality on fertility and pregnancy outcomes.

    How long does it take to read It Starts with the Egg?

    The reading time for It Starts with the Egg varies depending on the reader's speed. However, the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is It Starts with the Egg a good book? Is it worth reading?

    It Starts with the Egg is a valuable read for anyone looking to improve their fertility and increase their chances of a healthy pregnancy.

    Who is the author of It Starts with the Egg?

    The author of It Starts with the Egg is Rebecca Fett.

    What to read after It Starts with the Egg?

    If you're wondering what to read next after It Starts with the Egg, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • The Art of Waiting by Belle Boggs
    • The Gynae Geek by Anita Mitra
    • We're Pregnant! by Adrian Kulp
    • Meals She Eats by Tom and Rachael Sullivan
    • Quantum Body by Deepak Chopra
    • Your Best Just Got Better by Jason W. Womack
    • How to Make a Few Billion Dollars by Brad Jacobs
    • Expecting Better by Emily Oster
    • Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
    • Talking to Strangers by Malcolm Gladwell