March is Endometriosis Awareness Month
Endometriosis is a common health problem that can affect any girl or woman between the ages of 14 and 44 who have menstrual periods, but it is most common in women in their 30s and 40s and may make it harder to get pregnant.
What is endometriosis?
Endometriosis gets its name from the word endometrium, which is the tissue that normally lines a woman’s uterus or womb. Endometriosis happens when this tissue grows outside the uterus and other areas in the body where it doesn’t belong including:
- Fallopian tubes
- Tissues that hold the uterus in place
- Outer surface of the uterus
And in some women, growths can occur in the vagina, cervix, vulva, bowel, bladder, or rectum.
Pain is the most common symptom and can vary from very painful menstrual cramps to chronic lower back and pelvic pain as well as pain during or after sexual activity.
Some women experience painful bowel movements during their periods and even digestive issues.
Also, a stand out symptom – the inability to get pregnant.
Endometriosis and Infertility
Endometriosis cases infertility and can also take the form of a woman not being able to carry a pregnancy to full term, often suffering miscarriages.
This happens when the endometrial tissue forms around the ovaries, for example, keeping eggs from being released. And when the tissue forms around the fallopian tubes, it can get in the way of sperm traveling to the egg, or the fertilized egg from making its way to the uterus.
What causes endometriosis?
There are several possible causes including:
Menstrual flow problems. these may cause some of the tissue shed during a woman’s period to flow through the fallopian tubes into other areas of the body like most commonly, the pelvis.
Genetic factors. Because endometriosis runs in families, it may be inherited in the genes.
Immune system problems. A faulty immune system may fail to find and destroy endometrial tissue growing outside of the uterus. Immune system disorders and certain cancers are more common in women with endometriosis.
Hormones. Estrogen appears to promote endometriosis so it is possible that estrogen dominance may have a role.
Research also shows a link between endometriosis and other health problems in women and their families including:
- Allergies, asthma, and chemical sensitivities
- Autoimmune diseases – multiple sclerosis, lupus, and some types of hypothyroidism.
- Chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia
- Ovarian and breast cancers
Other risk factors are:
- Never had children
- Menstrual periods that last more than seven days
- Short menstrual cycles of 27 days or fewer
The good news is that there are many strides being made in research that offer hope for many women through lifestyle changes, supplementation, hormonal balancing and more. Here are a few options to look at:
Looking at what you eat is a good place to start when looking to relieve endometriosis symptoms.
It helps to eat less red meat and mostly low fat, high fiber and low sugar foods including low-glycemic fruits and vegetables. This helps to alkalize the body which in turn reduces the inflammation that creates pain.
- Use herbs and spices high in antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties such as turmeric, rosemary, ginger, and basil.
- Strive to keep blood sugar optimal and snack on healthy fats such as coconut, nuts, seeds, and avocados, and to avoid hypoglycemia.
Drink filtered water as often as you can and keep tea, coffee and alcohol intake to a bare minimum, if at all.
Omega-3 Fatty acids like GLA 240 which comes from the seeds of the borage herb and is the healthier method of getting GLA‚ since the vegetable oils that it usually comes from contain fats that could raise your risk of disease. GLA
may prevent the production of hormones which cause inflammation and stimulate the growth of endometrial tissue.
Also, a good women’s formula like FemGuard+Balance™ which offers classic herbal hormonal that may promote the proper elimination of excess estrogens along with many other valuable benefits for women.
Natural Hormone Replacement Therapy
Research shows that the use of natural progesterone may thin the lining of the uterus and suppress the growth of endometrial tissue that is often stimulated by estrogen. Here at the Health Choice we specialize in BHRT progesterone which can be safely used to help with endometriosis. CONTACT us today and let us work with your doctor to get you the help you need if endometriosis is keeping you from living a healthy, happy life.