Nutrition is one of a range of natural approaches to treat a wide range of conditions and disease; including endometriosis. Natural therapies are valued for their non-invasive approach and relative lack of side effects, and are increasingly used in conjunction with or in place of conventional medical treatments.
What is Endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a condition where cells from the lining of the uterus wall migrate and begin to grow outside of the womb. Endometriosis typically causes pain, bleeding and may even lead to infertility. It typically affects women in their 20’s, 30’s and 40’s, and is often associated with infertility. This is because endometriosis is thought to be partially caused by hormonal imbalances, though genetic factors and early menstruation both are thought to play a part in the condition. Conventional medical treatment involves pain relief medication, surgery and hormone treatment; which may have significant implications for long term fertility in many cases.
Nutrition is basically getting the right balance of foods and nutrients so your body can grow, fight disease and maintain a healthy overall status. The easiest way of obtaining a balanced diet is to eat a selection of food groups, including the following:
- Lean meats
- Fresh fruit
- Fresh vegetables
- Wholegrain foods
- Pulses and beans; and
- Plenty of water
- Avoidance or moderate intake of processed sugars, salt and alcohol are all deemed necessary to avoid health complications as a result of diet.
Nutrition for Endometriosis
A qualified nutritionist is the best placed health professional to advise on a suitable diet for controlling the symptoms and effects of endometriosis. This typically involves a diet that helps to control levels of estrogens while alleviating painful abdominal cramping. Saturated fatty acids have been shown to increase uterine contractions, so these should be avoided and include butter and other animal fats. Omega-3 fatty acids, are however ‘good fats’ and beneficial in calming uterine contractions, and include evening primrose, walnut and flax seed oil. A diet high in fibre is also considered beneficial as they can decrease estrogens in the blood stream. Good sources of fibre include:
- whole grains
- beans and peas
- brown rice; and
- Green vegetables such as broccoli and cabbage are also helpful in reducing estrogen levels, and should try be incorporated into a daily diet.
Find out about other effective natural endometrios treatments.
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