Endometriosis affects over five million women just in the United States and Canada – and many millions more in the rest of the world. It’s a chronic condition that is painful and both emotionally and physically debilitating.
The symptoms of endometriosis involve heavy and painful menstrual periods, fatigue, pain in the lower back and abdomen, and shooting pains in the legs. It may even cause infertility.
Endometriosis usually begins when the tissue which lines the uterus begins to grow outside the uterus. It may spread to the ovaries, pelvic lining and fallopian tubes and can also spread outside those areas, such as the bowels.
If you’re diagnosed with endometriosis, there are several natural remedies you may want to try. Among these are:
- Natural Progesterone Cream – Progesterone can reduce the growth of endometrial tissue that is abnormal and may improve symptoms such as painful menstrual cycles and pelvic pain. Apply natural progesterone cream to the upper chest, wrists, inner thighs and inner arms. Beware that it can also cause side effects such as water retention, weight gain and depression.
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids – Can relieve pain by decreasing the prostaglandin E2 levels – an inflammatory chemical. Omega 3’s can be obtained by eating such fish as sardines, salmon and anchovies can also be found in fish oil capsules, which also contain EPA and DHA, two compounds which help the reduction of prostaglandin E2.
- Hydrotherapy – A contrast sitz bath may help relieve symptoms of endometriosis. It involves sitting in a tub of hot (not uncomfortable) water for three minutes, then sit in another tub of cool water for a minute. Repeat three times.
- Reduce Cortisol (stress hormone) – Too much stress in your life produces more of the cortisol hormone which can cause a decrease in the progesterone levels in your body. That could result in a hormone imbalance and the onset of endometriosis. Herbs and mineral such as B and C vitamins, magnesium and zinc – plus stress reductions techniques like relaxation response and meditation can help reduce cortisol levels.
- Ginger Tea – A hot cup of ginger tea can relieve menstrual cramps and some other symptoms of endometriosis. The ginger root relaxes the intestinal tract and is a good source of antioxidants which reduces inflammation. Ginger tea may also relieve the nausea that often accompanies endometriosis.
Endometriosis and Your Hormones
Alternative medicine considers endometriosis a disease related to hormone issues. The body may not be producing enough progesterone or producing too much estrogen. Hormones can often be balanced with the right herbal mixtures and placing emphasis on a proper diet.
A diet consisting of high-fat dairy, meat and fish containing PCB (polychlorinated biphenyls) and dioxins may contribute to a hormonal balance.
Foods that help prevent endometriosis include Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cabbage and kale. To relieve pain associated with endometriosis, try herbs such as valerian, black haw, wild yam and crampbark.
If you suspect you have endometriosis, seek a diagnosis from your health care provider and ask what natural remedy they suggest would be best for you.