Have you heard of Endometriosis? March is Endometriosis Awareness Month and this is a health condition which needs more awareness! This painful condition affects 1 in 10 women in the UK, causing very painful, heavy periods and for some, infertility.
I experienced first hand the life changing benefits of improving my diet after it took 9 years to get my own diagnosis of endometriosis, having visited many GPs from my late teens onwards. I was repeatedly told that it was “quite normal” to experience debilitating period pain and was prescribed strong painkillers that made little difference.
It was only by meeting a friend through work who told me that she had Endometriosis, that I ever heard of the condition. She described her symptoms and I knew this was what I had. I went to my GP and asked for a referral to a gynaecologist and sure enough I was diagnosed with Endometriosis. After unsuccessful medical treatment, my mother read an article about a Nutritional Therapist, Dian Mills, who specialised in Endometriosis and managing it through diet. I read her book cover to cover and then went to see Dian.
Within 3 months of changing my diet my symptoms had improved dramatically. I no longer dreaded the arrival of my period and was delighted 6 months later to find myself pregnant, having been told by the gynaecologist that it would be very unlikely that I would be able to conceive naturally.
This personal experience sparked my interest in nutrition and I decided to retrain as a Nutritional Therapist so that I could share with others my passion about how powerful food is in managing your health.
Diet can have a huge impact on our hormones and as Endometriosis, along with other hormonal imbalances such as Premenstrual Syndrome, is driven by excess Oestrogen, there is much we can do to minimise the severity of symptoms.
Here are my top 5 tips for balancing hormones:
- Increase your intake of essential fats by eating more oily fish (salmon, sardines, mackerel), nuts, seeds, olive oil and avocadoes. Endometriosis is an inflammatory condition and Omega 3, found in oily fish can help reduce inflammation.
- Reduce your intake of saturated fat (found in animal products such as meat and dairy products)
- Ensure that you maximise your fibre intake so that the body can effectively excrete old hormones. Try to eat 6 -8 portions of vegetables and fruit a day.
- Eat phytoestrogen rich foods daily (berries, apples, nuts, seeds, broccoli, wholegrains, lentils, chickpeas, peppers)
- Reduce your exposure to xeno-oestrogens (chemicals which exert oestrogen-like effects on the body) – choose organic skin care products and minimise your use of plastics
Why not book our Women’s Health seminar where over the course of 45 minutes we can inform your female staff on how to take back control of their hormonal health through simple dietary changes.