(NaturalNews) Endometriosis is a condition where the tissue lining in the uterus spreads and grows outside the uterus. Symptoms of endometriosis are not always apparent and can go undetected for long periods of time. When symptoms do present themselves it is in the form of pain, scarring, menstrual problems, and difficulty in conceiving. Although conventional treatment includes surgery and the use of hormones, there are effective natural alternatives which include diet, herbs, and nutrient supplementation.
When a woman has endometriosis the lining of the uterus that should have been eliminated during menstruation instead migrates and attaches itself to other parts of the body outside the uterus. These parts can be varied, including other organs of the body. It can entwine itself around the ovaries, fallopian tubes, bladder and intestines and in some cases can travel to distant areas such as the lungs.
Endometriosis symptoms include premenstrual and menstrual pain that intensifies each month. Bleeding can be heavy during menstruation, together with spotting or bleeding between periods. Another common occurrence is pain during intercourse. Other areas can also be affected, such as the stomach or lower back.
Natural medicine considers this condition to be a hormone related disease. Either the body is producing too much estrogen or too little progesterone or the liver is not breaking down the active estrogen in a timely manner. Therefore, emphasis in treatment is placed on supporting the liver and digestive system with the proper nutrients and supplementation, together with balancing the hormones with herbs.
The following natural treatments are used in treating Endometriosis:
The first is to cut back on animal fats, especially high-fat dairy, red meat and fish. These animal fats contain dioxins and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB's) which have been associated with endometriosis.
Nutrients that help in the balancing and metabolic process of estrogen are found in foods such as Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, Brussels sprouts, and bok choy.
Additional beneficial foods and herbs include:
* Flavones, celery and parsley of which are an excellent source.
* Flaxseeds, which are high in lignans and fiber.
* Chaste-tree berry.
Progesterone cream may relieve the pain experienced during menstrual periods and it is thought to slow the growth of abnormal tissue.
Studies have indicated that Omega 3's may be beneficial when addressing endometriosis. These can be found in fish such as salmon, mackerel, sardines, and anchovies. However, because of the dioxins and PCB's that they contain, it may be preferable to take an Omega 3 supplement that contains a minimal amount of these environmental chemicals.
Excess cortisol also plays an important role in the progression of endometriosis. Prolonged stress leads to the elevation of this hormone which may result in hormonal imbalance. It is important to eliminate unnecessary stress or relieve and learn to cope with the stresses brought on by day-to-day life. Relaxation exercises, meditation, and breathing exercises are effective in developing these coping mechanisms.
Herbs and supplements recommended for stress relief include ashwagandha, B-Complex vitamins, vitamin C, zinc, calcium and magnesium. Calcium is necessary for the proper absorption of magnesium. When taking these supplements it should be on a calcium magnesium ratio of 2:1 or 3:1. Other beneficial supplements include vitamin E, folic acid, and selenium.
Herbs that support the liver and digestive system are goldenseal, dandelion, artichoke, milk thistle, and burdock, while xanthoxylon, ocotillo, goldenseal, and witch hazel improve pelvic circulation. Ginger tea may be effective in relieving the nausea associated with endometriosis.
Hydrotherapy is also recommended by many alternative practitioners.
Instead of relying on pain relievers, there are natural alternatives that will relieve pain, such as crampbark, black haw, valerian, and wild yam.
Luella May is a natural health advocate helping people to heal naturally. Luella is in the midst of editing her ebook, "The 8 Invisible Stains of Our Souls" which will be available in the next few months. She partners with Tony Isaacs, who authors of books and articles about natural health including "Cancer's Natural Enemy" and "Collected Remedies" Luella contributes to The Best Years in Life website for baby boomers and others wishing to avoid prescription drugs and mainstream managed illness and live longer, healthier and happier lives naturally. Luella co-moderates the CureZone "Ask Tony Isaacs" forum as well as the Yahoo Health Group "Oleander Soup" and hosts her own yahoo group focusing on the natural wellbeing of pets "