Endometriosis has no cure and it can be difficult to treat. A shocking 20 to 40 percent of endometriosis comes back within five years after surgery and even though oral contraceptives and IUDs reduce symptoms, a huge proportion of patients experience pain on a regular basis. According to the experts at women’s natural supplement brand Wild Nutrition, diet and natural supplements can bring either recovery or daily management of endometriosis. Here are the eight best supplements to take for endometriosis.
Endometriosis is a complex disorder of the female reproductive tract that causes cells similar to those found in the lining of the womb to grow elsewhere in the body.
With the normal monthly cycle, your hormones fluctuate and cause these cells to grow, break down and bleed along with your regular period.
The result is extra inflammation, painful and heavy periods, scar tissue, pain during or after sex, painful bowel movements, pain on ovulation, fatigue and low mood.
The symptoms differ from person to person but in general, it’s very hard to treat the condition once and for all.
Your diet and taking the right supplements, however, are a step in the right direction to managing endometriosis.
Optimum therapeutic levels of nutrients are key in taking control of your endometriosis, but that can be hard to achieve if you’re always on the go and drained by the painful condition.
Wild Nutrition’s site says: “Unfortunately today’s environment means that our food is commonly grown in exhausted soil, intensively farmed, picked before ripe and has travelled many miles from source before reaching our plates.
“Research has shown that, as a result, much of our food is lacking in vital trace minerals and vitamins.”
With pre-existing conditions like endometriosis, the body may need more than a gentle helping hand in the form of supplements.
The site explains: “If your health problem has been underlying for some time, as is commonly the case with endometriosis, the body’s natural healing processes can become worn down and less able to manage your condition on their own.
“It is at this point that your body will begin to show visible signs that it is not faring well.”
Research shows taking the right nutrients in food supplements can reduce the symptoms of endometriosis significantly (98 percent of the women in one study experienced improvements).
Here are the eight supplements you should consider taking if you’re struggling with the chronic illness.
Endometriosis causes gastrointestinal symptoms for up to 90 percent of cases, so probiotics could help to get to the root of these symptoms.
The team at Wild Nutrition explain: “A wealth of research is now available, linking the bacteria in the gut and the digestive environment (otherwise known as the microbiome) to the health of the immune system and inflammatory diseases.
“Probiotic bacteria can help to create a healthy intestinal environment, boosting immunity and promoting optimum digestion.
“Select a probiotic formula that contains a blend of at least eight strains to better reflect the diversity of the gut and without the addition of FOS such as the Wild Nutrition Multi Strain Biotic. Each dose should provide at least 10 billion colony-forming units (CFUs) per dose.”
Vitamin E levels were found to be significantly lower in endometriosis sufferers according to recent research, so make sure you’re getting enough of the vitamin.
It is thought this is the result of increased oxidation process that occurs naturally in cases of inflammation.
Good sources of vitamin E are:
- plant oils – such as rapeseed (vegetable oil), sunflower, soya, corn and olive oil
- nuts and seeds
- wheatgerm – found in cereals and cereal product
Alternatively, take 3mg a day as a supplement.
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Omega 3 essential fatty acids are essential for healthy hormonal function and keeping inflammation in check.
They are needed by every cell in the body, especially if you have endometriosis.
The experts at the site write: “In a study conducted on women following a diet low in caffeine, sugar and dairy and supplementing their diet with fish oils the results demonstrated a significant reduction in pain in the pelvic area associated with endometriosis.
“Oily fish is a great source of omega 3 but dietary intakes of these fats from food sources have declined in the past decade and consumption is now too low to meet recommendations for long-chain omega-3 fatty acids.
“On top of this there is concern over the heavy metals and other toxins found in the seas in which they are fished as well as the sustainability of certain fish species.”
Find a pure source of fish oils such as Wild Nutrition’s Pure Strength Omega 3 supplement or, if you’re vegetarian, take 1000mg of linseed (flaxseed) oil daily.
The site explains: “Linseeds also contain lignans, which block oestrogen receptors in the cell and reduce the symptoms of oestrogen dominance in conditions like endometriosis.”
A cup of tea helps everything, particularly if it is infused with ingredients that target endometriosis.
Founder of Meera’s Made from Scratch, Meera Bhogal, created the A Rose By Any Other Name tea when her hormones felt out of control and she was overthinking things.
This tea is designed especially for women for those times that our hormones seem to be ruling our body and mind.
It promotes serenity and stillness and will help to reduce inflammation, anxiety and stress while boosting immunity, good mood and supporting healthy hormone balance.
Her turmeric tea is also designed to help with inflammation so may be worth trying for those with inflammatory conditions such as endometriosis.
This blend uses organic turmeric, alongside black pepper to help improve efficacy.
Vitamin B6 or pyridoxine is key in any holistic approach to endometriosis.
This vitamin is “vital in the breakdown and regulation of oestrogen” as well as significantly reducing the intensity and duration of period pains, according to Wild Nutrition.
Choline (similar to B vitamins) and B12 are lipotropic factors that hasten the removal or decrease the deposition of fat and bile in the liver therefore helping liver function and the removal of toxins, so these are useful too.
The B vitamin family is also vital in the conversion of the important fatty acid GLA, the site adds.
It explains: “GLA supports the production of anti-inflammatory mediators that can reduce the pain-associated inflammation in endometriosis and relax the muscles.”
Magnesium levels can be reduced by up to 50 percent during menstruation and the supplement could really help to reduce cramps.
Also known as nature’s tranquilliser, magnesium acts as a muscle relaxant and has been shown to have a beneficial effect on painful periods and lower back pain.
You can either take magnesium supplements or add more magnesium-rich foods such as cacao, brown rice, oats, nuts, legumes, avocado, green vegetables and figs to your diet.
Alternatively, you can use magnesium spray, bath salts and balm to soothe pain.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the many cannabinoids found in marijuana and hemp, but it’s totally safe and legal to use this non-psychoactive component for health.
There are no published studies on the impact of CBD during your period or on endometriosis, but lots of endometriosis patients find CBD supplements and drops helpful.
“The endocannabinoid system is an endogenous system. We all have cannabis receptors within our body – some within the central nervous systems and some peripherally.
“The peripheral ones are involved in the inflammatory response, and cannabinoids are believed to be anti-inflammatory.
“A lot of the pain that we see is pelvic and chronic pelvic pain, which may be due to your period or a condition like endometriosis.
“It’s a mixed pain, which means it might be inflammatory and neuropathic. So, you have nerve pain mixed with inflammatory pain. The use of the CBD may help]with both.”