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What You Need to Know About Uterine Fibroids

Updated: Mar 29


Fibroids are benign, non-cancerous growths in the wall of the uterus (womb), that most women will develop at some point in their life. The tumors can range in size from microscopic to very large (the size of a watermelon). Some women experience no symptoms at all with a fibroid, while others may experience mild to very severe symptoms, such as pain (especially during sex or menstruation), backache, needing to pee a lot (if the fibroid is so big it presses on the bladder), bleeding during your cycle (and/or heavy bleeding during menstruation), and fertility issues. 


Until recently, Western medicine was unsure what caused fibroids, although certain risk factors were identified (such as ethnicity, genes, and obesity). However, it is becoming recognised that one of the root causes of fibroids is excess estrogen (estrogen makes them grow, and they usually shrink after menopause, which is a time when estrogen declines. In addition, PCOS – a condition of excess estrogen – is associated with an increased risk of fibroids). Researchers also think that inflammation may play a role in fibroids (if all of this sounds familiar, you’d be right – because inflammation and excess estrogen play a role in most hormone conditions, like PCOS and endometriosis). 


So, what can you do to treat fibroids?  


Like other hormone conditions, the traditional Western medical approach to fibroids is either going on the Pill, or surgery. But, in fact, there’s so much you can do to treat fibroids naturally, using diet and lifestyle. 


#1 Love your liver


Since fibroids are associated with excess estrogen, the first place to start is the liver (if you’re not sure why, check out my webinar which goes into a lot of detail on the link between the liver and hormones). We want to reduce, or eliminate, things that may be adding extra burden on the liver, such as: 

  • Caffeine 

  • Alcohol 

  • Trans fat (which also increases the risk of fibroids) 

  • Sugar 

  

We can then support the liver doing its job to eliminate excess estrogen by adding in: 

  • Cruciferous veg  

  • Whole grains, like brown rice, quinoa, millet, etc. 

  • Good quality protein such as tofu, tempeh, and pulses (beans) 

  • Fibre (so lots of fruit and veg, and pulses/beans) 

  • Herbs such as dandelion and milk thistle (in the form of tea or a supplement*) 

 

*Always check with your healthcare provider before trying any new supplements.


#2 Avoid exposure to excess estrogen


Another crucial step for addressing excess estrogen is reducing our exposure to xenoestrogens (also known as endocrine disrupting chemicals, which are known to increase tumors). This means avoiding: 

  • Dairy and animal products (the animals have their own hormones, but are also pumped full of growth hormones and other chemicals). Processed meat also increases the risk of fibroid growth

  • Plastics (such as plastic Tupperware and water bottles) 

  • Parfum/fragrance (these phthalates are a type of xenoestrogen), found in most beauty and cleaning products 

 

At the same time, we want to increase our consumption of phytoestrogens (plant estrogens) which support healthy estrogen levels and block xenoestrogens. Flaxseeds and organic, unprocessed soy (in the form of tofu, tempeh, miso, tamari or unsweetened soy milk) are great options to start adding in to your diet. 

 

#3 Other things that can help with fibroids include: 


  • Green leafy veg (which lower the risk of fibroids) 

  • Citrus fruit (which decrease abnormal cell growth) 

  • Resveratrol, found in grapes and pistachios (which stops fibroid growth) 

  • Curcumin, from turmeric (which reduces inflammation) 

  • Green tea 

  • Pears and apples (which contain a compound that inhibits tumor growth) 


These are 3 great places to start treating fibroids naturally, but there are lots of other things you can also do, such as reducing inflammation, getting enough exercise, and supporting your menstrual cycle. If you need more information or support in dealing with fibroids, book in for a free consultation with me, or check out my webinar on healing hormone imbalance naturally through nutrition and lifestyle tools.


Did anything surprise you from these lists? Comment below!

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