Wondering what an Endometriosis Diet is?
Well, do not mistake it for another fad diet to lose weight.
Endometriosis is a medical condition in a women’s reproductive system where there is an abnormal growth of cells or tissues. These tissues are usually found inside the uterus and act as a lining to it called endometrium, hence the name endometriosis. However, due to this condition, the tissues grow outside the uterus.
It is a painful disorder and is also commonly found in other pelvic organs as well. While what causes it is not yet known, it is not benign (non-cancerous).
Most women with endometriosis do not experience any signs or symptoms, however, those who do, experience the below symptoms.
- Pelvic pain
- Painful intercourse
- Painful bowels
- Heavy bleeding during periods
- Bleeding between periods
- Severe cramping
- Lower back pain
These signs and symptoms tend to get worse during menstruation periods.
As mentioned above, it is still unknown as to what causes endometriosis, and unfortunately, there is no definitive cure or treatment for it except for a few surgical procedures.
However, there are many studies that were carried around the world that associated certain foods to lower risks of developing endometriosis. Few women have also reported that certain foods have helped in reduced symptoms.
In this article, let us look at what you must eat and what foods to avoid to lower the risk of endometriosis or reduce its symptoms.
Foods to avoid
While there is no definitive diet for endometriosis, many studies have increasingly shown that certain foods can negatively impact women suffering from endometriosis or increase their chances of developing one. Here are some of the foods to avoid.
Various studies have suggested that high consumption of red meat increases the risk of developing endometriosis. So, red meat is one food you must stay away from or keep its intake to a minimum to be on a safe side.
A study found out that over 70 percent of women showed signs of decreased symptoms when they cut gluten from their diet. Gluten is a protein found in most grains like wheat, barley, rye, etc.
Make sure you pick up foods that are gluten-free.
Highly fatty foods
Another study has reported that women who indulge in high fatty foods develop an increased risk of endometriosis. This is because high-fat foods increase the level of circulating estrogen in the body.
High-fat food or foods rich in trans fat must be avoided to cut down the risks of developing endometriosis. Trans fat can be easily found in fast foods, fried, and processed foods.
Foods that cause bloating and irritable bowel
Foods that are poorly absorbed by our body may cause bloating, gas, abdominal pain, and irritable bowels. An example of such foods can be FODMAP foods. It stands for Fermentable Oligosaccharides Disaccharides Monosaccharides, and Polyols. They are short-chain carbohydrates and sugar alcohols.
FODMAPs are found in a few foods naturally or as an additive. Avoiding such foods can increase the symptoms of endometriosis. Some of the high FODMAP foods are wheat, garlic, onion, legumes and pulses, dairy, and beverages. It is also recommended that you keep your alcohol and caffeine intake to a minimum.
What to eat?
As you are now aware of what foods to avoid to reduce your symptoms and risks of developing endometriosis, let us look at some foods that are known to alleviate endometriosis.
Endometriosis causes pain and inflammation in the body, so it is suggested that you have a nutritious and well-balanced diet that consists more of plant-based foods.
Foods that are rich in Omega 3 fats are healthy and anti-inflammatory. They are also known as Essential Fatty Acids (EFA). Include such foods as fatty fishes, flax seeds, and other plant-based sources in your diet. These foods are believed to have the opposite effect and relieve pain.
You may also take fish oil supplements containing Omega 3 fat for decreased pain and symptoms, especially during your menstruation period.
Foods rich in fiber are known to flush out the toxins from your body, and in this case, it flushes out excess hormones like Oestrogen. Fiber-rich foods are also known to stabilize blood sugar levels and have an anti-inflammatory effect on your body.
Some of the common fiber-rich foods are fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lentils, legumes, etc.
During heavy menstruation, one of the symptoms of endometriosis, you tend to lose a lot of iron from your body, so it is recommended to have iron-rich foods like dark green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale, cabbage, broccoli, etc.
In addition to including the above foods in your daily diet, it is recommended that you also maintain a healthy and active lifestyle by regularly exercising, meditating, or doing yoga.
If you are facing symptoms discussed in this article or having abnormal periods, you may want to consult an OB-GYN(Obstetrician-Gynecologist) near you. Simply contact us on 8800 644 744 to Book an Appointment from the comfort of your home.