How to Manage Endometriosis With Your Nutrition & Diet
Hey gang - Bree here, Naked Harvest's in-house nutritionist! March is Endometriosis Awareness Month. Because this disease affects 1 in 9 Australian women (it is speculated to actually be more than this), I thought I'd share my tips on how to naturally manage your endometriosis through the lens of a professional nutritionist.
What is endometriosis?
Endometriosis is a chronic inflammatory condition that involves hormones and the immune system, characterised by endometrial tissue growing outside of the uterus. This debilitating disease can take 8-10 years on average to be diagnosed.
Symptoms of endometriosis include:
- Painful periods
- Heavy bleeding or bleeding between periods
- Pain during sexual intercourse
- Pain with bowel movements or urination
- Bloating during your period
- Bloating and gut discomfort
Conventional treatment options usually include surgical removal of the endometriosis lesions, anti-inflammatory and pain medications, as well as contraceptives to reduce symptoms. However, it is lesser known that there is so much you can do naturally to manage endometriosis symptoms. Natural endometriosis support may include dietary and lifestyle changes, supporting the immune system, improving gut health, and supporting hormonal and detoxification systems.
Nutrition and Endometriosis
An anti-inflammatory diet is beneficial for women with endometriosis. A typical anti-inflammatory diet focuses on eating more fruits and vegetables, and healthy fats like fatty fish, nuts and seeds. It also focuses on reducing inflammatory food like processed meats, refined carbohydrates, sugar, trans-fats, alcohol and toxins.
Foods to increase with Endometriosis
- Leafy green vegetables: green veggies are high in natural antioxidants and polyphenols, which can help combat inflammation
- Pineapple (with the core): pineapple contains high concentrations of bromelain in its core, which is a natural anti-inflammatory
- Berries: rich in antioxidants to fight inflammation
- Fatty fish: such as wild-caught salmon and sardines
- Chia seeds: high in omega 3’s to reduce inflammation
- Cacao powder: full of antioxidants and is also an anti-inflammatory
- Ginger: has strong anti-inflammatory properties
- Turmeric: my favourite anti-inflammatory food! (check out my smoothie recipe with turmeric here - I promise you can’t taste it!)
Endo-Friendly Anti-inflammatory Choc Chia Protein Pudding
Here's what you'll need:
- Chia Seeds – 4 NH scoops/tablespoons
- Cacao Powder – 1 NH scoop/tablespoons
- 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (or any plant based milk you prefer)
- 2 scoop NH Choc protein powder
- A sprinkle of raw nuts
- Mix the almond milk with the cacao and protein powder (mix well to avoid clumping)
- Add chia seeds to glass or jar
- Combine chia seeds and almond milk mixture
- Let set in the refrigerator for at least four to five hours or overnight.
- Add your toppings
- Enjoy as a snack or nourishing breakfast!