Read Part 1 in this series here – The Symptoms and Causes of Endometriosis
Read Part 2 in the series here – The Immune and Digestive Systems with Endometriosis
This final part in the Endometriosis series discusses how to manage endometriosis through diet and lifestyle modifications, primarily by reducing inflammation and inflammatory processes. This enables the gut to start healing and our body systems to function more efficiently. Bearing in mind that here is no “one size fits all” answer when it comes to diet and lifestyle, and what works for one individual may not work for another. For this reason it is best to work with a professional trained in nutritional medicine who can provide a tailored approach. Continue Reading
The immune system and Endometriosis:
The immune system has 2 main parts – Innate and Adaptive.
Innate immune cells should be cleaning up the misplaced endometrial cells, but with endometriosis this isn’t happening, allowing lesions (tissue damage) to develop.
Adaptive immune cells are “overactive” in women with endometriosis, creating an inflammatory state.
Regulatory T-cells (part of the adaptive immune system) that regulate the development of autoimmunity and dampen down an overactive immune response are reduced in women with endometriosis. Continue Reading
As I’m writing this, today is national Women’s Day, which somehow seems ironic when we’re so often treated like second class citizens. March is also Endometriosis Awareness month, which is one reason why the subject has been on my mind. This morning I was having a chat with a friend about contraception and it made me really angry that its so normal for women to be prescribed synthetic hormones to mask or interrupt their own hormonal cycles. This may be for birth control, or to “regulate” periods and PMS symptoms, or to “ease” the pain of endometriosis, or to “help” PCOS, or to get rid of acne, etc. And this is often without exploration of the underlying cause of these diseases or symptoms, and without explaining the impact on our bodies of the cessation of our natural hormonal cycle.
It also amazes and frightens me how many women think it is “normal” to have painful periods, heavy bleeding, clots, etc. This is not normal. Yes it is common, and it is often dismissed as “normal”, but it is a sign that our body has underlying problems that need to be addressed. Continue Reading
(Above image features my fave reintro foods – coffee and eggs!)
Before cleaning up my diet (pre-Hashi’s diagnosis back in 2013) I would eat out at least 4 times a week. And that was just dinner. Factor in work lunches and weekend breakfasts and that’s a lot of eating out! Fast forward to when I started AIP, and eating out had to be one of the first things to go. I just couldn’t deal with the stress of explaining to another person what I could eat and couldn’t eat when I was still trying to grips with it myself, and that look in their eye of “urgghhh….another customer with so-called “food allergies”!”. Continue Reading
As a clinical nutritionist it’s my job to help people make dietary changes to improve their health and symptoms. But changing your diet can seem really daunting, particularly if you are doing it to help manage chronic disease. I know, I’ve been there (read about it here)!
I initially made changes to my diet about 6-7 years ago, when I was diagnosed with autoimmune disease Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis (read about that here and here), so the tips I’m giving here are what worked for me, plus a few things I learned along the way. Continue Reading
If our blood sugar levels aren’t regulated (a rollercoaster characterised by sugar highs followed by the crash) we can experience symptoms such as fatigue, brain fog, anger (the hangries!), sugar cravings, inability to concentrate, dizziness, palpitations, anxiety, “the shakes”, etc. Personally, before my Hashimoto’s diagnosis (and starting AIP) I’d experience these feelings on a regular basis and would “resolve” them by eating a processed carb or a piece of fruit (yay, back on the sugar roller coaster!). However, this wouldn’t actually resolve the issue and unless I ate a balanced meal I’d be experiencing that sugar crash again. I’d even experience panic attacks which, looking back, I think was due in part to poor blood sugar management.
“Gummy squares!!!! Bouncing here and there and everywhere….🎼”
Anyone? No? Just me then!
Anyway, the point of this unicorn (rarely seen) post is….AIP gelatin gummies! Continue Reading
Well, I’d say I owe you guys an apology…..it has been 9 months since my last blog post!!!! I do have my reasons, the first being that we started renovating our house (which is still on-going) so trying to stay my shade of AIP without a kitchen didn’t make for particularly creative meals, and intermittent internet just made the whole thing too annoying to attempt. Buuuuttt…..my renovations aren’t anything to do with the exciting announcement. No. The exciting announcement is, that after 4 years of trying, about 1 year of AIP and 4 IVF treatments we are finally pregnant, and in fact due very soon, towards the end of March! Continue Reading
Lovely legumes at Alfalfa House, Enmore, Sydney
Ok, so this post has been on my mind a bit lately. I first published it over a year ago and, nutritionally speaking, I was in quite a different place back then. Wholefoods were very much my focus, but I hadn’t considered foods beyond “wholefoods good processed foods bad”. I hadn’t yet decided that I was going to start the Autoimmune Protocol (AIP), and I wasn’t Paleo either, and I’d probably eat tinned legumes about once a week or so feeling quite virtuous for doing so. But things have changed somewhat since then! And yesterday I received an email asking my position on legumes as a post AIP elimination phase reintroduction, based on the original version of this post. So I thought now would be a good time for an update! Continue Reading
I want to eat you….
I really quite like chocolate. Not in an obsessive “I have to have it all the time!!!” kind of way, but in a “I’d quite like some chocolate now so I’m going to have some kind of way. So eliminating chocolate for AIP was, hmmm, less than ideal! And I have to admit, it was one of the few things that the longer I didn’t have it the more I wanted it (I’m sure we’ve all been there)! Continue Reading