Recently I have had some thoughts about treating endometriosis, mainly how to stop the effects, limit the pain, etc…
As you all are aware, our eating habits and proper diet has an enormous influence on our health and not just endometriosis but general health which is proved by clinical studies. I am not going to go into details as there is too much to write about and I would prefer to leave it to specialists who know which supplements and foods help women with endometriosis.
I am more focused on women’s attitude when finding out about this illness and how they approach this matter. Often, after consulting doctors, they sit down in front of computers or with mobile phones in hand and browse the internet to find the answers about endometriosis.
This is where you can find a lot of helpful information about conventional treatments as well as the natural medicine approach, look up support groups where women share their stories and experiences and much more, but…
Let’s go back to the beginning.
You find out that you suffer from endometriosis, the chronic, incurable illness that often causes infertility and life in pain. This diagnosis does not sound optimistic and can be very scary. What’s next? Where should you look for help? What can the doctors do for you?
Then you come across group of women fighting the disease. You read their stories, posts about their diet, which herbs and natural supplements they have used, maybe some medicines and other products and then you decide to try everything to „cure” yourself…
This unfortunately could be a trap.
The special diet you should try when fighting endometriosis is not just for one month, a year or two but it is often changing your lifestyle and eating habits for the rest of your life!
Remember, this includes many sacrifices such as eliminating gluten, dairy, sugar, red meat and soy.
This can turn your daily culinary routines upside down and causes many restrictions. But you don’t give up and keep trying… You have survived the first week, but another one has just started and many more days like that to come. On top of that you have to go to work, need to remember about your hungry husband, still keep thinking about your illness, you might lose some energy and might feel fed up with preparing all these meals.
You want to help yourself and withstand the decision but it becomes difficult to do. You feel hunger and often fancy some treats but you know that if you don’t stay strong and don’t keep strict diet you will not cure yourself. This is very common scenario.
Many women can’t cope with their diet restrictions and often are afraid of failure, they feel they are too weak, will never win this fight and become frustrated which often leads to depression.We know, that proper diet is essential for good health and proper functioning of our body but positive state of our mind also contributes to it and influences our emotions. Human being is not just the body with organs but also the mind full of emotions therefore holistic approach to our health is caring about our mental comfort. In this case I wish to highlight the importance of listening to other women who tell their stories and sharing your own experiences especially when they have some helpful tips but you should always consider other ways of treating your condition. We must remember that things which work well for one person won’t necessarily work for someone else. This is why it is always important to contact specialists whether you choose pharmacological or natural way of treating endometriosis.
But what about our diet ?
How to implement it into our daily routines so it doesn’t turn our lives upside down and becomes pleasant thing that brings joy and feeling of helping ourselves instead of being frustrated or stressed because of it?
Everything needs time dear Ladies, especially when it comes to our lifestyle. Some take it easier than others but we all have to start at some point. I believe it is important to start with “small steps”. When for example eliminating gluten, firstly when you do your shopping take more time to read the labels, check ingredients and look for gluten free logo. Try to avoid any artificial additives including preservatives in all products that you put in your basket.Once or twice a week try to cook by yourself and make it for example gluten free, vegan or dairy free day.
You need to start learning the new method which is to remember checking the labels of all products consciously chosen to prepare your meals. You can look for new recipes and inspirations on internet or in culinary books and maybe one day you can surprise your family with new anti-inflammatory meal.
Try not to eliminate everything at once, do it step by step by consciously swapping the products you have been using for healthier options. For example white bread for sourdough bread or even buckwheat one and maybe someday try to bake it yourself. Sweets… we all love it and luckily there are lots of recipes and products available which easily substitute refined sugar such as agave syrup or coconut sugar.As the time goes by, continuous “small steps” method develops our cooking skills and the knowledge about products we use. After some time our taste will start changing. What you have thought was not sweet or salty enough suddenly becomes tasty and just right. It all takes time and also a lot of work.
My first step was eliminating gluten and it took me around 2 years to develop my new cooking habits. Then it was time to give up refined sugar and also I limited the use of dairy products. I felt my body sending some signals to do so. Later I have been diagnosed with endometriosis and I was told to give up red meat and the dairy for good but I have already felt ready for this challenge. Now I am so comfortable with all this in my kitchen that I have started trying vegan cuisine and it seems so good and natural. Even my partner loves it and praises my dishes. I am still open to new experiences. I am not vegan, I know what I should and should not eat and that is the important part of all this. I do not have the need of going back to the way I have been eating before and for as long as my body feels the same way, I won’t. We have to learn to listen to our body, to understand our emotions better and try not to do anything against it because that may give us opposite effects.
I have myself been a victim of what I had found in web. When I read about Ewa Dąbrowska’s diet plan and all women who got pregnant thanks to it I knew I had to give it a go. I was so desperate. I have attempted it twice but I only managed it for 5 days and gave up. I was so frustrated and disappointed in myself knowing I was wasting my chance of becoming pregnant. But now I know it does not work like this. This was just not good for me but I managed to find new ways, new flavours, dishes and I feel great. I also strongly believe that all is going to be just fine.
My lovely Ladies, I am so happy that you read this as I share it with you to give you some comfort. Especially to those, who often feel frustrated and for whom cooking and changes do not come easy. Do not get stressed as it only affects your health in negative way. It all has to start in your mind. As soon as you sort it out in your head you can think about starting your special diet, it is never too late. Another option is visiting dietician who will surely help you in finding the right products and recipes.
Don’t forget that these things take time.
It took me 4 years to find some answers and I am still looking for more.
Lots of love and health,