some other health stuff

05Apr15

MS has fallen into the background for me. I suppose that’s good! because that means my MS isn’t really symptomatic (not that I notice, anyway). But there’s been one other big, overarching issue… it all has to do with hormonal imbalances and estrogen dominance. I’ve experienced enough crazy symptoms over the past few days that I’ve decided to take more extreme dietary measures… well, the anti-dairy is fairly easy, since my body isn’t really letting me eat dairy, anyway.

I digress, though. My main symptoms, recently, have been massive lower belly bloat, I’ve been gaining weight above my waist (totally uncharacteristic for me), really dry eyes (yes, it’s been an awful allergy year in the Northwest, but along with my other hormonal issues…), the lactose intolerance, and the constant migraines are coming back. Used to be that the migraines would match my cyclical estrogen peaks… now, it’s more of a constant drone.

I had a few endocrinologists recommended to me by my naturopath… but since my gynecologist had suggested the standard “take these hormones” route, and I’d rather not stuff myself with more hormones if at all possible, I don’t kn ow if Western medicine is the answer, here. I’m a little confused.

I know that many women have this problem, and it’s one of those things that’s “just not talked about”, but I’m willing to (to try to help others). So, I posted something on Facebook yesterday. The response was slow at the beginning, but then, things started to pick up. Here’s what I said:

**

OK, keepin’ it real. I know that I’m not the only one who deals with this issue, and as a nutrition professor, I want to help.

Who here knows about estrogen dominance… ??? Symptoms can start as early as your late 30’s. I never used to be chubby around my waist, only my hips. (This has changed.) Vanity issues aside, the almost-constant migraines are out of control, not to mention the other symptoms (go to The Google if you think this may be you). My wacky hormones have made me pretty much lactose-intolerant. I miss cheese… (aside from my lame humor)

***NOTE! I am NOT a doctor! So, discuss any drastic changes with your healthcare professional, please!

Things that have helped me: supplements such as DIM (concentrate of cruciferous veg) and Evening Primrose Oil. Progesterone cream… I’m mixed on. Sometimes helps, but I’m concerned about too many synthetic hormones in me.

Foods that help: high fiber, which clears excess estrogen from the body. Sources say up to 40g/day can help. This is a LOT! But since omega-3’s also help us. you can kill 2 birds with one stone with flaxmeal (meal, not seeds; the seeds pass right through you, and you won’t get the benefits of the flax oil. But do consume the meal for the fiber benefits.) and/or chia seeds. The phytochemicals in leafy greens are also helpful, and they also provide us lots of fiber. And, you can naturally get beneficial compounds from cruciferous veg–broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, brussels sprouts… and fiber, too! (Also anti-cancer! Woo!)

Any other suggestions? Post ’em!

**

A few other people mentioned coconut/coconut oil/coconut products (which I agree with, in semi-moderation; I try to avoid canola and other overly-processed oils) and eating avocado (which I agree with, too–but trying to keep excess calories at bay, as well–avoid eating 10 in a day!)

There’s where I am right now on that. Going for a green smoothie every day with chia seeds and flaxmeal. Lots of fiber (if you aren’t eating a lot of fiber currently, ramp it up slowly, so that your intestinal flora don’t freak out). Other thoughts?

As I tell people, I love being in my 40’s… even though it’s just a number, I somehow feel a freedom to say what I want, moreso than before. If only it weren’t for these hormonal issues…

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2 Responses to “some other health stuff”

  1. I have found these books to be amazing sources of info for nutrition as it’s a primary focus of my treatment plan: Clean Cuisine by Ivy Larson and the Autoimmune Solution by Dr. Amy Myers. Hope they are helpful!

    • Hi Lisa!
      Thanks for the info. I do follow Ivy on Facebook, and some of the stuff there is great! I haven’t seen the other book, so I’ll have to look for it. I know that Clean Cuisine is all about total elimination of certain foods… which, I’ll admit, I would never be able to do 100%. Not only do I very much enjoy food, but I feel like I already have a second job with all of the food prep I already do for myself… add to that the additional layer of making more substitute foods out of things that are safer? Sigh. (I already do a reasonable amount of substitute creations… I, unfortunately, can’t do it all. Good thing I don’t have kids–I think my body is a “child” to take care of!)


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