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Herbs are Nature's Medicine?
Herbs for FibroidsFibroid tumors are most commonly found most often in the uterus of women in their 20's, 30's and 40's. Between 20-50% of women of childbearing age have uterine fibroids. They are usually benign (non-cancerous) uterine tumors. Medically, fibroids are also referred to as myomas or leiomyomas, and are considered to be a woman's fibrosis condition that is usually associated with estrogen dominance.
Uterine fibroid tumors are nodules of smooth muscle cells and fibrous connective tissue, hence the name "fibroid" tumor. They develop within the wall of the uterus. Fibroids may grow as a single nodule or in clusters and may range in size from 1 mm to more than 20 cm (8 inches) in diameter. They may grow within the wall of the uterus or they may project into the interior cavity or toward the outer surface of the uterus. In rare cases, they may grow on stalks or peduncles projecting from the surface of the uterus. These uterine tumors are known as pendunculated fibroids.
While many women do not experience any problems, symptoms can be severe enough to require treatment, and are the most common indication for surgery, including hysterectomy, myomectomy, and uterine fibroid embolization.
There are four primary types of uterine fibroids, classified primasrily according to location in the uterus:
These fibroids develop in the outer portion of the uterus and continue to grow outward. This type can cause the uterus to grow.
The most common type of fibroid. These develop within the uterine wall and expand making the uterus feel larger than normal (which may cause "bulk symptoms").
These fibroids develop just under the lining of the uterine cavity. These are the fibroids that have the most effect on heavy menstrual bleeding and are often associated with infertility and miscarriage.
Fibroids that grow on a small stalk that connects them to the inner or outer wall of the uterus.What causes uterine fibroids?
Although no precise answers exists for the development of uterine fibroid tumors, there is a link between fibroids and estrogen production. Fibroids do not develop until the body begins producing estrogen during the onset of menstruation. During the reproductive years, hormonal imbalance can cause fibroids to form and grow. Hormonal imbalance occurs when estrogen and progesterone are not present in the proper proportions, often referred to as estrogen dominance. The most common imbalance that causes fibroids is low progesterone in ratio to estrogen, which is often too high.
Progesterone production decreases during the 30s and 40s. When additional estrogens, such as the type found in birth control pills, hormone replacement therapy, and plant and environmental estrogens are brought into the mix, hormonal imbalance often occurs. Additionally, fibroid tumors may grow very quickly during pregnancy when the body is producing extra estrogen.
Fibroids sometimes shrink and disappear after menopause when the body stops producing as much estrogen. However, if a woman has used hormone replacement therapy for many years, there is a possibility that she may have an excss of stored estrogen that can prevent fibroids from shrinking after menopause. A woman will almost never develop fibroid tumors after menopause.
Diet for Fibroid Tumors
Utilizing a specific diet can make a big difference in the effectiveness of a fibroid tumor management protocol. When working on balancing hormones and shrinking fibroids, be sure to keep these diet guidelines in mind:
Eat a Whole Foods Diet
This means making whole, unprocessed foods the bulk of your diet, while limiting or avoiding refined, highly processed foods. Be sure to include:
Abundant vegetables including leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower, and crunchy vegetables like cucumber and bell peppers. Try to get at least one serving of vegetables in at every meal, but shoot for more. You ideally want to be getting in 4-6 servings of vegetables daily. Eating plenty of veggies will ensure your body has the vitamins, minerals and fiber necessary for proper hormone balance.
Lean protein. Protein is necessary to support phase 1 and phase 2 liver detoxification, which is where estrogen is largely metabolized. Be sure to get protein in at every meal from sources including:
Hormone and antibiotic free poultry and fish
Legumes (beans), but avoid soy beans
Eggs (antibiotic free)
Nuts and seeds
Whole grains including brown rice, quinoa, and buckwheat. You may consider eliminating glutinous grains like wheat, spelt, barley and rye from your diet for a few weeks, to see how it makes you feel. Many people have gluten intolerances that they are often unaware of, and find when they eliminate gluten from their diet, they see improved health. 1-2 servings per day.
A variety of color fruit. 1-2 servings per day.
Small amounts of dairy from plain unsweetened cultured yogurt and fresh cheese (hormone and antibiotic free). You may consider eliminating dairy from your diet for a few weeks, to see how it makes you feel. Many people have dairy intolerances that they are often unaware of, and find when they eliminate dairy from their diet, they see improved health. 0-2 servings per day.
What to Avoid
Excess amounts of refined foods from flour products and excess amounts of refined sugar including cane sugar, beet sugar, and high fructose corn syrup. These foods deplete the body of essential nutrients needed for healthy hormone metabolizing.
Strong phytoestrogens including soy beans. Be cautious about "women's supplements", as many of them contain phytoestrogens.
Xenoestrogens, which are environmental estrogens from things like pesticides, meat and dairy raised with hormones and antibiotics, chemicals found in common household cleaners, and plastics, just to name a few. Xenoestrogens mimic estrogen in the body, and can make estrogen dominance worse.
Fibroid Tumor Symptoms and Complications
Many women with uterine fibroids experience little to no symptoms or complications that treatment. Women who do experience uterine fibroid symptoms may suffer from pelvic pain, abnormal menstruation, uterine cramping, and a variety of other conditions. Pregnancy may be complicated, resulting in miscarriage, premature birth, and other difficulties.
Uterine Fibroid Symptom Check List
[Abnormal Menstruation and Bleeding with Fibroid Tumors] Abnormal Menstruation and Bleeding
[Anemia and Fibroids] Anemia
[Pelvic Pain - Uterine Tumor] Pelvic pain and/or cramping
[Bladder and Bowel Probelms from Fibroids] Bladder and Bowel Problems
[Miscarriage, Pregnancy Complications, and Intertility caused by Fibroids] Miscarriage, Pregnancy Complications, and Infertility
[Weight Gain from Fibroids] The appearance of weight gain, especially in the abdomenFibroids can result in a number of abnormal menstruation symptoms. Periods may be longer and more frequent than normal. Bleeding may also occur between periods. Tumor pressure can result in severe cramping. Menorrhagia (heavy prolonged menstrual flow) is also possible and can contribute to severe anemia if left undiagnosed and treated. Menorrhagia is th emost common reason for hysterectomies.
Women with menorrhagia (heaving bleeding) may pass blood clots, and may develop anemia (decreased red blood cells and hemoglobin). In rare occurrences, blood loss can be life threatening. Heavy bleeding is common amongst those with uterine fibroids and/or hormone imbalances. If clinically diagnosed as anemic, supplementing with a highly absorbable iron supplement is critical. Additionally, adding B-vitamins to this regimen can be beneficial because they help build red blood cells, which is an important factor when addressing an anemic condition. Taking Vitamin A (10,000 IU per day) and an iron supplement together has been reported to help overcome iron deficiency more effectively than iron supplements alone. Susan M. Lark, M.D., stated that "in a study of 71 women with excessive bleeding, the women were found to have significantly lower blood levels of Vitamin A than the normal population. Almost 90% of the women studied returned to a normal bleeding pattern after two weeks of Vitamin A treatment. Please consult with a health care provider to help you determine an appropriate dose for you.
Pressure from tumor growth can result in dull, aching pelvic pain. This sensation is sometimes reported as pain, or as a feeling of pressure in the abdomen and/or back. Pain may also be experienced during sexual intercourse, a condition known as dyspareunia. Occasionally, the stem of a pedunculated fibroid may twist, blocking the blood vessels in the fibroid in much the same way a kink in a garden hose prevents water flow. This results in sharp, severe pain. In this circumstance, hospitalization and surgical removal of the growth will be required.
Bladder and Bowel Problems
The pressure of a growing tumor can cause bladder and bowel problems. Women may find it difficult to urinate, or conversely, experience urgent and frequent urination. The need to urinate may force women to get up several times a night resulting in sleep deprivation. Some women have reported recurring bladder and/or kidney infections. Constipation, hemorrhoids, and difficult bowel movements may all occur as the fibroid puts pressure on the bowels.
Miscarriage, Pregnancy Complications, and Infertility
Many women with fibroids have normal pregnancies. However, the possibility of a miscarriage is higher if fibroids are present. The increased blood flow to the uterus during pregnancy can cause fibroid growth. If the tumor blocks the uterine passage, a C-section may be required. Large growths also increase the chance of premature delivery, and greater blood loss during delivery. Occasionally, a growth may block the uterus so completely that it causes infertility.
Benign uterine growths can grow to large sizes without producing symptoms. Some tumors may only be detectable as gradual weight gain and distention of the abdomen, as if the woman was pregnant. As malignant tumors can also cause this type of distention, it is important to consult your doctor if you experience sudden, inexplicable weight gain.
Herbal Medicine Can Help Shrink Fibroids!
Even if your fibroids are small, it is important to take action and learn ways to shrink fibroids naturally without the use of medication which can produce dangerous side effects. Homeopathy, diet, acupuncture and herbal medicine can offer healthy and long lasting solutions to uterine fibroids symptoms and in many cases these therapies can treat them successfully allowing natural conception and healthy pregnancies.
Herbs work synergistically to strengthen the body's natural capability of self-cleaning for the uterus and the ovary. They have the ability to stimulate the elimination of abnormal accumulation of body fluids, clots, tissues and cellular debris, which may form cysts and fibroids. It is extremely important to follow this regimen for a number of months in order to gain full recovery. How quickly they begin to shrink will depend on the fibroid's number and size. It is best not to take this formulation if you are trying to conceive.
There are a number of very good herbs that can help shrink uterine fibroids and also decrease remarkably the symptoms associated with them. When choosing herbal therapy for fibroids it is important to look at herbs that have the following properties:
Helps adapt to stress by supporting the adrenal glands and the endocrine system.
Aids in the elimination of metabolic waste. Cleans the blood, improves lymphatic drainage and helps boost the immune system.
Prevents heavy bleeding
Helps relieve menstrual cramps
Balances and normalizes the level of estrogen. Affects the feedback regulation of the endocrine system, reversing infertility, irregular menses.
Clears infections and strengthens natural defenses.
List of Useful Herbs for Fibroids
The following is a list of herbs that can be selected to help those women who suffer from uterine fibroids and that want a safe natural alternative. It is always best to consult with an herbalist in order to get the most individualized benefit from this type of therapy.
This herb helps reduce the over-production of estrogen which is responsible of uterine fibroids growth. This herbal remedy has a great power in helping, balances hormones, like progesterone and reduces PMS and tissue inflammation.
False Unicorn Root
This is a key herbal remedy for conditions affecting the uterus and the ovaries. It helps normalize the female reproductive system and it is used in cases of amenorrhea or irregular menses. False unicorn encourages the ovaries to release the egg at the right time during the menstrual cycle and it is very helpful in treating infertility. It is also very useful in treating endometriosis, fibroids and ovarian cysts.
This herb is used during childbirth for its ability to strengthen the uterine contraction. It is used during menstrual cramps to alleviate the intensity and prevent heavy bleeding. It also helps regulate the menstrual cycle because assists the body in reducing excess estrogen.
Among all the herbs for fibroids this is the most useful one because it is capable of addressing many menstrual problems. It is specifically indicated for bleeding associated with fibroids and it is useful for headaches and acne associated with hormonal imbalances.
This herb has astringent properties and can be used in cases where there is excessive menstrual bleeding. It helps prevent miscarriages. It is safe during pregnancy and it also supplies the body with vitamins and minerals.
This herb has a great power over the uterine muscles producing muscle relaxation, preventing cramping and menstrual pain. It is also very useful as a hormonal balancing herb.
This herbal remedy helps the body deal with excess stress and prevents heavy bleeding.
This is one of the best female regulators. It is a uterine sedative, aiding in menstrual cramps, afterbirth, and postpartum pains. It helps to prevent miscarriage, as well as internal hemorrhaging. It is often used to treat muscle cramping and spasms, as well as heart palpitations.
This herb has astringent properties and it is very effective in reducing menstrual bleeding that is excessive. It is an excellent tonic for the uterus and a hormonal balancer helping regulating the menstrual cycle. It also can help painful periods and gastro intestinal complaints.
This herb is used to treat disorders of the female reproductive system, and helps bring relief from menstrual cramps, reduce bleeding and it is beneficial for treatment of tumors and cysts of the body.
This lymphatic cleanser helps remove toxins from the body and cleans the blood. It is helpful in skin conditions and urinary tract infections.
This herb helps the liver eliminate excess estrogen. It assists the adrenal glands and it has anti-inflammatory and anti-allergic properties.
This herb is a blood cleanser and helps the liver get rid of toxins and contains phytochemicals which inhibit tumor formation.
This herbal remedy is very good in strengthens the immune system and helping reduce inflammation of the uterus.
This herb stimulates the immune system and helps the body control the growth of benign tumors such as fibroids.
How to Select Herbs for Fibroids
Herbs for fibroids should be selected for the preparation of an herbal formula that has astringent properties to lessen the heavy bleeding associated with fibroids, that helps reduce the estrogenic effect responsible for the stimulation of fibroids growth, and that helps hormonal balancing by reducing excess estrogen.
How to Take Herbs for Fibroids
You can find the dried herbs, make a decoction each morning and drink the preparation throughout the day. It may not taste the great so you can add honey or maple syrup to make it sweeter if you like. In the end, I guarantee it will be worth the effort. These herbs should be taken for 3-6 months at least in order to obtain good results.
Herbs for Fibroids and General Uterine Tonic
The following formula helps relieve congestion of the liver and assist estrogen metabolism, increases progesterone, helps stop excess bleeding, dissolves fibroids, relieves pain, and facilitates lymphatic drainage:
Burdock root (1 tsp)
Cramp Bark (1tsp)
Vitex (1 tsp)
Lady's mantle (1 tsp)
Wild Yam (1tsp)
Cleaves leaves (1/2 tsp)
Marigold (1/2 tsp)
Herbs to Shrink Fibroids
The following herbal formula is more specific for those who just want to target the fibroid growth in order to arrest, shrink and prevent their development.
Bethroot (1 tsp)
False Unicorn Root (1tsp)
How to Make an Herbal Preparation
1. Combine herbs and water in a pot and bring to a boil.
2. Lower heat and simmer for a few minutes.
3. Turn off heat and let sit for about 20 minutes.
4. Strain and drink at least 2 cups a day.
5. Continue for 3-6 months.
Note: You can combine the above formula as a tincture and use 50 drops 3 times a day for at least 6 months.