Dear Dr. Foster.
My question is that I have abnormal periods or known as polycystic ovaries and I would to know what alternative approach can I use beside going on the pill because my body acts crazy to those kinda chemicals. Thank You for your help.
On a vicious cycle
of Polycystic Ovarian Disease:
Before we go into what natural techniques are available to help, let's begin by defining polycystic ovaries and understanding the symptoms and the prognosis (A prognosis is what doctors say will happen to you in the future, given that you have this diagnosis.) Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (referred to by doctors as PCO for short), is quite simply the presence of many cysts on the ovaries. Poly means many, and cyst means a small, fluid-filled sac. In general, about 1 to 4% of all women of childbearing age suffer from polycystic sydrome. Half of all patients with PCO also suffer from obesity.
Symptoms include hirsutism (presence of excessive bodily and facial hair, in a male pattern such as hair on upper lip, chin, etc.), acne, irregular menstrual periods (menstrual periods may be absent or they may be profuse), and anovulation (lack of ovulation). If a woman does not ovulate, she cannot become pregnant. Therefore, PCO is an important cause of infertility. In this case, the estrogen secreted is not cyclical and it is not balanced by enough progesterone in the body. It appears not only that male hormones are the cause of the problem, but a relative lack of progesterone in relation to the amount of estrogen present.
Medical Treatments and Side Effects:
One option that Western medical doctors recommend is to take birth control pills. Before doing that, though, it would be worthwhile too look up the side effects since there are many and they are common. They include migraines, yeast infections, breast tenderness, gallbladder disease, liver dysfunction, high blood pressure, mood swings, depression, liver tumors, strokes, blood clots, a decrease in HDL (the good cholesterol) leading to a higher rate of heart disease, and an increase in cancer of the breast and cancer of the uterus (endometrial cancer). There are many more side effects which take up an entire page in the Physician's Desk Reference (PDR) for prescription medications. EVERYONE should consult a PDR before taking any prescription medication. In addition, birth control pills may deplete certain vitamins such as folic acid in the body. A lack of folic acid frequently leads to a type of anemia called megaloblastic anemia.
How well birth control pills work for this condition is debatable. To quote the Merck Manual - "No ideal therapy for either PCO or hirsutism exists." (15th edition, p. 1695) This should give us an idea of how effective Western medical treatments are for this condition.
Have The Doctors Missed?
What have they missed? Since medical science tells us that this condition is caused by an overabundance of androgens (male hormones), the first question to ask is where are these masculinizing hormones coming from? The second question is, how would I get more progesterone and have it be in balance with my estrogen?
In most industrialized countries, including this one, animals are raised in feedlots. In these feedlots, the animals are injected with many types of chemicals in order to stimulate their growth. The bigger the animal, the more money it will bring in. Therefore, since the goal is to grow an animal to its largest possible size as quickly as possible in order to maximize profits, many growth-stimulating chemicals are used. One of the most potent class of growth stimulating chemicals is hormones. Hormones work very well to grow the animal to a very large size in a short amount of time. Unfortunately, the rate of growth is so rapid, many times the animals cannot even support their own weight, and their legs break. It only takes a tiny amount of hormones to have a significant effect on an animal. Therefore, even trace amounts of hormones can have a noticeable effect on growth. Many women have noticed that medicines containing hormones such as Premarin are very tiny pills.
Now, the effects of these hormones are felt in every cell of the body. Estrogenic hormones affect not only the female reproductive organs, but also the muscles, ligaments and the connective tissues. Hormones can therefore be found in any tissue in the body, whether it be an animal or a human. Therefore, when an animal has been injected continually with hormonal substances, these substances accumulate everywhere in the body. When the animal is killed, the flesh that is sold contains traces of these hormones.
Now, when a female ingests this hormone-laden meat, her body responds to the hormonal substances within the meat. Again, it only takes a trace of hormones to have an adverse effect on the body. Medical science tells us that estrogenic hormones cause the lining of the uterus and the breast tissue to grow. The ovaries are also stimulated. However, there are no progesterone-like substances that are injected into the animal to balance the estrogen, so there is too much estrogen in meat and not enough progesterone. Progesterone causes the uterine lining to shed - resulting in a menstrual period. It also causes the breast tissue to stop growing at certain stages of the menstrual cycle. If progesterone is not present in a high enough amount, the uterine lining, the ovaries, and the breasts get over stimulated and they grow too much. On top of this, there may not be enough progesterone to cause the uterine lining to shed which means that menstrual periods stop. The uterine lining keeps growing, but it does not shed. In this situation, toxins build up in the uterus that are normally eliminated during a normal menstrual period. Over time, this abnormal, uncontrolled growth and build up of toxins will likely result in various types of tumorous conditions.
A large portion of estrogenic-like substances may be found in commercial meat. Therefore, if a woman desires hormonal balance in her body, she will decide to stop ingesting products which contain estrogenic-like hormones. Becoming a vegetarian is very important in this respect.
Doctors have learned the hard way that giving high doses of estrogen to women has increased the rate of breast and uterine cancer. This is why we have seen the dosages of birth control pills and other hormonal preparations drop down over the years. This is also why a doctor stops a woman from taking any hormonal substances (such as ERT or hormone replacement therapy) once she has been diagnosed with a cancer of the reproductive organs (breast, uterine, or ovarian). Simply put, these hormones can cause abnormal growths and upset the delicate hormonal balance in a woman's body. This is not speculation, but is well documented in the medical literature and has been known about for decades. Since the process of ovulation is largely dependent on the hormonal balance in the body, when the balance is upset, ovulation will naturally be affected.
Suggestions to get you on the road to recovery:
1. The first recommendation is to stop eating commercially-grown meat. Ideally, one would become a vegetarian. If that is not possible, only eat meat two times or less in a week's time and only meat that has been labeled as hormone-free and organic. The consumption of meat is also a major cause of obesity. An obese person has many more fat cells than does a healthy person, and fat cells normally produce estrogen. Therefore, the more fat cells there are (the more obese a person is), the more estrogen is produced in the body. Now we're in a vicious cycle: the person is consuming estrogen from meat, and that is causing fat cells to be produced. And then the fat cells produce even more estrogen. Since the problem is caused by too much estrogen, the more estrogen there is in the body, the worse the condition gets. Therefore, to help this problem, it is necessary not only to stop putting estrogen in the body from food, but also to lose weight. Hallelujah Acres has an excellent weight loss program. It's called the "Hallelujah Diet." This diet is composed entirely of plant foods - no meat, no dairy products, no eggs. 80% of all foods eaten are raw. No white sugar or white processed flour are allowed. Carrot juice and a green formula are consumed on a daily basis.
Ginger is a great food to incorporate into your daily food plan, since it has the ability to stimulate circulation to the pelvic region. In order to clean up toxicity that has built up in the pelvic area, we have to stimulate the blood to move there and to carry away the wastes and toxic buildup that are causing the problem. Most female reproductive problems stem from inadequate blood circulation to the female organs. When more blood flows to the uterus and ovaries, more healing nutrients can get there, and more built up wastes that are causing problems, can be eliminated through the bloodstream (via the venous system and the lymphatic system).
2. Use a Green Formula for appetite control and energy. A green formula contains greens such as spirulina, chlorella, alfalfa, wheat grass, barley grass, kamut, oat grass, Dunaliella, etc. There are many green formulas available in your local health food store. The formula I use is called Essential Nutrients. The algaes in this formula help to stabilize the blood sugar levels so that it cuts down on sugar cravings. It also supplies many essential trace minerals and essential amino acids. The spirulina acts as an appetite suppressant and naturally gives energy. Many people remain hungry all the time because they are not getting enough nutrients. Even though the stomach may be full, the brain knows that it has not gotten everything it needs to survive, so it registers hunger. Unless the nutrients can be supplied, the excessive hunger continues. Only when enough nutrients have been consumed will the body feel satisfied. Used as a meal replacement, Essential Nutrients has helped countless people lose weight. If there is a overweight issue, it is important to lose weight, since fat cells manufacture estrogen, and having too many fat cells adds to the problem of excess estrogen in the body.
3. Use female hormone balancing herbs. I use an herbal formula called the Female Harmony Formula which contains the herbs dong quai, wild yam and chaste tree berry and other balancing herbs which may be used for both men and women. There are many herbs which help to balance women's hormones such as black cohosh, licorice root, sage, squaw vine, false unicorn, and many others.
4. Or, instead of herbs, use female hormone balancing essential oils. You may wish to try myrtle, spearmint, or nutmeg.
5. In this instance, I do not recommend taking DHEA supplements to regulate the female hormones, since, according to medical science, DHEA is a hormone precursor that has masculinizing effects. The two known side effects of taking DHEA are prostate enlargement and hirsutism (abnormal growth of hair on the upper lip in women). These are problems that directly result from the masculinizing effects of DHEA and is not corrected, as some people say, by taking vitamin E. Taking more masculinizing substances into the body would be making the problem of polycystic ovaries worse.
6. Cleanse the colon/pelvic area: since the large intestine wraps all the way around the uterus and ovaries, a buildup of toxins in the intestines may cause a bulging which compresses the uterus and/or ovaries. Toxic material in the intestines may also diffuse out through the intestinal walls and into the pelvic region where they may be accumulated in the female reproductive organs. Bulging of the intestines may also put pressure on blood vessels which either bring nutrients to or bring wastes away from the uterus and ovaries. Many times, herbs cannot have an effect on the problem because even though you may do a great detoxification of the uterus and ovaries and get this area completely detoxified, the toxin-filled colon keeps feeding toxins back in. The Vibrant Colon Formula and the Colon Detox Caps do an excellent job of cleansing the intestinal tract. The Purely Herbal Intestinal Rejuvenation Program. Along this same line, it is very important to get massage work to open up the pelvis. Because of a sedentary lifestyle or sometimes childhood traumas, the pelvis can become "frozen." The pelvic joints are not completely immoveable as many medical doctors suggest, but should give and take slightly. The more flexibility in the joints and muscles around the pelvis, the better the circulation will be to the pelvic organs, and the quicker the ovaries and uterus can heal.
7. Chinese medicine and acupunture excels in helping to resolve female complaints. Many doctors stood up and took notice when researchers found that through a Chinese healing technique called moxibustion (specifically, they burned a bit of mugwort near the small toe), Chinese practitioners were able to turn a breech baby around into a normal position. No matter where in the country I lecture, at least one woman approaches me and tells me about how a doctor had diagnosed her as infertile and told her that there was no way she could get pregnant. Out of desperation, she went to a Chinese herbalist. After a year of drinking Chinese herbal teas and getting acupuncture, they would conceive and have a "miracle" baby. I have heard this story from so many women, that I'm convinced the best place to go for any female concerns besides this website is probably your local Chinese herbalist. I've also achieved similar results using a female homone-balancing formula called Female Harmony combined with intestinal cleansing routines.
8. If herbs are not available, many dramatic changes can be made through the use of juice fasting.
9. Whenever there is a weight issue, there are usually emotional issues which prevent one from losing weight past a certain point. In this case, high quality essential oils are excellent for dealing with difficult emotions. Some good ones include Relaxing Essential Oil Blend and Frankincense. And you may also like the citrus oils - Orange, Lemon, grapefruit, or a citrus blend since they help so much with lifting depressive feelings which frequently accompany issues with weight control. For women who have been traumatized (see below), rub essential oils over the entire pelvic area to help release negative emotional patterns which are contributing to problems in this area.
10. Lastly, many emotional states may contribute to female disorders. Very common is the belief that being a woman and having periods is a curse. Many women have related that when they got their first menstrual period, their mother responded by telling her, "Congratulations; you now have the curse." I hear this time and time again. Even worse, are spiritual beliefs about being "unclean" during menstruation (a ridiculous and absolutely false belief). I've even heard some ministers preaching that pregnant women could not be as spiritual as men because the baby tied them "too close to the earth." Some religions do not allow women to be be ministers, and in some countries, women are not allowed to read spiritual books or to follow any spiritual practices. At one time, it was actually debated whether or not women even had souls! I figure most of these male preachers have no idea how much damage they are causing to women by preaching these false beliefs. These false beliefs result from a misinterpretation of the Bible and other holy books. (As an aside, it may interest women to know that nuns have the highest rate of hysterectomies than any other occupational group. This is most likely due to their belief that sexuality is wrong, dirty, and something to be ashamed of.) None of us is unclean, impure or untouchable. We are all perfect creations of God. God is present in every cell of our bodies; therefore, there is no part of the body that is wrong, shameful or dirty.
From the false beliefs that run rampant in most organized religions, many women wrongly learn that they are spiritually inferior to men and that there is something wrong and dirty about the natural workings of their bodies. They are taught that there is something shameful about their sexuality. (I am not condoning promiscuity, but simply saying that there is nothing shameful about a loving sexual relationship between two responsible adults who are committed to each other.)
After all of this negative conditioning, it is no wonder that the women who have been diagnosed with a female reproductive condition ALWAYS tell me that all they want to do is get rid of their uterus by having a hysterectomy. They are very willing to give up their womanhood since it is such a "curse." We cannot have these beliefs about our bodies without it affecting the health of the female reproductive organs.
These negative emotions may lodge in the reproductive organs and weaken and eventually attract disease. Other women have been molested, raped or otherwise sexually abused, and they have many fears and traumas which are contributing to the disease. Some women overeat in the attempt to make themselves unattractive due to sexual traumas suffered in the past. Obesity protects them from being abused again since it makes them unattractive to many men. The obesity then causes an excess of estrogen which causes disease. When a woman denies her femininity or otherwise has beliefs such as that being female is a weakness or a disadvantage, she can subconsciously and slowly destroy her reproductive organs with these negative thoughts. Our body is listening to every word and every thought we have about it, and if we do not wish to be "weak" or female, then our bodies sometimes obey us.
It may be worthwhile if there are any issues with being female to work them out with a counselor. Also helpful would be to join a woman's group - one which celebrates womanhood. When a menstrual period comes, we should think of it as a blessing instead of a curse. There are many special gifts that women have - the gift of motherhood, sensitivity, the ability to nurture others, heightened intuition, creativity, generosity, and many others. Everyone has unique gifts to contribute to the world. Womanhood can be our greatest blessing, once we begin to recognize our special qualities and learn to unconditionally love and accept ourselves and our bodies exactly the way that they are right now.
May you be on your way to a blessed awareness of your femininity,
Sample Program For Managing
Female Harmony Formula
Vibrant Colon Formula (for most people) or Colon Starter Plus (extra strength)
Colon Detox Caps
Castor oil packs applied to pelvic area at least 3 times weekly
Stone Buster - this is taken for 4 days before beginning the Liver Regeneration Program Liver Regeneration Program + Blood Detox Formula
Stop eating meat
Cut down on dairy products
Once weekly massage focusing on pelvis, lower back and legs (tight leg muscles can constrict pelvis)
Examine relationship with sexual partner and beliefs about sexuality
Cut down on household chemicals and replace with healthy alternatives from health food store (laundry detergent, fingernail polish, perfume, body sprays, etc.)
Order this Female Hormone Balancing Program Online
"The Natural Healing Force Within Each Of Us
Is The Greatest Force In Getting Well"