How an Endometriosis Diet Helps Manage Symptoms
In the United States, about 11% of the population has endometriosis, making it one of the most common medical conditions women deal with. Because this condition causes the tissue that lines the inside of the uterus to grow outside of it, symptoms often show as pelvis pain, lower back pain, fatigue, intestinal cramping, heavy bleeding with periods, and spotting between or shortly after periods.
Endometriosis may cause infertility in up to 30% to 50% of those with the condition. Some of the most common reasons why this happens include adhesions, scarring in the fallopian tubes, pelvic inflammation, compromised immune system functioning, changes to an egg’s hormonal environment, blocked implantation, and altered egg quality. By working with a fertility specialist, you’ll be able to determine if and how endometriosis impacts your ability to become pregnant and determine the best treatment path for you.
Ways to Manage Endometriosis
Though medications or at-home options can help to manage these chronic pains, staying hydrated and following an endometriosis diet can make a difference. In general, this means incorporating foods that are anti-inflammatory, including:
- Fiber-rich foods, like fruits, vegetables, flaxseeds, legumes, and whole grains.
- Omega-3 foods, like fatty fish, nuts and seeds, plant oils, avocados, and nut butters.
- Foods high in magnesium, like dark chocolate, leafy greens, and legumes, as well as zinc, such as poultry, red meat (in limited amounts), and shellfish.
Research shows that the antioxidants in Vitamin C and Vitamin E reduce inflammation, period pain, and overall pelvic pain for those with endometriosis.
You should avoid foods that increase inflammation or raise estrogen levels, such as:
- Excessive caffeine
- Fatty meats
- Processed foods, and
- Sugary drinks
Some may find that gluten and dairy affect their symptoms, while others don’t.
Following an endometriosis diet will not only help to manage your symptoms but improve your overall health and, thus, fertility.
Endometriosis Diet Recipe Suggestions
Looking for recipe ideas to get you started with your endometriosis diet? Here are some for inspiration:
- Anti-Inflammatory Healing Bowl with sweet potatoes, turmeric, and kale
- Grain-free blueberry coffee cake
- Shrimp ceviche with fruity salsa
- Greek chicken quinoa salad bowls
- Eggplant curry and cardamom-spiced quinoa
- Spicy lentil soup
- Spicy butternut squash soup
Fertility Centers of New England is Here to Help
If you have questions about managing your symptoms or fertility outside of following an endometriosis diet, our expert team is here to support and empower you. Contact us today to set up your initial consultation, which is free for those without fertility insurance.