10 foods to avoid with Endometriosis
As I have become more aware of just how much changing your diet effects your body and how it deals with endometriosis I wanted to find out more about what other foods should be avoided, below is a list of the 10 foods which make endometriosis worse.
I think when you look at the list it is easy to be put off because the thought of cutting out so many foods is over whelming! What I would recommend is reading through the list and committing to cutting out Wheat, Dairy and what ever else you think you can manage to start. It took me 3 months to really notice the benefits of cutting out wheat and Dairy but after being relieved of the pain it has never been an issue for me which is why I am excited to see what else can help. Also a key factor in making a switch is finding good alternatives which I will list for you and if you follow my recipes and others you find online you will never be stuck for something delicious to make.
Wheat/Gluten – Gluten and wheat are shown to severely aggregate endometriosis and create an environment in which it thrives. Wheat contains phytic acid which should be avoided. My recipes are always wheat and gluten-free, you can find great products to get you started and lots of restaurants offer gluten-free options now.
Dairy Products – Dairy products contain high levels of dioxins which are very toxic chemicals that are shown to cause cancer and also make endo much worse. Dioxins are also passed through breast milk so it is important to try to reduce these as much as possible when breast-feeding. Dairy stimulates the production of PGFa and PGE2 which also needs to be avoided.
Soy Products – Soy falls under two different categories, fermented soy such as tofu, temph and miso are almost a complete protein and have most of the toxins removed so these can still be consumed. Highly processed soy products such as soy milk, cheese, vegetarian meat etc contain even more phytic acid than wheat, it also increases estrogen levels, which worsens endometriosis and soy has been linked to breast cancer.
Additives and preservatives – These are found in frozen and pre packaged food which also contain PGE2 and PGF2 they also lack a lot of vitamins and nutrients . I think the more you can cook from scratch the better off you are, I do use some great pre packaged gluten-free products that are additive and preservative free. You will find lots of recipes on here that you make yourself from scratch.
Caffeine – Caffeine should be kept to 2 cups and under per day as it increases estrogen which can cause endometriosis to develop and become more aggressive. I can relate to how hard this one can be as I usually can’t start the day without a cup of tea! But I have managed to cut back from 5 cups of caffeinated tea a day to 1 and I have found some great alternatives such as rooibos which is a lovely tea full of health benefits and antioxidants while being naturally caffeine free. You can also get decaffeinated black tea, green tea and coffee. Also by cutting back on the tea and coffee I have increased the amount of water that I drink which is a great plus.
Alcohol –I am not a huge alcohol drinker but I do like a glass of wine with dinner now and again or a few cocktails on the weekend. If you do like to drink I would suggest taking a vitamin B supplement because alcohol strips this from the liver. Healthy liver function is needed to expel excess estrogen from the body which helps reduce endometriosis. I will also put up some drink recipes such as an iced tea with sparkling wine so you are reducing the amount of alcohol you are having while still enjoying a few drinks.
Red Meat – Red Meat is very high in Dioxins and promotes PGF2a production so this is an important one to try to cut out or reduce. I found that using ground turkey instead of beef is a great alternative, Portobello Mushroom burgers are great and getting protein from chickpeas and beans is another great way to cut back on red meat and increase variety into your diet. You can always have a steak now and again as a treat, remember sticking to something 80% of the time is better than being too hard on yourself which could end up with you giving up on your new eating plan.
Saturated Fats and Oils – Saturated fats in meat and dairy are a key source of exposure to dioxins in humans. Saturated fats also promote PGE2 and PGF2a so you should avoid fried food, fatty meat, butter, margarines and processed food. Instead get healthy fats from fish, nuts, oils, avocados and other healthy sources.
Refined Carbs – Refined carbs are bleached and stripped of nutritional value. I try to use gluten-free whole grain such as rice and flours. I think the more nutrients you put in your body the more you reap the benefits.
Sugar – You are supposed to cut out sugar in all forms as it encourages inflammation and pain and causes a more acidic environment for which he endometriosis thrives. I am a massive sugar lover, my diet has changed a lot I no longer drink pop or have chocolate bars like I used to but I also want an eating plan that I can stick to so I still have sugar but i use natural sources as much as possible.
From this list I know cutting out gluten, dairy and soy has changed my life and if you can start by cutting them out you will notice a fantastic difference in yourself then have a go like me at cutting out what else you can and cutting back on the ones you can’t.
You want an eating plan that you enjoy and that makes you feel great so on my site you will find recipes that are gluten and dairy free and that will be low in all of the above, I hope that you give the recipes a try because the pay off is so worth it. Something I get asked a lot is how do you stick to it and I promise you that your answer will be the same as mine. At first it was hard to make some of the changes and to find the alternatives that I liked (I have listed some of the great products in my recipes) but after a couple of months I noticed huge changes no more crippling cramps, headaches and mood swings. Over time I lost weight, gained energy and I have never even for a second thought of going back and neither will you.
The products available are amazing and I love cooking and knowing what is in my food. Changing the way I eat has given me my life back and I want that for anyone else that is having these issues.