A woman’s health is a barometer of her environment. It ismodeled and shaped according to her evolution in the womb and the social, cultural, and ecological environment of her childhood. It is created out of her relationships, her joys and traumas. It is grounded in the quality of her nutrition and the purity of the water and air around her. At each stage of a woman’s life cycle, because of her innate connection to birth, creativity, and the protection of the human race, a woman’s health represents a sentinel of subtle and great disturbances in our culture and our environment. For that we should be thankful.
Women are the canaries in the coalmine, warning us of imminent danger, of disturbances no one else can see or feel. Unfortunately, these disturbances reg- ister in the anatomy, the biochemistry, and the souls of women. They create imbalances, which can be healed by shifts in belief, nutrition, and activity and supported by the fruits and plants of the earth, which have evolved in harmony with our own bodies, offering healing and balance.
The canaries are singing loudly enough. Why is there an epidemic of hormonal disturbances in women’s life cycles? Why is there an increasing incidence of early menarche, hormonal dysfunction, eating disorders, premenstrual syndrome (PMS), endometriosis, fibroids, menstrual difficulties such as pain and heavy bleeding, infertility, breast cancer, and difficult transitions supporting it with oxygen and medication, hoping it survives, while ignoring the poison gases all around.
MEDICALIZATION OF WOMEN’S HEALTH
Increasing numbers of young girls and women suffer from the vicissitudes of a toxic food environment filled with sugar and fats that promote obesity, increases in circulating estrogens, and early puberty.
Our industrial environment, filled with xenotoxic estrogens, disturbs normal hormonal cycles and stimulates pre- mature development. Early puberty is now seen in 8-year-old girls. Teenagers experience increasingly irregular cycles, dysmenorrhea, amenorrhea, and premenstrual syndrome. Physicians prescribe oral contraceptives to “regulate” patients’ cycles rather than addressing lifestyle and environmental etiologies of altered function.
If women’s health (or lack thereof) is a sentinel for imbalance in our lifestyle and environment, then perhaps that is a better starting point of inquiry into etiology that might provide a better guide for therapy than accepting as normal hormonal imbalances that require medication. Let us examine the role of diet (one of many factors, including exercise, stress, and environ- mental toxins, that influence hormonal function).
The influence of diet on hormone balance is vast and includes the differential effects of specific types of carbohydrates and fats, amino acids, and fiber and gut flora, as well as micronutrient effects on hormone synthesis, receptor function, metabolism, and detoxification. Anti-nutrients—harmful foods and non-nutritive substances in our food supply, including xenobiotics, exogenous hormones, and antibiotics—have powerful effects on hormone function.
The most striking and useful clinical examples of dietary influences on hormonal balance will be reviewed in reference to sex hormones; however, diet and environment also greatly influ- ence the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and thyroid function. Diet can create imbalance or restore optimal function. Emerging diagnostic and therapeutic strategies can help clinicians navigate a paradigm that regards symptoms as adaptive or maladaptive clues of functional imbalance.......
April 18th at 4:00 PM at Kasia Organic Salon!
Julie is an experienced certified nurse practitioner with advanced training in Functional Medicine (your body functioning properly at the cellular level) and application of bioidentical hormones. Her focus in on women's health, age management, and the functional management of chronic illlness.