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Endometriosis is a gynecological disorder that usually shows up during a woman’s reproductive years. According to one 2010 report, endometriosis affects up to 10% of women in the United States. (1)
It has been determined that endometriosis has a strong relationship with:
So far, there is no cure for the disorder. The best a doctor can do for a patient with endometriosis is manage symptoms.
Most often, symptoms include:
Each month, a woman’s ovaries produce hormones that tell the cells lining the uterus to multiply. When a woman does not get pregnant, these cells slough off and are shed with a woman’s menstrual blood. When these cells are found living and growing outside of the uterus, this is what is known as endometriosis. These endometrial cells grow and bleed just like the cells in the uterus.
Common symptoms of endometriosis include pelvic pain, constipation, and even infertility. Although the condition has no cure, women can find relief by calming inflammation and strengthening the immune system!
As these cells bleed according to a woman’s monthly cycle, blood is released wherever the cells are located. Endometrial cells have been known to implant on the:
Once these cells bleed, there is swelling, and the body will often mount an immune response.
A study published in 2002 in the Journal of Human Reproduction looked for a connection between endometriosis and the microorganisms in the intestinal tract. (2)
While researchers used rhesus monkeys in their study, it was their hope that the findings would shed some light on this common condition that affects so many women.
The study determined that:
Candida albicans is native to the human body and part of a healthy inner ecosystem. Only when Candida grows beyond control does it pose a toxic threat. This can happen for a number of reasons, but the most common are poor diet and excessive use of antibiotic therapy. Both a poor diet and antibiotic use can disrupt the natural balance of microorganisms that live in the body.
Researchers of the 2002 study found that inflammation can also disrupt the balance of microorganisms living in the gastrointestinal tract. Later studies have found that endometriosis has a clear and direct association to inflammation in the gut. (3)(4)
A healthy inner ecosystem keeps Candida in check. Without friendly bugs and without balance, the yeast Candida is able to quickly dominate its environment and colonize other areas of the body.
Women with endometriosis are at higher risk for Candida overgrowth. (5)(6) Part of this risk has to do a disturbance in the delicate balance of microorganisms in the gut.
Even though endometriosis involves multiple systems in the body, so far physicians only manage the disorder by lowering overall estrogen.
While endometriosis may or may not be an autoimmune condition, there is enough evidence telling us to support the immune system. Endometriosis:
One of the best ways to balance the immune system is to support gastrointestinal function. In fact, when it comes to an autoimmune disorder, a balanced inner ecosystem is essential because it reinstates the gut barrier, which protects the body from further flare-ups and inflammation.
We can manage the immune system and decrease inflammation by doing two things:
Keep in mind that probiotic-rich fermented foods and beverages are superior to the probiotics you may find in a capsule at the store. If you purchase fermented foods at the supermarket, make sure that these foods are found in the refrigerated section.
Up to 10% of women in the US suffer from a gynecological disorder called endometriosis during their reproductive years. To date, endometriosis doesn't have a cure; most medical treatment is used to manage symptoms like infertility, constipation, and severe pelvic pain.
2002 research reveals that intestinal inflammation occurs more often in women with endometriosis. An inflamed digestive tract contains different microorganisms than a healthy gut, with a higher risk for Candida overgrowth. Later research discovered that endometriosis is directly associated with gut inflammation, leaving women with the condition at an even greater risk for toxic Candida overgrowth in the digestive tract.
Although there is no cure for endometriosis yet, you can use two important tips to decrease inflammation and balance the immune system to alleviate symptoms caused by the disorder: