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Each year, millions of women seek out help for hormonal issues that are commonly identified as PMS (premenstrual syndrome).
PMS can present itself in a variety of ways, ranging from emotional symptoms like depression to physical symptoms like fatigue and bloating.
Once PMS or another hormonal imbalance is diagnosed, most physicians will prescribe some kind of hormone replacement therapy or an oral contraceptive, also known as birth control or "the pill." This is done in order to regulate hormonal rhythms. Typically, birth control only alleviates the physical symptoms of PMS. And yet, up to 80 percent of women have used oral contraceptives, known to wound the inner ecosystem and open the door to more serious side effects.1 For women with a genetic predisposition, using birth control could triple the risk of Crohn's disease and further devastate gut health.2 Oral contraceptives have also been associated with sexual dysfunction, bone thinning, fatal blood clots, and an increased risk of heart disease and cervical cancer.
Much of conventional therapy focuses on treating the symptoms of PMS. This is only partially effective — if effective at all. NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) like aspirin or ibuprofen are widely available, and they are a frequent go-to for pain relief. If the emotional symptoms related to PMS are severe enough, a woman may be placed on an anti-depressant.
Targeting Candida overgrowth will deal with the root cause of chronic PMS and can balance hormone levels. Eating cultured vegetables daily, made with the Veggie Culture Starter, can strengthen the gut with good bacteria to keep Candida contained.
For those who suffer from PMS, it is important to understand that research shows estrogen supports the growth of Candida.3,4 Research also shows that a common cause of Candida overgrowth is the use of oral contraceptives.5,6,7
Once Candida becomes a full-blown fungal infection, things have a tendency to spiral out of control.
The nature of candidiasis is a vicious cycle. For example, Candida can overwhelm the tissue in the digestive tract and generate inflammation, which will further the growth and spread of yeast. Candida also produces a waste product that, in the human body, mimics estrogen.8 This means that a Candida infection will send out a chemical message that your body is producing more estrogen than it really is.
The effect of Candida overgrowth on a woman's hormonal system is rarely acknowledged.
This is especially true when managing a diagnosis of PMS or any other time in a woman's life when hormones are fluctuating to the point of estrogen dominance.
Estrogen dominance occurs when there is an unhealthy imbalance of hormones. In other words, the scales are tipped in estrogen's favor. While a woman's body needs estrogen, more is not necessarily better. When it comes to hormones, balance is key.
Estrogen dominance can occur at any time in a woman's life.
Besides symptoms related to PMS, other signs of estrogen dominance include:
What leads to estrogen dominance? Candida overgrowth, outside sources of estrogen such as soy, an overworked liver, hormone replacement therapy, and the most common forms of birth control all contribute to estrogen dominance.
A healthy liver is essential for many reasons. The liver works nonstop to maintain the right balance of hormones in the body. When properly cared for, the liver will diligently remove excess estrogen and toxins from the body.
Unfortunately, most forms of conventional therapy poorly manage PMS, which is often a sign of a deeper disorder. These therapies, such as birth control, pain management, and pharmaceutical antidepressants, only address the symptoms. It's times like these when it's critical to take PMS seriously, instead of chalking it up as a "normal" part of menstruation.
Chronic symptoms of PMS have been tied with a more difficult transition during menopause.9 Even worse, if PMS related to Candida is left untreated, a woman can pass the fungal infection on to her baby when she becomes pregnant. Up to 85 percent of women experience a vaginal yeast infection when giving birth that passes dangerous pathogens on from mother to baby, instead of the beneficial bacteria needed to cultivate immunity and a strong inner ecosystem at birth. Like PMS, a Candida yeast infection during birth is considered "normal," with the potential to devastate a baby's immunity and early development.
Because the body is a unified whole, when you affect one system, you also affect the rest of the body.
For example, it is important to remember that:
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists estimates that at least 85 percent of menstruating women have one or more PMS symptom each month.10
While there are several drug therapies on the market to meet this demand, none of these conventional therapies target the root cause of PMS symptoms. And, in the case of Candida overgrowth, hormone therapy often makes matters worse.
If you think Candida may play a role in your symptoms of PMS, consider:
Most conventional treatments for PMS only focus on alleviating the physical symptoms. If you regularly suffer from PMS, it's important to understand that estrogen levels can support the growth of Candida — which can also be triggered by oral contraceptives used to treat PMS. Left untreated, Candida overgrowth can lead to estrogen dominance, causing an imbalance of hormones in the body.
To beat Candida and control PMS, try the following tips today:
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