According to PubMed, endometriosis affects at least one in 10 women across the world. It is a condition that involves the reproductive system and the endometrium-like tissue grows outside the uterus, in areas like the ovaries, abdomen, and bowel.
The symptoms of endometriosis include painful periods, heavy bleeding, pain during intercourse, painful bowel movements, and infertility.
The exact reason behind the occurrence of endometriosis is unknown, and no cure has been found as of yet.
However, research has proved that certain foods may increase or decrease the risk of endometriosis. Therefore here are a few dietary tips that can help manage and reduce the symptoms of endometriosis in women.
Increase the Intake of Omega-3 Fats
Omega-3 fats are considered healthy, and anti-inflammatory and are commonly found in fatty fish, and other animal or plant sources.
According to PubMed, omega-6 fats can be harmful to endometriosis patients but omega-3 fats have the opposite effect. They promote the formation of the body’s inflammation- and pain-relieving molecules.
Research shows that omega-3 fats might discourage the implantation of endometrial cells. Moreover, women who consumed the highest amounts of omega-3 fats are 22% less likely to suffer from endometriosis.
Avoid Eating Trans Fats
Trans fats are considered unhealthy. Research shows that trans fats increase LDL levels that are responsible for bad cholesterol and thus reduce the HDL levels, responsible for good cholesterol. Trans fats thus increase the risk of heart disease and death (US NIH).
Trans fats are formed when liquid unsaturated fats are combined with hydrogen to make them solid. Trans fats are used to give the products longer shelf life and a more spreadable texture.
According to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), trans fats must be banned due to the danger they pose to health. Women with endometriosis should stay away from these since high amounts of trans fats increase the risk of endometriosis by 48%.
Avoid Red Meat
Red meat, especially processed red meat is associated with a higher risk of certain diseases, and removing red meat from the diet can help improve inflammation, often associated with endometriosis (Healthline).
Research proved that women who consumed red meat regularly were at a higher risk of suffering from endometriosis as compared to those who ate little meat or didn't eat at all.
Moreover, a high intake of red meat results in higher levels of estrogen in the blood, and higher levels of estrogen in the blood can cause endometriosis. Though more research and evidence are required to know the connection between red meat and endometriosis.
Limit the Consumption of Alcohol and Caffeine
Higher intake of caffeine and alcohol has been linked to the development of various diseases and health issues. According to MedicalNewsToday, women with endometriosis should reduce their caffeine and alcohol intake.
Though more research is required to show the link between caffeine, alcohol, and endometriosis.
The caffeine and alcohol intake may be linked to endometriosis due to the increased levels of estrogen, the levels of which affect the endometriosis condition.
Eat Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables have always been included in the diet by our mothers and nutritionists. They are packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
This food combination is packed with essential nutrients and reduces the intake of empty calories. These foods have various benefits and are also beneficial for endometriosis patients.
According to US NIH, a higher intake of fiber may lower estrogen levels and can thus be an excellent strategy for women with endometriosis.
Fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are great sources of dietary fiber. They also contain antioxidants, which help combat inflammation and oxidative stress.
These food groups not only help reduce the chances of endometriosis but also reduce the pain related to the condition.
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