More than one out of 10 women of reproductive age have endometriosis, a disease that can be debilitating. (1) This is a personal issue for Dr. Flynn because his wife suffered from “endo” for years. Endometriosis occurs when endometrial (lining of the uterus) tissue grows outside the uterus, sometimes attaching to nearby organs. Most commonly, the affected organs are the fallopian tubes, ovaries, and the surface or ligaments around the uterus. Occasionally, it can also attach to the bladder, cervix, intestines, rectum, stomach, or vagina.
When outside the uterus, endometrial tissue doesn’t shed every month like it would during your menstrual cycle. The buildup of tissue can lead to inflammation, scar tissue, and cysts. The overgrowth of tissue can cause adhesions, which may cause fertility issues. This condition can lead to infertility and an increased risk of cancer.
Did you see the “Speak Endo” commercial on TV a few years ago? That commercial shows how messed up the mainstream thinking on hormones is. It also shows how messed up the thinking on health and genetics is, as doctors blame genetics for everything from heart disease to hormone imbalance. Their treatment of endometriosis goes back to “fireman” thinking: drugs or surgery. It’s frustrating because endometriosis is NOT genetic, and a drug CANNOT save you!
We know many women are suffering because they come into our clinics and are desperate. They may be desperate to feel better or desperate to have a baby. One woman would get her uterus scraped, and the medical doctors would send her home to have sex with her husband, hoping she’d get pregnant. Is this what they call reproductive medicine? Imagine how this woman felt and what her body was going through! Women should not have to suffer like that.
We see things like this too often, so seeing these ideas in commercials is heartbreaking. Endometriosis, the condition highlighted in the commercial, IS common, but it’s not normal. If you haven’t seen the commercial, you can watch it on this episode of the Dr. Patrick Flynn Show (now ADP).
The Medical Stats Are True, But The Reasoning is False
What’s great about the commercial is that it encourages women to speak about their symptoms. Common is not normal, and just because lots of women are experiencing this doesn’t mean you should have to live with it. The commercial is right about all the stats. They talk about how endo can evolve into cancer. That’s absolutely true! It really can lead to higher incidences of breast cancer. One out of ten is spot on, and likely even more have it and don’t know it.
Why is it so believable that these stats are accurate? Because of what we know about the current thinking on hormones. Western society promotes the belief that hormone health and hormone balance or imbalance are out of our control. We blame genetics. That’s where we disagree.
Endometriosis is a developed condition; it’s not genetic. It’s developed, and that’s why it can be undeveloped. We do find some commonalities among women who have endo, even though every woman is different: Hormones tend to get out of control. We know estrogens (yes, there are multiple) can get out of control, and progesterone can get out of control. We know the DHT, the testosterone, can get out of control.
So, step one is to get tested to learn what’s going on with your hormones. The Wellness Way has been operating on these principles for 20+ years to help women undevelop their endometriosis. What we’ve seen is that endometriosis is NOT genetic.
You Are NOT Genetically Programmed for Disease
So, at the end of the commercial, they ask women to get genetically tested to see if they’re at risk for endometriosis. Let’s ask a few questions before you go out and get tested.
- Is your uterus genetically programmed to function normally or abnormally?
- Do you think your heart is genetically programmed to function normally or abnormally?
- Is your breast tissue genetically programmed to function normally or abnormally?
Did you answer “abnormally” to those questions? No, of course not! The idea that anyone is genetically programmed for a disease is the biggest fallacy. Your body is genetically programmed to function normally. It makes it much easier to sell you drugs if you believe your health is out of your control. If it’s genetic, you have to take a pill for the rest of your life. No big deal. That’s a lot easier than making changes, too.
You aren’t programmed for disease. Your body is responding to its environment. That means your genes can respond to a stressor in ways that appear unhealthy if you don’t know the body is operating for survival.
Your Body is Programmed for Survival
Your body must adapt to survive a stressor, so it doesn’t die. Let’s say you go outside in shorts at -30 degrees F. What is your body going to do to survive? It’s going to send all the blood to your core. So, while you might lose a finger or some toes, you will live. Your body will survive even if it lets your fingers and toes die. Was that dumb or smart of the body? Smart! Your body adapted to survive. It’s about survival.
The idea that the body makes mistakes is one of the biggest fallacies of modern medicine. The body doesn’t make mistakes. It’s responding to stressors. That’s what my wife’s body was doing, and I got to the bottom of it to find out what was causing the stress. If it’s surviving by developing endometriosis, it’s better than dying. We know it’s a concept that’s hard for people to get. But if your finger and toes go, your heart gets to live. Your genes are programmed to respond. If you give it a toxic or stressful environment, it will respond as it should. The body also adapts to other stressors you introduce, and that means your body develops conditions like endometriosis.
Getting to the Bottom of Endo
Does your mom or sister have endo, too? You do have the same genes, but that doesn’t mean it’s genetic. If you have endometriosis, we know your hormones are out of control, as are those of anyone else with it. How did those hormones get out of control? If you have relatives who have endometriosis like you, it might be because you have the same habits and environment. It all goes back to what the chiropractic field has labeled the “3 T’s”: traumas, toxins, and thoughts. It’s these stressors that trigger an immune response by the body. Through appropriate testing, we can determine why your body is responding to its environment that way. Once we know the stressors, we can take steps to diminish those stressors and return the body to balance.
You’re in more control than the drug companies want you to think. Remember how that commercial encouraged you to find out if you have endometriosis and whether you’re genetically predisposed to it? Speakendo.org and that commercial came from AbbVie, a company that has produced one injectable endometriosis treatment, Lupron Depot. This “medicine” has nausea, headaches, hot flashes and others as common side effects. Sound like fun? The FDA approved AbbVie for a pill treatment, Elagolix, projected to make millions a year. (2) They’ll easily make millions by convincing women that endometriosis is out of their hands and perpetuating the wrong thinking about hormones.
You don’t have to suffer with symptoms of endometriosis, and you don’t have to accept the common medical thinking. Endometriosis is NOT Genetic.
Learn about Krista’s Wellness Way Story of how a different way of thinking changed her debilitating endometriosis. Check out this episode of The Dr. Patrick Flynn Show, where Doc and Ross discuss the commercial and endometriosis: