In the last Journey to Motherhood article, we laid out some of the health hazards of hormonal birth control. This commonly used medicine or device interrupts your hormones and messes with their levels. Birth control, by definition, is an endocrine disruptor. The NIH defines endocrine disruptors as:
Many chemicals, both natural and man-made, may mimic or interfere with the body’s hormones, known as the endocrine system. Called endocrine disruptors, these chemicals are linked with developmental, reproductive, brain, immune, and other problems.
The human body works like a finely-tuned Swiss watch. When one gear is off, it affects every other system and organ in the body. Birth control targets and influences hormones–that’s what it was designed to do, and it does it very well. This has drastic effects on the body and knocks it out of calibration. Rebuilding something is far easier than destroying it, and the fireman approach takes a lot less time than the carpenter’s work. This is especially true considering every person’s body is different and will react differently to various methods of treatment or interruption. One woman taking birth control can get off of it and have her body kick the hormones and processes back into gear within a couple weeks or months. Another woman may be dealing with repercussions for years or decades after. The good news is, there are things that can be done to detox the effects of birth control and start the body back on the road to wellness.
Stay Away From Other Endocrine Disruptors.
The last thing the body needs as it’s fighting to regain its calibration is to have it be messed up further.
What are some endocrine disruptors in everyday life? See if any of these sound familiar:
- BPA (often found in plastics)
- Fire retardants on fabrics
- Phthalates (often found in flexible plastics such as kitchenware and some medical supplies)
- Perchlorate (can be found in drinking water)
- Certain components in non-stick cookware
There are a few simple lifestyle changes that can help keep these endocrine disruptors at bay:
- Get rid of plastic kitchenware. Use glass bowls and ceramic plates.
- Use stainless steel or cast-iron pots and pans.
- When purchasing fruits and veggies be mindful of the dirty dozen and clean fifteen.
- Be mindful of the amount of mercury in any tuna or other fish or shellfish you eat.
- Get a good water filter.
The food put into the human body determines how well it can function. When the body is fed substances it is allergic to, it takes measures to protect the body from these foreign invaders. This is also where autoimmune disorders come from. When the immune system is constantly firing and working to protect the body, it can easily get fatigued and start impacting the body’s other systems and functions. When the body is fed food it isn’t allergic to and it can fully harness the nutrients of them, it functions far better.
There are other foods that, even if you’re not allergic to them, are far better for you to cut than keep eating. These are foods like sugar, food coloring, and naturally inflammatory foods. Work with your body–not against it.
Each food the body takes in affects it in some way. In this time of detox, it’s helpful to take in some foods that will help the body balance out its hormones and bring them back into homeostasis. None of these foods are magical or instant cure-alls. They don’t force the hormones to balance out, or for the body to start functioning correctly, again. They simply support it on its way to wellness. A few of these are:
- Cruciferous vegetables
- Reishi mushroom
Each of these foods can help balance out hormones when they’re in their natural state. The act of being processed will often strip these foods of their benefits. Cacao is good for you, but if it goes through immense amounts of processing and there’s a lot of sugar added before it becomes chocolate, the benefits are lost.
Measure twice, cut once–that’s a common rule when making anything, and especially when putting a house back together. Ask any carpenter, and they know the importance of this rule. Once something has been cut and is no longer in its original condition, that’s it.
When taking care of the human body, the same principle applies, but with a bit more grace. Make sure you know what needs to be addressed before self-diagnosing. You don’t know what you don’t know.
Birth control messes with hormones most–get those tested to know what in particular needs to be brought back into balance, and how they need to be supported.
Get allergies tested, as well. These can be hidden or blatant enemies, bombarding the body with immune responses and keeping it exhausted and unable to function properly. If an allergy comes to light, stop eating it and give the body a break so it can continue to support you, and, soon enough, your baby. This can be hard, which is why we have some recipes to make the first step that much easier.
To get allergies and hormones tested, learn how to recalibrate your Swiss watch, and what else to do to detox the toxins of birth control, visit a Wellness Way clinic today!