I recently did a talk for the International Pelvic Pain Society on diet and endometriosis. I spoke about how certain foods and dietary patterns may help relieve your endometriosis symptoms. In this post I’ll share my key takeaways. Hint: the anti-inflammatory diet is really promising for Endometriosis:
Focus on Anti-Inflammatory Foods
- Eat your fruits and veggies, especially citrus – Antioxidants may combat symptoms of endometriosis, and fruits and veggies are full of them. One study found this to be especially true for fruit. In particular, citrus fruit, packed with vitamin C was beneficial.
2. Add ginger and turmeric to your diet – In some small studies, curcumin seemed to lower symptoms of endometriosis. Add it to soups, stews, curries, smoothies and tea.
3. Eat nuts and seeds daily – Vitamin E and other nutrients in nuts and seeds are associated with lower risk of getting endometriosis. They also may lower inflammation.
4. Get your Omega 3s – Known to lower inflammation, omega-3 rich foods like fish, walnuts, flax, chia and soy may help lower endometriosis pain.
Add in Phytoestrogens
5. Get that soy – Women with endometriosis are often told to avoid soy, because of the estrogen-like molecules in it. But, in the one study on soy and endometriosis, it lowered risk of the most severe form of endometriosis and had no association with the milder forms. This was in Japanese women who had a more long-term intake than many Westerners.
Get your Gut Health in Check
6. Get probiotics – One study that gave women probiotic supplements resulted in lower endometriosis pain. This was found with Lactobacillus – the probiotic found in yogurt and kefir. Also try other probiotic foods like fermented veggies and kombucha.
7. Get a variety of fiber – Fiber is what’s known as a prebiotic. This means it feeds the bacteria in your gut, which helps keep the population diverse and less inflammatory. Eating foods like beans, whole grains, nuts, seeds and and fruits and veggies can support gut health. This will help with any stomach or intestinal symptoms associated with endometriosis.
Limit Pro-Inflammatory Foods
8. Limit red meat – Eating 2 or more servings per day of red meat was associated in one study with more than a 50% higher risk of developing endometriosis. This is likely because high intake of red meat can be inflammatory. Consider switching it out for fish or plant protein a few nights a week.
Need a little more help applying these recommendations to your life? I got you. I’m currently taking endometriosis patients in my 6 week hormone health program to help you balance hormones, lower inflammation and feel amazing! Book a Free Nutrition Chat to get started.