Skip to main content

How You Can Shrink Fibroids Naturally with Food and Herbs

When I found out I had uterine fibroids* nearly a decade ago, they were small and inconsequential. But over time, my fibroids quietly grew and I started to get a lot of unsolicited questions about my “baby bump.” 
That’s the sneaky thing about these non-cancerous tumors (more than 99 percent of fibroid cases are benign.) They can grow slowly, rapidly, or remain the same size. They range from pea-size seedlings to bulky masses that distort the shape of the uterus. Now my biggest fibroid is a whopping 12 cm, about the size of a grapefruit.
According to The Mayo Clinic, 3 out of 4 women have uterine fibroids sometime during their lives. African-American women are at an increased risk and suffer the most complications from fibroids.
African-American women are at a higher risk for uterine fibroids.

While the cause of fibroids is unknown, their growth has been linked to an imbalance of the hormones estrogen and progesterone, and heredity.  So if your mother or sister has fibroids, you’re likely to develop them, too.
Although some fibroids shrink on their own, especially after menopause, when they’re huge like mine, most doctors recommend surgery--either a myomectomy to remove the fibroids or a hysterectomy to remove the uterus, with the possibility of removing the ovaries and fallopian tubes.

But before you opt for the ER, why not consider a natural alternative?
Natural health practitioners believe there are natural ways to prevent and shrink fibroids, and ease sometimes debilitating symptoms such as heavy and prolonged periods; frequent urination; constipation; and lower back pain. Here are some of the options recommended for shrinking fibroids naturally.
Hormone-balancing foods
Research shows there’s a relationship between diet and developing uterine fibroids. Eating foods that are high in fiber helps to significantly decrease estrogen levels, which in turn may cause the fibroids to shrink.
In Healing Fibroids Naturally: A Doctor’s Guide to Natural Care, Dr. Allan Warshowsky recommends a diet rich in fruits, dark leafy vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds and cold-water, deep-sea fish like salmon and tuna.
Women with fibroids should reduce or eliminate red meat, dairy products including eggs, wheat and gluten, soy, alcohol, and foods high in sugar, caffeine and saturated fat from their diet.
Detoxifying herbs
Herbs like milk thistle, chasteberry (vitex), burdock, yellow dock, red clover and artichoke help the liver detox, balance hormones, and reduce excess estrogen and inflammation.
Other herbs effective in treating fibroids include black cohosh, Siberian ginseng, Echinacea, goldenseal, red raspberry, licorice root, motherwort and dong quai. But women experiencing heavy bleeding should avoid dong quai, as it could increase blood flow.  The herb is also not recommended for nursing or pregnant women.
Castor oil packs
Naturopaths believe placing a warm castor oil pack prepared with hexane-free castor oil and a white flannel cloth (both available in health food stores) over your abdomen several times a week is another effective method to shrink fibroids and relieve pain. While relaxing with the pack, this is the perfect time for meditation and positive visualization exercises to reinforce the desire for optimal health.
Exercise
Research suggests exercise also combats fibroids. Aerobic exercises like walking, running, swimming and dancing stabilize insulin levels and help prevent hormonal imbalance. Eastern disciplines like yoga and tai chi stretch, tone and increase the flow of energy (chi) to the pelvic organs and hormone glands. And weight training improves muscular health and strengthens the muscles that support the uterus.
If you have fibroids, Everything She Wants wants to hear how you manage them naturally? And check out a blog I came across that chronicles one young woman's quest to shrink her fibroids naturally.
(*Portions of this post originally appeared on the Institute for Integrative Nutrition's Wellness Today blog.)

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Win a $50 Gift Card for Fall Fashion Trends on Amazon.com!

Tweens and teens aren't the only ones who need new clothes for fall.  We also need new tops, frocks, and trousers for work and play.  Fortunately, Amazon.com has launched the new Amazon Contemporary Shop to suit our grown-up fashion needs. Me (r) and a model (l) wearing a MINKPINK maxi skirt from Amazon.com. The online boutique is stocked with trendy clothing, shoes and accessories for women and men by designer brands like Halston Heritage, Twelfth St. by Cynthia Vincent, Rock & Republic, BCBGeneration and more. I even picked up a great pair of Heidi Klum for New Balance (HKNB) sneakers for under $55! So, are you ready to shop?  Everything She Wants will help one lucky reader jazz up her fall wardrobe with a $50 gift card to use online in the Amazon Contemporary Shop. Here's how to win: Retweet this post (if you don't have a Twitter account it's easy to sign up on Twitter.com) Subscribe to Everything She Wants via Google Connect, email or RSS Feed.

Giveaway: Thank Your Friends with Merci Chocolates!

National Friendship Day was August 4, 2013, but Everything She Wants has decided to continue the celebration with a giveaway from merci fine European chocolates . While some friendships are for a season or a reason, other friendships are built to last a lifetime.  I’m fortunate to have two best friends: Cindy, whom I’ve known since junior high school and Deanna, who started out as my amusing intern.  Besides my mother and my husband, these girlfriends are my greatest confidants.  They’re like the sisters I never had and we’ve supported each other through personal trials and triumphs. So what better way to say ‘thank you’ to your friends than with merci chocolates?  One lucky reader will win a ‘Friendship Kit’  that you can either keep to reward yourself for being such a great friend or share with a deserving comrade. The kit includes: $25 Target gift card (yay!) 7 ounce box of merci chocolates A picture frame to display a photo of you and your friends A choc

Conway Discount Clothing Chain Closing in New York City

It's the end of an era. Conway discount stores are closing . As of this weekend, a sign on the sole Herald Square location (34th Street btwn 7th and 8th Ave) says the store will close in "7 Days." Before I relocated to New York City, I was introduced to the discount chain while on a bus trip from Baltimore.  I recall the first time I saw Conway's signature pink bags carried by hurried shoppers in midtown. And Miss Foster, the trip organizer and a bargain hunter from way back, took me to the store for the first time. Conway store in the Fulton Mall./Tracy E. Hopkins When I moved here in 1994, my love affair with Conway continued.  I furnished my first apartment with discount knick-knacks and home goods from the store.  And much to my chagrin, in hindsight, I curated most of my wardrobe for my first full-time job from the long-shuttered 42nd Street and Third Avenue store. One regretful ensemble: Lime green and white checkered pants with a matching lime green