First in a series.
When I started eating for endometriosis, I frankly didn’t have a clue what I was doing. I was starting from scratch, and there was little information to be found on the subject.
I started with blogs, websites, and going down rabbit holes on the internet about inflammation, dioxins, and all things menstruation. While I got what I needed — an understanding of the key triggers of inflammation — I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was overwhelmed by it. When you’re just starting out it’s easy to question who’s a reputable source.
Also, you’re constantly wondering if you’re doing the right thing. Luckily, my body quickly told me that I was on the right track.
It took many years to “perfect” my understanding and approach, and I’m still learning now. My current challenge is trying to navigate blood sugar balancing (for hormone regulation) while eating a plant-based diet. This might sound easy enough, but I recently interviewed Dr. Jessica Drummond for an upcoming podcast episode, and she explained why it’s so difficult to do when a person is vegan. Most available information includes meat, fish, and eggs.
My adventures in researching this subject reminded me of what it was like starting out on this journey and how all-consuming it can be. So, given my current reflections, I wanted to provide you with a bit of a low-down on the options for getting started on your journey of eating for endometriosis, my thoughts on the different approaches, and what they might mean for you.
Blogs and free resources
When I started out on the “endometriosis diet,” paying for a nutritionist or some kind of education just wasn’t possible. So, I took to Google and spent many hours reading up on endometriosis and nutrition, and then more hours pondering and going back to my laptop with further questions.
Many of the resources you can find are free and you can go at your own pace. Not all of the information is in one place, so you have to flip between pages, piece different parts of the jigsaw puzzle together, and try to distinguish between fact and opinion.
My advice? When reading a blog post look for references to specific studies or links giving further information on that subject. If there aren’t any, it doesn’t mean you should dismiss what they’re saying — they could have done tons of research — just double-check it against another resource.
Results may vary
I also would be wary of articles that tell you a method will work for you 100 percent — unless they’re a qualified nutritionist discussing evidence-based and widely verified information. I am not yet certified, but I always try to share my experience and research while reminding others to do their own research and find out what works for them.
I would hate for anyone to feel like they’re a failure because a tip they read online didn’t work out for them. Endometriosis symptoms vary dramatically, and responses to treatment vary just as much, so a personalized approach is always helpful when possible.
Endometriosis management isn’t black and white. I am sure at some point in my early days I was guilty of thinking something was the answer, but I hope my suggestions come across as more middle of the road now.
My final suggestion is to bookmark useful pages in categorized folders. I’m not naturally the most organized person, and I think I caused myself a lot of stress by discovering useful information and then being unable to find it again. Create a favorites section with folders that include “Inflammation,” “Nutrients,” and “Hormone Balance,” for example.
Next week, I’ll be talking books, courses, and getting a nutritionist.
Note: Endometriosis News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Endometriosis News or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to endometriosis.