What should I eat to help with my Endometriosis?

If you typed this question into any search engine or social media site you will be inundated with numerous recommendations and products that all claim to have benefits. So what is the problem with this you ask? Not every woman experiences endometriosis in the same way, and therefore one specific diet will not work for everyone who has this condition.

The strategy is often to decrease inflammation, increase antioxidants and aid in hormone regulation. Depending on the associated symptoms one experiences, the foods or supplements used will likely be different. For example, some of the recommendations one might find could look like the following headline, highlighting research findings of an Italian study:

Higher intake of green vegetables and fresh fruit helps endometriosis 

If you are someone with endometriosis that also experiences urinary bladder pain, due to something called interstitial cystitis a common condition associated with endometriosis, this recommendation would be torturous. The high oxalates in green leafy vegetables and berries are often an irritant to people with interstitial cystitis and this irritation can increase the pelvic pain they suffer from. 

Another headline might read:

Eat more fats to decrease your endo pain

The idea with this dietary suggestion is aimed at blocking the negative effects of a chemical called prostaglandins. There are prostaglandins that have a positive effect of relaxing muscle and decreasing inflammation as well as those that have the negative effect of causing uterine contractions, pain and inflammation. For women that have pain and cramping as a result of endometriosis, the dietary aim is to reduce or block the prostaglandins having a negative effect and enhance those that have a positive effect. This is done with an increase in oils rich in omega 3, such as those from fish, walnut, pumpkin seeds, flax seeds. It is also necessary to reduce the intake of foods high in saturated fats, such as those derived from animals (dairy, butter, fatty cuts of meat, lard) and palm, coconut, cocoa oils