Uterine fibroids
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Home Medications and Treatments for Uterine FibroidsHome Medications and Treatments for Uterine Fibroids

Fibroids and/or endometriosis affects millions of women during their reproductive years. Uterine fibroids are noncancerous growths on the wall of the uterus that tend to develop in women past the age of 35. Pregnancy, oral contraceptives, and estrogen will often enlarge these growths.  In the majority of cases, though, natural treatments can help a woman avoid such are a benign overgrowth of muscle tissue within the or within the uterine wall. 

Jump to - Symptoms, Causes , Treatment, Other suggestions

Symptoms of Uterine Fibroids

Common symptoms of fibroids include heavy bleeding in addition to frequent urination, pain during intimacy, constipation, bloating, abdominal pain, and chronic back aches.  While these symptoms may be uncomfortable, they are generally not harmful. More serious symptoms include anemia caused by heavy menstrual blood loss and bowel or bladder discomfort ,if the fibroids grow in such a way that they put pressure on the intestines or bladder. If there is not an immediate health threat, you have time to experiment with dietary changes, herbs, and other natural remedies to shrink the growths. Consult with your health-care practitioner, preferably someone who takes a holistic approach to your wellbeing and is willing to take the time to consult with you about alternative approaches to surgery.

 

Causes of Uterine Fibroids

Fibroids are stimulated by the hormone estrogen, produced naturally in your body. These growths can show up as early as age 20 and shrink after menopause when your body stops producing large amounts of estrogen.
Fibroids can be tiny and cause no problems, but they can also grow to weigh several pounds. They grow slowly. Some women with many fibroids may have an inherited tendency toward developing them.
The following factors have been associated with the growth of fibroids:

Being overweight, obesity
Never having given birth to a child (called nulliparity)
Onset of your period prior to age 10
African American heritage (occurring 3-9 times more often than in Caucasian women)

 

Treatment Of Uterine Fibroids

The basis of an herbal approach to treating uterine fibroids is to help to balance hormone levels and to improve liver function, which helps to detoxify excess estrogen. In addition, herbs can help to relieve symptoms caused by fibroids such as excessive bleeding and cramping.

Vitex (Vitex agnus-castus):
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Helps to normalize estrogen levels by stimulating the production of progesterone. For the greatest benefit, vitex should be taken for at least six months. To make a tea, pour three cups of boiling water over two tablespoons of crushed vitex berries. Steep for 20 minutes, strain, and drink three cups a day. Vitex has a spicy, peppery taste. You can also take one-half teaspoon of liquid extract or two capsules three times daily.

Dandelion root (Taraxacum officinale):
{extravote 2}
Stimulates bile flow, which helps to gently decongest the liver and improves liver function. It also has mild laxative properties, which encourages the elimination of excess estrogen. For best results, take dandelion for at least three months. To make a tea, simmer three tablespoons of dandelion root in three and one-half cups of water for 15 minutes in a covered pot. Remove from heat and let stand for an additional 15 minutes. Strain, and drink three cups a day. Dandelion root has an earthy, slightly bitter flavor. You can also take one-half teaspoon of liquid extract or two capsules three times daily.

Milk thistle (Silybum marianum):
{extravote 3}
Is a potent liver-protective herb that stimulates the growth of healthy new liver cells and improves the ability of the liver to detoxify estrogen. For best results, take an extract of milk thistle standardized for silymarin, which is considered to be the primary active ingredient. Take 140 milligrams of silymarin three times daily for at least three months. If you prefer to use the whole herb, you can grind milk thistle seeds in a coffee grinder and sprinkle them on cereals, salads, or other dishes. Eat approximately two tablespoons daily.

Nettle (Urtica dioica):
{extravote 4}
Is an excellent general health tonic. Rich in iron and other minerals, nettle builds healthy blood and is helpful for relieving anemia caused by excessive menstrual blood loss. Nettle is safe and gentle and can be taken indefinitely. To make a tea, pour three cups of boiling water over two tablespoons of dried nettle, cover, and steep for 15 minutes. Strain, and drink three cups daily. Nettle tea has a rich, pleasant flavor.

Yellow dock (Rumex crispus):
{extravote 5}
Iis an excellent detoxifying herb. It improves liver function by stimulating bile flow and has mild laxative properties. Yellow dock is high in iron and helps to improve blood quality if anemia is a problem. To make a tea, simmer two tablespoons of dried root in three and one-half cups of water for 15 minutes in a covered pot. Remove from heat and allow to steep for an additional 10 minutes. Strain, sweeten if desired, and drink three cups daily. Yellow dock has a bitter, earthy flavor. If you prefer, you can take one-half teaspoon of liquid extract or two capsules three times a day.Herbs for Uterine Fibroids

The basis of an herbal approach to treating uterine fibroids is to help to balance hormone levels and to improve liver function, which helps to detoxify excess estrogen. In addition, herbs can help to relieve symptoms caused by fibroids such as excessive bleeding and cramping.

Vitex (Vitex agnus-castus):
{extravote 6}
Helps to normalize estrogen levels by stimulating the production of progesterone. For the greatest benefit, vitex should be taken for at least six months. To make a tea, pour three cups of boiling water over two tablespoons of crushed vitex berries. Steep for 20 minutes, strain, and drink three cups a day. Vitex has a spicy, peppery taste. You can also take one-half teaspoon of liquid extract or two capsules three times daily.

Dandelion root (Taraxacum officinale):
{extravote 1}
Stimulates bile flow, which helps to gently decongest the liver and improves liver function. It also has mild laxative properties, which encourages the elimination of excess estrogen. For best results, take dandelion for at least three months. To make a tea, simmer three tablespoons of dandelion root in three and one-half cups of water for 15 minutes in a covered pot. Remove from heat and let stand for an additional 15 minutes. Strain, and drink three cups a day. Dandelion root has an earthy, slightly bitter flavor. You can also take one-half teaspoon of liquid extract or two capsules three times daily.

Milk thistle (Silybum marianum):
{extravote 7}
Is a potent liver-protective herb that stimulates the growth of healthy new liver cells and improves the ability of the liver to detoxify estrogen. For best results, take an extract of milk thistle standardized for silymarin, which is considered to be the primary active ingredient. Take 140 milligrams of silymarin three times daily for at least three months. If you prefer to use the whole herb, you can grind milk thistle seeds in a coffee grinder and sprinkle them on cereals, salads, or other dishes. Eat approximately two tablespoons daily.

Nettle (Urtica dioica):
{extravote 8}
Iis an excellent general health tonic. Rich in iron and other minerals, nettle builds healthy blood and is helpful for relieving anemia caused by excessive menstrual blood loss. Nettle is safe and gentle and can be taken indefinitely. To make a tea, pour three cups of boiling water over two tablespoons of dried nettle, cover, and steep for 15 minutes. Strain, and drink three cups daily. Nettle tea has a rich, pleasant flavor.

Yellow dock (Rumex crispus):
{extravote 9}
Iis an excellent detoxifying herb. It improves liver function by stimulating bile flow and has mild laxative properties. Yellow dock is high in iron and helps to improve blood quality if anemia is a problem. To make a tea, simmer two tablespoons of dried root in three and one-half cups of water for 15 minutes in a covered pot. Remove from heat and allow to steep for an additional 10 minutes. Strain, sweeten if desired, and drink three cups daily. Yellow dock has a bitter, earthy flavor. If you prefer, you can take one-half teaspoon of liquid extract or two capsules three times a day.

 

Uterine Fibroid Tea
{extravote 10}
2 teaspoons dandelion root
2 teaspoons yellow dock root
2 teaspoons ginger root
2 teaspoons licorice root
3 teaspoons vitex berries, crushed
3 teaspoons nettle
4 cups water

Simmer dandelion root, yellow dock root, ginger root, and
licorice root in water in a covered pot for 15 minutes. Turn off heat, and add vitex berries and nettle. Cover, and steep for 20 minutes. Strain, and drink in equal portions 15 minutes before meals 3 times a day.

 Diet:

In an effort to reduce the amount of Estrogen precursors taken in through foods:

1. Avoid dairy products, including milk, cheese, yogurt, and sour cream.

2. Switch to a vegetarian diet. This includes using fresh foods as close to the natural, unprocessed state as possible. A healthy diet includes leafy green vegetables, whole grains, fruit, and proteins with a minimum of animal fat since most animal products contain estrogen, which enlarges the fibroids.

3. If you must eat meat, eat it in small quantities and use only the hormone-free "organic" varieties that are available at health food stores.

4. Reduce the use of fats such as butter, mayonnaise, and nut butters.

5. Eliminate caffeine-containing foods such as coffee, black tea, sodas, and chocolates. 

Aromatherapy Treatments for Fibroids

Essential oils increase circulation to the pelvic organs, relax tense uterine muscles, ease cramps, and encourage a state of overall relaxation that promotes healing. Use the following essential oils in Sitz baths, massage oils, and abdominal compresses.

Ginger is a potent circulatory stimulant with warming properties. It also helps to improve liver function. Ginger has a spicy, warm scent.

Marjoram has potent sedative properties and is an excellent muscle relaxant that eases uterine cramps. It also has mild laxative action and helps to relieve constipation when used as an abdominal massage oil. Marjoram has a spicy, herbaceous, slightly sweet fragrance.

Rose is gentle and relaxing, and helps to ease physical and emotional tension. It has mild hormone-balancing properties and is considered to be a uterine tonic. Rose has a deep, sweet, floral fragrance.

 

Massage Oil for Fibroids
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10 drops ginger essential oil
10 drops rose essential oil
2 ounces almond oil
1/2 teaspoon vitamin E oil

Pour oils into a dark-glass bottle. Store tightly capped in a cool, dark place, and shake well before using. Use as a massage oil over the abdomen and lower back.

 

Sitz Baths for Fibroids

Sitz baths help to move blood into the pelvic area, which improves circulation and relieves the stagnation that contributes to the development of uterine fibroids. For best results, sitz baths should be used five times a week. Natural therapies take time and effort, but the results are well worth it.

Alternating hot and cold sitz baths are the most effective type of sitz bath for increasing energy flow to the uterus. The hot bath dilates the blood vessels and brings fresh blood to the pelvic region, while the cold water constricts the blood vessels and forces the blood out of the pelvis. The alternating dilation and constriction creates a surge of circulation that cleanses and nourishes the uterus.

You'll need two plastic tubs that are large enough to sit in comfortably. Fill one tub with water as hot as you can tolerate, and the other with ice-cold water. You'll need to fill the tub only halfway or less with water-you'll be able to determine how much water you need by sitting in the tub. It usually takes a bit of experimentation to get the amount of water and the temperature just right. The hot tub should be approximately 105-110 degrees F, and the cold tub should be between 55 and 65 degrees F. You may need to add ice cubes to the cold tub to obtain the desired temperature. To increase the healing benefits of the bath, add five drops of ginger or marjoram essential oil to the tub of hot water.

Begin by lowering your buttocks into the hot tub-the water should feel uncomfortably hot at first. Sit with your upper body and your legs out of the tub, and make sure that your pelvic region is covered up to your navel with the water. Stay in the water for three minutes and then immediately move to the cold tub for one minute. Alternate between the hot and cold tubs three times, remaining in the hot tub each time for three minutes and the cold tub for one minute. Finish with the cold tub, towel off briskly, and rest for a few minutes, concentrating on the healing energy circulating in your pelvis.

Got a question ask it on the Fibroids Forum or share your knowledge and experience with others.