As women we are forever told that our hormones are the enemy. But if you learn anything in this blog it’s that in most circumstances our bodies have been weaponized against us for the usual culprit: Profit and the belief in “normal.”
In reality our hormones very much serve a divine feminine purpose from creating life to thoroughly enjoying your sex life. Yes ladies, if you are hormonally balanced there is no such thing as zero libido. It is unfortunate that pharmaceutical companies as well as doctors, the very individuals empowered to assist us with our health, have actually done the very opposite for decades. Enter the Birth Control Pill.
Dr. Lara Briden is a naturopathic doctor, best selling author and for the past 20 years has worked with women to naturally balance their hormones while advising against the use of hormonal birth control. Briden started her professional life as a biologist at the University of Calgary. There, she studied zoology, botany, and ecology, and worked summers collecting data on the plants and animals of the Canadian wilderness. When she began looking into naturopathic medicine, she discovered that its core philosophy is that the body can often heal itself. That resonated with everything she had learned about the natural world in her biology studies. She understood the natural world to be a pragmatic and regenerative system. She concluded that the human body had to follow the same principles, because the human body is part of the natural world. The key word here is “natural.”
Here is the very important “why” you should always trust your natural state and body without outside interference.
In one of her books Briden states the obvious: Your period is not just your period. It is an expression of your underlying health. When you are healthy, your menstrual cycle will arrive smoothly, regularly, and without symptoms. When you are unhealthy in some way, your cycle will tell the story.
She goes on to say that most doctors don’t look at the underlying issue of period problems or hormonal issues as the magic medical solution over the last 60 decades has been the pill and then fertility drugs. Both incredibly damaging to our bodies and hormonal system but convenient af for the medical field which simply shelved these issues as “too hard” to fully investigate and comprehend. For 60 years!! Yet we have solved erectile dysfunction. Cool.
“Why does your doctor love the pill so much? Because it is a handy catch-all solution. Missing periods? Take the pill. Period pain? Take the pill. Polycystic ovary syndrome or endometriosis? Take the pill.
Then, when you want to become pregnant, you can take a fertility drug.” writes Briden in her book Period Repair Manual.
If you aren’t completely aware here is what the pill actually does to your natural cycle.
The pill forces you to have a bleed, which is reassuring for both you and your doctor. But there’s a problem: a pill bleed is not a real period.
A real period is a finale in a series of hormonal events which includes ovulation and the making of progesterone … A real period happens approximately every 28 days because that’s how long it takes your ovaries to complete the process. A real period is about the healthy functioning of your ovaries.
A pill bleed does not proceed from ovulation. Instead, it is a withdrawal bleed from the drugs that stimulate your uterine lining but shut down your ovaries. A pill bleed is about the dosing of a drug.
Most 15 year old girls who are conditioned to use the pill by most family doctors haven’t yet fully developed and here we are manipulating their hormones before they even begin their journey into womanhood falsely informing them it’s perfectly “normal.” . What’s worse is neither the medical professionals nor the women in their lives, who have been conditioned to believe the same, take the time to fully explain the side effects and long term consequences of the unnatural disruption of their hormonal system.
If you have been on hormonal birth control, fertility drugs or replacement hormones chances are that your body has been synthetically manipulated as result opening the door to unpleasant symptoms such as weight gain, cysts, irritability, hot flashes, etc,. Add in natural occurring hormonal disruptors such as gluten, processed food, alcohol and no wonder that women all over the world but especially in North America have been fighting their on bodies and have been led to believe that it’s a “normal” part of aging. It’s NOT.
The good news is that you can take control of your hormones through the best natural method and that is a healthy lifestyle. From a nutrition stand point not all food is equal and gluten is major hormonal culprit. My advice for years has been to cut out as much bread, cereals, baked goods, as you can. Alcohol is another major problem for women. Not only will limiting your alcohol intake slow down the aging process but it also does wonders for hormonal balance.
Adding movement and exercise is a non-negotiable item if you are looking to go into your menopause years in a state of hormonal bliss and sans hot flashes and weight gain. Your hormones can and should be balanced but you have to put in the commitment and work into your body to achieve homeostasis for yourself.
I will leave you with one last excerpt from Briden’s books to drive home the message that hormonal intervention is doing the opposite of what most doctors would have you believe and why it’s so incredibly important to have these conversations with girls starting in their teens and continue into adulthood and middle age.
“Wait a minute. Did I just say that hormonal birth control works by shutting down your ovaries and switching off your hormones? Yes. On the pill, you have no sex hormones of your own. Instead, you have steroid drugs given to you as a kind of “hormone replacement”—not unlike the hormone replacement that is given to women in menopause.” – Briden
You can stop the cycle. So start.