Welcome to the Thrival Nutrition Podcast with me as your host, Lahana Vigliano, the owner of Thrival Nutrition and a Board Certified Clinical Nutritionist. We’re on episode 141 talking about birth control and lessening the negative effects of it, if you decide to stay on birth control.
First before getting into things you can do to help lessen the effect of birth control, I want you to question about why you are on birth control. As a nutritionist and someone who is more “crunchy” and natural, I believe that there are better natural ways of birth control that won’t harm your hormones and your health. Because let’s be real, no matter what you do to lessen the negative effects of birth control – it’s still a synthetic hormone in your body and will naturally increase your risk of cancers, strokes, and other health issues. I will always advocate for something more natural when you aren’t facing death.
You might be on birth control because you want to stop a pregnancy from happening. While I won’t go into detail about natural birth control methods in this episode, I just want you to feel empowered that THERE ARE EFFECTIVE natural birth control options out there and which one works for you might be different for someone else. I will highly encourage you to look and research into those, but if you find that the pill is something you want to choose, we’ll get to what you can do in this episode to lessen the effects of the pill.
If you’re on birth control because your doctor put you on it because you had rough periods/PMS or to “balance your hormones”, I want to encourage you that birth control is not the answer. Taking birth control for this reason is simply masking the symptoms of an underlying hormone problem. You are delying the inevitable when you get off your birth control. Symptoms will come right back and the problem will still be there. I want to encourage you that you don’t have to suffer from a painful period or PMS or have this imbalance the rest of your life. I’ve personally seen painful PMS be gone with clients who focus in on diet, stress, exercise, sleep, and living a healthy lifestyle. Granted, it’s not as easy as it sounds. It takes a personalized approach for what is going on with you to be effective in balancing and supporting your body. (Which is why I am here!) Shameless plug, but if that is you, I would love to work with you to support your body with food and herbs to get your body back in balance. Book your free 15 minute phone call to see how I can help you. I’m here to be completely real and raw with you.
Okay, so getting that out of the way. Let’s talk about lessening the negative effects of birth control if you do find that this is the route you want to take.
Birth control is a total robber of your folate, magnesium, other B vitamins, vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium, and zinc! This lowers your immune system, your energy, and honestly, almost every other thing in your body. These are NUTRIENTS that are needed for our body to function in every way.
The best way to try to avoid major nutrient depletions are to have a nutrient-dense diet (of course, this will be my answer for everything!), which means to have half to three quarters of your plate filled with veggies! Also, taking a good quality multivitamin on top of that. Another shameless plug will be that I recommend our Thrival Nutrition Daily Multivitamin on Amazon! (This will be back in stock at the end of November/early December – I wish I had more control over the process, but with the holidays it can set some things back!) Total bioavailable nutrients and at levels that can help decrease nutrient depletion that birth control will rob.
Because some of those nutrients I mentioned are depleted, like Vitamin C + E (which are antioxidants too!), you can betcha that other antioxidants in your body are decreasing as well! Antioxidants are our body’s bodyguards from free radicals. Free radicals job is so seek and destroy cells + DNA – increasing our risk for cancers and other chronic diseases.
Supplementing with extra antioxidants can help reduce the risk of negative effects that come from the birth control pill. Here I go again saying – STARTING WITH A NUTRIENT DENSE diet first! If you need help with this and need a little more hand holding than me telling you, girl I understand! Book your free phone call!
Some antioxidant supplements that I love are:
Our liver takes a hit from all the “pollution” in the world – from diet, environment, medications, you name it. This is why I recommend to do what you can to help love and support your liver because let’s be real….there are things that we don’t have control over and we need to be functioning optimally for when we come into contact with those things. The liver is our biggest detoxification organ.
Hormones are detoxed through the liver and into the GI tract (which we will talk about next!). If your liver is feeling pretty burdened, guess what? Your hormones are just building up further creating a hormone storm when they are trying to be detoxed and eliminated from the body. I wrote a whole blog post on supporting the liver over on another post. And I also talked about it with Nicole Fennell, RD from Chews Food Wisely on the podcast!
A couple of tidbits from those are to eat tons of cruciferous vegetables. I’m talking eat 1-2 servings PER meal. Incorporate them into your diet – breakfast, lunch, and dinner! Yes, you can/should have veggies in the morning – think smoothie if you can’t handle the thought of it in your eggs or breakfast. Cruciferous vegetables are broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, kale, cabbage, bok choy, collards, and other green leafy vegetables.
Some supplements that I love to further help support your liver are..
And don’t forget to eat those high quality proteins – like grass-fed beef, pasture raised chicken, wild caught fish for those amino acids and healthy fats. Add some avocados and coconut oil in there while you’re at it!
Birth control, unfortunately, destroys your microbiome. The hormones in birth control can contribute to opening up your intestinal lining and cause inflammation all up in your gut! Dr. Khalili did a study on the connection between birth control and colitis + Crohn’s. It can really throw a wrench in your balanced gut bacteria. Remember, we want balance. We’ll always have bad bacteria and good bacteria, but we can’t allow the bad bacteria to outweigh the good bacteria.
You guys know that I’m constantly talking about gut health and how it relates to practically EVERYTHING. Some ways that you can love your gut is eating a nutrient dense diet (again I’m a repeating myself, but I will until I die!), drinking/eating bone broth, eating fermented foods, and taking some gut-loving supplements:
I actually offer my gut protocol that I use for my clients on my website – this is without any additional support – just the protocol in case you are looking to support your gut on a more therapeutic level. You can get it over on my website!
Are you wanting to be an educated consumer about the products that are on the market? Are you always looking for safe places to go to find amazing good quality products? Mark Ritz, founder of Ritzfit, has an online store to help consumers with finding new companies with quality not being sacrificed. What we cover in this episode...
Email me for a discount code when we are restocked on our multivitamin - email@example.com
Book your FREE 15 minute phone call to see how we can help you with your health in the New Year + use up last minute HSA funds to improve your health!
About Mark Ritz
Mark Ritz is the natural product nerd behind Ritzfit. Places like Thrive Market and Whole Foods have great products, but he still continues to find junk. In 2016, Mark combined my passion for nutrition and food products with over a decade of experience at Costco to create a new kind of membership site; one where we don't have to spend hours researching ingredients! Connect with Mark over on his Facebook Group, Instagram, and The No Diet Podcast!
Something that is trending right now is celery juice! Have you seen it on social media or read about it in a book? In a simple answer, yes, celery juice is awesome and if you can add it to your regimen, add it in! But, a lot of people (myself included) likes to know if there is science that supports the theory and if it’s actually studied to be helpful with certain diseases/disorders. I’m here to help break it down for you.
Juicing in general can be so helpful for the body – to flood it with nutrition and not let the fiber slow it down. It’s also important to have juices that are mainly vegetables with a hint of fruit. Juice made just of fruit can be pretty taxing on your liver from the fructose content, so make sure juices are tons of vegetables with some fruit. Celery is a great vegetable to juice with because you can get lots of juice from a stalk compared to trying to juice leafy greens (good luck with that!). Celery is loaded with….
Celery has been known as a “cooling” vegetable, which is helpful for the liver, kidney, stomach, and bladder. It contains coumarin, which is a phytochemical that helps with reducing headaches/migraines, cancer prevention, and improving the cardiovascular system (especially with blood pressure by relaxing the walls!).
Celery also holds 3-n-butyl phthalide, which has been studied to help lower blood pressure by researchers at the University of Chicago Medical Center. It was the amount of 4 celery ribs.
Celery also holds more phytochemicals, such as flavonoids, which are very protective to our body to combat oxidative stress. Oxidative stress leads to cellular and DNA damage increasing your risk of many chronic diseases. In the Journal of Human + Experiemental Toxicology, rats saw on a decrease in their antioxidants, such as glutathione and superoxide dismutase, when treated with an insecticide. Rats that had flavonoid extracts from celery minimized the harmful effects of the insecticide and reduced the loss of our body’s natural antioxidants!
Apigenin,(ah-pee-gen-in) another phytochemical, in celery has been studied to help reduce the risk of gastric cancer and inflammation in the stomach. Celery also contains luteolin (lute-tee-o-lin)
Since luteolin and quercetin were able to target CSC (cancer stem cells) and prevent cancer cell invasiveness, may serve as potential anti-angiogenesis (preventing new blood vessel growth) and anti-metastasis(preventing cancer from spreading) agents.ANTICANCER RESEARCH
There aren’t many human studies on what celery and celery can do for your health. Most of the studies are done with rats, but that’s only because there isn’t a lot of funding to look deeper into celery. Celery is loaded with nutrition and water to help hydrate you, which a lot of us are dehydrated and not drinking enough water.
Is it a cure-all? I can’t say scientifically because there isn’t really anything behind it to claim that. But from common sense and as a nutritionist, celery can definitely serve your body with the phytochemicals and nutrients that your body deserves (and wants!) to have! I can honestly say the same about carrot juice or turmeric juice or ginger juice. All of these plants have a purpose and can load up our body with nutrients that will better your health regardless.
If you are struggling with something health wise, I do think it’s wise to be working with a functional medicine doctor and a nutritionist to help provide a whole body approach for you. While people continue to look for a magic bullet, we need to address our diet, environment, stress, and exercise in our life as well for complete healing!
You can drink all the celery juice you want, but if your stress levels are through the roof, you won’t reach optimal health! We still need to focus in on a whole body approach.LAHANA VIGLIANO, CCN
Make sure to book your free 15 minute appointment to see how we can help you to get you feeling better with food as medicine. (Yes, we can incorporate celery juice if you want! )
Celery is a food that I always opt to buy organic. Conventionally grown celery can be full of pesticides, along with ethylene gas (which helps reduce the bitter flavor). Celery used to be a very bitter vegetable, but as time went on, it became more sweet, but with that comes less nutrition compared to our ancestral celery. It’s still nutritious though, don’t get me wrong!
I HIGHLY encourage all women to listen to this podcast, not just women in menopause. We're so excited to sit down with Dr. Patrick Flynn to talk about menopause and women's health! Here are some topics we're chatting about this week...
About Dr. Patrick Flynn
Dr. Patrick Flynn D.C., is the founder of The Wellness Way, as well as an international speaker and author, but still maintains that he is a “simple, country boy who loves what he does.” Dr. Flynn grew up in Crivitz, a small town in northern Wisconsin. He was inspired early in life to understand the human body when teachers labeled him as “troubled and hyper” (reflecting a modern day ADHD diagnosis). Rather than turning to medication, he turned to education, and as a thirteen-year-old boy he read numerous books his local library had to offer. Shortly after meeting his now wife, Christy, she informed him that she was unable to have children and his direction became clear: understanding hormones and the subject of fertility. Dr. Flynn continued his studies with greater passion and built his practice around achieving the best clinical outcomes for patients by testing for and addressing the reasons for dysfunction, rather than focusing on symptoms. As such, he has been able to successfully guide patients with a wide variety of clinical diagnoses to restored function. Now he and his wife have four beautiful daughters.