6 Worst Foods for Endometriosis

6 Worst Foods for Endometriosis

Nearly 15% of women in the U.S. may suffer from endometriosis. Endometriosis is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects the reproductive system and often causes severe chronic pains along with cramps. 

With this disorder, endometrial tissue that’s found in the lining of the uterus starts to grow outside and spreads to the ovaries, bowel, fallopian tubes, and elsewhere in the pelvis. While some women experience painful symptoms quickly, others have no symptoms until the condition starts to progress.

The causes of endometriosis still remain unknown. Unfortunately, there is no cure for the disease, but there are lots of effective treatment options that can reduce pain and other harmful side effects. Your gynecologist will choose the most appropriate treatment plan for you. 

Women with endometriosis might have heavy bleeding during periods, painful sex, and potential infertility. While aggressive treatment is essential to lower the risks of complications, women can also aid treatment by following the right diet.

Eating an anti-inflammatory diet loaded with foods high in antioxidants will help you eliminate bloating and can even stop the progression of the disease in some cases. However, it’s equally important to avoid foods that could potentially worsen the symptoms and speed up the progression of endometriosis. Here is a list of the worst foods for women with endometriosis: 

Red meat 

According to a 2004 study conducted by researchers from the University of Milano, it was found that red meat and ham significantly increased the likelihood of endometriosis. While getting a lot of saturated fat from red meat might generally not be the healthiest thing to do, it doesn’t mean you can’t ever touch a steak. Instead, try limiting your servings of red meat to once or twice per week.

Dairy products 

Many experts recommend avoiding dairy products especially milk, yogurt, and cheese in order to keep endometriosis symptoms in check.

But there is research that links consumption of low-fat dairy with decreased risk of endometriosis and suggests that dairy products have anti-inflammatory properties.

Foods rich in trans fats 

Like omega-3 fatty acids have the most scientific support for lowering the risk of endometriosis, trans fats are on the opposite side of the coin.

Trans fats tend to increase inflammation that can enhance endometriosis-induced pain and discomfort. Consuming high levels of trans fats can also raise your risk of getting endometriosis by up to 48 percent. Try limiting your consumption of fried fast food, canned frosting, and non-dairy coffee creamer.

Alcohol and coffee 

Coffee and alcohol are considered to be bad for women with endometriosis. That’s because coffee has been shown to raise levels of estrogen protein in the body. Increased estrogen might be a possible culprit of endometriosis. 

According to some studies, frequent alcohol consumption can raise the risk of getting endometriosis, while other studies found no link between alcohol and endometriosis.

Moreover, different studies show that coffee and alcohol can have both inflammatory and anti-inflammatory effects, which means you might have to do some experimenting to find what’s good for you and vise versa. 

Generally, alcohol or coffee consumption in moderation shouldn’t provoke inflammation, but it’s best to check with your healthcare provider. 

Foods containing gluten 

There is some evidence that suggests that a gluten-free diet can help alleviate symptoms of endometriosis. If you’d like to try a gluten-free diet to lower pain and inflammation, it’s best to go with naturally gluten-free foods like vegetables and lean meats.

Gluten-free versions of popular carbs such as bread, pasta, and baked goods are often refined and full of extra fat and sugar to make up for the lack of gluten.

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