I hope you’re excited for the week ahead. If the weather holds up and it doesn’t rain, I’ll be spending some time outside, kayaking in the sun and stopping for fresh spring water along the way.
It’s my favourite thing to do in the summer!
As we know, the sun can take its toll on our skin. We definitely need exposure to sunshine, but just the right amount.
And to help support any sun damage, minimize those wrinkles and get clear glowing acne-free skin, my delicious Anti-Aging Beautifying Tea will do JUST THAT!
A few reasons why this tea is so good for your skin:
It contains dandelion and nettle – two amazing herbs that gently support your liver in detoxifying. The more you can support your liver, the better your skin will be. In fact, the better your hormones and digestion will be too! It all goes back to the liver, so treat it well.
Nettle is also incredibly rich in iron, which is great if you happen to be have heavy periods. You can simply get dandelion and nettle tea from your local health food store.
As for cranberry, it supports the kidneys in flushing out excess wastes. It acts as a diuretic. BUT… be sure to purchase organic, unsweetened cranberry juice concentrate – the real stuff.
Lemon adds a nice tang to this tea and is loaded with vitamin C (a detox vitamin), plus it supports bile release (which is great if you’re feeling constipated). Vitamin C is helpful in reducing fine lines and minimizing free-radical damage to cells.
As for the honey (which is totally optional in this recipe), I suggest sourcing out a local raw honey. It’s antibacterial and antimicrobial and the perfect sweet addition to this beauty tea. Alternatively, you can use a touch of maple syrup or even lakanto as a sweetener (which is my fav and contains NO sugar!).
So let’s get to it…
Anti-Anging Beautifying Tea
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Holistic Wellness https://holisticwellness.ca/
You probably won’t find many bean recipes on my site.
Truth is, I actually do love to eat them, but I tend to eat more poultry, meat, fish or seafood. In fact, my quinoa black bean burger is pretty damn tasty, so that might be a yummy vegan recipe for you to check out.
Oh! and my Vegan Tempeh Chilli. Ok… that one is delish!
You’ve probably heard me say the term Qualitarian before, and for me, that’s really the type of ‘diet’ I follow. Regardless if it’s paleo or vegan, for me, it’s all about quality food.
And if you’ve participated in any of my detox programs, I like to include a variety of vegan, vegetarian and paleo meals because that’s pretty much how I eat and so I share those recipes with you in my programs.
Some days I feel like eating more meat and other days I feel like keeping it plant based. I listen to what my body is craving and go for that.
Today, I was craving falafels! And unfortunately, most restaurant falafels or store bought brands tend to contain low-quality vegetable oils and are typically deep fried.
I baked my falafels and they still got a nice crispy coating. I’m sure if I kept them in the oven a little longer and broiled them on high, they would have gotten even more crispy (definitely something you can experiment with), but I was happy with the texture minus the broiling.
These hearty little gems made the perfect dinner! I served them in a lettuce leaf, with cucumbers and little hummus. Honestly, I kept it reeeal simple. It was one of those “I just want to sit on the couch and watch bad TV” kinda nights and spending a long time prepping food wasn’t really on my agenda.
Tahini or tzatziki would be a great addition to this dish. Even some guac and salsa. Honestly, it’s pretty endless what you can do with these falafels. With my leftovers I plan on making a massive salad tomorrow with cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, crisp romaine lettuce and top it with my falafels and hummus.
Can you say yum?! Healthy and easy is how I like it over here!
Putting these falafels together is pretty easy. Your food processor does all the work!
Once you blend all the ingredients together, simply roll the batter into balls and place onto a baking sheet. (NOTE – I used a stone baking sheet which doesn’t require parchment paper. If you’re baking sheet is stainless steel, or if you find your food tends to stick to it, definitely use parchment paper).
Now you bake! Bake them at 375F for 40 minutes. If you want them a little crispier, you can experiment by broiling them for a few minutes. It’s important to flip them half way so they get crispy on both sides. I also slightly flattened them once I flipped them, which helped them cook a little better.
And now, they’re done! Time to eat and make your wraps. Get creative with this step and use your favourite toppings, use the falafels on top a salad or simple eat them as is!
Hope you enjoy them as much as I do!
- 1 x 400g can chickpeas (rinsed & drained - I used Eden Organic Beans)
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1⁄2 tsp chilli powder (less or more to taste)
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (less or more to taste)
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 tbsp brown rice flour
- 1 small red onion, roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- Sea salt
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- Add all the Falafel ingredients into a food processor and blend until well combined and creamy.
- Using your hands, roll the mixture into balls and place onto a parchment lined baking sheet. I got 10 balls out of this mixture. Depending on the size you want, you can make more or less.
- Bake for 40 minutes, making sure to flip half way through at the 20 minute mark. *When I flipped mine, I flattened them slightly.
- Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes.
- Serve on lettuce wrap, in gluten free wrap, in a salad or eat as is!
* The high concentration of the amino acid glycine, stimulates stomach acid production and thereby improves digestion and nutrient assimilation.
* Collagen makes up to 90% of bone mass, and several studies indicate that taking collagen internally can improve bone metabolism.
* Both gelatin (which is simply cooked collagen and what you get when making bone broth) and collagen are great in helping to heal leaky gut and support intestinal permeability.
- 2 1/2 cups spring water
- 2 cups kale leaves or spinach
- 1/2 avocado (peeled and pit removed)
- 1/2 banana (frozen) or 2 medjool dates
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 2 tbsps ground flax seed
- 4 tbsps hemp seeds
- 1 tbsp collagen powder (brands I like are Great Lakes, Bulletproof, or Vital Proteins)
- Add all ingredients to high speed blend and blend until well combined and smooth.
Don’t you ever have those times when you just want to dive into a huge bowl of carbs?
You know, a bowl of pasta or just eat 3 extra servings of rice and not give a damn! Well, this cauliflower fried rice feels like you’re diving into a huge bowl of carbs, minus the guilt!
This is the perfect veggie filled dish – EVER!
I’m a little obsessed with this recipe for a few reasons:
1. It’s incredibly easy to make
2. I feel like I’m actually eating Chinese fried rice
3. It’s loaded with veggies
4. You can eat a lot of it (because it’s veggies) and feel amazing!
I’ve been getting my Organics Live delivery box every week, which is amaze balls by the way! Every week I get organic produce delivered straight to my door and often times, there’s cauliflower. I’ve been trying to come up with creative ways to use it, cause let’s face it, steamed cauliflower is freakin’ boring!
You can click here to get your own Organics Live delivery every week (if you are in the local GTA area). Trust me, it’s worth it!
I made cauliflower tater tots the other night (will share the recipe soon) and this amazing fried rice. Oh! and my Creamy Cauliflower Soup is a serious favourite. Click here for that recipe.
It’s safe to say that I am becoming a cauliflower master! And it’s becoming a veggie that I adore more and more, which is a good thing since Cauliflower is an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, pantothenic acid, and vitamin B6. It also contains biotin, which helps to strengthen hair (and been known to help with hair growth!).
Cauliflower is also an incredible detoxification veggie. Certain compounds found in cauliflower, such as sulforaphane, glucobrassicin, glucoraphanin, and gluconasturtiian, are very useful for helping the body to detox due to how they support liver function.
And as a HUGE bonus, if you support the health of your liver, you in turn support the health of your skin, keeping the wrinkles at bay and that youthful radiant glow.
So let’s get to this delicious, nutrient dense, detox friendly, skin loving recipe.
- 1 large head cauliflower
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 medium carrots, diced
- 1/2 cup peas, fresh or frozen
- Half a onion, chopped
- 4 green onions, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup cashews, optional
- 3 tablespoons coconut aminos/marinade (or tamari)
- 1 tsp chilli flakes
- Sea salt and pepper
- Coconut oil, for sautéing
- Cut the cauliflower into florets, discarding the tough inner core. Working in batches, pulse the cauliflower in a food processor until it breaks down into rice-sized pieces.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat and drizzle in coconut oil. Add onion and carrots and saute until tender, about 2 minutes. Add in ginger and garlic and stir together.
- Slide veggie mixture to one side of the skillet and add in the beaten eggs, scrambling until cooked through and then incorporate with the veggies.
- Stir in cauliflower "rice" and peas and mix everything together well. Add in coconut aminos. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until cauliflower is soft and tender. Add in chilli flakes, sea salt and pepper.
- Top with green onions and cashews and serve and enjoy!
This combo of ingredients is amazing!
If you’re a fan of body scrubs (or at least picking them up in the store and smelling every one of them!), then you’ll love the aroma of these delicious ingredients and how they come together to make a skin smoothing, cellulite reducing, moisturizing scrub.
I love making my own homemade beauty care products because that means I get to decide exactly what goes in it and can make sure all the ingredients are #qualitarianapproved!
Unfortunately, most body scrubs (especially if you’re shopping for them in generic drug stores) carry a boat load of chemical ingredients that actually cause more damage to your skin in the long run and even dry your skin out! Not cool!
You won’t find any chemical ingredients in this scrub here. In fact, it’s made with only clean beauty approved ingredients that it’s even edible! Yes, you can literally eat it!
So let’s get our hands dirty and whip up some homemade scrubs. I made these over the holidays and wrapped them up with pretty ribbon and gave them away as gifts. They were well received!
- 1/2 cup brown sugar (brand I used was Wholesome)
- 1/2 cup turbinado sugar (brand I used was Wholesome)
- 1/4 cup coconut oil (not melted, not solid, just room temperature and soft. I used Progressive Organic Coconut Oil)
- 1 1/2 tbsp freshly grated ginger
- 10-15 drops lime essential oil (I used doTerra)
- Add all ingredients to a large mixing bowl.
- Using a hand blender, combine all the ingredients. This allows it to get nice and fluffy.
- Transfer scrub to a wide mouth mason jar and leave it in the shower. Use it 3-4 times a week, being extra gentle if you use it on your face.
- Be sure to focus on scrubbing all the 'important' areas such as, knees, elbows, hips, butt and thighs.
Ok, so I’ll admit; Vampire Immune Elixir sounds pretty weird right? Actually, I think it’s pretty damn cool, but then again, I”m totally bias to my creations 🙂
This immune elixir is awesome, but I’ll be the first to admit, it doesn’t taste like candy. In fact, when I took the first sip from it the other day, after it had been fermenting for over a month, I thought for sure it was going to taste a lot stronger than it did.
But truthfully, it wasn’t so bad. And a teaspoon a day is really all you need to help prevent the cold and flu, fend off vampires (ie. bacteria, fungus and parasites), strengthen your immune system, and support detoxification.
Yes, this powerful drink can do all of that!
Every morning it’s a ritual in our home that my boyfriend and I start our day with warm water and apple cider vinegar. And if you’re unaware of all the benefits of apple cider vinegar, then read this post here.
From digestion, to liver support and gorgeous glowing skin, apple cider vinegar has many incredible benefits. I decided our morning drink needed a boost and so, the Vampire Immune Elixir was born!
So why vampire? Well, this elixir is loaded with garlic, an antibacterial powerhouse that is amazing for immunity and overall health. And garlic helps to fend off vampires right? Well, I learned that from watching the Lost Boys when I was younger.
As a side note, I used to know this man who ate a raw garlic clove everyday for over 30 years. He was in his 70’s and let me just tell you, his skin was amazing!
So what other benefits does this elixir offer? Well since it’s loaded with ginger, garlic and spicy cayenne, it helps to heat and warm your body, detox your system and improve circulation. Stimulating blood flow is important as this helps to flush toxins and waste through your body.
I also added some anticancer turmeric to this mix, along with raw honey, sea salt, rosemary, lemon and of course, lots of apple cider vinegar.
You’ll need to let this ferment for roughly 30 days to help increase the potency and being that this is an old folk remedy, you can pretty much use whatever herbs and spices you’d like. The fermentation process turns this elixir into a cold and flu fighting nutrition powerhouse! Be sure to store it in a warm place (I put mine in the cupboard) and left it for for just over a month, roughly 40 days.
Make this Vampire Immune Elixir today so by the time Christmas rolls around and the busyness of the holidays, you’ll be prepared to keep your immune system strong and stay healthy!
- 1 large piece ginger root, roughly chopped
- 5-6 large garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- 3-inch piece turmeric root (or add in 1/2 tbsp ground turmeric)
- 1/2 white onion, roughly chopped (optional)
- 2 tsp cayenne pepper or 1 whole jalapeño pepper
- 2 organic lemons, sliced
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 500ml raw apple cider vinegar (with ‘the mother’)
- 500ml spring water
- 1/2 tbsp raw honey
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- Fill a 1L glass mason jar with all ingredients (herbs + spices). Fill half the mason jar with apple cider vinegar (roughly 500ml) and the remaining with spring water. Add in honey and sea salt. Be sure all the herbs and spices are completely covered with liquid. Cover the top with a piece of parchment paper, then put on the lid and close tightly.
- Store in a cupboard, out of the light, in a warm space. If you can remember to give it a shake every few days, that would be good! Otherwise, let it sit for 1 month to ferment. When ready, strain out the herbs + spices and pour the liquid into a clean mason jar.
- Every morning take 1 tsp of your Vampire Immune Elixir. Keep it stored in the fridge. It will last for 3-4 months.
If you’ve been dealing with a range of hormonal issues and have been trying to get to the bottom of your hormonal health, I’m sure somewhere along the lines in your research you’ve come across the term – Estrogen Dominance.
What exactly is estrogen dominance? Basically, it’s having too much estrogen in relation to other hormones. You can find out through hormonal lab work what your hormone levels are, but, in my experience and working with hundreds of women, the best way to know if you have estrogen dominance is through symptoms.
Let’s talk about those symptoms because there are lots of them! And with the over exposure to plastics, chemicals, environmental toxins, food toxins and mismanagement of stress, there’s a good chance many women (and men) are dealing with estrogen dominance.
Symptoms of Estrogen Dominance Include:
- irregular periods
- excess weight on hips and abdomen
- pms related migraines
- heavy periods
- uterine fibroids
- swollen lymph nodes
- ovarian cysts
- breast lumps
- breast tenderness
- hormonal acne
- abnormal paps
- breast cancer
- uterine cancer
Ok, so, there’s a lot. And just to be clear, just because you might be dealing with some pms, cramping and bloating around the time of your period doesn’t mean your estrogen is completely high, off the charts and you need medical intervention and your life and hormones are doomed.
Take a breather.
As a woman who suffered with PMS and estrogen dominance myself, (and sometimes still get some of these symptoms), it’s common and can be managed through diet and lifestyle.
Over the years as I’ve become more in tune with my body and track my cycle, I’ve become more aware of certain symptoms and why they show up. For example, if I’ve had a busy stressful month, late nights, indulged a little in too much in sugar, wasn’t consistent with my supplements and didn’t drink enough water or eat enough leafy greens; pms symptoms appear. I’ll get some cramping, bloating and will get a swollen lymph node under my left armpit.
On the flip side, when I’m working out regularly (i.e. sweating!), drinking my water, supporting detoxification through dry brushing, supplementation and food and managing my stress effectively, my period comes with ease and no swollen lymph node. Amazing how that works!
I often hear from my weight loss clients how amazing and regular their periods are just from following their meal plans and my supplement protocols. Although we are addressing weight, a bonus side benefit is more balanced hormones, easy breezy cycles and effectively eliminating estrogen! Yup, the right plan can do all of that.
Did you know that back in 1960 1 in 20 women developed breast cancer and today, 1 in 9 women develop breast cancer!? That’s an alarming rate (and may I add, millions and millions of dollars are being spent on breast cancer awareness, yet these numbers seem to suggest that we aren’t getting any closer to true healing).
That’s why it’s all about prevention. I know prevention isn’t a sexy word, but ladies, it’s what we have control over and we better start being more proactive about our health and our diets.
I’m sure you’re wondering… what actually causes estrogen dominance? Well, a few things – prolonged stress, pharmaceuticals, the pill, emotional or physical trauma, heavy exercise, diet, environmental toxins, soy, plastics, tap water, alcohol; just to name a few. Truth is, these aren’t actual causes of estrogen dominance, but they contribute to estrogen dominance. There’s a difference. Just because you have a few glasses of wine a week doesn’t all of a sudden mean you have estrogen dominance. However, combine that with the use of the pill, stress, a poor diet, exposure to environment toxins, eating lots of conventional animal products – well then, now there’s a potential for estrogen dominance and hormonal imbalance altogether.
So what can we do now to deal with estrogen dominance and bring our hormones into balance? Here are some very easy-to-implement tips that you can start doing today!
- Eat More Fiber – at least 45g a day! Yes, that’s a lot but in order to effectively eliminate estrogen, you need fiber to bind to the excess estrogen in your gut to help flush it out. Great sources include – leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower , brussel sprouts, flax, chia, artichokes, figs, apples, pears, beans and legumes, turnips, squash, peas, berries.
- Brush Your Skin – I’m talking about dry skin brushing. Read my full article here on how to effectively dry skin brush and why it’s beneficial.
- Drink More Water – this will be essential especially if you’re increasing your fiber intake. Water is essential for detoxification and is necessary for flushing out toxins from your system. Plus, it helps to support digestion and gut health. Aim for at least 2-3L a day and I suggest drinking spring water. FYI – tap water contains your neighbours birth control pills! Gross.
- Ditch the Plastic – plastic water bottles, food storage containers, all of it. Get yourself a pretty glass bottle fill it up with lots of water and drink your toxins away. Plastic contains BPA (even BPA-free plastic is no good in my books!) which mimics estrogen in our body. Basically, the chemicals in plastic increase the estrogen in our body leading to estrogen dominance.
- Ditch Your Toxic Store-Brand Makeup – which is also full of estrogen mimicking compounds. Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES), Mineral oil, Phthalates, Synthetic Fragrances, Imidazolidinyl Urea And DMDM Hydantoin, FD and C Color Pigments, Isopropyl Alcohol, just to name a few, all wreak havoc on your hormones.
- Use Safe Household Cleaning Products – another culprit of environmental toxins, cleaning products contain many questionable ingredients. Click here for my homemade all natural multi purpose cleaner that is free from toxins and won’t cause hormonal disturbances.
- Rethink the Pill – the birth control pill contains a combination of synthetic (I repeat, synthetic!) estrogen and progesterone. Need I say more? Try non-hormonal contraceptives like the copper IUD or barrier methods such as condoms or the cervical cap. You can read more here on the issues with the pill and why it’s destroying your health and hormones.
- Buy Local & Organic – as much as possible! Grass fed and pasture raised meats/animal products are the way to go (if you are a meat eater). Conventional meat and animal products contain pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics and hormones. Avoid it and your hormones will thank you.
- Manage Stress – ok, easier said than done, but seriously, freaking out over spilled coffee, being stuck in traffic and being pissed off because your netflixs is down ain’t doing your hormones any good. You have to find time to chill the eff out! A hot bath, a yoga class, a walk, deep breathing, more sleep, it is ALL important. Stress is a cause of estrogen dominance.
- Supplement – DIM, Turmeric and I3C are incredible for supporting estrogen dominance, detoxing the liver and supporting overall hormonal health. You could also take Estrosmart, which contains a combination of all these ingredients.
Don’t be overwhelmed by this list. My suggestion is that you start with ONE of the above tips and go from there. And may I point out, just popping a supplement everyday, although helpful, isn’t going to be the solution. In a society where we all want a quick fix, it really does take effort and commitment to heal our bodies and hormones. But, you’re worth it, so make the effort to do all 10 suggestions, even if it takes you 3 months, 6 months or 12 months. Just do it!
As you know, I offer as comprehensive weight loss program and specialize in women’s hormonal health. Whether you need help losing losing weight, or addressing your hormones, or both, email me and we can set up a complimentary consult call to discuss your health history and goals. My mission is to get more women off the pill, reverse the rates of breast cancer, heal PCOS, and help women feel more vibrant and damn-freaking-tastic. Basically, I’m here to help women unleash their superpowers so they can live a healthier, happier, more purposeful life. Email me at – email@example.com or fill out my application form here.
I hope you found this post helpful. If you have friends, sisters and mothers that could benefit from this information, please share it with them. I can’t reduce the rates of breast cancer and hormone related cancers alone. I need your help in doing that 🙂
If you have comments or questions, please post them below.
Also, I’d love to hear from you about what blogs/articles you’d be interested in having me write. Let me know! Send me an email or comment below.
*A quick note on hormone testing – I think it’s great and can definitely serve a purpose, however, most saliva or blood hormone tests cannot tell you what is going on at the receptor site. Also, hormones fluctuate quite dramatically throughout the day and month, so it can be difficult to get an accurate read. I think that if you’ve exhausted all your options when it comes to healing your hormones, this would then be a good time to test. In the meantime, having a practitioner (such as myself) assess your diet, lifestyle and symptoms will give you a clear understanding of what imbalances you are dealing with.
I’ve shared my story many times before about my experience with the pill.
As a quick recap, I was on it for about 8 years, suffered terrible migraines, tons of digestive issues and at the time, never really understood what it was I was doing to my body.
I didn’t realize I was taking synthetic hormones, stopping myself from ovulating and actually not getting a ‘real’ period the whole time while on the pill.
I work with many women in my private practice that are looking to get off the pill because they want to conceive in the future, and I’m happy they come to me to help them reclaim their hormonal health.
Getting off the pill isn’t so easy breezy. It definitely has it’s downfalls, which is why I want to share with you how you can come off of it. Because, bottom line, you need a plan. Deciding to just stop the pill one day and get right in the sack with you partner to conceive is no-good in my books.
Maybe having babies isn’t even something your considering but have decided it’s time to come off the pill because you’re done with taking synthetic hormones, or you’re experiencing many negative side effects.
Either way, it’s important to have a plan, work with someone who can effectively guide you through a customized program and take the appropriate supplements. Today, I wanted to share with you a few key guidelines to keep in mind if you’re deciding on coming off the pill and share with you what I do with my clients.
IF YOU’RE CURRENTLY ON THE PILL:
Whether you’ve been on the pill for 2 years, 5 years, 10 years or 20 years, it’s important to start supplementing with these key nutrients:
- Zinc – get’s depleted while on the pill and is essential for estrogen metabolism.
- B Vitamins – also get depleted while on the pill. B vitamins are involved in every neurological process in the body. Plus, they are essential for hormonal balance, energy production, mental health and stress.
- Vitamin C – another important nutrient that get’s depleted while taking the pill. Vitamin C is an important antioxidant that supports collagen production (hello gorgeous skin!), heart health, prenatal health and immunity.
- Probiotics – the pill can effect your gut flora which can lead to a weaker immune system, digestive issues, gas and bloating. Your gut is like your second brain so it’s essential to keep it healthy.
THINKING OF COMING OFF?:
Before you decide one day to just stop taking the pill, I recommend you start first by taking the suggested supplements above AND work on cleaning up your diet. You see, your liver is your main detoxifying organ. It detoxifies everything that comes in your body, the pill being one of those things. Aside from detoxification, the liver also works to metabolize your hormones. So, when it comes to balancing hormones, your liver plays a very important role. You want to make sure you are eating clean, real, whole foods that supports the liver, such as:
- Asparagus: Rich source of folate, important for healthy cells, and high in glutathione, a vital antioxidant for detoxification.
- Dandelion: Stimulates the digestive juices. Helps to digest fats and supports the body’s natural detoxification processes.
- Garlic: Antibacterial, antiviral, anti-fungal, and anti-cancer. Garlic supports detoxification and is one of nature’s best antioxidants.
- Nettle: Rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, including natural iron, nettle is fabulous for strengthening the liver, adrenals, and kidneys.
- Sea Vegetables: Dulse, nori, kelp, arame, and kombu all supply minerals and iodine to help support the thyroid and immune system.
- Leafy Greens: Kale, Swiss chard, spinach, bok choy, mustard greens, and watercress. Are all rich in magnesium, which is an important detoxifying mineral.
- Fresh Herbs: Parsley, cilantro, and basil are amazing chelators. They help bind to heavy metals and flush them from your system.
- Super Foods: Chlorella, spirulina, wheatgrass, chlorophyll, barley grass, and wild blue algae are incredibly supportive of the liver, gut, immune system and supply your body with vital nutrients.
If you’ve been a regular follower of mine, you know I’m all about Qualitarian Food. That is, choosing food in it’s natural form that are free from antibiotics, chemicals, hormones and pesticides. Load up on healthy fats, quality pasture raised protein, beans and legumes, a variety of leafy greens and vegetables, antioxidant rich fruit and starchy and non-starchy veggies. THIS is what your hormone balancing diet needs to look like, whether you are on the pill or not!
Once you’ve got the supplements and diet part down for at least 2-3 months, then I would advice coming off the pill. At this point, you can speak with you doctor about coming off and make the decision to stop taking it.
From here, diet and supplementation are key, but from this point forward, every women will experience something different. If you had normal cycles before going on the pill, there’s a good chance your period will return with ease and you’ll be fairly regular.
If you went on the pill when you were fairly young, roughly 14 or 15 years old, then your cycle may not return so easily. The reason being that if you go on the pill when you are very young, you actually haven’t given your body enough time to fully mature or your ovaries to develop. Then, if you’ve been on the pill for 10+ years and decide to come off, your ovaries and hormones are going to need a lot of time before getting regular and working ‘on their own’ again.
The truth is, it varies for every women and each women’s experience will be different.
ONCE OFF THE PILL:
At the end of the day, once you are off the pill, the ultimate goal is to get your body ovulating again. Ovulation is how you produce your estrogen and progesterone. Don’t just assume it’s about having babies. Ovulation has everything to do with being hormonally balanced and fertile, regardless of wanting to have babies or not.
*A few important things to note – when you come off the pill, many symptoms can arise, such as acne, heavy periods, no periods, migraines, irregular periods, spotting and hair loss. This is due to your body no longer being supplied with synthetic hormones. You might think to go back on the pill or stay on it forever to avoid these symptoms, but trust me, give your body time and the right support and it will return to normal. You can minimize or avoid these symptoms all together.
PERIODS RETURN WITH EASE:
Great! Continue to supplement with the suggestions above, eat healthy and considering taking some turmeric to support liver detoxification. If you’re wanting to get pregnant, I would support your hormones and detoxify for a few months before trying to conceive.
NO PERIOD OR IRREGULAR PERIODS:
If you come off the pill and 6-8 months down the road your period hasn’t returned, you can try supplementing with vitex (also known as chaste berry). This herb helps to increase progesterone production, which in turn can help with ovulation. Vitex should be taken on an empty stomach, first thing in the morning. You will know within 3-4 months if this herb is working for you. Do not supplement with it longer than 6 months. At this point, I would also suggest asking your doctor for some hormone blood tests, such as FSH, LH, androgens, prolactin and progesterone. If you do not have a period, I suggest taking vitex for 25 days on and 5 days off.
*If your periods were irregular before going on the pill, there’s a good chance they will be irregular after the pill. What’s important is to understand why they were irregular in the first place. Typically, this is due to insulin resistance or even PCOS. The pill can actually increase your chances for developing PCOS and it effects how your body utilizes insulin. I do not recommend the pill as a solution for PCOS. As much as supplements, vitex and a healthy diet can be beneficial, if you are not addressing insulin resistance, your chances of getting your period back and regular again will be low. I work with women who struggle with PCOS and balance their hormones with the right meal plan which stabilizes their blood sugar effectively. For more details about this and working together, click here.
—> Click here to join my FREE 7-Day Hormone Detox Challenge and heal your PMS, PCOS and Rebalance your body with the right foods! <—
POST PILL ACNE:
This is very common. In fact, I went through it myself for a few months and it sucked. The reason acne develops is because you’ve taken the synthetic estrogen away, which gives you clear, glowing skin. Your own estrogen will do the same thing for you, you just need to support your body with the right diet and supplements, zinc being one of them, to help clear up the acne. Trust me, it will go away, you just need to be patient. Eliminating sugar and supporting your liver are crucial for clear skin. Also, you can try supplementing with I3C or DIM, which helps to support estrogen detoxification.
HEAVY BLEEDING AFTER THE PILL:
If you suffered with heavy bleeding during your teens and are now in your late 30’s or 40’s, there’s a good chance you’ve outgrown this, however, that is not always the case.
Heavy bleeding is typically due to estrogen dominance or inflammation, or both. First, I would check with your doctor to rule out any fibroids or endometriosis (both of which are caused by estrogen dominance). If you have endometriosis I would advise speaking with your doctor about your options for coming off the pill. It is absolutely do-able, it just may be a little more complicated. Speak with an ND to discuss your options and get the right support.
I’ll say it again, the right supplements and meal plan in this case are essential. Turmeric, DIM and magnesium are also important in this case to support estrogen detoxification and support the liver in general. Iron is especially important for heavy bleeding and blood loss. It might also be wise to eliminate dairy, sugar and gluten as they tend to be inflammatory and can make heavy bleeding/estrogen dominance worse.
At the end of the day, I don’t recommend the pill or hormonal contraceptives as they can seriously wreak havoc on our delicate hormones and cycle. I see it all too often in my practice from women who are struggling to get pregnant, have PCOS, irregular periods, weight gain and are just so seriously fed up. I don’t blame them. And I can completely understand being that I’ve been in those same shoes.
I used to think that in order to balance my hormones, the pill was the solution. Unfortunately, it does not do that. It shuts down ovulation, disrupts our regular cycle, stops us from having a period, impairs liver detoxification, shuts down our own production of beneficial estrogen and progesterone and impairs insulin and blood sugar levels.
The best contraceptive options would be the Fertility Awareness Method (when used correctly is MORE effective than the pill!!), the copper IUD (not for everyone, but something to research) or barrier methods such as condoms or a cervical cap.
If you have any comments or questions, please post them below and don’t hesitate to fill out my online application if you’re looking to work together and FINALLY get to the root of your hormonal issues. Click here to fill out my application.
And if you’re looking to get started right now on healing your hormones and body, join my FREE 7-Day Hormone Detox Challenge!
Roll out the red carpet and throw some confetti in the air! My 21-Day Delicious Detox launches today!
I can’t tell you how excited I am for this amazing program.
If you’ve cooked up my recipes in the past, you know that I don’t disappoint. And trust me when I say you’ll love the new fall recipes in this Delicious Detox. I mean c’mon, why else would I call it delicious?
You see, detoxing doesn’t need to be about dieting or deprivation.
Its about using food as medicine, because truthfully, that’s what food is.
Struggling with a hormonal imbalance? Eat delicious, real whole foods.
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Consumed by sugar cravings? Eat delicious, real whole foods.
Ok, you get the idea. Food is fuel and it can truly help you to heal your body and reach your health goals.
As a nutritionist that’s worked with hundreds of people over the years, I know firsthand how food can play a role in someones health. I’ve seen what a diet full of processed, high sugar and artificial junk can do.
I experienced it firsthand too!
From my late nights of bingeing on fast food, to my uncontrollable cravings for sugar, and my not-so-pleasant PMS symptoms, I struggled with a ton of imbalances.
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