Feed Me Friday: The 'Endo Diet'
by Alison Landolt
Editor's note: Earlier this year, we launched Feed Me Friday and recently, we've been posting delicious, endo friendly recipes to our social media pages and on our blog. Nutrition can be particularly important for people suffering from endometriosis. While diet is not a cure, it can play a role in how we feel. Food can fuel our pain and symptoms, or it can help manage them. Every Friday, we will be introducing new recipes and reposting some we've used before. We encourage our readers to consult with their doctors before beginning any nutrition plan.
There is no one "endo diet", but if you read Beating Endo with us, you know that Drs. Iris Orbuch and Amy Stein suggest maintaining an anti-inflammatory diet to lower the inflammatory load on the body, aid in digestion, and help cool off the central nervous system. Their top foods to avoid are gluten, dairy, sugar, artificial sweeteners, soy, and processed foods.
Here are more dietary suggestions from Beating Endo:
Try to eat 8-10 servings of organic vegetables daily. 1 serving is ½ cup cooked or 1 cup raw. Things like lettuce, kale, spinach, parsley, endive, arugula, bok choy, swiss chard, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, and other leafy greens are especially healthful. Nightshades, on the other hand, can trigger an inflammatory response, so be careful with things like tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, zucchini, and eggplants.
You should eat healthy fats, such as avocados, olive oil, coconut oil, pre-soaked nuts or seeds, salmon, tuna, eggs, and even high quality dark chocolate (in moderation).
What we eat isn’t the only thing that matters. The quality and source of our food also plays a role in our health. As much as possible, it is best to buy local because this means there is less distance from the origin of the food to your table.
For vegetables, look for certified organic.
Poultry: free-range, never fed antibiotics, certified organic Beef: grass-fed, certified organic Fish: wild caught, cleaner waters, sustainable fishing Honey: local, raw, unfiltered. Try a local farmers market and skip the grocery store honey bear.
Again, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to an “endo diet” and you may need to experiment gradually to find what works best for you. When making major dietary changes it is also best to consult with a doctor or nutritionist. Check out www.integrativewomenshealthinstitute.com.
To read more in depth about nutrition for endometriosis, check out this article by Erin Luyendyk, RHN featured on the CEC website. http://centerforendo.com/new-page
Graphic by Endo Warriors
Alison Landolt is an EFHou cofounder.