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Imagine this scenario: A 15-year-old girl walks into an office and complains to her doctor about acne and painful and irregular menstrual periods. Your doctor is quick to write a prescription for birth control pills. And she tells the girl that this is going to help balance her hormones, regulate her cycle, and stop acne. During the medication, her skin clears and her periods are regular and pain-free, she is delighted and continues to take the pill without a second thought until she is ready to start a family.

Birth control pills, what you should know before taking them

In another case, a woman in her 30s or 40s is experiencing perimenopausal symptoms with mood swings, irregular bleeding, suffocation, and night sweats. Your gynecologist wants to prescribe a birth control pill to ease your symptoms instead of working to find out the cause of your hot flashes and mood swings.

The situation of these women would not be exactly rare, in fact, they would be in the company of 9.7 million other women who are currently taking birth control pills. After all, the birth control pill is so ubiquitous that it is often referred to simply as “the pill.” So this pill must be pretty harmless right?

The truth is, birth control pills are not harmless. For one thing, when a doctor immediately turns to birth control pills to alleviate a woman's symptoms, he is not dealing with determining the causes of the symptoms, but simply masking them with a medication, leaving the real untreated. root cause. What's more, birth control pills themselves pose several health risks.

In this article, we're going to look at what birth control pills actually are, how they affect your body, and the functional medicine approach to balancing your hormones naturally.

What are birth control pills?

Birth control pills are a type of hormone replacement therapy. They contain synthetic (man-made) hormones that interrupt the natural hormonal cycle to stop ovulation. In a woman's natural hormonal cycle, estrogen and progesterone fluctuate.

Estrogen spikes occur just before ovulation, and progesterone spikes just after.

Birth control pills work by providing the body with synthetic hormones (either estrogen and progesterone or simply progesterone) to keep hormone levels high, tricking the body into thinking you are pregnant and thus preventing your ovaries from releasing an egg.

The original purpose of birth control pills, of course, was to stop pregnancy, but conventional doctors prescribe the pill very quickly for other reasons, such as acne, PMS, painful periods, ovarian cysts, fibroids, mood swings. , and perimenopause, this just to name a few.

What are the problems with birth control pills?

The main problem with birth control pills is that instead of containing estrogen they have many synthetic hormones, such as stridiol ethinyl estradiol and norethindrone, which are not recognized or broken down by the body in the same way as natural estrogen. The birth control pills also disturb your natural hormone levels, maintaining artificially high levels of estrogen, which has a ripple effect on the endocrine system. These factors can cause a whole host of health problems.

1. Increased risk of cancer from taking birth control pills

Synthetic estrogens such as those found in birth control pills can increase the risk of developing certain types of cancer, such as breast, uterine, and cervical cancer. Studies show that women who take birth control pills, and even women who recently stopped taking them, have a 20 to 30% higher risk of developing breast cancer than women who have never used the pill.

2. Candida overgrowth

As we already know, most of us already have some candida in our digestive tract. When we are in good health – and we follow a healthy diet and lifestyle – this yeast does not cause any problems; However, when our internal ecosystem becomes unbalanced, it can lead to candida overgrowth and triggers all the unpleasant symptoms that come along with it.

Birth control pills upset our internal balance, causing something called estrogen dominance – which means too much estrogen in the body. In one study, researchers found that using birth control pills can double the risk of developing a Candida overgrowth.

3. Increase in binding globulin hormones

The synthetic hormones in birth control pills increase thyroid-binding globulin and sex hormone, mimicking pregnancy. This decreases the amount of testosterone and thyroid hormone available in your blood, which can lead to hypothyroidism, constipation, depression, being overweight, and almost non-existent sexual desire.

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