If you’ve been experiencing extremely painful menstrual cramps or irregular bleeding between periods, you may have fibroid cysts in your uterus.
Fibroids are noncancerous lumps or tumors that grow on the inner or outer walls of the uterus. While these tumors are benign and do not increase your risk of uterine cancer, they can cause extreme pain.
There are three main types of uterine fibroids:
- Intramural fibroids: These develop in the muscle wall of the uterus and are the most commonly occurring type of fibroids.
- Subserosal fibroids: These develop on the outer wall of the uterus, expand into the pelvic region and can grow really large.
- Submucosal fibroids: These develop in the muscle layer underneath the inner lining of the uterus and, as they grow, they expand into the uterine cavity. They can cause infertility if allowed to grow unchecked.
Fibroids are an extremely common occurrence. Reports suggest that as many as 30 to 77 percent of all women develop these during their childbearing years. In most women, these benign tumors do not grow big enough to cause symptoms and thus go undetected.
The problems caused by these fibroids depend on their size, which can range from as small as a pea to melon-like proportions in extreme cases. If left undiagnosed and untreated, these tumors may lead to serious complications, including fertility problems.
- Causes of Uterine Fibroids
- Symptoms of Uterine Fibroids
- Preventing Uterine Fibroids
- Home Remedies to Treat Uterine Fibroids
- Method 1: Apple Cider Vinegar & Blackstrap Molasses
- Method 2: Castor Oil Packs
- Method 3: Iodine
- Method 4: Vitamin D
- Method 5: Herbal Supplements
- # Chasteberry
- # Dong Quai
- Method 6: Diet
Causes of Uterine Fibroids
The exact cause of uterine fibroids is unknown. However, the following are some potential factors that can increase your risk of developing these fibroids:
- Hormone levels: Excess production of the female hormones estrogen and progesterone.
- Age: Above the age of 30.
- Family history: Especially if you have a first-degree relative suffering from fibroids.
- Ethnicity: Women of African-Caribbean descent are at higher risk.
- Use of birth control: For example, infections or complications arising from an IUD (intrauterine device).
- Early onset of menstruation.
- Vitamin D deficiency.
Symptoms of Uterine Fibroids
- Heavy, prolonged and painful menstrual cycles, which often cause anemia.
- Spotting before or after menstrual periods.
- Unusual bleeding between periods.
- Pain in the abdomen, pelvis or lower back.
- Bloating accompanied by feelings of abdominal pressure.
- Painful sexual intercourse.
- Frequent urination.
Preventing Uterine Fibroids
Since we still don’t know what causes fibroids, there are no surefire methods to prevent their development. However, you can follow these tips to stay healthy and decrease your risk of developing these uterine tumors.
- Exercise regularly: Abdominal exercises for burning belly fat are especially recommended, as they can help shrink existing fibroids and prevent new ones from developing.
- Plant-based diet: A plant-based diet with organic dairy and lean meats can reduce your risk.
- Hysterectomy: If a doctor determines that the problem is severe enough that removing your uterus is a reasonable option, it will eliminate the possibility of any future fibroids. However, doing so will mean you can no longer bear children and may cause further medical complications due to a hormonal imbalance.
Home Remedies to Treat Uterine Fibroids
Since fibroids occur internally, they can be difficult to detect unless you experience symptoms. Even then, you should see your gynecologist for a proper diagnosis. Also, getting regular checkups can ensure early detection. Most often, fibroids are diagnosed during a routine gynecological exam.
Once your gynecologist feels the swollen tissue, any of the following may be used for proper diagnosis:
- Pelvic exam or pelvic ultrasound to detect subserosal fibroids.
- Laparoscopy to check for fibroids on the outer wall.
- Hysteroscopy or a transvaginal ultrasound to check for fibroids inside the uterus.
Your gynecologist may suggest medical treatment options. Depending on the size of the fibroids, you can also use natural home remedies to shrink and get rid of uterine fibroids.
Method 1: Apple Cider Vinegar & Blackstrap Molasses
Raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar has strong antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties, due to which it is often called an elixir for health.
Drinking diluted apple cider vinegar on a daily basis helps detoxify all bodily systems. It is acidic in nature but has an alkalizing effect upon ingestion, raising the body’s pH level for improved health.
Blackstrap molasses is derived from the refining process wherein sugarcane syrup is transformed into sugar. This gooey, black liquid is extracted during the third boiling of the cane syrup.
Unlike refined sugar, which is nothing but empty calories, blackstrap molasses is rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. It has very high iron content that helps counteract anemia that may be caused by heavy menstrual bleeding due to fibroids.
Things you’ll need:
- Apple cider vinegar (detoxes body) – 2 teaspoons
- Blackstrap molasses (high iron content) – 1 tablespoon
- Warm water – 1 glass
Step 1. Add apple cider vinegar and blackstrap molasses to warm water
- Pour a glass of warm water.
- Add 2 teaspoons of raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar to it.
- Add 1 tablespoon of blackstrap molasses as well.
Step 2. Stir until it’s well blended
- Stir with a spoon until the ingredients have completely dissolved in the water.
- Drink this once daily, first thing in the morning.
Continue for at least 2 to 3 months to get rid of uterine fibroids.
Method 2: Castor Oil Packs
You can make and use your own castor oil pack to reduce swelling or minimize the growth of fibroids in your upper uterine region.
You can also use castor oil packs to get relief from the lower back pain and abdominal pressure associated with uterine fibroids.
Castor oil packs are recommended for the treatment of fibroids since they help in detoxification via improved circulation and functioning of the body’s systems. Some believe that fibroids may be caused by the buildup of toxins in the body.
Caution: Do not use castor oil packs during menstruation or if you are trying to conceive.
Single-Step Treatment: Soak a cloth in castor oil, place it on your abdomen & apply heat
- Pour some castor oil into a bowl.
- Soak a piece of flannel cloth in the castor oil, saturating it completely.
- Place the soaked cloth on your abdomen and cover it with a plastic wrap.
- Put a hot water bottle or heating pad on top of it.
- Soak in the benefits of this warm castor oil pack for 30 to 60 minutes.
Do this daily for 4 consecutive days per week for at least 4 to 6 weeks to shrink your fibroids.
You can store the soaked cloth in a ziplock bag in the fridge and use it for up to 30 sessions or until it becomes too sticky to use.
Method 3: Iodine
Iodine is required by your body for smooth and proper functioning of the endocrine system.
Caution: Before you start taking iodine supplements, get proper medical tests done to determine whether you have an iodine deficiency. Too much iodine in your system can cause complications like hypothyroidism.
Single-Step Treatment: Take iodine supplements daily
- After tests have confirmed that you have an iodine deficiency, take 2 drops of 5% Lugol’s iodine daily to get rid of uterine fibroids.
- You can enhance this treatment by taking women’s combination supplements with magnesium and selenium for better results.
Make sure to use iodized salt in your daily diet to prevent an iodine deficiency and resultant complications like fibroids.
Method 4: Vitamin D
Vitamin D is essential for hormone production, cell growth, metabolism and the development of strong bones and immunity.
Vitamin D has specifically been shown to shrink and prevent fibroids. In fact, a vitamin D deficiency is considered to be a major causative factor of uterine fibroids, especially in African-American women who tend to have lower levels of this vitamin.
Single-Step Treatment: Take vitamin D3 supplements daily
- Get a blood test to determine if you have a vitamin D deficiency.
- If you have a deficiency, take vitamin D3 supplements after consulting your doctor. The typical daily recommended dosage is 25 mcg, taking care not to exceed this limit.
Continue taking vitamin D3 supplements for 4 to 6 months, then get tested again to check your vitamin levels.
Other options for increasing your vitamin D level are:
- Eating foods rich in vitamin D, such as cod liver; fatty fish like salmon, mackerel and tuna; and organic dairy products. Include these in your regular diet to prevent a deficiency.
- Going out to a nearby park in the early morning for yoga or meditation and soaking in all the benefits of the morning sunlight for vitamin D production in your body.
Method 5: Herbal Supplements
Chasteberry, also known as vitex agnus-castus or monk’s pepper, is the dried fruit of the chaste tree found in Central Asia, southern Europe and the Mediterranean region. This natural herb has long been used in traditional Greek and Roman medicine to treat menstrual and menopause-related health issues in women.
Single-Step Treatment: Take chasteberry extract daily
- Consult your doctor before taking any supplements.
- Generally, people take 400 mg of standardized chasteberry extract containing 0.5% agnuside every day for at least 6 months to get rid of uterine fibroids.
Alternatively, you can take 25 to 30 drops of chasteberry tincture 2 to 4 times a day.
# Dong Quai
Dong quai, also known as Angelica sinensis, is another powerful herb made from a fragrant perennial plant that grows high up in the mountains of China, Korea and Japan.
Dong quai has been used since ancient times in traditional Eastern medicine to regulate estrogen levels in women and also to get relief from cramps, irregular menstrual cycles, infrequent periods, premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and menopausal symptoms.
Single-Step Treatment: Take dried dong quai daily
- Take 2 or 3 gram capsules containing dried dong quai once daily for 2 months to get rid of uterine fibroids. Consult your doctor before beginning any new supplement regimen.
Caution: Do not take this herb if you take anticoagulants or blood thinners, or if you are nursing or pregnant. Also, stop taking dong quai supplements when you are menstruating, as it can cause abnormally heavy bleeding.
Method 6: Diet
When it comes to fibroids, your diet is extremely crucial. You can follow the guidelines below to both prevent and get rid of uterine fibroids.
- Avoid processed meats and dairy products. Opt for grass-fed beef and organic dairy products.
- Avoid drinking alcohol and caffeine.
- Eat green leafy vegetables that are rich in vitamin K, such as spinach, kale, lettuce, mustard greens, watercress, collards and turnip greens.
- Include cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli and Chinese cabbage, and fresh fruits like tomatoes and apples, in your diet.
- Instead of meat, consume red beans to boost your protein intake. Red beans are especially recommended for those suffering from fibroids, as they also help lower your estrogen level.
- Include foods containing flavonoids, such as chocolate and red wine, in your diet. Flavonoids help lower your estrogen production and prevent the formation of fibroids.
- Get routine gynecological checkups at regular intervals for early detection and diagnosis of fibroids.
- Take long hot or warm baths for pain relief when suffering from fibroids.
- Prepare an herbal juice blend with aloe vera, beetroot and lemon juice and drink it once daily for 4 to 6 months to shrink your fibroids.
Summary of How to Get Rid of Uterine Fibroids
Download this infographic.