The Inside Scoop on Birth Control: Convenience Has Its Price

September 28, 2015

Last week I went head-on into a trendy topic of “not needing your period.” It all got started with this article that has gained considerable traction in social media forums and was even reposted in the NYT. I shared these four points in response in my post titled Women DO Need To Have Periods:

  1. You DO need your period and it should NOT be painful. Those painful symptoms are there to bring your attention to a deeper imbalance that likely began even before your menstrual cycles did. Read this post about what that imbalance looked like in your childhood. So this isn’t an either/or situation, it’s a clear cry from your body to fix the root of the problem.
  2. Using hormonal birth control to suppress menstrual pain is only exacerbating the inflammation caused by a sluggish lymphatic system and less than optimal elimination organs. This post on painful periods explains how you’re just shifting symptoms this way.
  3. Disruption of a regular cycle for any length of time will likely lead to overworked bowels and/or kidneys. This creates a build-up of acidic wastes which will then produce any or all of these symptoms:
  • Digestive disturbances (bloating, flatulence, acid reflux)
  • Changes in bowel movements (less than the optimal two a day, loose frequent stools)
  • Increase need to urinate or sense of an oncoming UTI
  • Nighttime urination
  • Skin disturbances (acne and/or eczema)
  • Painful breast swelling
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Lower back pain
    Irritability, Increased Anxiety, or Depressive Symptoms
    This post on inflammation and infertility discusses the approach I use in my practice

Also, don’t forget there is a huge pharmaceutical industry out there whose livelihood depends on the sale of birth control devices that will ease your pain or stop your period. It’s an unfortunate fact that much of the research we rely on for our health information is funded by the pharmaceutical industry. This is not cynicism, this is the truth and we can no longer risk our health and that of the next generation because of our naiveté. The greatest source of truth is to listen to your body and recognize its natural healing capabilities. Learning to listen and taking proactive steps that work WITH our body’s innate ability to clean and heal, we can have it all—painless periods and a body in harmony.

Now I’d like to tell you a story this week about a client of mine Melissa. Seven years before I had the opportunity of meeting Melissa she took the advice of her OB/Gyn to implant a Mirena IUD.

Why this seemed like a good idea
While Melissa was looking for the convenience of no menstrual flow she learned there was a price to pay. Let me share Melissa’s story. At 24 Melissa was delighted at all the Mirena IUD had to offer. No period AND reliable, ongoing birth control. That’s one great deal for a young professional woman. She was surprised, however, as she began to hear stories from friend after friend who also had the Mirena who were suffering from reoccurring UTI’s or ovarian cysts. She was feeling quite lucky that her experience was different. Or was it?

What Melissa did notice
While at the time Melissa never attributed these symptoms to the IUD she began experiencing them at a steady increase over time:

Anxiety & Sleeplessness: Like many young professional women Melissa had her fair share of steadily increasing sleeplessness and anxiety. This was easy to pass off as part and parcel of working full time and running her own business, but when this went away after the Mirena was removed it now appears to be linked.

Painful Swollen Breasts & Cramping: At about 8-14 days before her menses (which never actually occurred) Melissa would, in her words, “experience massive PMS symptoms particularly horrible swollen and sore breasts and cramps. It got to the point wearing a bra was extremely uncomfortable and I would have to cancel social outings because going in public was just embarrassing.” Now looking back Melissa can see it as if, “my body wanted to have a release but it couldn’t and it would last for a minimum of 8 days, usually 12 to 14.”  This went on every month in extreme form the last two years of having the Mirena.

birth control and cystic acneCystic Acne: It was the breast pain coupled with the highly inflamed cystic acne that would appeared on her face and back, increasing mid-cycle that pushed Melissa to the edge. “I remember one particular day crying in my car before walking into HEB because I was so embarrassed by my skin. This was my last straw before taking it out because nothing was working to clear my skin. Not even heavy prescription creams.”


My perspective
Melissa’s flaring symptoms came at the time of some groundbreaking collaborative work of mine with a group of European physicians who also integrated Gemmotherapy, Homeopathy, and Plant-Based Eating into protocols for their patients. I had just implemented the new intake process that evaluated a client’s elimination, vitality and inflammation that we had been working on. I was testing a theory that by opening elimination first the body’s natural cleaning and healing process would be optimized. Melissa’s protocol and her response actually became a landmark case for me and one I often hold up as an example in talks.

I had seen Melissa in my practice on and off for over a year with emotional and digestive complaints. In that time while treating her with Homeopathy, I saw her monthly painful breast swelling and tenderness 14 days out of a 28 day cycle, and significant cystic facial acne only grow more aggravated. Each 4-6 weeks we would make some gains but the cystic acne was taking its toll on her self esteem and she was at her limit. Melissa made an appointment to have her IUD removed and I suggested we meet afterwards to begin the process of restoring healthy elimination.

Meeting with Melissa this time viewing her case through the lens of elimination was where I discovered for the first time that aside from not having a monthly menses, Melissa only had a bowel movement every other day at best and never felt her bowels emptied. She told me this symptom had become increasing worse over the years since the IUD was in place. She had never mentioned it as it had been going on for so long and it was her skin that was in her focus.

I began treating Melissa with a simple protocol of only Walnut, (Juglans Regia) Gemmotherapy extract, twice daily by itself to begin the opening process and asked her to eat an all-fruit breakfast each morning. Within a week she begin having a daily bowel movement, and within that first cycle the breast swelling went from its high of 14 days a month to only 10 and the intensity of pain had decreased. Something was happening. We were both encouraged and could see that we were helping her body heal itself of long carried symptoms simply by opening her elimination.

Healthy skin with no birth controlBy her second post IUD cycle her breast swelling dropped to only 4 days pre-menses, the intensity decreasing again and her skin began to show significant signs of clearing! Additionally Melissa was now having two bowel movements daily. We continued with exactly this protocol through one more cycle and by that point her skin was glowing and there was no cramping and only minimal breast swelling.

Convenience can be a good thing but certainly not when it puts a young woman’s health and wellbeing at risk. More often than not conventional medicine offers an immediate fix without a holistic perspective so it is up to you to consider how that fix will impact the intricate systems that make up your body.

The bottom line
My practice is built on the fundamental belief that the human body comes equipped with the perfect systems to clean, eliminate and heal. However, due to inherited traits, accidents, early medical intervention or exposure to harsh toxins one or more of these organs involved may not perform optimally and symptoms appear.  This article on elimination explains what those symptoms might look like. Opening the organs of elimination, namely the bowel, kidney and for women the uterus is key to this healing process. I’ve explained that in this post about the first stage of treatment.

Want to learn more?
I am passionate about helping women restore the natural rhythm of their body so they can live symptom free. A twenty minute introductory meeting (by Skype, Facetime or Phone) may help you or someone you know suffering from symptoms learn more about whether my method is a good fit for you.

My integration of Gemmotherapy, Homeopathy and a Plant-Based diet to support this absolutely natural process is called The Hubele Method. Currently the first two levels of online training are available here for those interested in learning more.

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