Updated: Dec 17, 2019
Coming off any hormonal contraceptive can be daunting. Especially for women who went on the pill to treat health conditions. Often during the first 6 months your hormones can be all over the place and you may experience symptoms including:
amenorrhea (no period)
So what is going on?
When you are on the pill it essentially switches off your hormones. It does this be delivering to your body daily a dose of synthetic hormones progestin and ethinylestradiol, in combination or separately.
These synthetic hormones act on the same receptors as estrogen and progesterone which in turn lowers serum testosterone, however they also lower estrodial and progesterone, hormones essential for proper reproductive function (Pletzer & Kerschbaum, 2014). Whilst this stops you from getting pregnant, it wreaks havoc on your bodies ability to produce these hormones when you stop the pill.
Once you stop taking the pill your body has to start producing these hormones again in order for you to ovulate. Communicate between your ovaries and your hypothalamus needs to be restored.
Need a refresher on how it all works? Click here to read 'How well do you know your period?'
What can you do to help reset these hormones?
Diet and Nutrition
Arguably one of the most effect and important ways to treat post pill syndrome. Taken the pill for a long duration can deplete the body of many nutrients most notable B vitamins, magnesium, vitamin C and vitamin D.
Restore key nutrients
Emphasis on nutrient dense foods including:
dark leafy greens
seeds (pumpkin, linseed, hemp, sunflower, sesame)
berries (blueberries, raspberries, blackberries)
palm sized protein with EVERY meal (animal proteins, tofu, tempeh, legumes)
Eat liver stimulating foods
Cruciferous veg - broccoli, cabbage, brussel sprouts, globe artichokes
grapefruit, beetroot, berries, cranberries
coffee, green tea, turmeric, dandelion tea
Regulate blood sugar
don't skip breakfast
eat regular meals
avoid processed and sugary foods that will spike blood sugar
ensure each meal has a balance of protein, fats and carbohydrates
Note: supplementation may be necessary for certain nutrients however this should always be tested by a health practitioner prior to taking.
Once you clean up your diet and restore key nutrients more work may be required to help eliminate any excess oestrogen and to help boost progesterone. This can be done in a wide range of ways and is often based on a case by case presentation.
If you are experiencing any of the post pill symptoms mentioned above and want to take control of your period book working with a Naturopath can be greatly beneficial.
About the Author
Chloe is a female health Naturopath with a passion for cooking real food and not feeling guilty about it! She is also a self confessed skincare junkie and is always trying or researching new and emerging products to recommend to her clients during the healing process. Aside from seeing people in her clinic Chloe is also developing an online skin master class, to help guide people all over the world how to clear up there skin for good! To be the first to know when this course launches, sign up here!