Padma Lakshmi (“Top Chef”), Susan Sarandon (“The Big Wedding”), Whoopi Goldberg (“The View”) and another 100 million women worldwide contend with endometriosis, a condition in which endometrial cells (that line the uterus) grow outside the uterus, causing adhesions, scarring, severe pain and a 30 to 40 percent risk of infertility.
Even though 10 percent of all women develop endometriosis, we’re just beginning to understand the causes: possibly a combination of immune-system misfires, exposure to environmental toxins (like hormone disrupters in plastics), plus a genetic predisposition. Effective nonmedical treatments are emerging, but until recently, only hormone therapy, pain pills and surgery were offered, at a cost of $22 billion a year!
- Stress reduction. Life stressors can aggravate immune-system misfires and amplify pain, so it’s important to meditate regularly. Also, acupuncture, biofeedback and massage may ease stress and discomfort.
- Vitamins E (1,200 IU of mixed tocopherols) and C (1,000 milligrams) daily. One study reports a 43 percent reduction in everyday pain and a 25 percent reduction in painful sex within eight weeks. Check with your doc if you are taking a statin or have smoked, as this amount of vitamin E may cause problems.
- Eliminate all transfats and boost your intake of omega-3s. Eat salmon and ocean trout two to three times a week and take 900 IU of DHA from algal oil daily. In one study, women with the highest intake of transfats were 48 percent more likely — and those with the highest intake of omega-3s were 22 percent less likely — to develop endometriosis!
THE SANEST FOOD CHOICES EVER — NUTS!
Novelist Franz Kafka (maybe a little nuts himself) explained the relationship between tree nuts and good health better than anyone: “God gives the nuts, but he does not crack them.” That part is up to you, and boy, is it worth the effort!
Eating nuts regularly can help cool bodywide inflammation, reduce the risk of metabolic syndrome (a heart-risky precursor to Type 2 diabetes), lower blood pressure, reduce heart attack risk by 30 to 50 percent, shrink your waist (more than 40 inches for men and 35 inches for women means you’re obese), aid digestion and protect your brain. Eating 2 to 4 ounces of nuts a day may lower total cholesterol by up to 21 percent and LDL by up to 29 percent.
So here’s our scoop on nuts. And remember, substitute nuts for unhealthy carbs and fats in your diet: Don’t add them to what you already eat.
- Almonds, 1 ounce equals 23 nuts; 160 calories; 6 grams protein; 14 grams fat (1 gram saturated); more calcium than any other nut, vitamin E, riboflavin, magnesium and manganese.
- Hazelnuts, 1 ounce equals 21 nuts; 176 calories; 4 grams protein; 17 grams fat (1 gram saturated); a good source of vitamin E, copper and manganese.
- Pecans, 1 ounce equals 19 halves; 195 calories; 3 grams protein; 20 grams fat (2 grams saturated); a good source of manganese.
- Pistachios, 1 ounce equals 49 nuts; 160 calories; 6 grams protein; 14 grams fat (2 grams saturated); and thiamin, B-6, copper and manganese.
- Walnuts, 1 ounce equals 14 halves; 185 calories; 4 grams protein; 18 grams fat (2 grams saturated); the most alpha-lipoic acid of any nut, and the only nut with appreciable amounts of omega-3s, plus copper and manganese.
Let’s get crackin’!
Dr. Mehmet Oz is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Dr. Michael Roizen is chief medical officer at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute. For more information go to www.sharecare.com.