Endometriosis and the Integrative Approach

Endometriosis and the Integrative Approach


By Erin Lindberg /   Mar 26, 2023   


While there is no known cure for endometriosis, conventional medicine is yet to find a way to ‘treat’ endometriosis; mainly focusing on temporary symptom relief through surgery/hysterectomy, hormone therapies/birth control pills or prescription painkillers.  Each comes with their own undesirable side effects and risks, while simultaneously failing to address the root cause of the problem. 


Shared later, is a more integrative approach to managing endometriosis in lieu of succumbing to the pharmaceutical and surgical push, which includes a more holistic approach aiming to reduce inflammation, enhance immune function, alleviate pain, balance hormones and support natural detoxification through diet, lifestyle changes, supplements and therapies.  


Endometriosis Facts


  • Endometriosis is estimated to affect one in ten women of reproductive age (15-50), which is approximately 176 million women & people who menstruate in the world.
  • Studies have shown the average time taken to accurately diagnose endometriosis is approximately 10 years from onset of symptoms. [1] The average age is 27 years when a woman is first diagnosed with endometriosis even though most women start experiencing symptoms in their teenage years.  Because there is not a great non-invasive alternative for diagnosis women often go undiagnosed for years.
  • Endometriosis is one of the top 3 causes of infertility.  Up to 30%-50% of women with endometriosis may experience infertility. [2]  Many women don’t even realize they have endometriosis until they are trying to conceive and lesions are found. 
  • One study found endometriosis in approximately 70% of adolescents with chronic pelvic pain that was unresponsive to medical therapy. [3] Unbelievably endometriosis is the leading cause of dysmenorrhea (painful menstruation) in adolescents.[4] Endometriosis has been found in girls as young as age 8. 
  • There currently is no known cure for endometriosis.  Pregnancy, surgery or medications are not a cure. Women are often prescribed the pill, pain medication and/or antidepressants.  The pill does not slow down or stop the growth of endometriosis. 


What Is Endometriosis?


Endometriosis is a complex, inflammatory condition in which tissue similar to that which lines the uterus, is found outside the uterus, where it creates a chronic inflammatory reaction that results in lesions, cysts, scar tissue and adhesions. The endometriosis lesions and growths most often exist in the peritoneal cavity, fallopian tubes, ovaries, the bowel, bladder and rarely found on the diaphragm and lungs. 


The tissue outside the uterus responds to the hormone fluctuations that affect the menstrual cycle in the same way it would if it were in the uterus, building up each month before the period, and then breaking down when the body signals that it’s time to shed the lining.  Because the body does not recognize the presence of this endometriosis tissue it leads to a chronic cycle of inflammation.  The immune system continuously tries to manage the situation and repair the tissue significantly contributing to the inflammation. This inflammatory process leads to the formation of scar tissue and adhesions causing neighboring organs to stick together and an increasingly abnormal immune response worsening symptoms over time.  


Symptoms of Endometriosis


Endometriosis is difficult to diagnose.  Exploratory laparoscopy surgery is currently the only fully viable method to diagnose or rule it out. It is diagnosed in 4 stages of severity, from stage 1/mild to stage 4/severe.  However, the stage of endometriosis does not dictate the severity of symptoms.  Someone could have stage 3 endometriosis and not find out they have it until they’re having trouble conceiving.  Symptoms often correlate with menstrual cycles since the endometriosis tissue is estrogen-dependent like the endometrial lining of the uterus. The biologically active estrogen, estradiol, aggravates the pathological processes (inflammation and growth) and the symptoms associated with endometriosis.  Estrogen receptor levels in endometriosis tissue are >100 times higher than those in endometrial tissue. [5]  Depending on the location and severity of the endometriosis lesions, symptoms can vary quite a bit.  Endometriosis is a whole-body condition and is different for everyone affected.


Symptoms often include, but are not limited to:


  • Pelvic, low back and/or leg pain, usually correlating with menstruation, but some may experience pain throughout the month. 
  • Severe menstrual cramps that don’t typically resolve with anti-inflammatories and may disrupt day-to-day activity for 1 or more days.
  • Heavy menstrual flow and irregular periods, including spotting or irregular bleeding outside of period. 
  • Bowel and urinary disorders including painful urination and/or IBS like symptoms, bloating, constipation and diarrhea.  These conditions also include vulvodynia, interstitial cystitis and pelvic floor dysfunction. [6]
  • Pain during ovulation, during and/or after intercourse/orgasm. 
  • Nausea and/or vomiting.
  • Headache and debilitating fatigue. 
  • Depression and/or anxiety.
  • Infertility. Fertilization rates in those with endometriosis are significantly lower than those without the disease. 

Causes and Contributing Factors of Endometriosis


Currently, this complicated condition is still not well understood but more and more research is being done, which is promising.  There are multiple proposed theories on how and why endometriosis develops, including immune system dysfunction, oxidative stress and inflammation, genetics, development in utero and retrograde menstruation to name a few. 


There is a strong body of evidence supporting the connection between endometriosis, inflammation and immune system dysfunction. [7]  Researchers have concluded that endometriosis has almost all the hallmarks of an autoimmune disease and has been found to occur in conjunction with other autoimmune conditions like multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel diseases, including Crohn's and ulcerative colitis. [8]  Inflammation is connected to our gut function and liver health (it’s ability to detox effectively) because gut and liver health play an important role in autoimmunity and the development of autoimmune disease.  


Additionally, research demonstrates that hormonal imbalance does not cause endometriosis, but can definitely exacerbate it, primarily with excess estrogen.  In a balanced hormonal system, all the hormones work in concert, communicating messages between each other and our organs harmoniously.  Unfortunately, when one of the hormones becomes imbalanced, it can cause a flow-on effect to this communication and lead to undesirable symptoms.  One of the most common hormones to fall out of balance is estrogen. The balance of estrogen can be disrupted by poor diet, stress, lack of sleep, impaired liver function, an unhealthy gut microbiome or exposure to environmental toxins. The body can create too much estrogen (internal) or struggle to properly eliminate natural estrogen through the liver and bowel.  Secondly, exposure to external sources of estrogen-like substances (xenoestrogens) increase estrogen levels in the body. 


Once the body has used estrogen it needs to be metabolized and eliminated. The first step takes place in the liver where natural and estrogen-like substances are broken down.  The liver requires several nutrients, including magnesium, to break down estrogen.  A deficiency in nutrients can slow or impair liver breakdown of estrogen and other hormones. Other factors that have been linked to the development of endometriosis include high intake of alcohol, which can increase estrogen in the body and decrease the liver’s detoxification function. [9] Liver function may also be impaired by high intake of caffeine and pharmaceutical drugs. 


The second step takes place in the gut where the metabolized estrogen is packaged up and eliminated via the stool.  One study found that 80% of women with endometriosis have SIBO, and another suggested that the health of the intestinal bacteria played a critical role in the development and progression of endometriosis. [10]  Imbalanced gut bacteria can lead to excess estrogen, as higher levels of bad versus good bacteria, which are responsible for breaking down estrogen, can cause more estrogen to be reabsorbed rather than eliminated via the stool.  Additionally, endometriosis can directly affect the GI tract, so it goes both ways.  Prostaglandins, which are released during menstruation by the uterus and the endometrial lesions, affect the smooth muscle of the bowel and cause symptoms such as intestinal cramping and diarrhea.  The endometrial cells can even invade through the wall of the intestines.  This interferes with the gut’s ability to keep waste products moving (motility), resulting in SIBO, yeast overgrowth, and bacterial imbalance. When either or both of these processes are not functioning optimally, estrogen can be reabsorbed into circulation rather than eliminated, contributing to high levels of estrogen which will only worsen endometriosis.  You can now see the importance of supporting liver and gut health. 


Chronic inflammation is induced by the presence of the endometriosis tissue. As a result, there are high numbers of immune cells like macrophages and mast cells in the peritoneal cavity and in the endometriosis lesions due to the body’s immune response.  These cells contribute to the inflammation as they try to manage the situation and repair the tissue.


Histamines are chemicals stored in the mast cells and are involved in nerve transmission and immune response regulation.  When mast cells are triggered, they release histamines.  When a person has a histamine sensitivity or intolerance, certain foods or environmental stimulants can cause a stress response and a host of symptoms.  Some signs/symptoms of Histamine Intolerance to look for: flushing and temperature regulation issues, sneezing, itchy skin, hives, headaches/migraines, wheezing, burning in mouth/hands/feet, tightness/fullness in throat, Postural Orthostatic Hypotension Syndrome (POTS) or other forms of dysautonomia, dizziness/vertigo, low blood pressure, tachycardia, heart palpitations, swelling, anxiety/panic attacks, confusion/irritability and difficulty sleeping/sleep disturbances. In women with endometriosis, mast cells are present in much higher quantities in the endometriosis tissue. [11]  As the condition progresses, the immune system response becomes increasingly dysfunctional. 


The HPA axis is the principal effector of the stress response.  HPA axis dysfunction results when one or more of the three components of the HPA axis (hypothalamus, pituitary gland and adrenal gland) is not doing what it should be doing.  For example, if the hypothalamus fails to signal the pituitary gland to release ACTH, then the adrenal gland won’t produce sufficient amounts of cortisol. Working together, these 3 components regulate energy levels, stress response, metabolism, mood, motivation, and immune system.  Here’s how it works: 

  1. In response to stress, the hypothalamus secretes corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) to signal the pituitary gland.
  2. In response to the CRH, the pituitary gland releases ACTH to signal the adrenal glands.
  3. In response to the ACTH, the adrenal gland secretes glucocorticoids, including cortisol.  


Usually, the root cause of HPA axis dysfunction is inflammation due to a variety of stressors, including emotional stress (at home or work), undiagnosed infections, exposure to environmental toxins and pollutants, food sensitivities or poor diet. Inflammation will cause dysregulation of the signals in the brain coming from the hypothalamus, causing a chain reaction that impacts the pituitary gland and ultimately the adrenal glands.  This will have a “whole body” effect with numerous symptoms that are difficult to trace to any single illness or dysfunction.  In summary, immune system dysregulation is intrinsically linked with endometriosis, and working on nutrition, limiting histamine triggers, supporting gut and liver health and HPA axis dysfunction can help lower inflammation and stabilize the immune system. 

Genetics also plays a role in the development of endometriosis. It’s been found that women who have a close relative with the condition are 7-10 times more likely to develop endometriosis.[12]  There are theories that suggest implants of the endometriosis tissue on the external surface of the pelvic organs during embryonic development, and then become “active” as puberty begins.  It is also suggested that women with endometriosis due to genetic mutations, over respond to estrogen which encourages growth of the lesions, while progesterone receptors are being silenced and becoming unresponsive to progesterone, which would normally balance out the strong influence of estrogen.  


Lastly, there is a belief that retrograde menstruation may also be a cause of endometriosis. Normally, menstrual blood should flow from the uterus out of the body, but instead of the blood flowing out of the body through the vagina, the endometrial lining flows backward through the fallopian tubes and into the abdomen.  There is a link, however not every woman who experiences retrograde menstruation has endometriosis.

Integrative Treatment of Endometriosis:


Endometriosis is a complicated condition, and not everyone will be able to significantly reduce or eliminate their symptoms, but there are several mainstream treatment options that can help manage symptoms, slow progression and improve quality of life. Some may need or opt to have excision surgery by a skilled surgeon to remove the lesions and scar tissue, however lifestyle and dietary changes are pivotal parts of addressing endometriosis naturally.  


An integrative approach to endometriosis takes into account the whole person, physical, emotional and spiritual.  It involves combining conventional medical treatment with complementary therapies.  Integrative therapy aims to address the underlying causes of a person’s health concerns rather than simply treating the symptoms.  Below are some integrative approaches to help you manage endometriosis naturally on the basis of immunomodulation and anti-inflammatory therapy. Treatment typically involves identifying and reducing the impact of stressors, reducing exposure to environmental toxins, detoxing the body, and adjusting to a supportive diet and possibly restoring gut health. 


  • Manual and Manipulative Therapies: Pelvic Floor Therapy, Myofascial Release, Maya Abdominal Massage, Visceral Manipulation, Manual Lymphatic Drainage and Acupressure are some of the ways we treat endometriosis symptoms by promoting healing, calming the nervous system, promoting relaxation, improving circulation and lymph drainage, reducing inflammation, adhesions and pain.  Endometriosis, surgery, adhesions and inflammation have a significant impact on the anatomy and mobility of the intestines.  Digestive motility may be impacted, and its motility is key to a healthy gut microbiome. Sometimes adding a few simple exercises, improving breathing patterns, pelvic floor and manual therapy or self-massage techniques is all it takes to improve the environment for a healthier gut microbiome and keep digestion moving daily.  All which are important in the breakdown and elimination of excess estrogen. 



  • Mind-body Techniques:  Complementary therapies can be used in the treatment of endometriosis to help manage physical, emotional and mental support.  These techniques focus on the connection between the mind and body and are designed to help individuals learn how to use their thoughts and emotions to promote healing, support parasympathetic dominance (rest and digest), optimize stress resilience and reduce pain.  Endometriosis is often associated with significant emotional and mental distress, including anxiety, depression and stress.  The world is filled with stressors, poor sleep and processed food, where many live in sympathetic dominance or “fight or flight”. 



Mind-body techniques can help to manage these symptoms by calming the nervous system, reducing stress levels and promoting “the relaxation response”, generally characterized by a reduction in blood pressure, respiratory rate, body temperature and resting heart rate, and relaxed muscles.  Try practicing short periods of mindfulness and breathing techniques throughout the day.  For many, changing when and how you eat is more important than changing what you eat. Incorporate mindful eating, chewing food 20-40 times and eating with more pleasure and enjoyment. Finish eating for the day by 7-8 pm. Eating during the most productive hours of the day is important for blood sugar regulation and hormone balance. 


Vagus nerve toning using vagal nerve stimulation and/or exercises help support parasympathetic dominance, enabling the body to counter cortisol levels and effectively releasing stress from the cells, promoting relaxation, sleep and digestion.  Excess cortisol production from being in a chronic state of stress can lower progesterone production increasing estrogen dominance.  Meditation, grounding, visualization, JFB Myofascial Release, Yoga and Tai Chi are other techniques to support parasympathetic dominance and optimize stress resilience.   


  • Diet and Nutrition: Diet modification, eating a nutrient dense, anti-inflammatory diet can directly impact inflammation, hormone balance and immune system function.  While no specific diet has been shown to cure endometriosis, dietary changes, and nutritional supplements may be beneficial in reducing inflammation and pain associated with the condition. While there is no one size fits all endo diet, most will benefit from learning how to apply a personalized anti-inflammatory diet into their lives. 


Inflammation is a key factor in the development and progression of endometriosis. Eating specific foods can trigger a stress response and can contribute to inflammation in the body, while others have anti-inflammatory properties that can help to reduce the inflammation.  Keeping a food diary can be helpful when you’re trying to see what, if anything, triggers or makes your symptoms worse.  There are no bad foods, there are just foods that may not agree with your body, foods that you may be allergic to or intolerant of.   


  • Fat: Opt for good quality fats that are organic, fresh, unprocessed and grass-fed options, such as grass-fed beef or butter, avocados and coconut oil/milk. Increased intake of omega-3 fatty acids, found in fatty fish such as salmon and mackerel, as well as in pumpkin seeds, flax seeds and chia seeds, have been shown to have potent anti-inflammatory effects. Avoid poor quality fats such as those typically found in processed foods, conventionally raised meat/dairy (due to use of growth hormones) and refined cooking oils.  Start by eating or preparing food with a golf ball size of healthy fats per meal.


  • Carbs: Avoid refined carbohydrates/grains (processed foods) and refined sugars/artificial sweeteners. Attempt to get sources of carbs from whole foods whether they be vegetables or fruits. Lower sugar fruits include raspberries, strawberries, blackberries and granny smith apples. Pair with some kind of protein or fat to avoid major blood sugar spikes. Consume lettuce and leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables (kale, brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli), which help the liver to break down excess estrogen.  You may also include sweet potatoes, squash and plantain, beans. Remove gluten products. Gluten is extremely difficult to digest and can lead to intestinal permeability, also known as leaky gut.  It is believed that leaky gut is one of the main causes of autoimmune diseases. [13] In one study of women with endometriosis who were put on a gluten free diet for a year, 75% reported a significant decrease in painful symptoms. [14] Well-tolerated gluten free whole grains include rice, quinoa, buckwheat, amaranth and millet. 


  • Protein: Eat a balance of protein, carbohydrates, fat and fiber to regulate blood sugars.  If blood sugar is consistently unstable, it contributes to inflammation and long-term inflammation causes pain.  This also translates to more stable energy, stable moods, better sleep and better periods. Protein is also essential for hormone health.  A diet low in protein intake can also stimulate a stress response. If possible, look for grass fed beef, organic chicken or turkey.  At every meal attempt for your plate to include ½ carbohydrates from non-starchy vegetables, ¼ from starchy vegetables and/or fruit, ¼ protein and a golf ball of healthy fat. The healthy fat may be used to cook/prepare the meal. 


  • Lower the histamine load:  Especially if you notice signs of histamine sensitivity/intolerance, add foods high in flavonoids to inhibit the release of histamines from mast cells and reduce the release of proinflammatory cytokines. Foods high in quercetin and other flavonoids include citrus fruits, apples, onions, cabbage, cruciferous vegetables, lettuces and leafy greens, parsley, sage and other herbs and black or green tea.  Olive oil, buckwheat, asparagus, figs, grapes, dark cherries, blueberries and blackberries are also high in histamine-reducing flavonoids.  Consume foods high in histamine receptors antagonists by drinking nettle tea, eating pineapples and papayas, kiwis, ginger, asparagus, sauerkraut, yogurt, kimchi and kefir support modulation of the histamine response at the receptor level. 


Attempt to limit, but not completely eliminate, highest histamine foods such as fermented or soured foods, such as yogurt and sour cream, kombucha, vegetables and pickles, fermented soy and grains (such as sourdough bread), cured meats, smoked and canned fish (sardines or tuna), aged cheeses, alcohol beverages, tomatoes, eggplant, spinach and vinegar. Focus on adding low histamine and high flavonoid foods versus strictly eliminating high histamine foods.  


Notice some foods that are highest in flavonoids are also high in histamine. It’s essential not to create a fear of food within the nervous system, and instead promote enjoyment of foods high in flavonoids. Limited consumption should be fine as long as the focus is on a whole foods diet low in packaged and processed foods. Fortunately, by reducing the histamine load, strategically antagonizing histamine receptors and supporting optimal digestive function and a healthy, diverse gut microbiome the immune challenge of histamine intolerance that many people with autoimmune diseases struggle with can be overcome.


  • Avoid exposure to damaging chemicals/toxins and xenoestrogens:
    • Polychlorinated and brominated chemicals-like PCBs and flame retardant, found in drinking water and many foods, are harmful to the liver.  Consider a home water filtration system or an inexpensive drinking water filter and shower head filter so the water is free of contaminants or chemical pollutants. 
    • BPA and phthalates-plastic softeners that can artificially increase estrogen levels. Avoid plastics including water bottles, food packaging, plastic wrap, lining of tin cans and receipts. Substitute with glass or silicone food storage.  Also avoid synthetic fragrances like perfumes and air fresheners due to the addition of phthalates. 
    • Pesticides and growth agents-Prioritize organic fruits and vegetables.  These do not contain pesticides and growth agents which contribute to the toxic load in your body.   Animal products that are not organic, grass-fed or pasture raised often use growth hormones, antibiotics and pesticides. 
    • Dioxins-bleach byproducts should also be avoided because they contribute to endometriosis progression. [15] Consider switching to organic cotton tampons, pads or period underwear and use natural home cleaning and personal care products.  



  • Supplements:  Similar to diet, supplements may be beneficial in managing endometriosis by reducing inflammation, promoting hormonal balance, and supporting immune system function. While it is best to focus on a nutrient dense, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant diet, targeted supplementation may enhance the effect in some cases. However, it is important to note that supplements can have side effects and may interact with other medications, so it is essential to consult with a healthcare provider before use of supplements. 



  • Omega-3 fatty acids or high-quality fish oil (or algae oil for vegans)- Studies showed that omega-3 fatty acids were associated with a statistically significant reduction in pain intensity and improved quality of life in women with endometriosis. [16]


  • Turmeric-high quality turmeric or curcumin supports phase 2 detoxification of the liver, which is vital with hormonal issues. It is also an incredible anti-inflammatory powerhouse.  Curcumin also prevents the growth of endometriosis cells by inhibiting the production of the hormone estradiol. [17]


  • Magnesium- a study found that magnesium was associated with a statistically significant reduction in menstrual and endometriosis-related pain intensity and duration. [18]  Magnesium has a role in more than 300 reactions in our body, including regulation of blood sugar, muscle function (smooth muscle relaxant) and energy production. Magnesium is a major player in glutathione, the body’s master antioxidant, therefore indirectly can tame inflammation.  It also impacts the production of vitamin D in the body which promotes a healthy immune system.  It may also help you relax and sleep longer, by helping with melatonin secretion and maintaining healthy levels of GABA (a neurotransmitter that promotes sleep). A study from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) found that 48 percent of Americans of all ages have less magnesium than they should.  Excess stress, alcohol and caffeine can deplete magnesium stores in the body.


  • Vitamin D-Vitamin D supplementation is often essential because even in sunbelt areas of the world, up to 30% of the population is deficient.  The authors of a study found that vitamin D was associated with a statistically significant reduction in menstrual and endometriosis-related pain intensity and duration. [19] Vitamin D plays an essential role in fertility, menstrual cycle regulation, PCOS, endometriosis and PMS. [20]


  • Quercetin-This is a flavonoid which works like an all-natural antihistamine, stabilizing the effects of histamines released from mast cells. It also helps with leaky gut and pain relief. 


  • Castor oil packs-Castor oil is derived from the seeds of the Castor Oil plant and has been used by many cultures for centuries to promote healing, specifically reproductive system healing.  It has been shown to stimulate the circulatory and lymphatic system and the liver which are all in charge of removing waste and toxins from the body. Castor oil packs have been found to help, but does not claim or guarantee, congestion in the pelvic floor, increase blood flow and circulation to the uterus and ovaries, soften scar tissue throughout the abdomen/pelvis, shrink fibroids, help with endometriosis pain, improve or even eliminate mild-medium period cramping, irritable bowel syndrome and other digestive disorders. [21] Use this link for a free guide, from one of my mentors Nicole Jardim, on how to make and use castor oil packs. 



  • Herbal Medicine: Herbal medicine is the use of plants or plant extracts to treat or prevent disease.  Many herbs have anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties, making them useful in managing endometriosis.  While further research is needed to fully understand the effectiveness of herbal medicine for endometriosis, many women have reported supportive outcomes from using herbal remedies as a complementary therapy. Just as in the case of supplements, work with an expert in the field to avoid interactions with prescription medications. 




  • Fresh turmeric-supports liver detoxification which is key in breaking down estrogen as stated above. 


  • Fresh ginger-another herb that has been effective in reducing inflammation and pain associated with endometriosis. [22]



  • Aromatherapy: Aromatherapy involves using essential oils to promote health and well-being.  Essential oils are concentrated plant extracts that are believed to have therapeutic properties.  They can be applied topically with a carrier oil (to dilute) such as coconut or almond, diffused/inhaled or added to a bath.  While there is limited scientific research on the effectiveness of aromatherapy for endometriosis, some women with the condition have reported that it has helped to manage their symptoms. Use with caution if you are pregnant or breastfeeding and follow label instructions. 



  • Lavender-may help with stress relief, sleep, and tension related pain and inflammation. It can help calm the body and mind with anti-anxiety properties. 
  • Clary sage-believed to act on the pituitary gland affecting hormones and is suggested for menstrual related tension and pains.  It also supports the nervous system and is relaxing and calming yet uplifting. 
  • Rose-Rose oil is well known for its antidepressant, antiseptic, antispasmodic and anti-viral properties. A study concluded that aromatherapy with rose essential oil may be beneficial for individuals with primary dysmenorrhea (pain reduction). [23]
  • Peppermint-Peppermint oil is promoted for having pain-killing effects and helps relax the gastrointestinal tract. 
  • Eucalyptus-known to be great for relieving muscle aches as well as providing calming relief to combat stress. 


  • Infrared Sauna: Using an infrared sauna works to oxygenate the body’s tissues, and can really help with detoxification pathways to reduce xenoestrogens in women with endometriosis. [16] Using the same type of radiant energy that the sun produces, it raises your body temperature, but not the air or surrounding environment.  


The rise in body temperature stimulates production and mobilization of white blood cells and killer T cells, which means your body’s natural healing mechanisms are optimized.  At the cellular level, the light waves can alter membranes, DNA/proteins and cell fluids.  Altered cell membranes and mitochondrial activity take place, impacting your body’s energy and metabolism.  Stimulation of your lymphatic system and circulatory system, oxygenates cells, regenerates damaged tissue and eliminates toxins.  


Sauna time also stimulates the production of endorphins in your body helping with pain relief, the deep heat promotes relaxation of tense muscles as well as producing a parasympathetic healing effect, helping with stress relief and balancing cortisol levels.  Only 15-30 minutes of time in an infrared sauna can impact your health significantly and has the potential of helping restore balance if you are dealing with chronic pain, inflammation, low energy or poor circulation.    




Contrary to popular belief, endometriosis is not a problem with reproductive organs.  It just happens to manifest in the body as reproductive problems.  This is why uterus and ovary removal is not a solution.  We need to start moving away from the belief that endometriosis is a gynecological condition and instead embrace the understanding that it is a full body condition driven by immune system dysfunction and chronic inflammation that happens to affect the reproductive organs and menstrual cycle significantly.  It is a condition that is heavily influenced by dietary and lifestyle components and these interventions should be cornerstone in one's treatment.


Endometriosis is a full body complex condition that will often require a multidisciplinary approach to treatment.  Integrative therapy is not a replacement for conventional medical treatment of endometriosis but rather a complementary approach to achieve better outcomes.  

By addressing both the physical and emotional aspects of endometriosis, integrative therapy can help women achieve a better quality of life and attack some of the suspected root causes of endometriosis as well. 


  1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12790847
  2. https://www.asrm.org/uploadedFiles/ASRM_Content/Resources/Patient_Resources/FAct_Sheets-and_Info_Booklets/EndoDoesItCauseInfertility.pdf
  3. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpag.2019.11.011
  4. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30461694/
  5. https://ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/PMC/22772552
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4432718/
  7. https://wwwnvci.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6121292/, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27294113/, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31476950/
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24807511
  9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21620779, https:www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8488967
  10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25355803, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9660426
  11. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26901277
  12. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22330229, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26247027
  13.  https://wwweje-online.org/content/130/2/137.abstract, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15244201
  14.  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23334113/
  15.  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3941414/
  16. Pan J, Dai Q, Zhang J, et al. Omega-3 fatty acids intake and risk of endometriosis: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Nutrients. 2018; 10(10):1542. doi:10.3390/nu10101542
  17. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15727565
  18. Sesti F, Caponecchia L, Pietropolli A, et al. Magnesium in the gynecological practice: a literature review. Magnes Res. 2017;30(1):1-7. doi:10.1684/mrh.2017.0415.PMID:28498078.
  19.  Amr MF, El-Mogy MM, Shams T, Vieria KSR, El-Masry SA. Vitamin D and Its Association with Endometriosis and Menstrual Pain: A Systematic REview and Meta-Analysis. J Clin Med. 2018;7(10):356.doi:10.3390/jcm7100356
  20.  https://ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6250088/, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29447494/, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6422848, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6265788/
  21. Grady Harvey. Immunomodulation through castor oil packs.  Journal of Naturopathic Medicine. Unknown; 7(1):84-89
  22.  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4436156/
  23. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/PubMed/27502800

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