DO YOU SUFFER WITH ENDOMETRIOSIS???Since I posted my Asthma blog on Tuesday Evening I was then contacted by another fan straight away, Gemma! Here is Gemma's story "I first started suffering with problems around 3 years ago. I was getting stomach pains, bloating and back pain, my energy levels were dropping and I couldn't figure out why. Every time I went to my doctor they said I had IBS so I followed the advise they gave but I had a feeling there was more to it. I noticed I was getting worse pain when I had my period and the pain was happening about 1 week before and staying with me longer afterwards, there was also a pattern to my stomach problems and I was suffering what I thought were re-current UTI's more frequently. I kept going back to the doctors and kept getting told I had IBS and to take tablets for it.....I was in so much pain I thought I was going mad!! I started to look at the internet and found some useful information about Endometriosis so I started to keep a symptom diary. I found a new GP to speak to and demanded they took me seriously as I was near breaking point, this GP listened and referred me to a gynaecologist at St Marys so I was finally getting somewhere! In the meantime he put me on a pill and I had my appointment 3 months later - the consultant felt I had Endometriosis and referred me for a laparoscopy in December 2012 to investigate. They found Endometriosis on my bladder and left ovary and put me on the Mirena Coil..unfortunatley the coil did not agree with me and 2 months later I had it taken out. I went back to my consultant and they suggested another pill to supress my periods but that made me suffer headaches and nausea so I soon stopped that too. I decided after that I would take matters into my own hands and change my lifestyle. I started cutting out wheat and red meat and have cut down on caffeine, I go to the gym and excersice regularly and my energy levels feel boosted everytime! The diet has helped reduce bloating and pain and I feel so much better. My journey is ongoing and I am now on a Zoladex injection to ease my pain and stop my periods so I will have to wait and see how this trial goes. This condition affects 1 in 10 women and there is not enough research or understanding, if I can help one other woman by sharing my story I will be happy. Exercise and diet are a massive part of helping to live a much happier and healthier life and Im so glad I finally changed my lifestyle for the better :-)xxxxx" Thank you so much to Gemma for sharing her story with me, reading it gave me goosebumps! Here is some more information on the condition... WHAT IS ENDOMETRIOSIS? Endometriosis effects women and is a disorder where the lining of the uterus, known as your endometrium, grows outside of the uterus. WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS? Symptoms may include: - Pelvic pain, especially during your period - Pain during intercourse, - The need to urinate more frequently - Excess bleeding during your period or between periods - Infertility HOW CAN EXERCISE HELP? By exercising you promote circulation and the release of endorphins, which are pain-relieving, "feel good" chemicals in your brain. High-intensity exercises such as running/ biking/ swimming will help to reduce your symptoms! However you should discuss with your Doctor before beginning a physical activity program, especially if you are new to exercise!!! I would also advise that after advice from your Doctor, that you consider obtaining the help of a Personal Trainer for at least 2-3 sessions to help you with an exercise plan which you can increase intensity of over time and as you become accustomed to it! HOW CAN YOUR DIET AND LIFESTYLE HELP? Here are some tips on how to help with your symptoms and make living with this condition a little easier if not better!! - High fiber diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, beans, whole grains, and nuts - Limit saturated fat by eating mostly plant–based foods - Low–fat dairy products - Lean meats - Reduce Red Meat intake - Include more sources of Omega–3 fats such as fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, herring, and sardines), fish oil, canola oil, flaxseeds, walnuts, and pumpkin seeds Just remember that living a healthy lifestyle is a long term choice, it will provide you with so many short and long term benefits! Before making any drastic changes to your diet please consult with your Doctor or Nutritionist! And good luck ladies If you have a story to tell I would love to hear from you!!! Mwah xxxxx

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