Common Questions About the Treatment of Fibroids
If you are suffering from the effects of uterine fibroids, you may already be exploring available treatments. The good news is that a range of options can help alleviate painful, uncomfortable, and inconvenient symptoms. The bad news is that it can be challenging to sort through so much information, especially when not all of it is accurate. .
Many women with fibroids believe that their only available treatment is the complete surgical removal of the uterus through a hysterectomy. Fortunately, this isn’t true. If you are avoiding the doctor because you fear surgery or have fertility concerns, we encourage you to visit a fibroid specialist to explore your treatment options.
At USA Fibroid Centers, our primary goal is to give women with fibroids all the information they need to make an informed treatment decision. We also specialize in a minimally invasive, outpatient treatment called Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE). UFE can shrink your fibroids, alleviate your symptoms, and quickly get you back to normal life.
Below, our experts answer some common questions about fibroid treatment.
Are There Home Remedies for Fibroids?
Understandably, many women with fibroids want to know if there are any home remedies that can help. The answer is both yes and no. While home remedies are unlikely to make your fibroids disappear, they may help alleviate symptoms and prevent additional growth.
Although the causes of fibroids are not entirely understood, it is believed that lifestyle plays a role in their development. For instance, we know that you are more likely to develop fibroids if you are obese or overweight. We also know that certain fibroid symptoms, such as constipation, can be improved with dietary changes, proper hydration, and physical activity.
If you have fibroids or are at risk for developing them, we generally recommend:
- Lose excess weight
- Eat a healthy, well-rounded diet
- Quit smoking
- Avoid alcohol, sugar, sodium, and processed foods
- Drink plenty of fluids
- Exercise regularly
- Manage other underlying health conditions
Finally, we want you to understand that lifestyle modifications are not always enough. If your symptoms cause you to regularly miss work, cancel social engagements, or avoid intimacy, we suggest looking into medical treatment.
Can Bananas Help Treat Fibroids?
Wouldn’t it be nice if treating fibroids was this simple (and delicious)? While bananas can’t treat fibroids, eating a healthy diet that includes fresh fruits and potassium-rich foods like bananas may help alleviate symptoms and prevent additional fibroid growth.
A fibroid diet should include:
- Fresh and cooked vegetables, including leafy greens like spinach, lettuce, and broccoli
- A variety of colorful fresh fruits
- Beans and legumes
- Fish, especially oily ones like salmon or tuna
- White meats like chicken or turkey
- Low-fat milk, cheese, and other foods rich in Vitamin D
- Whole grains
- Potassium-rich foods like potatoes, bananas, tomatoes, and avocado
- Green tea
Keep in mind that what you don’t eat is just as important as what you do eat. Therefore, we suggest avoiding the following foods and substances:
- Red meat
- High-fat, processed meats
- Any highly processed foods
- Added sugar of all types
- High sodium foods
- Soda and other sugary drinks
- Excess calories
For more dietary recommendations, ask your doctor about visiting a registered dietician.
Castor Oil Packs for Fibroids?
Castor oil has been used for thousands of years to treat a range of ailments. When it comes to fibroid treatment, you may have heard that placing a castor oil pack above your uterus may help.
Although castor oil may offer some health benefits, there is little scientific evidence to back its claim as a fibroid treatment. That said, you may find it helpful as an anti-inflammatory or to relieve constipation (a common fibroid symptom).
If you are suffering from life-altering fibroid symptoms, we urge you to consider treatment from a medical professional.
Herbs for Fibroids?
While there are many herbal products on the market that claim to treat fibroids, there is not a lot of scientific evidence to back up these claims. Beyond that, some herbal remedies may be dangerous. Before deciding to take herbal remedies for fibroids, be sure to discuss your plans with your doctor.
One potentially beneficial option is green tea extract, which may inhibit fibroid growth. Although it probably won’t make your fibroids completely go away, it may provide you with some level of symptomatic relief.
Vitamins To Shrink Fibroids?
Although vitamins or minerals probably won’t shrink your fibroids, some women may benefit from taking supplements like multivitamins, calcium, Vitamin D, fish oil, folic acid, magnesium, or iron. However, always talk to your doctor before taking any new supplements. You may be able to meet your nutritional needs through diet alone.
One common issue related to fibroids that sometimes require iron supplementation is anemia, a condition involving low red blood cells. It can develop as a result of heavy menstrual bleeding. Symptoms include fatigue and weakness. Your doctor can confirm anemia by ordering a simple blood test.
Acupuncture for Fibroids?
While acupuncture is sometimes used for fibroids, there is little scientific evidence of its benefits. One recent study suggested that it may be helpful, but additional research is needed to confirm its efficacy as a fibroid treatment.
Essential Oils for Fibroids?
While essential oils are unlikely to make fibroids go away, you may experience some relief from your symptoms while enjoying their aromatics. For instance, try adding essential oils to a warm bath to help alleviate menstrual cramps.
Can Turmeric Help To Shrink Fibroids?
There is some evidence that curcumin, a component of turmeric, may be helpful as an alternative treatment for fibroids. In one research study, curcumin was shown to inhibit fibroid growth. However, that does not mean it is currently recommended as a fibroid treatment.
If you wish to shrink your fibroids, you may want to consider minimally invasive fibroid treatment instead. Uterine Fibroid Embolization takes only 30 to 45 minutes and is approximately 90 percent effective.
Can Garlic Shrink Fibroids?
Although garlic may have the potential to shrink fibroids, adding garlic to your diet alone is unlikely to have any noticeable effects on your symptoms. For better results, we recommend eating a healthy, well-rounded diet and discussing your treatment options with a fibroid specialist.
Can Aloe Vera Cure Fibroids?
Aloe vera cannot cure fibroids: the only known cure for fibroids is a hysterectomy, the surgical removal of the uterus.
Alternatively, Uterine Fibroid Embolization is a highly effective fibroid treatment that aims to shrink fibroids and eliminate symptoms. After UFE, fibroids are unlikely to regrow.
Can Dandelion Root Shrink Fibroids?
Although it is possible dandelion root may help in combination with other fibroid treatments, it is unlikely to have any major impact on the size of your fibroids. Some believe that dandelion root may promote better liver health, which in turn may help balance hormones.
Uterine fibroid growth has been linked to hormone production, particularly estrogen and progesterone. Fibroids tend to grow during the childbearing years and shrink after menopause.
Can Fasting Cure Fibroids?
There is no evidence that fasting can cure uterine fibroids. Fasting is defined as abstaining from food or drink for a set period.
Does Apple Cider Vinegar Shrink Fibroids?
Although apple cider vinegar is sometimes viewed as a cure-all, it does not shrink fibroids. It may, however, offer other health benefits, such as aiding in weight loss and helping to control diabetes.
How Can You Treat and Get Rid of Fibroids?
Although we understand the desire to turn to natural remedies for fibroids, many of these are unproven or ineffective. Instead, we encourage you to seek out scientifically-backed treatments and visit a fibroid specialist for help.
At USA Fibroid Centers, our experts specialize in performing Uterine Fibroid Embolization (UFE), a minimally invasive fibroid treatment that can shrink your fibroids, provide symptom relief, and quickly get you back to normal daily activities. UFE does not involve a hospital stay or lengthy recovery.