Written by Lucy Fitzgibbons.
When the oral contraceptive pill was first released in the 1960s it gave women complete autonomy over their reproduction. While once “empowering”, the pill has come full circle in the sense that it is generally prescribed for any and all period concerns. This happens often without the patient feeling heard, or being told of potential side-effects, or knowing that the body is able to naturally have symptom-free periods – not such an empowering solution anymore.
In my clinical practice I see women daily who after using the pill for a number of years are left feeling depleted and riddled with a number of symptoms.
- Nutrient depletion (B vitamins, folate, vitamin C, vitamin E, magnesium, selenium, zinc)- nutrient depletion can lead to hormone imbalances, thyroid issues and fatigue.
- Changes in pheromones- research also suggests that the pill can change who you are attracted to.
- Mood alterations- anxiety & depression
- Lowered libido (seems kind of counterproductive, right?)
- Increased risk of cervical and breast cancer
- Changes to the gut microbiome – often resulting in bloating or other digestive issues
- Hair loss
- Weight gain
- Blood clots
- Bone density
- Brain function
- Mood & reducing anxiety
- Hair growth
- Cardiovascular health
- Blood pressure maintenance
- Herbal medicines – to encourage a regular symptom-free period
- Nutritional supplements – rectify nutritional deficiencies & improve gut health
- Individualised dietary advice – boost nutrient levels & improve hormonal detoxification
- Acupuncture – working on any underlying imbalances