Do Not Ditch the Pill Before You Read This

How you go about ditching your birth control can make the difference between nasty symptoms and getting a natural, fertile cycle back with ease.

After eight years on the birth control pill, I tried to go off it. After two months, my skin was a mess. I had acne along my jawline and around my mouth bad enough to keep me from leaving the house if I didn’t absolutely have to.

My energy levels flatlined and my breasts flattened. My periods started off incredibly heavy with debilitating cramps before my cycles went from a slightly long 35-days to 46 and then 60 days. I went back on the pill.

There is a right way to go off hormonal birth control.

Healthy lifestyle concept image

Two years later, I tried again, but I knew I had to do things differently. After a lot of independent research, I determined that I needed to address underlying nutrient deficiencies and repair my digestive and detoxification systems. The difference was amazing.

My skin remained mostly clear and my cycle was symptom-free overall. My body started producing adequate amounts of its own hormones within a few months, which fostered healthy breast tissue (I no longer felt like they shrunk after the pill) and my cycles returned to a healthy and consistent length.

This is how I did it.

Feed yourself the right things for a healthy cycle.

The birth control pill and other forms of hormonal contraception deplete the body of essential nutrients. Depleted levels of vitamins like Folic Acid, B6 and B12 and minerals such as magnesium, zinc and selenium compromise our bodies’ ability to produce its own reproductive hormones at the levels necessary to foster a healthy natural cycle.

Magnesium, in particular, is used in over 300 essential biological processes and is required for the synthesis of DNA, RNA and the antioxidant glutathione. Glutathione, in turn, is essential for many other processes, including the efficient removal of toxins from the body. Effective detoxification is important for the metabolism of hormones like estrogen and for maintaining clear skin.

A healthy high-nutrient diet is the best place to start supporting your body post-pill. It can also be helpful to get a head start by incorporating more leafy greens, vegetables and healthy-fats into your diet prior to going off of your hormonal contraceptive. You may also find that supplementation is necessary to replenish your nutrient stores.

Love your liver.

Healthy coctail in the hands of fitness female

Our livers can be especially taxed by the birth control pill because it is the liver’s job to break down the incredibly high amounts of synthetic estrogen. When our detoxification system does not work properly, we often experience hormonal imbalances like estrogen-dominance.

Post-pill, estrogen-dominance can come with a whole host of symptoms such as PMS, heavy bleeding and acne. Furthermore, an over-taxed liver is more likely to dump partially broken down compounds back into the blood stream, which can cause inflammation that can present as acne or other skin issues.

In order to help out your liver, you may want to try a three to five-day cleanse. You will also want to reduce your consumption of processed foods that contain synthetic compounds that tax the liver as well as caffeine and alcohol.

Eating bitter foods and drinking warm water with lemon in the mornings is also a nice way to show your liver some love.

Repair your digestion for best results.

You can eat all the healthy foods you want, but if your digestion is impaired, your body will have a hard time assimilating the nutrients those foods contain. Furthermore, impaired digestion and Leaky Gut Syndrome can cause inflammation in the body.

The birth control pill compromises the microbiome by helping to feed bad gut bacteria and fungi like candida. This compromises our digestion and can even affect our mood. I recommend taking a good probiotic daily when coming off of the birth control pill—and it doesn’t hurt to keep it up afterwards.

Good digestion not only ensures that you’re getting the nutrients that you need, but helps to clear out toxins and estrogen through regular bowel movements. In order to support good digestion and motility, be sure to chew your food well, consume enough healthy-fats and remove any potential allergens like gluten from your diet if you feel that you may have a sensitivity.

Ready to ditch the pill? Give these three things a try and you should be feeling happier and healthier in no time.

About the author

Kara DeDonato

I'm Kara, a Women’s Health Coach and founder of Libera Wellness. I'm dedicated to helping women live their best lives through balanced hormones and healed digestion. I believe periods should be painless, food should be enjoyed, and life should be good.

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