Thursday, July 21, 2011

Infertility and Miscarriage - Prevalent in Our Times

Today as I drove through the industrial park in Middleton, I noted two newer facilities, both specializing clinics in infertility. Surely these facilities are a sign of the times we live in. A time when infertility is at an all-time high, and miscarriages have become an epidemic vs. a rarity, with one in three pregnancies ending in miscarriage.
One must question, why? Why is it so difficult for women to conceive? What is the underlying cause?
To shed some light on these questions one has to look at the physiology of the human body. What is necessary for pregnancy to take place?
For certain, hormone balance plays a crucial role. However, we live in an industrialized nation in which we are exposed to chemicals that produce xenoestrogens. These faux estrogens enter our body as we come in contact with pesticides, herbicides, household cleaners, skincare and cosmetics, food dyes and preservatives…that’s just the tip of the iceberg. All disrupt the endocrine system, which is an intricate communication network within the body. And all make many, many of us (men and women alike) estrogen dominant.
For women trying to get pregnant, this is a problem. When we, as women, have too much estrogen we also have too little progesterone. Progesterone, sometimes referred to as the “hormone of pregnancy” is essential for ovulation, for fetal development, and helps prevent miscarriage upon conception.
Per the Virginia Hopkins web-site: Ovulation is the first requirement for pregnancy, but we can’t take it for granted, even in young women. As reported by Peter Ellison of Harvard, a study of 19 presumably healthy premenopausal women with a mean age of 29 found that six of them -- or 31 percent -- failed to ovulate at any time during their menstrual cycle.
From the same article, which you can read in its entirety here: “Exposure to pesticides or other petrochemical xenobiotics (environmental substances with hormonal effects) during the embryonic period is particularly damaging to the development of ovaries. (For details, read Our Stolen Future by Theo Colborn et al.) That is, the mother may not show toxic effects to minute doses of these toxins, but the embryo is exquisitely sensitive to them. If the embryo is female, her ovarian follicles may be damaged.”
Check out the entire article here:
You may recall from previous posts that petrochemicals are in our food dyes and preservatives, and also in our U.S. formulated skin care and cosmetic products, often in the form of mineral oil, which is an inexpensive filler made from crude oil.
An excerpt from the Natural Progesterone Advisory Network reads: “During pregnancy, rising progesterone levels prevent the premature shedding of the uterine lining (pro-gestation). If progesterone levels drop due to inadequate progesterone production, then a premature delivery could result, or bring about a miscarriage in the early trimesters…
To protect the fetus the body secretes ten to fifteen times more progesterone during pregnancy than at other times. Dr. Lee tells us that the placenta becomes the major source of progesterone. per day during the third trimester. What a great protection we have during pregnancy with this incredible hormone! And with no known dangerous side effects.”
Lee also states that it is important for high risk pregnancies to continue using progesterone cream throughout the pregnancy, and to wean off slowly when going off.
I have also read about the correlation between too little progesterone and adequate in regards to the effect on brain development of the baby, with progesterone deficiency being linked to ADD, ADHD, and other possible brain disorders.
There is so much more I could write, but please check out the links instead. Suffice it to say, when my parents were young infertility clinics may not have even existed. Now we can have two such dedicated clinics less than a mile part. Think about it!
If you would like to learn more and live in the area, email to find out about a hormone balance class coming up this coming Wednesday, July 27th. Information will be shared that women of ALL ages hould hear. It may be life changing.
To your health!
Rita S.

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