Making Sense of Women’s Health: A Naturopathic Solution - Book
You don’t have to fall victim to your hormonal shifts, as Dr. Marita Schauch explains. Despite all the complexity and the myriad things that can go awry, you can take charge of your health and do it all naturally. From PMS to infertility, fibroids, and menopause, and everything in between, this book explains in plain language what to look for, how to treat it, how to talk to your health care professional about it, and best of all, how to prevent it all from happening in the first place. As we women become more empowered in all spheres of our lives, we also need to understand our bodies, and take charge of our health naturally. On occasion she or I will prescribe medications. However, rather than turning immediately to these powerful, side-effect-laden drugs that only “handle” symptoms, Dr Schauch helps you find the root cause of the problem. With diet, lifestyle, and targeted supplements (herbs, vitamins, minerals) you can then attain a state of balance and harmony.
Hyla Cass M.D., integrative medicine expert, author of 8 Weeks to Vibrant Health: A Take Charge Book for Women to Correct Imbalances, Re-claim Energy, and Restore Well-Being (www.cassmd.com).
There is an expression in traditional Chinese medicine that says, “to treat one woman is equal to treating five men”. This ancient saying high-lights the additional intricacies involved in healing women. With our ever fluctuating hormones, heightened emotional awareness and paradoxically greater tolerance to physical pain, it’s no wonder that bringing balance to a woman’s wellness seems a daunting task. In short, we women are complex.
But Dr. Marita Schauch shows us that complex doesn’t have to mean complicated. If you are sick and tired of being sick and tired, or your intuition is telling you that you should be able to do something to help yourself feel better and you don’t know where to start, this book is a good place. By providing a basic understanding of hormones and their actions as well as an insight into principles of naturopathic medicine, Dr. Schauch guides us through a myriad of common women’s health concerns and effective natural remedies with straightforward advice.
Kate Rhéaume-Bleue, ND, Canadian health expert and author of Vitamin K2 and the Calcium Paradox: How a Little Known Vitamin Could Save Your Life (Wiley & Sons, 2012)
My decision to pursue a career in Naturopathic Medicine was a simple one. I see rapid changes coming to medicine. More and more patients are adopting preventative and proactive approaches to treating their various health concerns. Ten years ago, educating my patients about the principles of Naturopathic Medicine was a part of my regular routine. But in the last few years, I have really seen a shift in the awareness and desire of the general public to look beyond superficial symptoms in order to investigate and treat the cause of disease. Naturopathic Doctors, I believe, are integrating into many health care teams and are offering a complementary approach alongside medical doctors, chiropractors, nutritionists, physiotherapists etc.
I love what I do and I am constantly guided by the six Fundamental Healing Principles of Naturopathic Medicine:
- First, to do no harm, by using methods and medicines that minimize the risk of harmful side effects.
- To treat the causes of disease, by identifying and removing the underlying causes of illness, rather than suppressing symptoms.
- To teach the principles of healthy living and preventative medicine, by sharing knowledge with patients and encouraging individual responsibility for health.
- To heal the whole person through individualized treatment, by understanding the unique physical, mental, emotional, genetic, environmental and social factors that contribute to illness, and customizing treatment protocols to the patient.
- To emphasize prevention, by partnering with the patient to assess risk factors and recommend appropriate naturopathic interventions to maintain health and prevent illness.
- To support the healing power of the body, by recognizing and removing obstacles to the body’s inherent self-healing process.
I have always had a passion for educating, researching and treating women’s health conditions. In the past few years I have seen an over-whelming increase in hormone-mediated problems especially when it comes to estrogen dominance. The environment is becoming increasingly more toxic and many of these chemicals are very disruptive and harmful to our normal biochemical pathways – especially our hormonal pathways and hormone metabolism. As you will read in this book, environmental chemicals such as Bisphenol-A (BPA), a synthetic estrogen that has been the focus of a growing number of research studies and legislative actions, is detrimental to a woman’s body and hormone balance. An estimated 6 billion pounds of BPA are produced globally each year, generating about 6 billion dollars in sales. Just last year, researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention measured BPA levels in the urine of 244 mothers at various times during pregnancy and in their children at various times after birth. Mothers with higher BPA levels in their urine during pregnancy tended to have 3-year-old girls who were anxious and depressed with poor emotional control and inhibition. A detailed description of the most common environmental toxins can be found in the First chapter on hormones as well as the chapter on breast cancer. In my practice, I have also seen an overwhelming number of cases of infertility and menstrual irregularities. I can’t help but wonder if this may be due to increasing environmental insults on the body.
Chronic stress and adrenal function is another passion of mine. Last year, I co-authored The Adrenal Stress Connection, a simple booklet on how chronic stress impacts health and the many systems of the body. I chose adrenal fatigue for one of the First chapters in my new book since I believe the adrenal glands play a critical role in hormonal health as well as dictate future disease development. This chapter is a must-read.
Making Sense of Women’s Health is organized by each woman’s health condition. Some women might read it all the way through. Others may Find that specific chapter that pertains to their individualized symptoms and health concerns.
As a Naturopathic Doctor, I believe that education is key. You will see each chapter outlined with a description of symptoms and diagnoses of the condition followed by a complementary approach to treatment including dietary and lifestyle tips as well as key supplements for healing.
I have also included a section on conventional medicine as I believe it’s important to see both the conventional and alternative approaches to treatment. I hope that you will find the tools in this book to help you with a lifetime of well-being and good health. Change can be overwhelming at first but start by incorporating one change at a time. You might try to eat more veggies in a day, walk 30 minutes a few times per week or maybe think twice before indulging in dessert after dinner and lunch! By slowly adopting some of the health principles outlined in this book, you can create and nourish a healthier and more vibrant body, mind and spirit.