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Women's health - a topic with many facets

November 07 2022
Dipl.-Biol. Dorothee Ogroske et al.

The physiology of women is characterized by various peculiarities. Thus, she differs from the man not only at the level of the sexual organs, but also in terms of hormones. Menstruation, pregnancy and menopause are closely related to the hormonal cycle of women.

In this article, we will give you an overview of various problems in the field of women’s health. Our therapeutic focus is on natural remedies, especially vital mushrooms. In fact, they are a valuable support in naturally healing various women’s diseases such as cysts and fibroids. Find out here which medicinal mushrooms have proven effective in the treatment of endometriosis or help against involuntary childlessness.

Cervical dysplasias & cervical cancer

All women know the so-called “Pap smear”. In this test, cells are taken from the cervix and examined under a microscope. The finding is then assigned to one of five upper categories. I stands for no abnormalities. III is severe inflammation or degenerative tissue changes, and IIId is the first evidence of precancerous lesions. V has malignant cervical carcinoma, i.e., cervical cancer.

Conventional medicine refers to abnormal cell changes as “cervical dysplasia”. The altered cells can develop into cancer. Incidentally, such cell changes are often preceded by infections with human papillomaviruses (HPV). There is also a test for this, which can be performed regularly every three years along with the Pap smear in women 35 years of age and older.

Illustration of cervical cancer

Infection with HPV usually leads to cervical cancer years later. However, many infections are asymptomatic and heal on their own. With regard to cancer risk, it always depends on the type of HP virus present.

Risk factors for cervical cancer

The following factors increase the likelihood of developing cervical cancer:

  • Smoking (risk increased three to tenfold)
  • recurrent infections of the vagina (e.g. herpes or chlamydia)
  • Immunodeficiency together with vitamin D deficiency
  • Long-term hormone use
  • Spiral
  • Deficiency of antioxidants and folic acid

Prevent cervical cancer naturally

In mycotherapy, various vital mushrooms are available, with which you can strengthen your immune system in general. Some fungi also have some potency against certain strains of viruses or bacteria.

In the case of HPV, Coriolus, among others, has proven effective. In a study of 100 female patients with HPV, its antiviral mode of action was confirmed. In addition, its ingredients also help against herpes viruses. It has an antioxidant effect, which basically provides protection against the degeneration of cells. Since Coriolus also activates the liver, it supports important detoxification processes. Toxins that are potentially carcinogenic are also secreted in the process.

The medicinal mushroom shiitake strengthens the entire immune system through its contained beta-glucans – especially lentinan – and also unfolds antiviral and antifungal properties. It has also proven its effectiveness against HPV in studies. Recurrent infections with bacteria or fungi in the vaginal area can increase the risk of tissue changes. The intake of shiitake is preventively beneficial here.

A good complement to Coriolus and Shiitake is Reishi. It also activates the liver and thus detoxification. It also counteracts inflammation that can occur along with HPV infection.

Cysts

Cysts are quite common. They are usually co-caused by hormonal imbalance. Cysts can occur in both the breasts and ovaries. In the so-called “ovarian cysts”, small cavities form in which tissue water, blood, lymph or glandular secretions accumulate. They can cause cycle disorders such as heavy or absent menstrual bleeding and spotting. Very large cysts may press on the bowel or bladder. Then there may be abdominal swelling, a feeling of pressure, constipation or discomfort during urination. Usually they disappear again spontaneously. However, stem rotation can cut off blood flow to an entire fallopian tube. This is extremely rare, but must then be operated on immediately. Apart from this extreme case, ovarian cysts are quite asymptomatic.

Breast cysts are also cavities filled with secretion. If you want to cure or treat such cysts as well as fibroids naturally, you have to look at the causes of their development. Breast cysts are often caused by a hormonal imbalance (estrogen dominance). This can be caused, for example, by a weakness of the corpus luteum or a dysfunction of the thyroid gland. On top of that, when a woman is under a lot of stress, there is a relative lack of progesterone. Less progesterone is produced in favor of the stress hormone cortisol, since both are built up from the same biochemical precursor.

Prevent and treat cysts naturally

To cure cysts and fibroids naturally, the vital mushrooms Reishi and Cordyceps are suitable. Both exert a balancing influence on hormone balance. Cordyceps is particularly suitable for establishing a healthy balance of sex hormones. The vital mushroom intervenes in the hormonal balance via the hypothalamic-pituitary axis. Here it promotes effective stress management of the organism, for example by regulating the release of the stress hormone cortisol. Reishi, on the other hand, primarily regulates hormone production in the thyroid gland. It has a hormonal as well as vegetative balancing effect on stress.

The Poria Cocos has a moisture-regulating function. It reduces the risk of moisture accumulation. According to TCM, this moisture can condense you as mucus, which promotes cyst formation. In addition, the Poria Cocos helps against nervous restlessness. It relieves stress symptoms such as nervousness, tension and sleep disorders.

To promote the formation of progesterone and thus women’s health, the following plants have also proven effective: Yams, lady’s mantle, yarrow, monk’s pepper.

Polycystic ovary syndrome

Polycistic ovarian syndrome, or “PCO” for short, is the most common hormone-related disorder in women of childbearing age. It affects between five and ten percent.

In PCO, multiple cysts, i.e. immature follicles, accumulate in the ovaries (poly = many; ovaries = ovaries). Affected individuals often have increased levels of male hormones detectable in their blood. The increased testosterone prevents the follicles from fully maturing. This means fewer and fewer ovulations take place and ovarian function becomes weaker and weaker.

Illustration of polycystic ovary syndrome

While testosterone increases, estrogen levels decrease. Cycle disturbances occur until the period stops altogether. PCO syndrome makes it difficult for affected women to become pregnant and quite often leads to infertility. Externally, an excess of male hormones can manifest itself in hair loss or hair growth typical of men. In addition, acne often occurs.

Risk factors of PCO include …

  • genetic predisposition
  • metabolic syndrome
  • Overweight
  • Lack of exercise
  • Insulin resistance / diabetes: Elevated insulin levels increase the production of male hormones (androgens) in the adrenal cortex and ovaries.
  • Often, PCO syndrome is associated with Hashimoto-type hypothyroidism.

Treat PCO naturally

Basically, a therapy for PCO aims at lowering the level of male hormones. It is important to stimulate the function of the ovaries and thereby restore hormonal balance. If the affected person is overweight, weight reduction and regular exercise are helpful in any case. The following vital mushrooms have also proven their worth:

Maitake: A scientific study found evidence that maitake can stimulate the triggering of ovulation. If the eggs pop regularly, no cysts can form from the follicles. The medicinal mushroom stimulates fat metabolism, lowers triglyceride levels and supports weight management. If PCO is related to insulin resistance, the ability of the vital mushroom to reduce insulin resistance comes into play. In this case, the Coprinus can be used in a supportive manner.

Cordyceps: By acting on the hormonal regulatory circuit of the pituitary and hypothalamus, the vital mushroom brings hormone balance (especially estrogen and testosterone) closer to a healthy equilibrium.

Reishi: The Reishi activates the thyroid gland. It counteracts Hashimoto’s by reducing TPO antibodies while relieving inflammation. It activates the liver.

Myomas

Traditional Chinese Medicine uses vital mushrooms to naturally cure fibroids as well as cysts. Myomas are growths in the area of the uterus. They are the most common benign tumors of the female genitalia and occur in approximately 20% of women over the age of 30. Their size is very variable. Some fibroids are tiny. Others grow up to twenty centimeters. A certain pressure is already felt by those affected with small fibroids. It may manifest as a constant urge to urinate, constipation, or pain during sexual intercourse. In addition, there are menstrual cramps with severe pain and excessive bleeding.

Causes of fibroids

Myomas occur in clusters within families, indicating some genetic predisposition. A hormonal imbalance in favor of estrogen is primarily responsible for the development of fibroids. Such estrogen dominance often develops in the fourth decade of life, when ovulations become fewer and the counterpart hormone progesterone is thus produced less. Stress and obesity can also create hormonal imbalance, which can be a cause of fibroids, especially in younger women.

Other risk factors are deficiencies of the immune system and exposure to environmental toxins such as heavy metals or xenoestrogens (pesticides, bisphenols, phthalates). In addition, the disease is often accompanied by thyroid dysfunction, i.e. an imbalance in hormone production. During menopause, when hormones readjust, smaller fibroids may spontaneously regress.

What helps with fibroids?

Basically, measures for fibroids pursue these goals:
1. balance hormones. Cause of estrogen dominance must be found and eliminated.
2. prevent further growth of the fibroids.
3. replenish blood iron (e.g. with lactoferrin).
4. regulate excessive bleeding.

In this context, the following vital mushrooms are purposeful:

Cordyceps because it balances hormone levels (especially in progesterone deficiency), increases stress tolerance, and has both detoxifying and antioxidant effects.

Reishi because it has a positive effect on hormones, regulating the thyroid gland and strengthening the liver. It also promotes detoxification (heavy metals, pesticides), has anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting effects.

Hericium, because it counteracts stress. It relaxes and promotes healthy sleep. In addition, it stimulates detoxification through the intestines.

Coriolus because its antitumor properties can counteract uninhibited cell growth.

Maitake because it activates the metabolism and thus supports weight loss.

Auricularia because it has hemostatic properties.

Besides vital mushrooms, yellow body strengthening herbs can help heal cysts and fibroids naturally. These include lady’s mantle, yarrow and monk’s pepper. Yams cream has also proven to be a good support.

Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a benign growth of the lining of the uterus. It occurs in about 10% of women in Central Europe, making it the second most common disease of childbearing age.

The mucosal growths can be located outside the uterus and involve organs such as the fallopian tubes, ovaries, bladder and bowel. This mucosa is subject to the natural cycle and bleeds during the period. Severe period pain is a typical symptom of endometriosis. In some cases, the overgrown organs are impaired in their function.

Illustration endometriosis

Possible complications include inflammation, adhesions or adhesions. These can lead to infertility. Therefore, efficient endometriosis treatment is enormously important, especially for young women.

What are the causes of endometriosis?

There are various theories on the causes of endometriosis. One speaks of a disturbed interaction of hormones and the immune system. Inflammatory processes also play a role. In affected women, for example, conspicuous immune cells are found in the abdominal cavity and genitals, as well as an abnormal concentration of inflammatory messenger substances. Behind these hormonal fluctuations and inflammatory cascades can also be a heavy load of toxins or a diet high in sugar and fat.

Endometriosis treatment

To prevent endometriosis, a healthy diet and avoiding toxins are key. Vital mushrooms can wonderfully support endometriosis treatment as gentle but efficient natural remedies:

Chaga has been shown in experiments on mice with endometriosis to improve the structure of uterine tissue. It reduces inflammatory processes here and lowers pro-inflammatory tissue substances. It also improves the composition of the intestinal microbiota.

Cordyceps exerts multiple positive effects on the entire urogenital tract. It strengthens the ovarian function and develops a harmonizing effect on hormonal balance. This concerns both the sex hormones and the stress hormones. Experience shows that increased stress levels can exacerbate the symptoms of endometriosis. Due to its ingredient cordycepin, cordyceps also has anti-inflammatory properties, while its antioxidant enzymes intercept damage due to inflammatory processes.

Reishi has anti-inflammatory and immunoregulatory effects. It promotes detoxification processes in the organism especially through its effect on liver metabolism. Since the sex hormones estrogen and progesterone are broken down in the liver, it consequently contributes to a better hormone balance.

Hericium has a calming effect and relieves cramps that may occur in connection with menstruation. Overall, the vital mushroom strengthens the entire gastrointestinal tract.

Pleurotus is also considered an antispasmodic. It relaxes the muscles.

What to do in case of unfulfilled desire to have children?

Women’s health indisputably includes the unrestricted ability to have children. However, one in ten women of childbearing age in Germany is involuntarily childless. The reasons for this may lie with the partner as well as with the woman. Here, we primarily consider the health of unintentionally childless women.

We have already talked about cysts, fibroids and endometriosis. They indicate a hormonal imbalance that may stand in the way of pregnancy. Irregular anatomy of the uterus is also possible. A kink, for example, makes it difficult for sperm to rise. In addition, the causes often lie in the nature of the cervical mucus. If it is too tough, the sperm cannot penetrate it. If it is too acidic, it restricts sperm motility. In the context of acute vaginal inflammation, the mucous membrane also tries to fight off the pathogens. At the same time, this also keeps the sperm away.

To promote the general health of the reproductive organs and especially the cervical mucus, three vital mushrooms have proven to be effective. Cordyceps generally improves blood flow to the pelvic organs, increases libido and promotes the formation of all sex hormones. Like Reishi, Cordyceps supports the work of the immune system. Urinary tract infections and other vaginal inflammations are therefore less likely to occur as a result of taking the vital mushrooms.

In the following, we will take a closer look at some of the central reasons for an unfulfilled desire to have children.

Yellow body weakness

This phenomenon, in addition to the age of the woman, is closely related to her general health. Under stress and in the presence of thyroid dysfunction, the risk of developing luteal insufficiency increases. Those affected only notice the problem through diffuse symptoms:

  • Before your period: breast tenderness, depressive mood, other psychological complaints
  • Relatively short cycles
  • Lumpy menstrual blood

If luteal insufficiency is the cause of childlessness, the vital mushroom Cordyceps is a good choice. Its ingredients strengthen the corpus luteum and promote ovulation. Reishi also regulates the thyroid gland if there is a dysfunction here. Other proven natural remedies include hericium, lady’s mantle, pulsatilla and monk’s pepper. Taking progesterone D4 can also be helpful.

Thyroid dysfunction

While hypothyroidism can lead to luteal insufficiency, in men it interferes with potency. Hyperfunction increases the risk of miscarriage in women. In order for the thyroid gland to work properly, it must be adequately supplied with the following nutrients: Iodine, selenium, vitamin D, iron, omega 3 and coenzyme Q10.

The Reishi has proven to activate the thyroid gland in particular. At the same time, it inhibits autoimmune processes that can lead to Hashimoto’s disease, for example. While Hericium promotes the supply of all organs with micronutrients, Cordyceps has a harmonizing effect on hormonal regulatory circuits. That is why these two vital mushrooms are useful in thyroid dysfunction.

Stress related fertility disorder

We have already listed stress as a risk to women’s health in several places. Fertility is no exception. It is important to know that “stress” does not only mean classic everyday stress. Extreme fasting or intensive sports also mean stress for the organism. If the energy is lacking or needed elsewhere, energy-consuming functions such as the maturation of an egg must be cut back.

Possible consequences of stress can be:

  • a shortened luteal phase
  • Hyperprolactinemia (prolactin suppresses ovulation during breastfeeding, for example).
  • Exacerbation of thyroid problems (dysfunction, autoimmune processes).
  • Weakening of the adrenal glands

On the side of natural remedies, for the reduction of stress, as well as for the calming and harmonization of hormones, the reishi has proven itself many times. Hericium also reduces stress, relaxes and promotes healthy sleep. The vital mushroom Cordyceps directly influences the release of the stress hormone cortisol. It also promotes mental stability due to its mood-lifting effect.

Supplementation with ashwagandha (Indian ginseng) is recommended. Since our body tends to become over-acidic under stress, care must be taken to maintain a healthy acid-base balance. Cordyceps, alkaline powders, alkaline baths and an alkaline diet with plenty of zinc, calcium, magnesium and potassium help here.

Post-Pill Syndrome

This is a cycle disorder that occurs after discontinuation of the “birth control pill”. Post-pill syndrome is characterized by unusual cycle length along with poor bleeding. In the background, there is often an egg maturation disorder or a corpus luteum deficiency.

Especially good in this case helps to regularly drink mugwort tea for several weeks immediately after stopping the pill. In addition, the detoxification of the liver should be supported. Reishi, shiitake, milk thistle, turmeric, dandelion and artichoke, for example, come into question for this.

Sperm allergy

Women can form antibodies against sperm. As a result, sterility due to allergy occurs. From the outside, allergic reactions such as burning, redness, itching and vulvar swelling can then be seen after contact with the semen. In an examination of the sperm after intercourse, only a few surviving sperm show up.

Also in this case, the medicinal mushroom Reishi provides great help. In fact, it alleviates allergies, as it has a modulating effect on the immune system and has antihistamine properties. It also relieves inflammation and supports the detoxification process via the liver. Allergies are not infrequently accompanied by toxin exposure. Problems with the intestinal mucosa also promote allergic reactions. Here Hericium helps to rebuild the mucosa as well as the environment in the intestine.

Toxin load

Toxins from the environment and food are a very central factor when it comes to the issue of infertility. Hormones and their degradation products from meat and drinking water, for example, are problematic. Nitrates, nitrites, phthalates, mercury and other heavy metals also accumulate in the body and can cause unwanted childlessness.

Vital mushrooms are very suitable for detoxification. They activate the body’s own detoxification enzymes and protect the nerves as well as the liver from damage caused by toxins. Their antioxidant properties and ingredients (glutathione, ergothioneine, laccases, peroxidases, catalases, …) prevent damage from toxic substances. In addition, the chitin from vital mushrooms is able to directly bind toxins in the intestine.

Graphical representation of environmental toxins

For detoxification via the kidneys, a combination of the medicinal mushrooms Cordyceps and Polyporus is ideal. As for the elimination of toxins through the liver and intestines, Hericium and Reishi or Shiitake are recommended. They activate the metabolism while protecting the intestines and liver from damage caused by the toxins.

Buy vital mushrooms

If you suffer from one of the mentioned gynecological diseases, you should definitely consider a supportive treatment with vital mushrooms. Which mushrooms fit best in their individual case depends on many factors. Therefore, you are welcome to consult our experts free of charge.

When looking for a supplier of medicinal mushrooms, we recommend that you pay attention to the following quality criteria:

  • Cultivation according to German organic standards
  • Processing of the whole mushroom into mushroom powder
  • gentle drying and grinding under 40° Celsius
  • Portioning of the mushroom powder in capsules

Only if all these conditions are met, you can be really sure to buy a high quality and therefore fully effective medicinal mushroom powder.

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