In this week’s episode, Dr. Lisa and Dr. Toni are discussing what you need to know about uterine fibroids. Did you know that by the age of 50, almost two-thirds of women experience fibroids? Listen in to discover risk factors, racial disparities, conventional and natural treatments available for fibroids.

What are uterine fibroids?

Fibroids are noncancerous tumors that grow in the uterus and range from pea to football sized. 

Fibroids disproportionately impact women of color. Black women are diagnosed with fibroids roughly three times as frequently as white women, develop them earlier in life and tend to experience larger and more numerous fibroids that cause more severe symptoms.

In the US, nearly a quarter of Black women between 18 and 30 have fibroids compared to about 6% of white women. By age 35, that number increases to 60%. 

Potential causes and risk factors:

  • Estrogen dominance, as estrogen can feed the growth of fibroid – see Episode 21 and 22
    • Xenoestrogens and hormone disrupting compounds – for more info see Episode 65
      • Commercially-Raised Animal Products:
      • Plastics & Canned Goods (many have plastic lining)
      • Personal Care Products (makeup, lotion, & perfumes)
      • Oral Contraceptives or birth control pill
      • Pharmaceutical medications
      • Food Additives & preservatives
      • Styrofoam products
      • Laundry & Dishwashing detergents
      • Household cleaners & air fresheners
      • Pesticides & Herbicides
    • Perimenopause due to with lower progesterone levels
    • Weight gain, as your fat cells make more estrogen
  • Poor liver detoxification of hormones
  • Low vitamin D status – impacted by your skin tone and levels of melanin in your skin 
    • Vitamin D deficiency occurs 10X in Black women compared women from other cultures
    • Vitamin D inhibits uterine fibroid growth
  • Stress – see Episode 24 for more info on stress and your adrenal glands

Signs and Symptoms:

  • Heavy menstrual bleeding
  • Menstrual periods lasting more than a week 
  • Anemia and fatigue
  • Pelvic pressure or pain, can be during intercourse
  • Frequent urination
  • Difficulty emptying the bladder
  • Constipation
  • Protruding abdomen or bloating
  • Backache or leg pains

3 locations:

  1. Subserosal – on the outside surface of your uterus
  2. Intramural – within the muscular wall of your uterus
  3. Submucous – bulging into your uterine cavity

May impact your fertility in the following ways:

  • Block fallopian tubes, cervix
  • Reduce where implantation can occur
  • Increase risk of miscarriage
  • C-section may be recommended for birth

Conventional Treatments:

  1. Uterine Fibroid Embolization
  • Non-surgical; outpatient procedure
  • Incision in upper thigh with catheter inserted into femoral artery using x-ray to guide/locate blood supply to fibroid
  • Microscopic inert particles injected into vessels that nourish the fibroid to block blood supply resulting in fibroids shrinking
  1. Myomectomy: 
    • Fibroid only taken out
    • Black women 2x more likely to get complications like excessive blood loss, scar tissue, fertility issues
  2. Hysterectomy 
    • Removal of uterus
    • Black women 2.5x more likely to get than other cultures in the US


  • Optimize vitamin D levels
  • Supporting liver detoxification pathways
    • Green tea
    • Cruciferous vegetables
    • Garlic, onions, beets
    • Herbs: turmeric, milk thistle, yellow dock

Support regular bowel movements – see Episode 63 for more info on addressing constipation

Avoid xenoestrogens and plastics (even BPA free plastic) – see Episode 65 for more info

Limit alcohol

Support healthy weight and body fat percentage


Reduce stress

Consider hormone testing and if needed:

  • Support progesterone with vitex or bioidentical progesterone
  • Support estrogen detoxification with DIM, I3C 

Naturopathic treatment includes:

Above prevention strategies plus

  • Replace iron if deficient
  • Castor oil packs topically on abdomen to reduce inflammation and support circulation
  • Herbs to reduce bleeding like yarrow, shepherd’s purse

This Week’s Mama Must Have: 

Dr. Toni is loving the inspiring and motivational book Untamed by Glennon Doyle.

Dr. Lisa has committed to daily reading time and has read 4 books so far since Jan 2021. She loves getting books from free little libraries and just started Girl on a Train.

Dr. Toni’s next HypnoBirthing info session for expecting parents looking for increased calm, confidence and comfort during labour and birth is May 30. Join her at

Dr. Lisa’s Wild Collective in Fall 2021: get on the waitlist:

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Stay safe and healthy everyone!