Treating HPV and abnormal cells in your body can be done with natural methods and supplements that are equally effective.
Perhaps you are reading this post because you received pap results that showed positive HPV.
I know it can be scary and overwhelming to receive this information, and you might be searching for answers to what you can do about it. Whether your results show HPV with normal cells (or HPV with some abnormal cells), from my experience it is likely you can start treating HPV before it might lead to cancer, and without medical procedures that could damage your cervix.
That being said, if your results show carcinoma in-situ or cervical cancer, it is important that you work with your doctor to remove these cells right away. And at the same time, you can take steps to prevent the virus from causing issues again in the future.
So no matter what, the fact that HPV shows positive tells us that your body is susceptible to the virus right now, and it is important that you take action to support your body to heal, right away.
Natural approaches can make a difference and are worth it. In this blog post I’m going to share about supplements and herbs* I’ve used clinically to help women in effectively treating HPV to get their pap smears back to normal.
Let’s first start by reviewing HPV and what your pap results mean.
How Is HPV Dangerous?
Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is transmitted from person to person through sexual contact. However, HPV is can also be dormant in the body for years without ever causing issues.
While many live their entire lives without ever knowing that HPV resides within them, should the virus become active, it has the potential to cause abnormal cells. For women, abnormal cells on the cervix are called “dysplasia” and if left untreated, these cells have the potential to turn into cervical cancer.
Finding HPV and Abnormal Cells
Pap smears help to identify abnormal cells on the cervix or vaginal walls as early as possible before it has time to progress. Starting at age 21, pap smears are recommended every 2 years for women. At age 30 (or more), your practitioner (naturopathic doctors and midwives offer this service in many states) should also test for HPV, and specifically the riskiest strains of the virus (16 and 18).
For women who have had three consecutive normal pap smears with no HPV, pap smears are still recommended every 3 years until age 65 or 70. Even women who received the HPV vaccine (Gardasil) need to get pap smears according to these same recommendations (the vaccine is not protection enough).
What happens if the results are abnormal?
Should a pap smear come back with abnormal findings, it will be on a continuum from mild to moderate or severe (ASCUS, CIN1, CIN2, CIN3 or CIS). Depending on your history of HPV and the severity of abnormal cells, your practitioner will recommend a biopsy. Referred to as “colposcopy”, this in-office procedure will help to evaluate the abnormal cells more specifically.
If the cells are considered to be more abnormal (closer to cancer cells), conventional medicine would suggest either a LEEP procedure to laser the cells away or a “cone biopsy” to remove more tissue.
Of course, we all want to address any abnormal cells as soon as possible.
And yet, many practitioners don’t explain the potential downsides to this approach: Both procedures can cause potential damage to the cervix, which could cause issues for women trying to conceive in the future. Plus, removing the cells doesn’t address the actual virus, so often the abnormal cells will reoccur.
They also don’t explain that other options exist; nor that the abnormal cells often resolve ON THEIR OWN without any treatment.
Women often walk away from the doctor’s office after an HPV diagnosis feeling:
- Afraid for their health or to ask more questions
- Worried over the effect a virus could have on their relationships
- Unsure of what to do and out of control of their own bodies
- Unsupported and isolated
- And worst of all, uninformed.
Listen when I say that it is possible to fight off HPV, especially when we take a strategic approach to address the reason you became susceptible to the virus in the first place.
How Stress Affects HPV
As I’ve mentioned, HPV can be dormant in the body without presenting signs or testing positive for years. It’s no coincidence that most times women test positive for HPV, they also admit that they’ve been under higher than usual levels of stress.
Whether it’s money, a relationship, school, a big move, lack of sleep or the demand at work, stress makes us susceptible to viruses all the time – and HPV is no different. In fact, women in their 50s and 60s can test positive for HPV for the first time ever and it’s typically during stressful events in their lives.
This is because stress decreases our immune function, making it harder for our immune system to protect us from viruses. Stress also disrupts cortisol, causes leaky gut, and throws off methylation, all of which makes you more susceptible to HPV and abnormal cells.
Thankfully, there are other options to explore for addressing HPV without damaging the cervix.
The Naturopathic Approach to Treating HPV
After 20+ years I’ve had the pleasure of helping hundreds of women to reverse their abnormal cells using natural approaches including diet changes, herbs, supplements, and my customized stress recovery protocol. And maybe, more importantly, I’ve helped women to understand that HPV isn’t something to be embarrassed about.
In fact, I’m hoping women will feel more comfortable talking about it.
The best way to address HPV and dysplasia is with a comprehensive approach that addresses the issues triggering the susceptibility in the first place – such as stress (and cortisol), leaky gut, and/or food sensitivities – and then use well-researched nutrients and herbs to help your body fight off the virus and make healthy new cells.
The Top 5 Supplements* and Herbs For Treating HPV and Dysplasia Are:
- Folate (1 to 10 mg per day): Not to be confused with FOLIC ACID. Your body needs the right type of folate in dosages specifically prescribed for your body to get the full benefits of folate. Methylation is your body’s ability to use B vitamins, influenced by your genetics and stress exposure. However, if you’re like roughly 40% of women, this process doesn’t happen and your body doesn’t receive the true folate it needs.
- Vitamin A: It’s incredibly common for women who have HPV and/ or dysplasia to be deficient in Vitamin A, which is known for its antiviral properties. Vitamin A also helps to improve healthy cell function, important when trying to fend off or replace abnormal cells in the body. While many people attempt to get their Vitamin A from beta-carotene supplements, similar to the previous example, some people are genetically predisposed to not be able to convert beta-carotene into Vitamin A. It’s worth noting, however, that Vitamin A should not be taken in excess of 10k iu if trying to conceive or more than 100k iu without consulting your practitioner first.
- Green Tea Extract (200 mg per day): Green tea drinkers, rejoice! This extract is known for shifting the genes responsible for cancer growth, helping to prevent cervical cancer. While you could drink an excessive amount of organic green tea daily, one capsule is equivalent to four cups and gets the job done just fine.
- DIM (200 mg per day): Also known as diindolylmethane, DIM is actually derived from broccoli. It works to ensure the healthiest detoxification of estrogen by the liver, helping to prevent abnormal cells on the cervix and breast tissue. It has also been shown to reverse dysplasia on its own. That said, you would need to eat a dump truck worth of broccoli to get the benefits one capsule can provide, so enjoy your side of greens at dinner but let the capsule do the work.
- Mushroom Extract: Specifically AHCC and Coriolus are known for their antiviral, immune boosting properties that help to fight off all viruses, HPV included. Adding them to the HPV protocol can also help to protect your body from the negative effects of HPV. These products can be found individually or in combination. I encourage you to choose the highest quality products and to work with a practitioner who can guide you on the dosing that is best for your situation.
Additional Naturopathic Solutions for Treating HPV
While the above are the top supplements and herbs I recommend to my patients to reverse HPV and dysplasia, there are other natural methods that are beneficial and deserve mentioning:
- Hookworm Therapy: a recent study showed that having a hookworm decreased HPV and cervical cancer.
- Vitamin C: known to support the immune system.
- Vaginal Suppositories and Escharotics: need to work with a practitioner to access these effective strategies. Check out my program here.
Next Steps for Treating HPV
You’ve taken an important first step – getting informed so that you can be your own health advocate. After helping hundreds of women reverse abnormal pap smears and HPV, I’d love for you to benefit from this information too. You deserve it.
- I put all of the information in this blog post, and more, in a HPV and Cervical Dysplasia Guide (PDF) that you can download and print if you’d like.
- Here’s an interview I did about the Botanical Approach to Treating HPV (video).
- To learn more about my protocol for addressing cervical dysplasia and treating HPV, here’s my HPV & Cervical Dysplasia Solutions Program. It is designed for women who have had an abnormal pap smear, have tested positive for HPV, and are seeking natural remedies for cervical dysplasia. This is where you can work with me directly (in-person or by phone).
I have a few different options for you to start addressing and maximizing your protection against HPV.
Option 1: HPV Masterclass (1-Hour Overview)
Option 2: HPV Workshop (5-Day Program)
Option 3: HPV Course (12-Week Program)
Option 4: Meet with Me
You can sign up to MEET WITH ME ONE-ON-ONE to create a customized Stress Recovery Plan which includes identifying the foods your body needs specifically to reverse HPV and other chronic conditions.
You can reverse HPV!
Here’s why I launched these programs. It has become very clear that more and more women are being diagnosed with HPV, and they are being told a variety of things by their doctors… everything from “do nothing” to “have a hysterectomy.”
This is not the help that women need. Because of the range of options, women feel less secure and less confident that they are taking the right steps to address their HPV. This makes the problem worse – not better.
It’s important to remember that an HPV diagnosis is not the end of the world – but it is best to identify it as soon as possible. Stay up to date on your routine pap smears and don’t ignore any abnormal results. The sooner we work together to address the internal issues and design a customized protocol, the sooner we can start treating HPV in your body.
Stop wondering what life without HPV will look like for you. We can address it, reverse it, and heal your susceptibility to HPV for good.
And of course, there’s always the option to work 1:1 with me instead: Set up an initial consult here.
24th April 2019
*Please keep in mind that any and all supplements—nutrients, herbs, enzymes, or other—should be used with caution. My recommendation is that you seek the care of a naturopathic doctor (with a doctorate degree from a federally-accredited program) and that you have a primary care physician or practitioner whom you can contact to help you with individual dosing and protocols. If you ever experience negative symptoms after taking a product, stop taking it immediately and contact your doctor right away.
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