HPV, Menstruation, and How They Are Connected (Episode 203)

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HPV, Menstruation, and How They Are Connected (Episode 203)

Dr. Doni has identified six connections between menstrual issues and HPV.
You can reduce the risk of HPV if you address menstrual issues and their related symptoms. Dr. Doni covers the 6 connections she's identified that connect menstrual issues to HPV.

Some health-related menstrual issues are connected to testing positive for high-risk HPV virus strains. This is a really important conversation because a lot of times when it comes to testing positive for the HPV virus, women are left with not enough information and their doctors are not providing that information. The doctors are doing what they’re trained to do, which is important, to address abnormal cells. 

What’s happening, unfortunately, is women are left in a state of fear and not knowing what they can do to prevent abnormal cells caused by HPV and to prevent cancer in the long run. Women are also left not knowing what they can do about menstrual related symptoms other than take a birth control pill.

Standing Up for Women’s Health

I want to be here to really stand up for women and say let’s think this through, let’s be detectives and understand why is it that you’re testing positive for HPV at this point in your life. Because when it comes down to it, most all of us are being exposed to high risk types of HPV.

Research shows that 80% of us by age 50 are exposed to high risk types of HPV, whether we have been in a single relationship or in more than one relationship with more than one sexual partner. So it’s not just about having multiple sexual partners and it’s not just about being exposed to the virus. It’s about how your body is able to protect you from the virus or not.

Menstrual issues and related symptoms, including PMS, cramps, heavy bleeding, irregular cycles, as well as perimenopausal symptoms, are often addressed by gynecologists by giving a birth control pill which turns off ovarian function. But the birth control pill, which are synthetic hormones, also increase the risk of HPV-related cancers, so many women are realizing this is not a good option for them.

Meanwhile, as a naturopathic doctor, clinical nutritionist and midwife for over 23 years, I help women to solve both menstrual issues, as well as perimenopausal symptoms, alongside helping women to solve HPV and prevent cervical cancer, vaginal cancer and other cancers associated with HPV. I do this with diet changes, nutrients, herbs, and natural hormones (when needed).

Because I’ve had this close-up view, like a magnifying glass, on this issue for so many years, I’ve been able to identify connections that you likely are not hearing about in the gynecologist office and you might not be hearing about in other videos or things you might be hearing online.

Natural Approaches Are Not Always Enough

A lot of times what women hear about is how they could take a natural substance, let’s say such as a mushroom extract like AHCC, or green tea, or DIM, to address the abnormal cells and try to get that virus to leave them alone. Those are definitely good tools to use, absolutely.

We want to be able to support your immune system and protect you, and there’s research on those natural substances. I do use them in my protocol, but what I’ve seen over the years is that for many cases that’s not enough. Even when women are taking AHCC and green tea and DIM for example, they’re still testing positive for HPV and they’re still getting abnormal cells.

So I’ve had to go beyond that to say what’s really going on here and look for the root causes for each individual. What I’ve seen is it’s not all the same. There are many possible susceptibilities to HPV – why a certain individual may be more susceptible than another individual. I’ve covered those susceptibilities in others of my videos, so if you’d like to learn more I encourage you to watch more of How Humans Heal episodes here.

The Six Connections Between Menstrual Issues and HPV

Today I want to focus on the susceptibilities associated with menstrual issues, such as imbalances in hormones and irregularities women experience with their menstrual cycle. I’m going to go through the six connections that I’ve identified that connect menstrual symptoms to HPV.

Please know that there’s so much we can do to help, and what ends up happening is as I help women to address their menstrual related symptoms, the HPV risk goes away. Women are then testing negative for HPV and they no longer have menstrual cramps or menstrual issues. It’s amazing, that’s one of the ways that tells me that they’re interconnected.

1. Estrogen and Progesterone Imbalances

The first is estrogen and progesterone imbalances. What we want is for estrogen and progesterone to be in a nice balance with each other. That’s what happens with a healthy menstrual cycle. When there’s an imbalance, it could be low progesterone and high estrogen, such as with perimenopause.

As perimenopause continues into menopause, both hormones will be low. HPV is more likely with both scenarios. It’s not just about high estrogen. There’s a lot of women who end up testing positive for HPV at the point when their estrogen level drops. 

So it’s important to understand if there is an imbalance by testing for it first of all. When you do a blood test, it’s not likely to show it. Your gynecologist might have done an estradiol and progesterone blood test and it might show that it’s in the range, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s actually in balance. 

What I find is we really need to do a urine hormone panel. I prefer the one by Precision Analytical or what’s known as the DUTCH panel at this point in time. It is giving us the clearest answers as to where’s your estrogen, and not just one type of estrogen but all three types of estrogen – estriol, estradiol and estrone – and where’s your progesterone and are they in balance with each other.

2. Estrogen Detoxification

The second way HPV and menstrual issues are connected has to do with estrogen detoxification. Estrogen is a hormone that has to go through our liver before it goes out through our digestion and into the stool. So what happens is when estrogen gets to the liver, the liver has three options in terms of the way it’s going to process estrogen in the first phase of liver detoxification. 

What your liver does is partially determined by genetics. Your liver could possibly turn estrogen into toxic estrogen. If there’s a high percentage of toxic estrogen being produced in the liver, that can increase risk of menstrual related symptoms as well as higher likelihood of HPV testing positive.

So, we want to know how your liver is detoxifying estrogen – how’s your phase one detoxification working? That can also be checked in the Precision Analytical urine hormone panel. When we do that panel, we’re getting a couple pieces of information – we’re finding out the level of your hormones and how well is your liver detoxifying.

3. Methylation and Liver Detoxification

The second part of liver detoxification is something called methylation. Methylation is where the estrogen goes from a partially detoxified form into a form that can be excreted from the body. There’s several nutrients that are required to support that detoxification in phase two, including the B vitamins, methylated B vitamins, as well as magnesium and choline.

These are often nutrients that women don’t have enough of and it just so happens that when women don’t have enough B vitamins, magnesium and choline, that also increases risk of high risk HPV and abnormal cells on the cervix.

genetic health conditions, genetic mutation, chronic health issues, methylation, methylation cycle, genetic testing, genetic treatments, MTHFR, MTHFR mutations, SNP, single-nucleotide polymorphism

So, if there’s methylation issues in the liver, then we’re not processing estrogen well and that can cause menstrual related symptoms. Women are especially more likely to have PMS, PMDD, breast tenderness, as well as menstrual cramps and migraines when there’s an issue with methylation. AND they are also more susceptible to high risk HPV causing abnormal cells, because methylation is important for making healthy new cells. 

4. Heavy Bleeding and Anemia  

The fourth area related to both HPV and menstrual issues is with heavy bleeding. Those of you who experience heavy bleeding with your menstrual cycle or with perimenopause, are more susceptible to both anemia and HPV. 

A lot of times women assume that it’s normal to have heavy bleeding and potentially normal to have cramping. I’m here to say that you should not have to experience cramping and heavy bleeding. There are solutions, there is help, and it doesn’t have to just be relying on a birth control pill or pain medications. 

When women have heavy bleeding during their periods, they are likely to become anemic. They’re much more likely to become anemic because they’re losing blood and they become iron deficient, but often also deficient in the B vitamins. When we’re making more blood (to recover from anemia) we need iron and B vitamins, especially folate and B12.

Once we are deficient in iron and B vitamins, we become more susceptible to HPV

If you’ve been having heavy periods, I encourage you to find out if you’re anemic or maybe you’re not anemic but you have low iron or low ferritin, as well as potentially low B12 and folate. The tests in the blood work often don’t show this because a lot of practitioners don’t know the right test to do, so we need to be measuring ferritin, homocysteine, and methylmalonic acid to really get the right information.

Please know that these are not tests that are usually run n the standard medical system. They don’t usually offer the urine hormone panel and they don’t usually order homocysteine and methylmalonic acid unless you request it. You can get homocysteine and methylmalonic acid tested at a regular lab, but you have to ask for it.

5. Endometriosis and Adenomyosis

The fifth way that they’re connected is the example of endometriosis and adenomyosis. Endometriosis, as far as we understand from research in the past couple of decades, has multiple different causes, some of which we’ve already talked about such as imbalance of estrogen and progesterone, imbalance in the detoxification of estrogen, and methylation issues. 

Also, endometriosis is associated with imbalances in the digestion and the gut bacteria. So if you have leaky gut, imbalanced gut bacteria (which you would have to do a food sensitivity panel and analysis of your gut bacteria to know for sure), then we’re going to want to address your gut health, heal your digestion, and in that way we’re helping to turn off and prevent endometriosis. 

Endometriosis is also associated with toxin exposure, such as plastics, mold toxins and other toxins in the environment.If you’ve been diagnosed with endometriosis or adenomyosis, then I would definitely recommend we do some testing for toxin exposure, because once we identify which toxins you’ve been exposed to, then I can help you to get those toxins safely out of your body so that we can again decrease your pain and decrease the endometriosis.

At the same time, we will decrease the risk of HPV, because what I find is that HPV is also associated with imbalanced gut bacteria, leaky gut and toxin exposure.

6. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) 

The sixth connection is with PCOS, polycystic ovarian syndrome, which is a quite commonly diagnosed situation which may or may not involve ovarian cysts. PCOS is more consistently associated with imbalances in blood sugar and insulin function.

What research over the last couple decades has shown is that when women have higher blood sugar levels and lower insulin function (so their insulin levels are actually higher because the body’s trying to get it to work better), then they have higher likelihood of PCOS. We also see that when women take medications used to support insulin function, such as metformin, it reduces the symptoms of PCOS.

I’s not always the case, but in a large number of women who are diagnosed with PCOS, a lot of the underlying cause has to do with their insulin function and blood sugar levels which then affect ovary function. 

What I find is when women have blood sugar issues and insulin function issues, they also have a higher risk of testing positive for HPV. By supporting them to improve their metabolism, HPV goes to negative. 

The Role of Stress and Adrenal Health on Menstrual Issues

Now one final connection that I want to make before we wrap up this session has to do with the adrenal glands and stress and cortisol. Because really if we’re being detectives and we’re digging deep underneath to find root causes of all of these things, what we’re going to find is deep down underneath all of the connections we just covered, is going to bring us back to the effects of stress. 

Ultimately, stress exposure for women, whether it’s psychoemotional stress from present or from the past, or even stress from injuries or infections or other stresses in your life, they all are going to cause a stress response in a human body. That’s a human stress response that involves cortisol and adrenaline.

What can happen is when we’re under stress ongoing over and over (it really could be from being a mom, being a grandmom, being a caretaker, having a job, running a business – the things we do as women end up having an effect of stress in our bodies) and that can cause imbalances of cortisol and adrenaline, meaning we might have too high or too low cortisol and adrenaline. 

When that happens, when cortisol is either too high or too low, is it can disrupt estrogen levels, it can disrupt liver function and detoxification; it can make you more susceptible to nutrient deficiencies such as iron and B vitamins; it can disrupt methylation and how well your body uses your B vitamins; it can also disrupt your gut health and your gut biome; and it can disrupt your blood sugar and insulin.

Again, cortisol and adrenaline levels are not commonly tested in the standard medical office or standard lab. We need to be checking cortisol at four different times a day – morning, midday, evening, bedtime. I most often test them in a saliva sample, but it can also be done in urine.

We also need to measure adrenaline in the urine, and I prefer to also measure neurotransmitters in the urine so we can really see how stress has affected you as a human being. Because once we see how stress has affected you, then we can give you specific help to recover.

If cortisol is high, we can use the nutrients and herbs that help bring it to optimal. If cortisol is too low, we use different herbs and nutrients to bring it back up to optimal. And then as we do that, now we’re healing you from the stress.

We’re helping you to NOT just manage your stress, but to recover from stress, because now we’re actually bringing your cortisol to optimal and your adrenaline to optimal. You’re learning what it is that you need to do now in your life to maintain and help you keep up and be resilient to stress, to maintain a healthy gut health, healthy hormone levels, healthy detoxification and methylation, and to avoid toxins or help your body detoxify in an effective daily way so that you can protect yourself from health issues.

You can reduce your likelihood of menstrual symptoms, perimenopausal symptoms, post-menopausal symptoms, and decrease your risk of HPV and HPV related cancer.

To learn more about my Stress and Trauma Recovery Protocol® which involves optimizing cortisol and adrenaline levels using nutrients, herbs and C.A.R.E.™, my proprietary program to support clean eating, adequate sleep, stress recovery and exercise, you can read all about it in my latest book Master Your Stress Reset Your Health.

If you are ready to get rid of HPV now, you can sign up for my Say Goodbye to HPV Program. In the program I guide you step by step to implement my protocol, including to address the 6 connections discussed in this episode, with support and expert guidance. The Say Goodbye to HPV Program is online and available everywhere.

Say Goodbye to HPV: Heal your cervix and clear HPV with this 12-week guided program from Dr. Doni Wilson.

I will help you gain freedom from the high-risk types of HPV, and at the same time help you to solve menstrual issues and menopausal related issues. We can solve both issues at once, and at the same time, hep you prevent future health issues. 

For the most comprehensive support, even with the most difficult health issues (physical or mental), and for access to the tests I mentioned in this episode, it is best to meet with me one-on-one, which is available to you no matter where you are in the world (via phone or zoom). You can set up a one-on-one appointment here.

Thank you all so much for joining me today. If you are new, I invite you to subscribe and send me comments and reviews. I appreciate all of you listening and I look forward to connecting with you again in the next episode of How Humans Heal.

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