Endometriosis is a condition that causes inflammation in the pelvic and abdominal region. You can get relief, thanks to exercise.
Endometriosis is a disease in which the inner lining of the uterus grows outside the uterine cavity, usually around the pelvis and abdomen. The condition affects roughly 10 percent (190 million) women and girls of reproductive age, globally, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). There are several questions that come to mind around endometriosis, and one is: is exercise a good idea when you have this condition?
But before we get to that, it’s important to know about some of the symptoms associated with endometriosis:
* Painful periods
* Chronic pelvic pain
* Pain during and/or after sexual intercourse painful bowel movements and painful urination
* Fatigue, depression and anxiety, abdominal bloating and nausea
Why is endometriosis painful?
When a woman with endometriosis has her periods, she has bleeding from the lining of the uterus, and also from the endometrial tissues that are outside the uterus. The bleeding from the outside of the uterus cannot exit and causes inflammation, scar tissue, and adhesions to form, causing severe pain.
Exercise is a promising conservative treatment that can help relieve the symptoms and improve the quality of life. The most common treatment of endometriosis is medication and surgery, depending on the condition and its severity.
Benefits of exercise for endometriosis patients
Inflammation is the main side-effect of endometriosis. A 20-minute session of moderate exercise can stimulate the immune system, producing an anti-inflammatory cellular response, as per a study published in the journal Brain, Behavior and Immunity. Improving anti-inflammatory and antioxidant markers helps in the better management of this condition.
Exercise reduces estrogen secretion. Endometriosis is also termed a benign estrogen-dependent disease. The decrease in estrogen can help in decreasing endometriotic tissue growth that also helps to reduce pain.
Exercise has a protective mechanism for chronic diseases, improves cardiovascular function, maintains good bone and muscle strength.
Exercise helps in stimulating the production of endorphins, which are considered feel-good hormones. They improve mood, stress, and depression, and have a pain-relieving effect.
Regular exercise boosts confidence, endurance, and flexibility. Being active helps relieve constipation, abdominal bloating, and bowel health.