In our last post, we shared about Lisa Hendrickson-Jack's book, The Fifth Vital Sign, which names a healthy menstrual cycle, i.e. a fertile body, as the fifth vital sign ( 1-4 being blood temperature, blood pressure, pulse (heart rate) and breathing rate (respiratory rate)).
In her book, Hendrickson-Jack expounds on the history and challenges with hormonal birth control (HBC). It is from her book that we share the below information (and highly recommend reading the whole thing).
The first birth control pill was called Enovid. Enovid was approved by the FDA in 1960. In its first version, the pill provided 3-7 times more synthetic estrogen and 98% more synthetic progestins compared to today's formulations. Scientists found that exposing women to synthetic estrogen and progestins suppressed ovulation (click here to read why suppressing ovulation is a really bad idea).
At that time, women had almost no access to the birth control options we have today. Popping into a drug store to grab some condoms, or scheduling an abortion were inconceivable notions.
The only option to stop having children was a hysterectomy (the complete surgical removal of the uterus).
So the initial desire to give women an alternative, "less invasive" contraceptive method was an important step in women's liberation.
But in order to work, Enovid shut down the normal, regular function of the menstrual cycle. (Many physicians today prescribe HBC for menstrual challenges, and the majority of women still believe they are getting their periods. This is simply not the case. The synthetic drugs of HBC mimic the body's hormones, but they effectively suppress the hormonal functioning of the body. A pill bleed is not a real period.)
Scientists needed to be able to convince women to take "medication" every day when they were not sick (these were the days before EVERYONE was taking their vitamins and supplements etc lol) and to take a pill that stopped their menstrual cycles.
Therefore, scientists needed to design a pill that mimicked a women's natural cycle as a solution to convincing them that all was well with their bodies. And that's just what they did.
If you or anyone you know has taken HBC, it feels like you have a menstrual. But from the very beginning, women have been lied to about what HBC does to their bodies. The creators of the pill inserted a fake menstrual bleed to get women to go along with it. Without the fake bleed, women would not have agreed to go along with it. The pill follows a 28 day cycle and then a "bleed" even though that bleed is totally unnecessary in between pill packs.
While HBC undoubtedly prevents pregnancy, it is done through health-compromising ways. 1, HBC interferes with ovulation, 2. HBC interferes with implantation, 3. HBC prevents the cervix from producing fertile-quality mucus. HBC also interferes with hypothalamus, ovaries, and pituitary gland, the incredible trifecta that allows for ovulation to occur. In many cases HBC completely shuts down the ovaries and stops ovulation all together. To learn more, check out Ova Moon's blog post entitled I’m on hormonal contraception or coming off it, is OVA MOON for me?
If currently taking Hormonal Birth Control, we highly recommend taking Ova Moon's Prenatal to re-nourish the body with depleted vitamins such as Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Vitamin B12 Folate Vitamin E Vitamin C Zinc and, Selenium. Click here to Shop the Prenatal.