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Hi all. I'm writing to see if anyone else had information on anything that helped them with a luteal phase defect. Some background:


I stopped taking hormonal BC (Yas) in January of 2013. I'd taken it for about 4 years at that point. Since then, I've done a Whole 30, a Whole 14, and loved it. I discovered I had Celiac's through that process, and I feel wonderful. I don't eat by the template when I'm not doing a Whole 30 exactly. I don't have any issues with dairy, non-gluten grains, or white potatoes, so I do occasionally include those (I'm living in Korea, so I eat rice approximately once or twice a week) when necessary, like this week, when my lettuce head for lettuce wraps had worms in it. So I broke out the emergency loaf of GF bread for lunch since I had no other options (grocery store is closed for restocking on Mondays).


The problem is that, since I stopped taking BC, my luteal phase (ovulation through start of menstrual cycle) has gone from several hours (from ovulation to spotting continually until my period itself started) to about 3 days this month. In a year and three months since stopping BC. To be able to conceive, you need to have at least 10-12 days. Obviously - it's a problem.


In my looking around, I've seen several natural living resources advocating vitamin B6, vitamin C, and an herb called vitex (possibly paired up with red raspberry leaf). I'm planning on getting more FCLO (omega 3s are mentioned as well, and I ran out a few months ago and never reordered) as well, but beyond that, I don't know what brands to start with. Recommmendations?


I plan to bring this up to a doctor, but before I do, is there anything that's helped anyone here with a similar problem? I'd like to at least give it a try through diet and natural supplements to see if I can extend it at all - at least an improvement (3 to 6 days?). I'm not TTC yet, but will be in a year or two.


Mods: if you think this belongs more in the pregnant/breastfeeding section, feel free to move!

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One of the things I'd get checked out would be your thyroid. I went from a 6-7 day luteal phase with spotting to 11-12 with proper thyroid treatment. If you have a thyroid deficiency, which is likely due to your issues with gluten, all the supplements in the world might not be enough.

If your thyroid is fine (tsh, free t3, free t4, and antibodies), you've got a good list. Acupuncture is helpful, too. If you're eating off template, at least eating the ratio of carbs/fat/protein can be of assistance, too.

Good luck!

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Interesting about the thyroid - I was always told my thyroid is fine, but last year had more extensive testing and it wasn't! Definitely don't take a straight TSH test at face value - I had to get T3 and T4 tested before I was diagnosed.


Years ago, I was able to get my LP from 6-9 days all the way to a normal 13-14 days by taking B6, losing a little weight and taking metformin. Not sure what really made the difference, but I bet whole30 would be as effective (or more effective) as metformin in stabilizing blood sugar.


Good luck!

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  • 4 weeks later...

Update: just saw the doc for my annual lady appointment (HATE HATE HATE but I saw a new doc and she was SUPER FAST...like 2 minutes from scope to no scope...best as it could've been). Talked about the issues I'm having. She did some abdominal palpitations and thinks I have uterine fibroids. Looking through the symptoms, hubby and I think I probably do too...specifically, heavy bleeding, prolonged periods (mine are about 2 weeks from first needing a panty liner through finally not needing one), pelvic pressure or pain (thinking this could be related to my death cramps (although my Zivaa belt thing makes them like non-existant pretty well) and maybe even ovulation pain?), frequent urination (I always joked about my trick bladder), backache or leg pains (lower back specifically, I pop the pelvic joints in my lower back at least daily to help relieve the pressure/tightness back there, and my legs haven't been recovering from my normal bike riding like they usually do).


She did labs to test my thyroid first, and those results should be back in three weeks. If thyroid is normal, then she'll have an ultrasound to check me for fibroids and we'll go from there. Hopefully this is an easy-ish fix. It wasn't what I was expecting to hear, but it seems like it might be easy-ish to deal with, so I'm hopeful.

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  • 3 months later...

So just to update y'all on what's going on.


It took a second pelvic ultrasound to see anything wrong with me other than I did have a cyst on one of my ovaries. But the second ultrasound showed that I have a cervical polyp, which I will have removed in two weeks (assuming that I'm not bleeding then; otherwise, it'll get scheduled for two weeks out from there...and so on until I finally get an appointment where I'm not bleeding). I was lucky and had 11 days of not bleeding this past month, so I got to enjoy some time with my hubby (we were apart for the first week of not bleeding, and I was so afraid that the two days we were gonna have together before separating for another week wouldn't work...but it held off until we left again...SO GRATEFUL).


So...yeah. At least I know what it is, and it's less scary than it sounds. And easily treatable!

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  • 2 months later...

Another update (finally) - I went in today for biopsy of the cervix. Talk about an unpleasant experience, should know more in a week. The Motrin at least is kicking in and my boss let me have the day off work plus hubby took the day off to be with me. I don't like the waiting period I'm in now (we have to send these samples out for testing blahblahblah) but...at least the painful part is done for now. They didn't take the whole thing out, so once the results are back I'll probably have to have another appointment to remove all of it. *sigh*


Things learned - cervical pain makes me feel extremely nauseous, which kind of makes sense given the fact that I have  thrown up from cramps before. Also, hot towels are amazing at quelling pain. Hubby was running back and forth to the oven for more than an hour to keep me comfortable until the nausea died down enough that I could eat to take the pain meds they gave me.


And when you're in a situation like this (running back and forth to the bathroom in pain and using heat to manage it), don't worry if you're eating by the template. Eat whatever you can stomach; if that's compliant, then great for you. But if not, then don't sweat it. Eating something is more important than stressing/eating something that will make you throw up.

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