Does saturated fat lead to Bacterial Vaginosis?


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Day 2 after whole 30. Haven't added in anything new but either have one of the above mentioned. Idk if this is because of the change in diet or possibly because of my exercising and sweating in these humid conditions. I had chronic problems for years and have been free of symptoms for over 6 months. Stressing. Advice, similar symptoms? Thanks

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I've read about people who get spontaneous yeast infections while on w30 as if it's part of their detox process. BV is an entirely different diagnosis and unrelated to diet as far as I know. I'd get checked out if I were you before treating it. Good luck!

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  • 10 months later...

I've read that saturated fat (in red meat, ghee, etc.) can lead to BV and I've had elevated Ph levels for over a week now (using Ph paper to test).  I'm on day 21 btw.  I've also read that carbs lead to elevated Ph levels which means that the Whole30 should even me out (as you're regulating your hormones and healing your gut, etc).  There's so much mixed info on the internet.  What I've found: BV will show Ph levels above 4.5 and a yeast infection will show a normal Ph but have other symptoms (it took so much time to find this out as the same limited info seems to be on every site).  The one solution that I'm hoping will work is using Vitamin C suppositories (the plain tablets, nothing else added) each night for a week as supposedly Canada offers this OTC b/c it has been shown to cure BV (as the ascorbic acid in Vitamin C has a Ph of 4.2).  


Would love to hear from others who may be struggling with finding this balance.  I'm also taking expensive refrigerated probiotics.

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BV is strongly linked to hormonal changes which is why it's not unusual for women to see a pattern of BV hitting at the same time during their cycle each time it rears its ugly head. BV in general has a high recurrence rate and, frankly, no one really knows why. Sometimes it's linked to issues like hygiene products, but in a lot of cases, people are doing absolutely nothing wrong and BV is just one of the "joys" of being female. Probiotics have not been shown to help with an active infection. They might help to prevent recurrence, but they won't kill an active flare. There's also debate as to how much, if any, of the probiotic organisms from an oral supplement will actually end up in your vagina. I'm of the opinion that if your goal is to support your vaginal flora, then that's where you need to put the good bugs to start with. (Look for gelatin capsules w/o added sugars/starches/etc. for this)


The bacteria responsible for BV are primarily kept in check by lactobacillus-type bacteria. These are bacteria that create hydrogen peroxide which helps to kill off less-desireable bacteria and also helps to maintain vaginal pH. One at-home solution is to douche with a peroxide and water solution. You may have to play with the ratio to find one that doesn't irritate you. I've used half and half with no issues, but you may need a weaker solution if your skin is particularly irritated. Pick up an infant oral syringe and use that to help irrigate. (These are the ones that are about the width of your pinky and also short so they're easier to navigate when you can't quite see what you're doing.) Continue irrigating until all the discharge is gone. For stubborn infections, you may consider propping up your hips while in the tub and letting the solution "sit" for 5-10 minutes. Repeat nightly for about a week and see how it goes. There's some research out there (link) that suggests that, longterm, peroxide is just as effective as oral meds and topical creams.


I like to follow-up the peroxide with a vinegar/salt bath. Apple cider vinegar is naturally anti-fungal, but any vinegar will work. Add about a cup each of table salt and vinegar and soak for 15-20 min. This will help further with pH balance.



And if the above still isn't working, you can try boric acid capsules. These require a bit more work on your part since you'll probably have to make them yourself. Commercial products do exist, but only outside of the U.S., I think. You'll need pharmaceutical grade boric acid and gelatin capsules. Cellulose based capsules will NOT work--you need something that will dissolve in water. You may be able to get the boric acid at a local pharmacy, but if not, you can order it on Amazon. Don't confuse industrial-grade boric acid with pharamaceutical grade, though. The industrial stuff is used as in insecticide, but isn't pure enough for this application. Pharmaceutical grade boric acid is also used in eye drop solutions.


Once you have your supplies, grab a paper plate, dump some boric acid powder onto it and start filling your capsules. The easiest way to do this is to pull them apart and "scoop" the two halves together until they're full. You may want to wear gloves while you do this, but I personally don't bother. Just wash your hands before touching your eyes or mouth. Keep making capsules until you're sick of it and place the completed ones into a ziploc back. To use, insert 1-2 capsules 1-2 times daily for about a week. You may see some increased discharge with this so you'll probably want to wear a pantiliner. These are great too for maintenance. Once a week, insert 1-2 capsules as a "booster" to help prevent further problems.


Bonus: Everything I listed above also works for yeast infections.

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Douching with something like Summer's Eve is bad news and should be avoided 100% of the time. Douching for a legitimate medical issue, i.e. BV or a yeast infection, can be appropriate for helping to stop the infection and relieve symptoms. If the infection is anything more serious than BV or a yeast infection (or if you haven't had a definitive diagnosis in the past so aren't exactly sure what it is) then it would be best to avoid douching. Same for if you've recently given birth. If you're postpartum, absolutely nothing in the vagina for 6 weeks or until your provider gives you the all clear.


Sending bacteria further up the reproductive tract would mostly be an issue in situations where the cervix is open for some reason--after giving birth, recent miscarriage, surgical procedure, etc.

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