Are Birth Control Pills ‘Vitamin Robbers’?
Can the side effects of oral contraceptives contribute to serious health issues for women later in life? The Pill Problem, a new book by pharmacist and nutritionist Ross Pelton–the world’s leading expert on drug-induced nutrient depletions–says yes, and gives women a prescription for protecting their health while on the pill.The Pill Problem is a follow up to his breakthrough 1995 book How To Prevent Breast Cancer (Simon & Schuster).
The Pill Problem: How to Protect Your Health from the Side Effects of Oral Contraceptives is a nutritional health manual for women that devotes 15 short information-packed chapters to the most common side effects of the pill. Each chapter outlines various nutrient depletions underlying the condition and offers detailed descriptions of lost health benefits that can be regained with a complimentary regimen of the right nutritional supplements and other lifestyle prescriptions.
Oral contraceptives cause the depletion of a wide range of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, neurotransmitters and antioxidants that can dramatically increase a woman’s risk for depression, sleep disorders, anemia, low energy, migraine headaches, sexual problems, heart attacks, strokes, blood clots, weakened immune system, birth defects, premature aging, and cancers of the uterus, colon and breast. The Pill Problem takes aim at these and other life-threatening conditions that can be caused by chronic nutrient depletions.
“While most classes of drugs deplete one, or even several nutrients, oral contraceptives deplete more than almost any other other,” says Ross Pelton, author of The Pill Problem. “Hormones are very, very powerful chemicals that affect virtually all tissues and cells they come into contact with.”
The Pill Problem reviews a significant number of studies showing that women taking oral contraceptives have substantially lower levels of vital nutrients such as vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, B12; minerals magnesium, selenium and zinc; amino acid tyrosine and the critical antioxidant named coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) compared to women who have not been taking oral contraceptives.
“When I wrote The Drug-Induced Nutrient Depletion Handbook, I was shocked to discover that birth control pills inhibit the body’s ability to absorb so many nutrients vital to long-term health,” states Pelton. “Many women ask me why their doctor hasn’t informed them about the long-term side effects of the pill. Unfortunately, and understandably, most doctors are not aware that all of these studies even exist, and are usually way too busy to track new research on all of the pills they prescribe. Because birth control pills are almost as commonplace as multivitamins, women generally are not as informed about their side effects as they are with other common pharmaceuticals that are advertised nearly non-stop on TV.”
Studies show that about half of women who start taking the pill stop within six to 12 months due to widely known, early onset symptoms such fatigue, depression, insomnia, migraine headaches and weight gain. Hormonal imbalances caused by the pill can also cause serious sexual side effects in some women including decreased desire for sex, difficulty becoming aroused, less natural lubrication resulting in painful sex, and difficulty experiencing orgasms.
“It is ironic that oral contraceptives can also result in sexual dysfunction for so many women,” says Pelton. “But it is the potential long-term side effects which can lead to life-threating conditions that I hope to make women everywhere more aware of and, more importantly, provide them the information they need to stay healthy.”
More than 100 million women worldwide now take oral contraceptives–most completely unaware that prolonged usage can cause serious long-term side effects which can culminate in life-threatening conditions, even long after usage has been discontinued. Because many of the long-term side effects of the pill are initially invisible, most women only learn about them decades later when a health crisis hits, making it much harder for the kind of gentle lifestyle prescriptions in The Pill Problem to be effective.
The Pill Problem is available in ebook and paperback from all major online booksellers.
Tell us what you think. Are birth control pills ‘vitamin robbers’? Have you stopped taking birth control or are you considering quitting the pill for health reasons?
Follow Marvelous Girl on: