Nature Made Birth Control: How We Came Across 2 Traditional Alternatives
After birthing our first love, Ezmaye, the Doctor immediately asked me what form of Birth Control I was considering. Birth Control pills, IUDs, it all didn't seem right to me, nor natural in anyway (and this was before going natural in every aspect we could!) "You don't have to make a decision now, we can speak about it in my office for your postpartum check-up" the Doctor said. I walked out of the office without a prescription for any that day.
With our second child, Ezel, being that I was breastfeeding I didn't menstruate for a good 17 months. At first, I was expecting to have to deal with the bloody mess that is a period (or used to be before changing my diet to a vegan one) and it never appeared! Strange? So, I did some research and here is what I found!
"Most women will not start ovulating in the first six weeks after giving birth. Breastfeeding typically delays the onset of ovulation. Depending on the intensity of breastfeeding, it can be several months or over a year before you regain your fertility." - Breastfeeding USA
My intuition was spot on! Breastfeeding was in fact, delaying my menstruation. Lactational Amenorrhea Method (LAM) is a short-term family planning method based on the natural effect of breastfeeding on fertility. The act of exclusively breastfeeding often suppresses the release of hormones that are necessary for ovulation. That's exactly what I had experienced.
Around that time, I began using lemons and key limes a lot (mostly key limes)! We used lemon/lime juice in our homemade guacamole, squeezed on top of our sauteed veggies, infused water with key limes, key lime juice, you name it, it had lime in it! Once again, I stopped menstruating. I was beginning to think breastfeeding was to blame. But why if I had already menstruated while breastfeeding my son, did my menstruation stop? Was my fertility also being affected, or was I just having irregular periods? Back to the drawing board I went.
I came across a scholar study that was conducted in Nigeria by the Department of Anatomy, College of Medicine of the University of Lagos, Nigeria, that once again validated my suspicions. The study was done on 40 Sprague-Dawley adult female rats and they were divided into two groups where group 1 was given undiluted lime juice and group 2 was given distilled water. The female rates were mated with males and then studied to see if there were any abortifacient (fancy word for a drug or substance causing abortion) effects. The conclusion of the study was that lime juice kills sperm cells and it stated in the study that lime juice was used by woman as a barrier contraceptive in history by African Woman douching with lime juice, or lemon juice. Due to this finding and study, I do NOT recommend pregnant woman consume lime or lemon juice in high amounts!
Consuming lime juice was preventing me from ovulating! It was a natural contraceptive, and for almost two years I had no fears of getting pregnant at the wrong time (timing is everything isn't it?) Although, whether we got pregnant or not was never truly a fear for us, the more children the merrier, remember?
So, there you have it! Using natural alternatives to controlling getting pregnant is far more healthier than adding a chemical, hormone disrupting substance to the body that will have negative side effects. There is also Papaya Seeds, and Neem oil that can be used as natural birth control. The beauty in life is variety and free will! There are so many options to choose from and ultimately we have the choice. Choose what aligns with your higher spirit and what appeals to your body, after all you only get one! Peace, love, and harmony to you all! <3