I’m here to help women feel confident in their female bodies again and to empower them to take back charge of their health. I am putting an end to the myth that the female body and cycle are confusing and irrational.
And, while I am 1000% pro-choice (and that extra 0 is not a typo), our healthcare system and providers need to do a better job providing us with ALL of the information we need to make an informed decision about hormonal birth control. I’m here to show you why you should never have to rely on a daily pill, an injection, or a hormone-emitting device to be “healthy” and how much better you can feel without it all, should you choose to quit the pill!
I know what it’s like to rely on hormonal birth control to manage your symptoms and to be told that you need to be on the pill for your health. I understand the frustration, confusion and constant search for answers – I’ve been there too!
I was on the pill for ten years. I was told to go on the pill early for some minor acne and stayed on it through my teens. In college, I tried to go off of it, but my acne came back about ten times worse. I went back on it.
Fast forward another year or two, and I tried again. And then again. Every time I went off of it, my period would go missing (and my hair would fall out), and my acne would return with a vengeance.
There were no answers, no solutions – just hormonal birth control. “Take this pill and your problems will go away.” Sound familiar?
But, something didn’t feel right. While my experience on hormonal birth control was relatively painless, I always found myself thinking that I shouldn’t need to take medication in my teens and early twenties to be healthy. I knew there had to be a way to get off the pill without my period going missing or my skin getting out of control.
So I started to do some research.
What I learned about birth control shocked me.
Hormonal birth control depletes your body of essential nutrients such as magnesium, B vitamins, selenium and zinc. Many of these nutrients are important for emotional stability and mental health. Birth control was never intended for long term use, and the effects of long term use are still being studied. The pill can compromise gut health and the microbiome. Hormonal birth control disrupts communication between the brain and the ovaries. Some forms of birth control can shrink the clitoris. Birth control may increase the risk of certain cancers, such as breast cancer.
These are things we should be told when we are prescribed hormonal birth control.
I learned that that while the pill was masking my symptoms, it was actually exacerbating the root cause of my issues by depleting important nutrients and compromising my gut health.
I studied the medical journals and came across studies that indicate that the pill and other forms of hormonal birth control may cause certain cancers, that it creates a dark spot on the liver, and a whole host of other not fun stuff.
I became even more determined to learn how to heal my symptoms holistically. This led to a year of self-study, another year at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, and a six-month apprenticeship with “Fix Your Period” expert Nicole Jardim.
Now I know that the answer to these problems was never hormonal birth control. The answer is true self care, working with and not against your body, and focusing on nutrition.
The end result: I feel better than I ever have before and I know that you can too.
Today I help other women heal issues before they even go on hormonal birth control, to transition off of hormonal birth control as seamlessly as possible, and to troubleshoot any issues – ranging from acne to totally absent periods – that may arise after quitting hormonal birth control.
Kara Ferreira (nee DeDonato) is a certified health coach specializing in women’s hormonal health. She is a passionate advocate for healing cycle and skin issues without the use of hormonal birth control (HBC). Since launching her health and wellness blog, Libera in 2014, she has helped over 100 women to stay off HBC, transition off of HBC and to troubleshoot post-HBC problems for optimal health. In 2017, she launched Quit the Pill to reach more women and serve them on their journey to optimal health and fertility. Kara’s writing has been featured on MindBodyGreen, ourbodybook.com and Appleseed Fertility, amongst others.