I recently wrote the following piece for Get Fresh! magazine and wanted to share it with you in light of the disturbing (but inevitable) realities regarding this generation of young girls reaching puberty significantly younger (averaging ages 8-12)! If you haven’t read the stats already, this piece from the Los Angeles Times sums it up: http://www.latimes.com/health/boostershots/la-heb-girls-puberty-early-20110412,0,2227227.story
Now for the article I wrote for Get Fresh! (in this month’s issue)…
I’m a girl and by me that’s only great
I am proud that my silhouette is curvy
that I walk with a sweet and girlish gait
With my hips kind of swivelly and swervy…
—from “I Enjoy Being a Girl” By Rodgers & Hammerstein
It’s hard to enjoy being a girl when you’re a toxic girl. The fact is, most young women in our culture are suffering from symptoms of moderate to extreme toxicity—physically, mentally, and reproductively. This is apparent enough in symptoms such as acne, migraines, and depression, but what many girls don’t know is that their levels of toxicity are also evident in their menstruation.
It’s a bizarre twist in human history that may foretell our extinction as a species: in an attempt to gain social acceptance and attract potential mates, young girls and women engage in self-care regimens that actually render them less fertile. The very products that women typically use today to enhance their appearance and well-being are undermining their beauty and rapidly deteriorating their health from the inside and out.
The modern woman, starting from a very young age, has become a commodity for corporations. She is a walking advertisement for lipstick, pantyhose, and three-inch heels. She is a stupendously good consumer—falling into line with all the modern myths of feminine beauty, in the service of countless products, fashion trends, and medical procedures. The average female body takes in countless toxins on a daily basis through unfit food and drink, pharmaceuticals and oral contraceptives, alcohol and other recreational drugs, chemical pollution and radiation, and environmental estrogens. These substances breed harmful bacteria, carbonic gas, and yeasts that build up in the body, creating all kinds of obstructions and wreaking havoc on the body’s natural cycles.
In short, we women are moving further and further away from the true meaning of health and beauty. More to the point,we are moving further and further away from what it means to be women. Just consider the rising rates of infertility. Infertility has become a widespread affliction of modern society, and it’s only getting worse. Granted, many women are waiting until later in life to have children, but this argument only goes so far. A healthy woman should be able to procreate for about thirty years—yet the average woman today is far from healthy. A profusion of reproductive health issues are occurring earlier and earlier in life, such as breast cancer, amenorrhea, uterine cysts, and thyroid imbalances. They all spring from a deep cultural ignorance. The cycles of the female body are breaking down under the heavy burdens of modern toxicity.
Over the course of human history, we women have been by turns worshipped, vilified, loved, and feared for our femininity. This is largely because women are endowed with the power to procreate. Whether you consider yourself an old-fashioned girl or a die-hard social feminist, the fact remains that the hallmark of our gender is fertility. Even if you have no interest in having babies right now, you still want to be radiant and healthy, right? Well, you cannot separate your overall health from the health of your reproductive system. Fertility is the ultimate indicator of health for a young woman, yet the way most women live today, it is slipping through their hands like sand through an hourglass!
Let’s consider this mother-daughter scene, which I recently saw in a movie: An eleven-year-old girl proudly announces the arrival of her first period to her mother. They are in the grocery store filling their cart with various mainstream feminine sanitary products. The girl then tosses a box of sugary cereal and milk into the cart as she and her mother continue down the aisles kveching about their bodies and the agony of calorie restrictions. They also talk about when the daughter may lose her virginity.
Now let’s look at this more closely: The modern girl who has just begun to menstruate has not been taught to draw any connection between her body and her spirit. She knows nothing about honoring her body, her womb, or her sacred sexuality. Her intuition has been prematurely cut off, and she is offered no life-generating sense of direction when it comes to caring for herself. She is left wide open to chemical toxins, insecurity, and harmful behavior patterns—all the messages that will cause her a lifetime of physical and emotional suffering. Don’t be surprised if in twenty-five years she’s shopping around for a plastic surgeon and a “fertility specialist”—or what passes for one these days! The young girl’s future is laid out right there in the grocery store with the tampons, the sugary cereals, the sexual misguidance, and her equally misguided mother.
Is it any wonder that so many young women suffer on account of their bodies, and end up struggling with infertility by the time they reach their twenties, thirties, and forties? As a society and a species, we are on a nonviable trajectory. The rising number of adults seeking infertility treatments is not just a question of age, but a result of so many years of defying Nature’s warnings. Think about it: if your body is trying to tell you that it’s not a viable home for hatching new life, do you really think it’s wise to override its message with more chemicals and synthetic hormones? Sure, you might be able to trick the body with science in the short term, but what are the ramifications in the long term? How much toxicity and mutation can a body—or a species—take? To continue along this trajectory at this rate is to play a very dangerous game indeed.
What’s a modern girl to do?
- First she must take charge of her self-care regimen, questioning everything she’s ever been told by her elders, her peers, and the media. Surviving womanhood today with her beauty and health intact means braving a whole new frontier. The mainstream lifestyle is a recipe for a lifetime of unnecessary pain and disappointment. This calls for a paradigm shift—from the model she inherited to one that harks back to her feminine roots and honors fertility.
- Second, she must understand that anything that carries toxins into her body will contaminate her blood and organs, and then will begin eating away at the integrity of her entire system—including her future offspring, should she ever bear fruit!
- Third, she must recognize the direct connection between her menstrual cycles and symptoms and her future fertility. For example, excessively painful, premature, heavy, malodorous, or otherwise troublesome periods are cause for concern. (Sadly, acute PMS cramps, headaches, and acne breakouts are all considered normal and treated with over-the-counter drugs. Heavy bleeding is merely seen as bad luck. Rather than questioning what is causing all this mayhem, oral contraceptives are typically doled out to young women as an easy solution—often just leading to other imbalances and serious long-term risks!)
- Fourth, she must develop a health and beauty regimen for herself that is distinctly life-generating—one that improves her blood chemistry and the vitality of her organs. This means cleansing the body and adopting a largely organic, vegetable-based diet with minimal acidic substances in her food and environment.
How much longer will mothers pass down to their daughters the conventional “wisdom” of their toxic lifestyles? How much longer will medical prescriptions and procedures masquerade as answers to deeper problems before we heed Nature’s warning signs?
We don’t even have to scratch the surface to see that we are poisoning ourselves: Consider the noxious odors that emanate from the arm pits, groin, mouth, and sweat of the average body. Notice the pimply, dull, or prematurely aging skin. Count the numbers of pills popped and sick days taken on account of painful cramps and heavy bleeding.
Women of wisdom, where have you gone? You know the answer is not in the drugstore aisles or at fancy fundraisers! This calls for a profound paradigm shift, a literal return to our bodies and what they are so desperately trying to tell us!
Above all, we must protect our blood chemistry from any further onslaught of environmental and chemical toxins, and we must teach our daughters the language of their bodies and reproductive systems. It is never too soon to do this. For instance, my ten-year-old daughter goes to a highly sought-after school, and I suspect she will choose to go to college one day. However, I would not consider her well educated if (a) she did not know how to care for her body, or (b) she were not highly literate in the language of Mother Nature. I owe it to her to give her all the knowledge that she needs not only to survive in the modern world, but to thrive in her body throughout her lifetime. Now is the time to lay a strong and healthy foundation.
Modern women today are far from liberated, at least not when it comes to our bodies. If we want to reclaim our health, we must reclaim our reproductive health. If we want a brighter future for ourselves, our children, and our children’s children, we have to make the world—and our bodies—a viable place for all of us to thrive. Every woman has a right to rejoice in the full power of her femininity!