Wed 4 Apr 2012
How many times have you heard women are born with all the eggs they will ever produce? How many times have you heard there is nothing you can do to change the health of your ovaries, follicles, and resulting eggs?
Neither of these is true and it breaks my heart each time I hear a new client talk with me about these fears.
Dr. Randine Lewis addressed both of these issues very eloquently in a recent blog post. If you are not aware of Randine’s work with fertility, please visit her site at TheFertileSoul.com, or pick up a copy of her book, The Infertility Cure.
I am sharing her full article with you today.
Can Women Make New Eggs?
By Dr. Randine Lewis
A new study confirmed the underlying belief, unproven, that the ovary contains deep, hidden stem cells, capable of becoming new eggs. It was previously believed that a woman’s ovarian potential was determined before birth, and was incapable of being improved upon. While science hasn’t been able to study ovarian potential from healthy, living ovarian tissue, rodent studies have supported the idea that mammalian ovarian cells have a potential to produce new cells. Yet, the only tissue science has previously had to study was pathological or diseased tissue, removed from the body. It was previously proven that menopausal ovaries, when placed in a younger, healthier body, were capable of ovulating again. Science does not know how, why, or under what circumstances those stem cells can produce eggs.
The ovaries respond to cues from the internal environment (the blood circulation, hormones, nutritional status, oxygenation, stress hormones in the blood., toxin and antioxidant levels…) and create a follicular environment to mimic the body’s internal response to its external environment. It is within that follicular environment that the eggs (which have been in a dormant state since before birth) undergo meiosis, and wait to see if they will be selected for maturation and ovulation.
Knowing that ovarian tissue is capable of producing new eggs, and knowing that primordial follicles remain dormant until called into circulation by communicating with the body’s internal environment (which is based on her emotional interpretation of the external environment), let me provide a couple of stories from women I have treated.
- A woman underwent high dose radiation and chemotherapy, which “killed” her ovaries. She conceived naturally.
- A woman in ovarian failure, with an FSH value over 100, conceived naturally.
- A woman conceived during her 7th IVF at age 47.
- A woman conceived naturally with ¼ of one ovary.
- A woman conceived naturally with only one ovary on the left, and only one fallopian tube, on the right.
- A woman gave birth to her first child, conceived naturally, at age 48.
The body is capable of miraculous feats, when provided the right cues. I am less concerned with how to manipulate stem cells in the lab ten years from now, than I am with providing the right environment where the body can call upon its deepest, dormant potential now.
While the examples might be clinical anecdotes and not research worthy, the beauty of these stories is that each of the women above had to call upon a higher potential within.
According to Chinese medicine, the energy that stirs this primordial potential comes not from the Kidneys (which govern the ovaries), but from the Heart (Spirit’s) interaction with the primordial potential within the ovaries. Energetically, ones highest potential must reach into one’s most basic potential.
When an internal pressure cooker is provided (like the fertility journey,) an internal state of tension is produced, requiring one to call upon this higher level of interaction. If it isn’t accessed, the HPO axis continues on its previous (horizontal) pathway of decline. When a woman can access her heart’s highest potential, we can consider it an evolutionary jump, calling upon that hidden (vertical) potential to now manifest at a higher level.
Dr. Randine Lewis is the author of The Way of The Fertile Soul (Atria/Simon & Schuster, 2007) and The Infertility Cure (Little, Brown & Company, 2004), and her work is regularly featured in the international media including on CBS’ The Early Show and in the Washington Post, The Economist, the Wall Street Journal Europe, the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Therapies, Elle magazine, Organic Style magazine, Pregnancy magazine and other publications. Dr Lewis is also the creator of The Fertile Soul ® body, mind, spirit program of deep internal healing based upon Taoist and Chinese medical practices. For more information, including retreats, please visit www.TheFertileSoul.com.