Whether you’re starting to try or you’ve been trying to conceive with no success, having a conversation with your doctor about Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a good idea. For those of you that aren’t familiar, according to PCOS Foundation it is one of the most common hormonal endocrine disorders in women. It affects 7 million women in the United States. For some women, symptoms can appear as early as their first menstrual cycle. The kicker is most women don’t know they have it because often it’s difficult to diagnose, which was what happened in my case.
For example, you may have subtle symptoms such as acne, unusual hair growth for a woman (chin, facial, neck) and male pattern baldness. More obvious and problematic symptoms are irregular or missing periods, and an excess of insulin (read more here about insulin if you’re interested http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pcos/basics/causes/con-2002884) Basically, too much insulin increases the male hormone testosterone and may affect your ability to ovulate.
According to the Mayo Clinic, having PCOS and not treating it may result in several dis-eases in the body, especially if obesity is an issue which include: type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart disease, infertility, uterine cancer, gestational diabetes, anxiety/depression just to name a few. Doctors don’t know what causes PCOS, but excess insulin, low-grade inflammation and heredity play a role.
Here’s a study I found fascinating regarding taking medications vs. making lifestyle changes (i.e. diet and exercise)…sneak peek, LIFESTYLE CHANGES WINS!
If you’re like me, I believe a happy healthy mom and dad makes an healthy environment to create a healthy egg and sperm = healthy embryo = healthy pregnancy = health child.
Below are four steps to offset the effects of PCOS on your own:
- Talk with your doctor to see if you may be someone who could have this syndrome;
- Dietary Changes. Lose the low-fat, high-carbohydrate diets. Choose complex carbs, which are high in fiber and moves through your body more slowly so your blood sugar levels stays level. According to the Mayo Clinic, even a modest reduction in your weight – for instance, losing 5 percent of your body weight – might improve your condition. There are also supplements available that may be helpful (discuss with your doctor before trying supplement as they may not be the best option for your unique situation) Here’s a prior blog of mine for some ideas of foods to start incorporating now. http://dianazic.liveeditaurora.com/service/blog/2016/11/16/curious-if-eating-certain-foods-help-your-fertility;
- Be active. Exercising daily helps to reduce and/or prevent insulin resistance, reduce inflammation and it’s the happy drug for your mind by producing endorphins.
- Get support. As I mentioned, 7 million women in the USA have PCOS, so don’t feel like your abnormal or broken beyond repair. I can help you implement these changes, reach out here!