What is PCOS?
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that is common among women of reproductive age. Women with PCOS may have irregular or extended menstrual periods or high male hormone levels. The ovaries, in case of PCOS, may develop several small collections of fluid sacs and fail to release eggs regularly.
The cause of PCOS is not known yet, but it is linked to family history. If your family members are diagnosed with PCOS, you have a high chance of getting PCOS. The symptoms are related to abnormal hormone levels.
If you have PCOS, the encouraging news is that there is hope. Including little lifestyle changes can be of great help to control the disease, thereby, reducing the risk of developing other health concerns such as heart disease and diabetes.
When is a woman said to have PCOS?
Irregular, infrequent periods or no periods at all can be attributed to PCOS. An increase in body hair or male hormone levels is also associated with PCOS. In most instances, though, even as hormone levels in the blood remain normal the woman may be diagnosed with polycystic ovaries via ultrasound and may witness abnormal period cycles, elevated hair growth, or experience problems in getting pregnant.
Treatment of PCOS
A lot of women with PCOS successfully control their symptoms and long-term health risks without medical intervention. They do this by eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. However, some women need treatment.
Adopt a healthy lifestyle
Adapt to long term lifestyle changes rather than adopting a short-lived PCOS diet that promises weight loss. We all have heard all the stories of a woman who achieved her weight loss plan in a few weeks, only to end up gaining weight again after stopping the diet.
Follow a balanced diet, including fruit, vegetables, and whole foods. Do not eat packed food, as much as possible. Decrease the quantity of dairy and gluten in your diet.
SAY NO TO PROCESSED FOODS
Adopting changes to your lifestyle can be difficult initially, but it is well worth the effort. Relish a rich diversity of whole foods in self-discipline. Stay away from eating highly processed foods (you know the ones that have a list of ingredients you cannot pronounce). And lastly, be kind to yourself. Transforming your lifestyle can be tough, but it is not unworkable.
By following a healthy routine such as going to bed early, waking up early, and eating meals on time, not skipping breakfast, etc. Ensure to have a portion control diet with wholesome foods and lots of fats. We have this misconception about eating fat, making people fat! But, the case is very different from what you see. It is the SUGAR that you consume that does not get utilised, that turns into fat, and a stubborn one at that. Avoid staying up late in the night because then your body will not get into the recovery mode and ask for more food and then you will give into binge eating and junk in the middle of the night. This practice will increase the risk of obesity and PCOS.
Exercising consistently, including brisk walking for about 30 minutes for 4-5 days a week will show a difference. Being active every day physically is one of the most productive things you can do to take care of your PCOS. Studies show that exercise can help decrease insulin resistance and inflammation in women with PCOS.
Furthermore, follow a healthy diet. There is a lot of research that suggests some nutritional supplements for PCOS may be useful. But, before adding supplements to your diet, talk to your doctor to know what supplements will be best for you. Everyone is not the same. What will benefit your friend or cousin or neighbour may not be the best option for you. Regular checkups, if a woman is diagnosed with PCOS, and should be monitored regularly to check early signs of other health issues.
Life should be enjoyed by doing everything in moderation. Don’t be under or overweight, don’t over-exercise, over eat, over work, over stress, and overestimate the power of the body! Yoga, pilates, meditation, and swimming are wonderfully gentle.
Therapeutic treatments will focus on controlling and decreasing the symptoms of PCOS. Treating with medicines alone will not do any better than a healthy way of living. In the real world, dealing with PCOS will be personal and upsetting. But, you are not alone. Be kind to yourself.