Guest Blog by Marcela De Vivo.
It seems unfair that our bodies can betray us so badly with symptoms like acne, weight gain, hair on our faces, depression and infertility. Recently, a friend of mine was diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome) and I’ve been with her through the entire process, and let me tell you, it can be quite overwhelming.
Doctor-prescribed hormones and other PCOS treatments can sometimes have many side effects, plus they don’t always deal with every issue connected with PCOS. Luckily, I’ve discovered a few natural treatments for PCOS.
First Of All, What Is PCOS?
If you’ve been diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome, you should really take the time to fully understand it. I know that when I go to the doctor, I’m so consumed with fear about my diagnosis that I often forget to ask the right questions or even listen to what the doctor is saying.
PCOS is a hormonal disorder that is common in both adult and adolescent women that are at the reproductive age. Although medical professionals have yet to figure out what causes PCOS, they do know that the imbalance of hormones can cause cysts on the ovaries. It can also lead to diabetes, due to the buildup of insulin resistance. Heart disease is also associated with a PCOS diagnosis.
How Can I Tell If I Have PCOS?
There are many symptoms that, when combined together, can hint towards a possible PCOS diagnosis. The biggest symptom that can point toward PCOS is irregular periods. Many women with PCOS have only a few periods a year; some even don’t get periods at all. Other symptoms include weight gain, trouble losing weight, acne, thinning hair, facial hair, infertility and depression.
If your family has a history of PCOS, as my friend’s does, your chances of having it are much higher, which is why you should get a full medical history from your family. If any of the women from either side of your family have had PCOS and you have some of the symptoms, you should consult a doctor right away.
What Can The Doctors Do For Me?
When a doctor tests you for PCOS, they should be looking at the hormone and testosterone levels in your blood work. In order to see the ovarian cysts, many doctors recommend a transvaginal ultrasound examination. Trust me, it sounds scarier than it is. Although the ultrasound can be slightly uncomfortable, it can discover any overgrowth in the uterine lining.
In order to treat PCOS, doctors will often suggest surgery and medication in order to regulate your menstrual cycle, which can help those who are trying to get pregnant.
So, Are There Really Natural Remedies for PCOS?
Indeed, there are several natural remedies you can try in order to reduce your PCOS symptoms. A healthy diet that is focused on heart-healthy foods is a good way to start. While making these dietary changes, you might also want to cut out coffee, soda, alcohol and smoking, as these can exacerbate your PCOS symptoms. Since PCOS inhibits insulin levels, you can ensure that your blood sugar is balanced by eating 3 square meals a day and exercising on a regular basis.
Lowering your stress levels plays a large part in dealing with PCOS symptoms. Personally, my friend and I like to take a spa day once a month. There, we can get a massages, which promote better circulation, and feel pampered with a manicure and pedicure. At the end of the day, we feel so much better and, best of all, she sees results in her health. Other women I know with PCOS have seen positive results with yoga, meditation and getting a few extra hours of sleep.
If you have been diagnosed with PCOS, you can minimize the symptoms you experience by making a few simple lifestyle changes. We’ve all heard that exercise and a healthy diet can lead to an overall better quality of life, and if you have a certain health condition, this saying applies to you now more than ever before.
Marcela De Vivo is a writer for Bellezza, a Miami spa, as well as a mother of three and yoga enthusiast. She is always there for her friends when they are in need and she tries to help others with their health conditions as much as possible. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter today!