More and more women are coming to see me for help with PCOS because they are struggling to fall pregnant naturally. Its such a growing problem and this is because of 4 factors: 1. Stress, 2. too much fast food in the diet, 3. a sedentary lifestyle and 4. eating too much sugar.
Firstly chronic long term stress like a big commute and a heavy workload will stimulate your hypothalamus gland to signal an alarm in your body. This alarm sends out hormonal and nerve signals that cause your adrenal glands to release stress hormones. Cortisol is the stress hormone that affects the way your body processes insulin. This steroid hormone makes your muscle and fat cells resistant to insulin and increases the production of glucose. The increase in glucose due to these chronic stressful situations can alter the amount of insulin necessary to provide healthy blood sugar levels and this in turn will increase the production of male hormones like testosterone which is one of the biggest causes of PCOS.
Damaged fats found in fast foods worsen insulin resistance and they promote weight gain. They can also inhibit ovulation.
Exercise is so important without it your muscle cells become insensitive to insulin. A lack of exercise will also contribute to weight gain.
Not only does sugar in the diet increase testosterone levels but it also increases the body’s sensitivity to the testosterone already present in the body.
There are lots of things you can do straight away to help you, your symptoms and your fertility if you have been diagnosed with PCOS.
Eat a low carbohydrate diet – women with POCS cannot cope with common levels of carbohydrates in their diet. A low carb diet will lower blood insulin levels and that will greatly reduce the ovaries production of male hormones. If you find weight loss extremely difficult, you may need to reduce your carbohydrate intake to approximately 30 grams per day in order to get your body to burn fat.
Avoid damaged vegetable fats in your diet. These are found in margarine and most vegetable oil sold for cooking, as well as processed foods that list vegetable oil in the ingredients list. Beneficial fats to include in your diet are extra virgin olive oil, cold pressed macadamia nut oil, organic coconut oil and small amounts of ghee.
Start regularly exercising and if you can combine both aerobic and muscle strengthening that is perfect!
Get your thyroid and vitamin D levels checked with your doctor.
Avoid using the pill as it will worsen insulin resistance
Increase your intake of magnesium and chromium. Both of these minerals are essential for helping to make your cells more sensitive to insulin, thus helping to reverse insulin resistance. They will also reduce hunger and cravings and make a low carb diet much easier to stick to.
Minimise your stress levels in which ever way you can, you may want to start relaxation techniques like meditation and yoga. Magnesium and B vitamins and the herb Rhodiola all help the adrenal glands to recuperate after long term stress. Adequate sleep and rest are also essential for helping the body to recover from stress.
See a homeopath and have homeopathic remedies prescribed for you based on your individual symptoms and health history. Click here for a free chat with me to find out more about working with me to balance your hormones naturally and treat your PCOS.