What is PCOS?
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, PCOS, is a hormonal condition which causes enlarged ovaries with small cysts on the outer edges. It usually affects women of 15 to 44 years of age.
What Happens In PCOS
In PCOS, due to imbalance of hormones that stimulate ovulation, the body is unable to ovulate, that is, produce a mature egg. Instead, the follicles, which contain the immature egg, grow inside of the ovaries. There are many such fluid filled sacs inside the ovaries and hence the name polycystic ovarian syndrome.
Also because of this, the masculine hormones are more in the body and causes excess facial hair and irregular menstrual cycles.
What are the symptoms of PCOS
The symptoms of PCOS are
Irregular Menstrual Periods
Due to PCOS, periods get irregular. Sometimes periods don’t occur for two to three months. PCOS causes lesser than 9 periods in a year.
People suffering from PCOS have hair growth due to excess levels of masculine hormones. Hair growth is seen on the face and other parts as well.
Due to PCOS, it gets difficult to get pregnant as there is lack of ovulation.
It may affect metabolic rate and lead to obesity. It can also cause darker skin patches and acne.
Causes Of PCOS
The exact cause of PCOS is unknown however it is related to certain genetic and environmental factors.
Studies have found that PCOS can run in the family.
Due to the body’s inability to completely break down sugar from foods (using insulin) for energy, the pancreases produces more insulin to compensate. Increase in insulin levels also trigger the ovaries to produce male hormones.
Obesity and type 2 diabetes are certain risk factors which can cause PCOS.
Unhealthy diets can cause PCOS. Having a nutritious meal is very important.
Other environmental factors like sedentary lifestyle, other medical conditions, etc can cause PCOS.
Effects Of PCOS on Our Body
Due to PCOS, the hormone levels in our body are imbalanced. This can affect our body in numerous ways
PCOS causes infertility as it prevents secretion of the right amount of hormones required for ovulation
Depression and Mood Swings
Due to hormonal imbalance, many women suffer from depression and mood swings
Can lead to heart diseases
Due to PCOS and obesity, blood sugar can increase, cholesterol levels increase and blood pressure also increases which can lead to a higher risk of heart diseases.
It means pausing in breathing while sleeping at night. It disrupts sleep.
How to Treat PCOS
There are many pills available which can treat PCOS and can force the body to produce the right hormones. However there is no known cure for PCOS.
Treatment for PCOS starts with a lifestyle change. Exercising, weight loss and a well balanced diet is very important.
Balanced Diet and Exercising
Having the right food along with exercising is very important. This will help you reduce weight and also leads to regular periods which will treat PCOS. A low carb high protein diet is very beneficial for weight loss.
30 minutes moderate intensity exercise is needed along with change in diet at least thrice a week.
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