Periods & PCOS

What is PCOS?

PCOS or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome is extremely common among women. In fact, it affects 10% of the female population of child-bearing age. Those with PCOS experience extreme mood swings, facial hair (especially on the chin), acne, problems with insulin, weight gain, and find it harder to fall pregnant than those who don’t have PCOS.

Professor Gordana Prelevic, an expert endocrinologist in London discusses PCOS in this video clip:

Menstrual Cycle Irregularities

  • Typically, women with PCOS will only have periods at 3 to 4-month intervals.
  • A significant number will experience a complete lack of periods completely.
  • The rest suffer from more frequent bleeding.

 

How is PCOS Treated?

  • There is no cure for PCOS, only medication that focuses on certain symptoms of PCOS.
  • If a woman does not get periods regularly, a contraceptive pill is usually given.
  • If fertility is the problem, there is an array of treatments starting from tablets and then injections, and this is usually done by fertility specialists.

 

Inconveniences of PCOS

Unexpected Periods

One of the most common inconveniences of PCOS is the fact that periods can occur at any time of the week, month or year. It’s like a surprise party you really didn’t expect and can lead to many embarrassing situations. Just imagine starting a new job or going out on a date while wearing light colored pants and suddenly getting a period. Things can get rather awkward.

Now, there are a few thins you can do about an unexpected period. Usually, PCOS sufferers will experience PMS and can experience no period. It is safest, when experiencing PMS to carry around tampons and pads in your bag and in your draws at work, just in case. If you feel that a period is near, put on a pad or insert a tampon before heading out for the day.

The Ultimate Period Solution:

If you really want a great solution for your PCOS periods, get a menstrual cup. These are wonderful solutions because if you feel a period coming on, you can just insert one easily and carry on with your day. The cup will collect your flow and you can just clean it when you get to the bathroom. If you are nervous about inserting one, or never have inserted one before, this guide will show you how easily it is done. You will also save a ton of money as it is reusable.

Venus menstrual cups are really great as they have the modern woman in mind. It comes in both small and large sizes, and suits teenagers, virgins and more mature women. They come in a gorgeous lavender color and are made out of 100% medical grade silicon and are completely reusable.

 

Unbearable Pain

Due to the nature of PCOS and all the cysts that sit in the ovaries, a lot of pain can be experienced by those with PCOS. This is no ordinary period pain, mind you. This is drop to the floor, can’t get up, have to take multi pain killer medication immediately kind of pain. It’s also the kind of pain that just prevents you from getting on with your day or even just having a normal day at work.

Solutions:

  • Keep a hot water bottle nearby.
  • Always keep pain medications.
  • Give an extra key of your home to a friend so they can help you if you can’t get up and need to get into bed (yes – sometimes the pain gets that bad!)

 

Too Much Hair

From moustaches to beards and excessive body hair, those who have PCOS have to regularly shave on a daily basis to make themselves feel and look feminine.

The Best Treatment for Excessive Hair:

  • Contraceptive Pill
  • Laser Hair Removal
  • Waxing
  • Shaving

 

High Insulin Levels & Diabetes

Having PCOS also imbalances your insulin levels and results in blood-sugar spikes. Many PCOS sufferers end up with diabetes and really have to watch what they eat and have to avoid too many starches and sugar. A bowl of pasta is fine for someone who doesn’t have PCOS, but with a PCOS sufferer, it can wreak havoc on the system.

Solutions:

  • Metmorfin Tablets (See your doctor first before taking these)
  • Eat a healthier diet with a low GI (Glycemic Index)
  • Exercise really helps all over with PCOS symptoms and insulin problems

 

The Perfect Diet for PCOS Sufferers

People with PCOS really need to watch what they eat – particularly the amount of carbohydrates and sugars they put in their bodies. Ideally a diet that is more protein based is better for their bodies. Diets like the Keto diet, Paleo diet, Vegan, Vegetarian and Pescatarian diet all work well. It is important to eat sugar – just the right kinds of sugar such as fruit with a LOW GI (Glycemic Index). Avoid too many grapes on a regular basis, as they contain a very high level of sugar. Apples, pears and oranges are all good for you.

 

The Keto Diet

This diet is richly based on protein encouraging meats off all kind and discourages too many carbohydrates. Vegetables are included as well as a ton of healthy fats such as avocados. This video clip will explain the best foods to eat on a Keto diet:

The Paleo Diet

The Paleo diet is a favorite among many celebrities. It is comprised of lean meats, seeds and nuts, as well as fish fruit and vegetables. Basically, all foods that you can hunt and gather. You will notice, there is no dairy in this diet.

The Pescatarian Diet

This is a diet that is very healthy, where many vegetables, nuts and legumes are consumed as well as healthy fats. The main emphasis is that meat is abandoned in favor of fish. Many who follow this diet also eat dairy and eggs.

The Vegetarian Diet

The Vegetarian diet is comprised of many vegetables, as well as fruit, nuts, legumes, seeds, even dairy and eggs for some. The only difference is that no meat or fish is consumed.

The Vegan Diet

This is a very specific diet where nothing that harms an animal or comes from an animal (not even honey) is eaten. For those who follow this diet, it is very important to eat a lot of protein from nuts and seeds. It is important to get enough calories into your body with this diet.

Conclusion

Life isn’t the easiest for PCOS sufferers but, with the right diet and exercise and correct treatment, life can be experienced in a happy and healthy way. Don’t forget that your menstrual cup is the most convenient solution of all when it comes to attending to your periods!

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