I have recently been reading a lot about PCOS and a lot of the symptoms ring true with me. Here are the common symptoms listed by the NHS:
The classic symptoms of PCOS are:
- problems getting pregnant (because of irregular ovulation or failure to ovulate) I seem to be having this too!
- excessive hair growth (hirsutism) I have found my top lip has been much harder to manage recently and I seem to be tackling it a lot more often so that I don’t have a slight moustache. Not good!
- weight gain I have always been naturally thin and since coming off the pill, have lost approx 10lbs. So this one is not affecting me
- thinning hair and hair loss This has been a big concern of mine over the past year or so. Maybe even since coming off the pill I’m not sure. Anyway, I seem to loose a lot of hair in the shower and it has become noticeably thinner and “flatter” recently. My mum was quite shocked when I told her and she felt the difference.
- oily skin or acne Yep, this is another one I have. My skin has broken out on a number of occasions around my chin, lips and forehead since coming off the pill and I now always have a few spots on the go.My skin has also become much oilier, again, since stopping birth control.
At the moment, I am convinced that this is what I have. I have booked an appointment to go to the Drs next week so hopefully they will sort some tests out and confirm one way or the other.
I’ve read a lot recently about the causes of PCOS and the effect diet can have on the symptoms:
“Insulin is an important hormone as it transports sugar from the blood into the muscles of the body, allowing the body to effectively make use of the energy from glucose. High insulin levels wreak havoc on the body, leading to a lot of the symptoms of PCOS like, increased hair growth, weight gain, skin tags, fatty liver and high cholesterol, polycystic ovaries and an irregular menstrual cycle, not to mention increased hunger levels and cravings. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? Most of us have many, if not all, of those symptoms.
So, management of blood insulin levels is crucial in the management of PCOS. Refined carbohydrates cause a spike in insulin levels and should therefore be avoided. Also, foods that are high in fat will lead to weight gain and high cholesterol.”
I recommend you have a read of this page if you’re interested in finding out more http://www.pcosdietsupport.com/the-best-pcos-diet/ however there is a lot of information out there if you do a quick Google search.
One thing to mention that links to this – I am ALWAYS hungry. Always. I get a bit dizzy and funny feeling if I go too long without eating and tend to be hungry only an hour or 2 after eating breakfast, lunch, dinner or a snack. It doesn’t seem to matter how much I eat either!
Because of this, I have decided to follow a low GI diet for the next month and see if this helps me. I’ve also decided to cut out dairy, as I’ve read a lot about the effects that the hormones of lactating cows (!!) can have on the human body, especially those with PCOS.
I may well be jumping the gun as I haven’t been diagnosed with PCOS…but I figure it’s worth a shot. I will post my meal plan for the week on a separate post.
Please let me know if anyone has any experience of this – I’d love to hear from you x