In women, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is one of the most commonly known hormonal endocrine disorder. In this condition, small fluid-filled sacs developed on the ovaries. Also, it has been linked to the development of various conditions like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, insulin resistance, and Type 2 diabetes.
Most Common Symptoms of PCOS
Your cycle is all over the place – You have unpredictable menstrual cycles or skipping several periods.
Have growing hair in unexpected places – You get hair grown around your nipples, on your chest, face, the inside of your thighs, and your belly.
Experiencing Headaches – Due to hormonal changes, some women may experience headaches.
You are breaking out – you have acne on areas like the face, chest, and upper back.
Darkening of the skin – you may experience stubborn dark patches of the skin under your breasts, on the neck, and in the groin.
Male-pattern baldness – Hair on the scalp gets thinner and falls out.
Trouble getting pregnant – Your body’s ability to ovulate normally (essential for pregnancy to occur) is affected by the hormonal imbalance.
Weight gain – About 80 percent of women with PCOS are overweight or obese.
Heavy bleeding – The uterine lining takes longer to build up, so the periods a woman with PCOS gets are heavier than normal.
Though the exact cause of PCOS remains unidentified, there are natural remedies that can help you deal with some of the symptoms.
Increase Your Chromium
Chromium intake is necessary since this mineral can help your body regulate insulin and blood sugar levels. According to research, 200 mcg daily of chromium can significantly lower blood sugar and insulin levels in subjects. Aside from this, chromium can also help your body metabolize carbohydrates, protein, and fats in the body.
Some of the foods that contain chromium are broccoli, mashed potatoes, dried basil, turkey breast, orange juice, green beans, and dried garlic.
Saw palmetto’s fruit is used in making a supplement that can help lower down the testosterone levels of women with PCOS.
It is suggested that one should take daily saw palmetto supplement of about 250 to 350 milligrams to prevent testosterone from being converted into dihydrotestosterone, which causes hair growth in women with PCOS.
However, saw palmetto should not be taken on an empty stomach and by women who are breastfeeding or pregnant.
When glucose binds with protein, advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are formed. According to studies, women with PCOS have higher levels of AGEs and by cutting down on dietary AGEs, women with PCOS can lower their insulin levels. Processed and animal-derived foods have high AGEs and once high heat is applied (grilling or roasting), its level increases.
Usually, an insulin-controlled diet includes foods like green vegetables, whole-grain bread, beans, and other legumes and most fruits. One should avoid foods that are high in sugar, starch, and fats like white rice, pasta, red meat, white bread, cakes, cookies, and prepackaged foods.
By following this kind of diet, your insulin levels won’t spike dramatically, thereby enabling you to manage symptoms associated with PCOS.
Load Up On Omega-3s
Included in the long list of health benefits you can obtain from fish oil is its ability to lower androgen levels in women with PCOS. A study revealed that women who consumed 3 grams of omega-3s daily for a period of 8 weeks have experienced a decrease in their testosterone concentration and were more likely to resume regular menses as compared to those women who received a placebo.
Additional Vitamin Supplements
Research shows that magnesium supplements can help improve insulin sensitivity, a factor in the development of type 2 diabetes and PCOS. Taking 300 mg of magnesium at bedtime was found to significantly improve blood glucose and insulin levels. Some of its food sources are avocado, black beans, spinach, quinoa, almonds, cashew, peanut, and edamame.
Daily intake of zinc supplements (7 milligrams) can also help regulate insulin, balance blood sugar, and control appetite. Zinc-rich food can also be consumed – seeds, nuts, legumes, shellfish, eggs.
You can also take B-vitamin complex to help control weight and balance blood.