Contribution from Pollie, a telehealth solution for female hormonal imbalances
PCOS (Polycystic ovary syndrome) is an ovulatory disorder that impacts an estimated 10% of women (although some sources are putting that number closer to 20%!) It is characterized by irregular ovulation and subsequent absent periods, polycystic ovaries, and elevated levels of androgens like testosterone. This leads to symptoms like female hair loss, hirsutism (male-pattern hair growth), irregular cycles, weight gain, adult acne, and more. It is also the #1 cause of infertility!
While receiving a PCOS diagnosis can be overwhelming, there are ways to manage this lifelong disorder. One key strategy is through nutrition.
If you are trying to manage your PCOS through diet, it’s important to understand that every body and every case is different. For example, you may have heard that you must eat a low-carb diet for PCOS, but this is not always true: in cases catalyzed by adrenal fatigue for example, eliminating carbs can actually make symptoms worse!
Be wary of one-size-fits-all diets you see on the internet. Working with a nutritionist or other women’s health specialist can help you identify which types of foods work for your specific body. When it comes to hormone balance, personalization is key!
That said, one general rule of thumb when it comes to managing PCOS symptoms is to make sure your diet includes plentiful antioxidants, or substances that protect your body against harmful “free radicals” that can contribute to cancers, heart disease, and other conditions. Chances are you’ve heard about the health benefits of antioxidants (oh hello, wine and dark chocolate!), but these powerhouses take on a whole new meaning when it comes to PCOS.
Here are a few fast facts about antioxidants and PCOS:
- Studies have shown there is a relationship between PCOS and oxidative stress, or an imbalance between free radicals (which can cause our bodies harm) and antioxidants (what fights these free radicals) in the blood
- Research indicates that low levels of antioxidants and high levels of oxidatives, or free radicals, can increase risk of PCOS complications like heart disease
- Antioxidant supplementation has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity, general symptoms, and longer-term health complications in women with PCOS
Given this information, it makes sense why keeping tabs on oxidative stress and supporting your body with plenty of antioxidants is important if you have PCOS. Make sure to eat a diet that is full of colorful fruits and vegetables, healthy fats, and lean proteins. Supplementing is also always an option, but be sure to work with a qualified practitioner if you decide to go this route – certain vitamins can do more harm than good if you unknowingly take a supplement that your body does not need. The antioxidants in CONFLAM-Forte can complement your antioxidant-rich diet. And research found that women with higher total antioxidant levels during IVF cycles, have a greater chance of becoming pregnant and a recent large study concluded that use of antioxidant supplements was associated with a shorter time to pregnancy.