Polycystic Ovary Syndrome affects 116 million women worldwide (5 million reporting in the U.S), and we are dedicated to improving the lives of women who have 1 or all of the symptoms of this sometimes devastating condition.
What is PCOS?
PCOS is a hormonal condition that affects a woman’s hormonal balance, This can impact her menstrual cycle, fertility, body composition, hair growth, hair loss, acne, depression and many other symptoms along with overall well-being. This is due to an imbalance of many hormones to include: cortisol, insulin, testosterone, estrogen, progesterone and even thyroid. Polycystic Ovary Syndrome is also an indicator of insulin resistance affecting the body’s ability to handle sugar and starches and maintain a healthy weight. (See more on insulin resistance here.)
The cause of PCOS is unknown; however, genetics and lifestyle are risk factors for the condition.
While statistics claim that 1 in 10 women are diagnosed with PCOS, we believe that the true statistic is actually closer to 1 in 3 women who suffer from many of the symptoms of PCOS. The symptoms of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome can manifest differently from woman to woman so it can be very hard to diagnose.
That’s why it’s so important not to wait for a diagnosis to take action.
What are the symptoms of PCOS?
The symptoms of PCOS vary based on each individual, depending of a variety of factors. According to the PCOS foundation, some of the most common symptoms are:
- Absent, infrequent, or irregular periods
- Infertility or difficulty getting pregnant
- Many small cysts (fluid-filled sacs) on the ovaries
- Acne, oily skin, or dandruff
- Excessive hair growth on the face and body (hirsutism)
- Hair thinning or hair loss on the head (male-pattern baldness)
- Weight gain
- Anxiety or depression
- Sleep apnea
- Low energy
- Brain fog – fuzzy thinking
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome doesn’t always manifest with cysts on the ovaries, and many of the symptoms (especially on the lower end of the spectrum) can be vague and even vary throughout different times in a woman’s life. (To learn more about PCOS and Ovarian Cysts click here)
Some women assume that the symptoms of PCOS are just the uncomfortable and unpleasant side effects of being a female, and don’t connect them to the root cause of PCOS. Also, many women feel embarrassed or ashamed by their symptoms, such as weight gain, excess facial hair, depression, and infertility, so they find it difficult to reach out for help.
But the good news is that there IS hope! It is possible to improve, and completely manage the symptoms of PCOS. We all deserve to be happy, healthy, and vibrant beings, and here at Insulite Health we’re here to show you how.
What could having PCOS mean for your health?
PCOS is the first warning sign for other life threatening diseases. While some of the symptoms of the condition may just seem like superficial problems, the indications of those symptoms are much more serious.
As PCOSAA states, women with PCOS are at a greater risk for these conditions:
- Diabetes or pre-diabetes (impaired glucose tolerance) More than 50 percent will suffer with some level of diabetes and poor glucose tolerance before the age of 40.
- Heart Attack The risk is increased 4 to 7 times.
- High blood pressure
- Bad Cholesterol. High levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol and low levels of HDL (good) cholesterol.
- Sleep apnea This occurs when breathing stops for short periods during sleep. This is a dangerous condition and has negative implications for brain health, weight, blood pressure and inflammation in general.
- Anxiety & Depression. These symptoms can be very serious, and can have a tremendous impact on quality of life and overall health.
- Endometrial Cancer. Women with PCOS have a 9% higher risk for endometrial cancer.
- Fertility issues. PCOS is the leading cause for difficulty getting pregnant. Thousands of women every year spend a great deal of time and money on infertility treatments, causing physical and emotional distress, and costing thousands of dollars.
How do you know if you have PCOS?
There is no specific test for PCOS that you can order from your doctor. Here are some suggestions to help you obtain an official diagnosis:
- Take our Insulite health PCOS self-test – Click Here It’s a fast and easy way to discover where you are.
- Have a Physical Exam – Visit your doctor for a physical exam and to discuss the symptoms you are experiencing that you think may be PCOS related. Ask them to measure your blood pressure, Body Mass Index (BMI), and waist circumference. Also discuss any increased hair growth or hair loss you may be experiencing.
- Request a Pelvic Exam – Schedule an appointment with your OBGYN for a pelvic exam to check for cysts. Remember that not all women with PCOS actually display cysts in their ovaries, but it is important to know whether you have them or not.
- Test Don’t Guess – See our Top 14 Most Important Lab Tests for PCOS – click here. Then ask your doctor (endocrinologist) or integrative doctor for these tests
How do you manage PCOS?
Research shows that the symptoms of PCOS are most successfully managed through a 5-element system – without the use of pharmaceuticals. The 5 elements combine our proven nutraceuticals, food as medicine, movement as medicine, cravings awareness, and community support to help you overcome your PCOS symptoms with grace and ease. Click here to learn more about the system and how you can get started healing today.
You hold all the power for your healing. And do you know what? You’re in charge!