Lifestyle management of PCOS - your personalized PCOS diet and exercise plan
- 2 Minutes Read
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a complex metabolic condition that is thought to affect 5-10% of women. Learn about this condition and guidelines for lifestyle management of PCOS.
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a complex metabolic condition that is thought to affect 1 in 10 women of childbearing age. Men, while this does not apply to you, it may impact someone you know. Symptoms of PCOS can vary from woman to woman. Common symptoms may include infertility, irregular periods, unexplained weight gain, acne, oily skin, skin tags, increased hair growth on the face, chest, stomach, and back, cysts on the ovaries, pelvic pain, and male-pattern baldness.
The medical world has made progress in recognizing that PCOS can involve more than just the reproductive system, while often including insulin resistance (IR). IR is the reduced ability of insulin to carry glucose (sugar) from the blood into the body cells. This means the pancreas produces more insulin, and guess what? Excess insulin production leads to an increase in stored body fat. In PCOS, IR also appears to increase male hormone production, like testosterone. The good news is that women with PCOS can positively impact their condition with a PCOS diet and exercise plan.
The PCOS diet and exercise plan is targeted at treating IR by tempering the cascade of reactions that interplay between the reproductive and endocrine systems. Think of it as nurturing rather than aggravating the insulin response.
A registered dietitian nutritionist familiar with PCOS can help you create a personalized, PCOS diet and exercise plan. If you can identify with the PCOS symptoms above, seek advice from a medical specialist who is trained in endocrinology or women's health. There are medical treatments that can treat PCOS along with a healthy lifestyle plan. You may also find the following resources useful to learn more about PCOS.
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