How to Manage Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

Three Methods:Maintaining a Healthy WeightDealing With Irregular Periods, Infertility and Excess HairStaying Positive

Polycystic ovary syndrome is a condition in which the endocrine system is disrupted and blood flow to hormones is compromised.[1] This causes difficult-to-manage symptoms like weight gain, unwanted hair, infertility, and irregular menstrual cycles. Some women with polycystic ovary syndrome also experience heightened anxiety or depression due to the unpleasant symptoms. [2] Battling polycystic ovary syndrome might sound overwhelming, but there are ways to alleviate the symptoms and have a satisfying, healthy lifestyle.

Method 1
Maintaining a Healthy Weight

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    Control insulin by cutting out sweets and carbs. Those with polycystic ovary syndrome experience increased insulin levels. Insulin is a hormone, and when more of it is present, people feel hungrier sooner and more often, which causes them to eat more and gain weight. It is crucial for those with polycystic ovary syndrome to regulate their weight to avoid the most severe symptoms. [3]
    • Eliminate sweet treats. Most of us enjoy a sweet piece of cake, candy, bread, or pie at least every now and then. Sometimes, it feels difficult to go a day without having some chocolate or cookies. However, the more sugar you eat, the more insulin you will produce. Eat fresh fruit when you need your fix.
    • Cut down on carbohydrates. Food like white pasta, white bread, potatoes and corn tastes good and can be comforting to eat, but it also heightens insulin levels. Consume multigrain bread, vegetable or whole wheat pasta, or tomatoes and spinach instead of starchy items.
    • Stop drinking soda and other sugary drinks. Pepsi might be your drink of choice, but soft drinks are filled with sugar. Even healthier seeming options like juice contain too much sugar. Choose plain water, water flavored with strawberry or cucumber, seltzer water, or unsweetened ice tea.[4]
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    Help yourself to more protein. To help block insulin and to keep your weight on track, eat more meat and legumes. Healthy sources of protein are a good choice when you need a snack, and you should consume protein at every meal. Just don't go overboard!
    • Prioritize protein. Eating protein-filled food helps fill us up and provides energy. Eating items like peanut butter and other nuts, fish, chicken, pork, red meat, eggs, beans (black beans, lentils, lima beans, etc), and soy counteracts insulin produced by eating other food. Sustaining a more protein-based diet can help you maintain a healthier weight. [5]
    • Consider portion size. After you change your diet, you still have to be aware of how much you eat. Clearly, savoring a 16-ounce steak or three servings of fried fish during Friday dinners won’t help you keep your weight down. It is better to eat smaller portions throughout the day. [6]
    • Read the labels. Sometimes, it might seem like our food choices are healthy, but they aren't. Be aware of how much sodium and sugar are in the food that you eat. Use a fit bit or buy a calorie counter to help you in this endeavor.[7]
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    Exercise regularly. Exercising boosts the heart rate and helps us lose weight. It can also alleviate PMS symptoms or feelings of anxiety, which also come along with polycystic ovary syndrome. Women with this illness can benefit especially from exercising right after they eat. Figure out what kind of exercise is enjoyable for you and build it into your routine. [8]
    • Using exercise equipment is one option. You can go to the gym and use an elliptical machine, lift weights, ride a stationary bike, and more. If you have a machine at home, that is even more convenient.
    • Another option is to hike outdoors, which can be more enjoyable for those who like to breathe in the fresh air. Even big cities offer large, wooded parks, so seek out a pleasurable environment! While walking trails, you might see interesting wildlife, too!
    • Playing sports can be fun and definitely helps burn calories. You don’t have to be a pro; sign up for a community kickball or softball league. Get that blood flowing and beat down those insulin levels.
    • Yoga and pilates are other great forms of exercise. The stretching and breathing exercises relax you and help sustain a normal weight. These exercises also strengthen your muscles.
    • You can join a zumba, hip hop, step aerobics, kickboxing or similar class. These are great choices for those who like to dance. You’ll boost your cardio and have a blast doing so.

Method 2
Dealing With Irregular Periods, Infertility and Excess Hair

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    Take birth control pills or progesterone to manage your period. When your period interferes with your daily life, take action. One common method is to use birth control pills. The different dosages of hormones that they contain can help balance out problems with your hormones. Using progesterone is an alternative that will give similar results for those who do not like birth control pills.[9]
    • Remember to take your birth control pills every day at the same time. If you accidentally skip a dose, do what the directions say.
    • Administer progesterone as directed by your doctor. You will usually take it for only ten to fourteen days per month. Ask to try a different length of time if it doesn’t seem to work. [10]
    • Be patient when starting these treatments. It will take several months to figure out if they will have positive effects. If you experience severe effects listed as possibilities in the informational brochure, contact your doctor immediately.
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    Use Clomiphene or other hormonal medicine to address infertility. If you desire to start a family but have not been able to conceive, it might because you are not ovulating properly. The illness prevents ovarian follicles from maturing and producing eggs.[11] Clomiphene or similar medications can spur ovulation. [12]
    • You can try metformin alongside the Clomiphene if Clomiphene does not produce results. [13]
    • There are alternatives to Clomiphene if it doesn’t work. Your doctor might prescribe follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) medications. They usually come as injections. [14]
    • As always, you should follow your doctor’s recommendations during this time to avoid complications.
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    Try facial masks or medication for unwanted hair. As a woman, having excess hair is not pleasant to deal with. If constantly shaving or using fading creams becomes a hassle, administering these treatments can help. [15]
    • You can make a face mask with turmeric or eggs to apply to your face. Turmeric is antibacterial and it can stop hair growth. You just need to blend it with equal parts flour and some water. Mixing an egg white with a half tablespoon of corn starch and tablespoon of sugar has a similar effect. [16]
    • Using the drugs Aldactone or Vaniqa will lessen the amount of androgen that your body produces, which will result in less hair growth. [17]
    • You have to use contraception while using medication because spironolactone, an active ingredient, can result in birth defects in children.
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    Get acupuncture. This ancient Chinese practice has documented beneficial uses. It focuses on tapping into the energy found in your body's pathways. For women with polycystic ovary syndrome, acupuncture takes place near knee, lower back and lower belly to stimulate the ovaries. [18]
    • Certain forms of acupuncture can work as well as or better than traditional medicine.
    • Acupuncture can actually help balance your hormones.[19]
    • Testosterone levels will decrease, the menstrual cycle might regulate, and ovulation may improve. [20]
    • Thousands of women have used it and have experienced positive results. [21]

Method 3
Staying Positive

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    Practice radical acceptance. Sometimes we become angry when we realize that we can not control something in our lives, like our bodies. Often, we might rebel by doing exactly what we are not supposed to. Instead, we have to accept our circumstances to stay healthy. [22]
    • Don't deny that you have an illness. In order to live a productive life, you must be realistic about your situation. [23]
    • Remind yourself daily that you are not alone. [24]
    • Educate yourself about the illness. Being informed benefits us mentally and emotionally--ignorance is not bliss when it comes to a serious health concern. [25]
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    Join a support group. Groups for women who have polycystic ovary syndrome exist. Look online to find a group in your area and attend a meeting or two. Making connections with others has many benefits. [26]
    • You will feel better after sharing your experiences, especially if you don’t already know someone else who has the syndrome.
    • You can also learn a lot from talking with like-minded people, like other tips for treating symptoms.
    • Strangers are usually be more objective than close friends or family members. You shouldn’t have to worry about judgment while at a support group meeting.
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    Seek counseling. If you are a private person, seeing a personal counselor is another option. People use therapy for many different reasons. Counseling can be especially helpful for women who experience fertility issues. [27]
    • No audience of strangers will be in the room, listening and looking. This is a plus for those who might feel uncomfortable attending a support group.
    • You can vent about how you are feeling about having polycystic ovary syndrome.
    • If you are not sure how to deal with the illness, a counselor can help you formulate an action plan.
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    Learn to meditate. After being diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome, it is important to reduce stressful feelings as much as possible. [28] Meditation involves breathing deeply, being mindful of the moment, and blocking out negative or chaotic thoughts.
    • The most useful benefit of meditation is that it will lessen your anxiety. [29]
    • You will also discover new solutions to pressing concerns. Sometimes we think about things in only one way, which puts us in a rut.
    • It will be easier for you to conquer pessimistic feelings and feel more upbeat.


  • Be consistent. Don’t disregard the steps for a few days each week. In order for your symptoms to lessen, you have to maintain a regimen, especially in terms of diet.
  • When you do need a snack, something like trail mix. The nuts are high in protein, which will give you a boost. Just check the label and avoid mixes that are high in sugar.
  • Be wary of so-called “fat free” food. It often has additional sugar. Check the labels carefully before purchasing it. [30]

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Categories: Reproductive Health