How to Reduce the Damaging Effects of PCOS on Fertility Through Diet and Herbs

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PCOS — Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Emily Hi my names is Emily I'm 20 years old was diagnosed with endometreois 2 years ago and have just been diagnosed with pcos. Endocrine function is imbalanced from the very beginning of the menstrual cycle causing mild to severe hormonal imbalance, depending on the individual. She is of 22 yrs old and we are looking for baby. How your lifestyle may be inhibiting your ability to conceive — and what to do about it Why popular fertility diets may be leading you down the wrong road What foods to eat to optimize and nourish your fertility, and how to adopt a real foods diet How to determine your personal health imbalances that may be interfering with your fertility How to use Chinese medicine to bring your body into balance and improve your odds of conception How to streamline your supplements and take only what you really need Your natural and medical treatment options for common fertility issues How to navigate the medical fertility world and when to seek help Get Feed Your Fertility Now. Certain food groups like sugar, grains, dairy and legumes could be having a negative impact on your health and fitness without you even realizing it. Then read below to learn how to heal your metabolism, manage your blood sugar, and control food cravings.

What is PCOS?

Step One: Discover the Whole30

Created by the registered dietitian nutritionists from the PCOS Nutrition Center, women who have PCOS themselves, this cookbook provides a summary of science-based know-how on what to eat and what to avoid , as well as easy and delicious whole food recipes, to beat PCOS.

Recipes include a variety of slow whole grains, lean proteins, healthy fats, and plenty of fruits and vegetables proven to prevent disease, boost fertility, lose weight, and optimize health. The PCOS Nutrition Center Cookbook includes a bonus four-week meal plan along with weekly shopping lists that help take the guesswork out of meal planning.

This cookbook will help you rediscover the pleasure of making and eating food that is both good and good for you. I provide nutrition therapy for women with PCOS and nutrition is the key component of their treatment.

This is the first cookbook that features recipes and meal plans that optimize nutrition for PCOS management. The authors both have PCOS and are registered dietitian nutritionists.

The recipes are wonderful and I have prepared the Mini Quinoa Kale quiches many times. I appreciate the easy to read format, nutrition information and great color pictures so I know what the dish will look like. I will continue to recommend this book to all my patients with PCOS and to anyone who likes fresh recipes ideas that promote health and wellness. Women with PCOS who want to eat more healthfully now have a terrific cookbook available to them. Jennifer Lee Greene — February 25, There is so much stress over eating when you have PCOS.

This book has helped me stay on track with some delicious and easy meals your whole family will enjoy. I also recommend the diet guide and workbook. These tools have helped me get a better perspective on my PCOS.

A big thank you to Angela for writing these books! Angela Grassi — April 8, As a registered dietitian, I always welcome books that help people eat better. This book focuses on helping women with PCOS control their health through whole foods, but I think the book would be useful for anyone who wants to eat a healthier diet. I love the simple, colorful layout. The recipes are simple to follow, with tips on ingredients.

For those who are interested, Grassi includes brief discussions of the nutritional principles she recommends. I definitely recommend this for women who are dealing with PCOS. There are numerous studies and testimonials of Vitex and its effects on the body. Vitex supports hormonal balance in the body by having an effect on the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis hormonal feedback loop , correcting the problem at the source.

Tribulus has been found to help encourage regular ovulation in infertile women when used prior to ovulation. This herb has been found to be wonderful in aiding women with menstrual irregularities, improving the timing of the entire menstrual cycle.

Tribulus has also been found to be a nourishing tonic for the female reproductive system as a whole, especially concerning the ovaries. Most clinical trials have found that when White Peony is combined with Licorice Rt. Progesterone cream can help to oppose estrogen dominance that may occur in some women with PCOS. Through the topical application of progesterone cream one can mimic a natural cycle and help the body to establish its own cycle, including ovulation, once again.

DIM balances the hormones and aids in the breakdown of estrogen. Estrogen is a major culprit to many of the fertility issues women face today including PCOS. Unopposed estrogen has been shown to cause menstrual cycle irregularities and in more advanced cases, endometrial hyperplasia.

Removal of excess estrogen is vital to overall hormonal balance in women with PCOS. A pilot study published in by Fertility and Sterility showed cinnamon to greatly reduce insulin resistance in women with PCOS. Another study suggests cinnamon may also reduce insulin resistance by slowing the movement of food from the stomach to the small intestine.

This slows the breakdown of carbohydrates, which is important for people with diabetes and women with PCOS. Gymnema has been used for hundreds of years to reduce high blood sugar.

Gymnema blocks the typical paths that sugar molecules take during digestion, delaying the absorption of sugar. It works by stimulating the regeneration of pancreatic cells that produce insulin, which aids in more insulin production; in turn stimulating production of enzymes that help with the uptake of glucose into cells; and then prevents stimulation of the liver to produce more glucose.

Gymnema also appears to have a lipid-lowering effect, which aids in weight loss. Hirsutism and Endometrial Hyperplasia. This herb also helps to reduce endometrial hyperplasia and hormonal acne symptoms. Inflammatory response Because women with PCOS usually have low-grade inflammation constantly present in the body, it is important to support the body by promoting a healthy inflammation response. Some foods are known to trigger inflammation in the body. If you have food allergies, avoid foods which you are sensitive to because they trigger an inflammatory response.

Omega essential fatty acids decrease the risk of inflammation, especially omega-3 and 6. Getting enough essential fatty acids in the diet may help, both through foods you eat and through supplementation. Systemic Enzyme Therapy or using systemic enzymes is another option.

Systemic enzyme blends work as a biological response modifier; working with the bodies own immune defense system to moderate inflammatory response. They also break down the proteins in the blood that cause inflammation. They may also aid in hormonal balance through endocrine system support. Click here to learn about other herbs helpful for women with PCOS…. Eating a specific PCOS Fertility Diet is one of the best things you can do to improve your chances of becoming pregnant.

The biggest part of the problem with PCOS is insulin resistance. Insulin resistance also makes it difficult for the embryo to attach properly to the uterus for implantation. I do not say all this to scare you, but I do want you to know that this is a serious matter. Fortunately, there are many natural options you can do on your own to turn this all around. The biggest step you can take is to change your diet to a PCOS diet.

Balance your daily protein intake with an equal amount of carbohydrates This will help to eliminate the insulin yo-yo. When you eat equal amounts of protein and carbohydrates this helps to keep your insulin at a balanced level, thus increasing your fertility.

A low-carbohydrate, high-protein diet helped insulin resistance. A high-carbohydrate, low-protein diet made insulin resistance worse. The types of carbohydrates you choose are also an important factor.

Choose whole grain, or sprouted grain products. They contain more protein and fiber better for balancing insulin levels than their processed counterparts.

Avoid processed carbohydrates, especially the white variety white flour, rice, potato, etc. Make sure the proteins you are eating are complete and organic. Organic meats and dairy contain essential fatty acids and will reduce the negative impact on hormonal imbalance. Blood glucose rises and then falls when you eat a meal containing carbs.

How high it rises and how long it remains high depends on the kind of carbs glycemic index, GI and the amount you ate glycemic load, GL. The glycemic load takes into consideration the amount of the glycemic index food you consumed and how that affects your blood sugar. The serving size of the amount of carbohydrates consumed really matter here.

Be sure to eat no more than g of low glycemic index carbohydrates a day if you have insulin resistant PCOS and are overweight. Increase the amount of low glycemic index carbohydrates consumed a day to over g if you are thinner or underweight. Avoid foods that have a high glycemic index such as sugary and starchy foods such as: Fiber helps in two ways with PCOS. The first way it helps is by slowing down the digestion of sugars in the body, so there is no spike in insulin.

The second way fiber helps is by promoting healthy estrogen metabolism which aids in the reduction of elevated levels of androgens. Great sources of fiber are: By eating more often, the body will not go into fasting mode. When you look at the way most Americans eat, it is usually three big meals a day. With such a large gap of time between meals the body goes into fasting mode which may cause the metabolism to become imbalanced. Your five meals a day should consist of three regular meals and two healthy snacks, or 5 small meals.

The first snack should be eaten in the mid-morning before lunch and the second snack to be eaten less than an hour before bed. Alternately, you could have your last snack between lunch and dinner, eating your dinner right before bed. Find out what works best with your lifestyle. Cod Liver Oil — Take 1 capsule daily with one of your meals. You can take this daily and during pregnancy.

Evening Primrose Oil — Take mg of this oil from day one of your cycle menstruation until ovulation. Evening Primrose Oil helps to increase cervical mucous and metabolic function.

Use in addition to flax or cod liver oils. Exercise helps PCOS by improving insulin sensitivity, increasing metabolism and helping to shed any excess weight. Both aerobic and resistance exercises are good. Researchers found that participants of resistance exercises showed better improvement in insulin sensitivity than with aerobic exercise alone.

Avoid excessive exercise programs because too much exercise overworks the adrenal glands which increases inflammation and in turn makes PCOS worse. Restorative exercise programs are best. You could walk and lift weights, or take a Pilates class and run on the treadmill, or do some Zumba and then Fertility Yoga. Discover what you enjoy doing and do this 5 days a week for at least thirty minutes a day. You will be eating a high protein diet, so it is essential that any animal proteins meats and dairy you are eating are organic.

In commercial meats there are large amounts of added hormones estrogens that make the animals grow bigger, faster, and produce more milk. With PCOS there is usually a progesterone deficiency and adding more estrogens can make it even worse.

Caffeine increases estrogen levels. A study from Fertility and Sterility shows that drinking just two cups of coffee a day boosts levels of estradiol, a natural estrogen. Your doctor may recommend a certain number and then make adjustments based on your results. Women with PCOS who restricted their carb intake to 20 grams per day for six months experienced significant improvements in weight, insulin sensitivity, triglycerides and testosterone levels, according to a study published in the journal Nutrition and Metabolism in December Researchers report that even a modest reduction in carbohydrates improves PCOS symptoms.

In one study, sticking to 27 percent of calories from carbohydrates resulted in significant improvements in testosterone, cholesterol and insulin sensitivity. If you're following a diet consisting of 1, calories, that equals about grams of carbohydrates. A restricted-carbohydrate diet for PCOS means choosing nutritious foods that contain a low number of carbs.

To balance out your carbs and remain within your daily goal, limit the portion size of foods that are higher in carbohydrates. For example, grains are rich in carbohydrates. Many low-carb plans use "net carbs," which are simply the total carb grams minus the grams of fiber. When you go grocery shopping, load up on nonstarchy vegetables, protein-rich foods and lower-sugar fruits like berries, grapefruit, apples and pears. Stock up on lots of green vegetables like asparagus, bell peppers, spinach, cabbage and other leafy greens.

What Causes PCOS?