Sunday, July 08, 2007
"My wife is 33 yrs old and has been diagnosed with PCOS...any information from someone who seems to have lead a fairley normal life would be great even a phone call to her in the USA would be great form of support for her......Please help her anyway possible"
This was my reply:
First of all, your wife should know that it is not the end of the world. Unfortunately, the lack of good information (and good doctors who know about PCOS) available means that many women feel incredibly despondent when they discover they have it. My advice to your wife would be:
1. Sign up for my free newsletter at http://www.pcosmatters.com - the information I give will be a good starting place for her to learn about PCOS (under no way feel obliged to buy the interviews I sell there - the free information is a good grounding).
2. Find a doctor who understands and is sympathetic about PCOS and...
3. Get a referral to an Endocrinologist. PCOS is actually an Endocrine disorder and this specialist is best placed to help her (more so than a gyne). I hope that helps some. Other than that, if she is particularly interested in natural health she should keep an eye on my MySpace blog.
I honestly believe that lack of readily available information means many women diagnosed with PCOS think it is the kiss of death but, while it often makes life harder and does cause some heartache, it is not the end of the world. Everyday, women with PCOS are getting pregnant, losing weight, dealing with the excess hair etc.
I thought it was interesting during the recent Trans Fat scare/findings that it was attributed as a significant cause of infertility. Many women have been blaming their PCOS as the cause of their fertility problems, but there are tons of other toxins in the modern world that might be equally to blame (I say this not to depress you even more but to help you realise that PCOS is not always your greatest enemy, and not all problems in life are the fault of PCOS).
I hope that is of some help and feel free to post your own feelings about this (even if it means calling me to task)!
Sunday, July 01, 2007
There are many alternatives you can try from changing your diet to consulting a natural health therapist, herbs to massage, or a combination of treatments. If traditional medicine is letting you down it might be time to try something different.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
Stressed out? Need a good way to relax and feel better about life? Why not get a massage? Getting regular massages helps relieve the physical and mental stress from your body, leaving you ready to take on new challenges.
Here are some of the great benefits of massage:
Improves immune system functioning
Studies have shown that the number of white cells in your blood increases after a massage. These are the cells that help the body fight diseases. With regular massage, you can have a stronger immune system and get sick less often.
By relaxing your muscles, blood is able to flow more freely through your veins. Improved circulation gives you a boost of energy for the rest of your day. Plus, increased circulation in the skin can even reduce the appearance of cellulite if done on a regular basis
When muscles are tight and tense all day long, they eventually become sore. By relaxing the muscles with a massage, you can ease the pain caused by sore, stiff muscles. Plus, increased circulation further helps relieve pain from the area that is rubbed, and can help relieve tension headaches.
Decreases stress and anxiety
Stress is one of the most prevalent, but preventable causes of health problems in modern society. De-stressing is not only a great way to feel better; it also helps you live longer. If you've ever had a massage, you already know how relaxed it makes you feel. With relaxed muscles, decreased pain, improved circulation, your body lets go of all the daily stress you've been holding on to.
Decreases blood pressure
There was a study conducted that showed that a simple, short touch can immediately cause a drop in blood pressure. Combine this with the improved circulation, relaxed muscles, and decreased anxiety and you get a great way to keep your blood pressure low. You should be careful if you have low pressure to begin with; make sure to get up slowly and take it easy after a massage.
Massage has been shown to make you feel better due to many of the reasons listed above. It is so good at improving mood, it has been used for treating depression in women who had recently lost a child. If massage can help with their depression, it can certainly lift a bad mood. So, think a massage might help you but just don't think you can afford it? You should check out massage schools. There you can get a quality massage at an incredibly low price.
So what are you waiting for? Go out and make an appointment for a massage today. You'll be feeling great in no time.
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
Juicing is a great way to get your vitamins and nutrients in one simple and effective blast. This is even more important for PCOS sufferers, especially if you are on the contraceptive pill. Trials have shown that the pill can strip the body of nutrients and alter the vitamin and mineral levels of the body. The vitamins and minerals you should be most concerned about are vitamin B1, B2, B6 and B12, folic acid, vitamin C, Vitamin E and Zinc. Try juicing leafy green vegetables such as spinach and broccoli, carrots, and tomatoes.
Many people with PCOS suffer from energy lows and fatigue, partly caused by blood sugar levels dipping and the effects of insulin resistance, but also possibly from the effects of the other hormone inbalances. Raw foods are a great way to get your essential nutrients and boost your energy levels during the day, but not everybody can face plates of raw or lightly steamed vegetables. Juicing those vegetables (and some fruits) will help make those raw foods more palatable and easier to stomach!
These are naturally occuring substances that have numerous health benefits (but can not be stored in the body, so you need to eat them on a regular basis). Again, these are important for everybody's health because they are good for the skin and hair, as well as your heart, mental and reproductive health. They are especially important if you have PCOS because they help reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes and reproductive disorders. Again, those green leafy vegetables are important, as well as tomatoes, blueberries and cranberries.
I hope this has given you just a "taster" of why juicing can be so beneficial to PCOS sufferers.
A word of warning, if you are Insulin Resistant, fruit juices will be quite high in natural sugars (remember it takes a few apples to make a small glass of juice) and will cause your glucose levels to spike. Try to stick to mainly vegetable juices with a little fruit juice mixed in. Secondly, juicing means you are not benefiting from the fiber you would normally get from eating fruit and vegetables so make sure you are getting your fiber elsewhere.
Monday, May 07, 2007
Meanwhile, try this juice recipe:
Half a cucumber, halved lengthways
3 carrots, peeled
3 celery stalks, tops trimmed off
Tip: Vegetable juices are great for overall health. At first it takes a little time to get used to the taste, but eventually you'll get there…. Just think of all those health benefits! Another tip is to mix your juice with a little natural apple juice (juice apples along with the veggies) to give it a sweeter taste.
Juice according to juice instructions and enjoy!
Fruit & Veggie Facts:
Cucumbers are a strong diuretic and may help lower blood pressure. Perfect for when you're retaining water.
Celery contains compounds called pthalides which helps regular blood pressure. Also a good diuretic.
Carrots are great for the skin and eyes.
Let me know what you think and feel free to add your own favorite juicing recipes
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
The Secret Lives Of Women With PCOS
By Ashley Tabeling
For years thousands of women have incorporated unusual daily rituals and affirmations to manage symptoms that seemed to be unrelated. Some of these rituals might include plucking, shaving, treatments to reduce hair loss, acne creams, diets to fight unexplained weight gain, skin bleaches, and repeated trips to doctors who tell them their irregular menstrual cycles and problems are all in their heads.
For Kimberly Sacs, an earlier diagnosis of PCOS could have eliminated years of misdiagnoses and pain. "My PCOS story began at an early age. I was always the first child in my class to develop— I was considered "overweight" from the age of 8 on. I was told that I was lazy by doctors, offered forms of speed to increase my metabolism and even told that if I didn't loose weight that a doctor might, one day, have to stick a needle in my heart if I had a heart attack."
Eight years later, Kimberly finally received a diagnosis, "At the age of 16 I had a stretch of 6 months without a period. A family doctor gave me a five-day dose of hormones to "jump-start" my period. That worked once, but when it didn't work again and I requested another doctor. A caring and intelligent young intern noticed the correlation of many of my medical conditions—the weight, the depression, and the break in my cycles. She diagnosed me with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)."
Although PCOS Polycystic Ovary syndrome affects up to 10% of women and girls of reproductive age, it is estimated that less than half know they have it! To put this in to perspective, 6% of both men and women have diabetes, which is well known and supported. PCOS, a precursor to diabetes again affects up to 10% of women alone and many medical professional are stil not up to date with diagnosis, treatment and management of PCOS!
What PCOS is, and what it does to women who have it, is complicated to explain as symptoms and severity of the syndrome can vary from person to person. Some of the classic symptoms are drastic weight gain, hair loss, depression, fatigue, thyroid problems, high cholesterol, panic attacks, headaches, dizzy spells, poor memory or muddled mind, sleeping disorders, constant thirst, extreme cravings, insulin resistance, cystic acne, cystic ovaries, menstrual cycles without ovulation, irregular cycles, severe mood swings, high testosterone levels, infertility problems, excess facial and body hair, not to mention a seven times greater risk than an average woman for four major health concerns affecting women in the United States today including heart disease, diabetes, endometrial cancer and stroke.
Many women have experienced the same lack of response as Kimberly did, and are left w with little understanding of PCOS and the best way to treat it. This may be due to the fact that there is n centralized resources for teaching and learning about PCOS!
Deborah Cardoza didn't give her symptoms much thought until she wanted to start a family " I came across a short article in a magazine, I believe, that talked about PCOS and those symptoms fit me! I went to my internist who ran some tests. While the tests didn't support a PCOS diagnosis. I was thin, young, and didn't know much so the only thing I did about my symptoms was to go for laser hair removal, which didn't wind up working and left me to start shaving my face every morning.
Over the next few years I did not give my symptoms much thought until my husband and I decided to start a family. Suspecting I may have problems, we went straight to a reproductive endocrinologist. Pre-IVF testing this time showed I did have PCOS. The doctor put me on an insulin sensitizer to help me lose weight before any cycles to conceive. I wasn't on it for long when my husband and I decided to build our family another way. My weight wasn't a big issue at the time, and I still didn't know all I do now about PCOS."
Prior to a few years ago, PCOS had been largely misunderstood and rarely diagnosed. The information to make a proper diagnosis just wasn't there. Your concerns, in many cases, would have been dismissed. Now the medical community is realizing it is more than menstrual irregularities, it's a lifelong condition that can take years off of your life.
Sarah Yochved- Goldstein like many others who have dealt with PCOS from an early age feels awareness and information about the syndrome are important, "I hope and pray daily that doctors will get more aggressive with treatment, ladies will educate themselves better, and insurance companies will give preventative treatment instead of waiting until a woman needs drastic measures to regain her life! It is my blessings that whoever helps in this, and any woman that educates herself and aggressively takes part in her care will experience some success, whether the return of her health and vitality, or the eventual birth of a child."
The good news is that there is now more information than ever about this syndrome –medical professionals are being trained to recognize the symptoms and know the best way to confirm a diagnosis is sending women to endocrinologists for testing.
"Remember information is the key!," say Ashley Tabeling, Founder of Project PCOS projectpcos.org , a new website a central resource for information, education and awareness for PCOS. She continues, " The more you know about PCOS or any condition, the better you will be at communicating with your medical professionals and understanding what steps you need to take to live a happier and healthier life."
Founder and COO
Project PCOS - http://www.projectpcos.org
PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome) Coordinator
The PCOS Center @
Drexel Center for Women's Health
219 N. Broad Street, 6th Floor
Philadelphia, Pa 19102
Monday, January 22, 2007
I am often asked for help with fertility issues, and now researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health have found that these hidden fats can increase the risk of fertility problems by 70 percent or more! That's huge!
Unfortunately, it isn't easy to find out which foods have trans fats in them. They can be found naturally in some red meat and dairy products, but in general they are artificially produced and added to many processed foods in order to extend their shelf life.
Thankfully, research has prompted many companies to announce they will no longer add trans fats to their foods (and hopefully this will include it being added to nutritional information on food packets that still contain them), but there is another answer to avoiding trans fats and that is to avoid processed foods altogether.
The best books I have read discussing the effects of processed foods and food toxins on PCOS are written by Colette Harris. I have listed her books here:
I know organic foods can be expensive and we don't always have time to cook from scratch, but the arguments for avoiding toxins and focusing on good nutrition are extremely convincing. Colette Harris is from the UK, so certain foods or weights and measures may not be familiar to you, but the quality of the information is well researched and universal.
It's interesting that when we suffer with PCOS we assume that any problems we have (such as problems conceiving) are most likely caused by the PCOS, when sometimes it is worth looking at other aspects of our lifestyle and the world around us.
To your good health,