The relationship between PCOS and Obesity
Sunday, September 8, 2019
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder common among women of reproductive age. Women with PCOS may have infrequent or prolonged menstrual periods or excess male hormone (androgen) levels. The ovaries may develop numerous small collections of fluid (follicles) and fail to regularly release eggs.
The complications of PCOS can include: Infertility, gestational diabetes or pregnancy-induced high blood pressure, miscarriage or premature birth, nonalcoholic steatohepatitis — a severe liver inflammation caused by fat accumulation in the liver, metabolic syndrome — a cluster of conditions including high blood pressure, high blood sugar, and abnormal cholesterol or triglyceride levels that significantly increase your risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes or prediabetes, sleep apnea, depression, anxiety and eating disorders, abnormal uterine bleeding and cancer of the uterine lining (endometrial cancer).
Does Being Overweight Cause PCOS or Does PCOS Result in Obesity?
Both are possible. The link between PCOS and obesity is complicated. Signs and symptoms of polycystic ovarian syndrome begin for some females soon after they start having periods. Women with PCOS produce too much insulin, or the insulin they produce does not work as it should. The inability of insulin to function normally is one reason why women with PCOS tend to gain weight or have a hard time losing weight. For others, PCOS develops later on, following substantial weight gain. What is clear is that women affected by obesity have a greater risk for PCOS and women with PCOS have a greater risk of obesity.
Losing weight not only cuts your risk for many diseases, but it can also make you feel better. When you have PCOS, shedding just 10% of your body weight can bring your periods back to normal. It can also help relieve some of the symptoms of polycystic ovary syndrome.
How to Lose Weight with PCOS?
Many women with PCOS can manage their symptoms and reduce their risk of other medical concerns by controlling their diet and lifestyle choices. You can avoid gaining weight—and even drop pounds—with PCOS if you follow these guidelines:
- Reduce Your Carb Intake.
- Get Plenty of Fiber.
- Eat Enough Protein.
- Eat Healthy Fats.
- Limit Processed Foods and Added Sugars.
- Manage Your Stress.
- Get Enough Sleep.
- Exercise Regularly.