Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is surprisingly common (25% of adult women) and mainly affects a woman's ability to ovulate. It is characterised by a whole-body hormonal imbalance that shows signs of excess androgen hormones, with symptoms that include acne, excess facial hair, or thinning hair of the head. If not managed sufficiently, PCOS can contribute to further health risks such as diabetes and heart disease.
Through tackling the root cause of hormonal imbalance, the Functional Medicine approach to PCOS works to restore ovulation. This, combined with other natural methods of boosting fertility, can help you conceive when you want to.
PCOS is formally diagnosed if you meet two of the three criteria:
- Irregular periods or no periods at all
- Excess androgens, identified either via symptoms or through a blood test
- Multiple small 'cysts' on the ovaries, as shown in an ultrasound
The common drivers of PCOS involve insulin resistance, inflammation, stopping the oral contraceptive pill and STRESS. You can also test for PCOS with hormone testing, blood tests and a glucose tolerance test.
Managing PCOS requires a multi-targeted approach:
- Minimising Stress with lifestyle improvements
- Supporting Gut Health to reduce inflammation improve absorption
- Blood Sugar Balancing to improve insulin sensitivity
- Toxic load reduction to support the liver
- Optimising Diet and using supplements and herbs to support hormone balance
The goal is to get your hormones back into balance to facilitate a normal menstrual cycle and re-establish ovulation.
If you are struggling with hormonal imbalance, then contact us so that we can provide the necessary nutritional and lifestyle support to improve your overall wellbeing..
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