Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (also known as PCOS) is a hormonal disorder that can cause symptoms such as cysts on your ovaries, facial hair, infertility and weight gain. Women with PCOS are also at risk of getting type 2 diabetes as they may suffer from insulin resistance.
When I was first diagnosed with PCOS, I had symptoms of sudden weight gain and a cyst growing in my ovaries. In fact, I gained 10 kg over a period of five years. My Gynae told me that I may have infertility issues since I cannot ovulate regularly. Upon hearing the bad news, I was discouraged but I did not want to surrender to this disease. Perhaps I can do something about it.
I decided to start working out so that I can lose weight but it was really difficult for people like me. Losing weight was an issue for women with PCOS because we love to eat. Now I am happy to announce that I have lost 7kg in one year, through exercising and eating clean. My mensuration cycle is now regular and the Gynae even told me he was surprised that I am ovulating well.
Below are the things I did to fight PCOS:
I exercise 5-6 days a week with combination or strength training and cardio. Research has shown that regular workout not only helps women with PCOS to lose weight, but also improves response to insulin. Click on the links below for some video tutorials to kick-start your workout regime:
Reduce Sugar Intake
The first thing that I did was to quit soda. I used to drink Coca Cola almost every day and it was the main culprit of my excess belly fats. The moment I quit drinking, my body fat percentage drop tremendously. To avoid high insulin level in my blood, I am now more cautious when it comes to eating food with high sugar. It does not mean we have to avoid lip-smacking desserts completely, but we should always indulge in moderation.
More Protein, Less Carbohydrate
A mindful diet consists of more protein, more fiber and less carbohydrates. High intake of protein helps to increase metabolism and hence helps to burn more fats. Low carbs does not mean no carbs at all, many often think of carbs as their worst enemy but sugar and starches are just as important to a healthy life. You can switch to wholemeal food products to help moderate insulin intake.
I want to emphasize that breakfast is the most important meal for everyone. A hearty breakfast prevents unnecessary cravings for fatty or sweet stuff. Besides that, I eat 4-5 small meals a day to manage my hunger pangs because regular small meals can help to stabilize insulin release.
Although PCOS is something that will follow me for life, it does not mean I cannot lose weight or I will definitely have type 2 diabetes. My battle with PCOS is still on-going but I approach it in a happy and positive manner. My mensuration cycle is stable and I am enjoying every minute of my healthy lifestyle.