What is PCOS and can we help?

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If you suffer from PCOS, give our office a call today at (425) 686-4498 to learn more about how we can help!

Do you suffer from PCOS?

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is one of the most common endocrine and metabolic disorder among reproductive-age women. PCOS is where women develop multiple cysts on their ovaries. This also contributes to irregular menstruation, pain with ovulation, insulin resistance, excessive hair growth, hormonal acne, and one of the leading contributing factors to infertility.

Many women with PCOS often report struggles with fertility, irregular menses, acne, increase in hair growth, insulin resistance or develop diabetes, and pain with ovulation.

Natural treatments for PCOS

Natural Treatments for PCOS

The main goals for reducing symptoms of PCOS is to decrease inflammation, regulate blood sugar to prevent or reduce insulin resistance, and hormone regulation. The main drug prescribed to treat PCOS is Metformin. This is often prescribed because the key is to decrease insulin resistance and keep blood sugar levels maintained. This does help to decrease inflammation in the body. The approach to treating PCOS is multi-factorial and includes diet and lifestyle interventions, specific supplementation, and treatments such as acupuncture have been found beneficial to help PCOS.

Diet and Lifestyle

Women with polycystic ovary syndrome, a condition involving the imbalance of sex hormones, have a higher risk of ovarian cancer and obesity. Because of this, it is even more important that those with PCOS have a healthy diet.

The key with PCOS is to balance blood sugar and reduce insulin resistance which can be done using a 3-fold approach of diet, lifestyle, and acupuncture to provide a whole body approach to care.

Consider adding in these foods:

Lean Proteins: Limiting saturated fats can help decrease the body’s inflammation. Choose grass-fed and organic meats if possible. Good sources of lean proteins include fish, chicken, lentils, beans and eggs. Diets that are centered around the Mediterranean diet have shown to help decrease inflammation and help to control insulin resistance.

Fruits and Vegetables: Fruits and vegetables are never a bad choice to include more of into your diet. They are packed with vitamins and antioxidants to help strengthen your body’s immune system and fight disease. Good examples to add in are dark berries, cherries, dark leafy greens like chard and Kale, green onions, and bok choy, just to name a few.

Nuts and Seeds: Healthy fats are important for not only hormone regulation but providing those anti-inflammatory properties. The unsaturated fats in nuts and seeds can provide omega-3 fats that can reduce inflammation and help decrease your cancer risk. Good examples include: pumpkin seeds, hemp, and chia seeds.

Supplementation

Women with PCOS can benefit with supplements and vitamins that can help to decrease inflammation and decrease insulin resistance. Some top supplements that have been shown to do this include:

  • Vitamin D: Vitamin D has been found in studies to be essential for reducing insulin resistance and levels should be in the optimal range. If you live in the PNW, your levels often may be low so having them checked can be useful to know the dosage you should be taking.
  • Cinnamon: Cinnamon has been found to improve insulin resistance. This is more than just adding cinnamon to your meals, you need a therapeutic dose to have the desired effect. Studies have shown supplements that have 1.5gm/day can help.
  • Other supplements that have been shown to help include: methylfolate, Alpha-lipoic acid, and Chromium picolinate.

 

Treatments for PCOS

At Starting Point, we take an integrated approach to helping our PCOS patients. Acupuncture has found in many studies to be safe and highly effective treatment option for PCOS, with no or low side effects. Studies show that acupuncture may help PCOS by: increasing of blood flow to the ovaries, reducing the number of ovarian cysts, controlling blood sugar levels by helping with insulin sensitivity, and decreasing blood glucose and insulin levels and helping to reduce cortisol levels.

 

If you suffer from PCOS and not finding relief from your current treatments, give our office a call today (425) 686-4498 and learn how we can help.


Sources:

uptodate.com

Chi E. D. Lim & Wu S. F. Wong (2010) Current evidence of acupuncture on polycystic ovarian syndrome, Gynecological Endocrinology, 26:6, 473-478, DOI: 10.3109/09513591003686304

https://www.cochrane.org/CD007689/MENSTR_acupuncture-polycystic-ovarian-syndrome

Wu, Jielei MDa; Chen, Di MDb; Liu, Nenghui MDa, Effectiveness of acupuncture in polycystic ovary syndrome, Medicine: May 29, 2020 – Volume 99 – Issue 22 – p e20441 doi: 10.1097/MD.0000000000020441

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(425) 686-4498

Dr. Ellie Heintze, ND, LAc

  • Master’s Degree in Acupuncture
    Bastyr University
  • Doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine
    Bastyr University
  • Master’s Degree in Chemistry
    Northern Arizona University
Dr. Heintze Acupuncturist and Naturopathic Doctor

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