Causes - PCOS - Resources

In this section, we offer resources on special diets and alternative treatments that can help you cope with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and get you closer to achieving your dream of bringing home a baby.

PCOS and diabetes
Women with PCOS often have a high Body Mass Index (BMI), which means that they tend to be overweight or obese. Whether they have weight problems or not, women with PCOS are also at high risk for pre-diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes. Early interventions, including weight loss plans, may reduce problems associated with PCOS and pre-diabetes.

PCOS and weight loss
Weight loss does not cure PCOS but studies show that a PCOS weight loss plan may help correct hyperinsulinemia, regulate the menstrual cycle, and even restore fertility. Achieve a healthy weight and lower your BMI by eating a balanced fertility diet and exercising daily. A registered dietician can help formulate a PCOS weight loss plan that you can stick to. For example, diets approved by the American Diabetes Association (ADA) are excellent for PCOS weight loss. The diabetes diet is balanced and offers many food choices to allow you variety in your diet.

Before starting a PCOS weight loss plan, talk with your doctor. Your doctor may want to check your glucose tolerance. When you have impaired insulin resistance, it makes it harder to lose weight—even if you are on a very low calorie diet.

Alternative treatments for PCOS
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) gets its theoretical basis from the Taoist principles of yin and yang, the five movements, and Qi (pronounced “chi”). The main goal when trying to improve fertility in women with PCOS is to induce ovulation. To induce ovulation, TCM practitioners treat the main organs, including the kidney, spleen, and liver. The practitioner may use a combination of acupuncture, electro-acupuncture, moxabustion, and herbal therapy.

Diet, acupuncture, massage, yoga and talk therapy are all helpful additions to your conventional PCOS treatment program. Participating in these mind-body programs may help you relax and cope with PCOS symptoms and infertility. Ask your doctor for more information about PCOS treatments that may work for you.