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I need some suggestions, please. Let me give you some background on my situation. I am going to have to do this in 2 posts.
My period started when I was 10. When I was 14 it started to become irregular. By 16 I was going months without a period and then when I finally got one I would basically hemorrhage for 2-3 days and have a typical flow for 3-4 weeks. This cyle continued for a while and my mother took me to see an OB-GYN. She refused to examine me and dismissed that there was really an issue.
When I was about 18 I started really researching my symptoms and found this thing called PCOS. It was the only thing that matched all the syptoms that I had. So I made an appointment with a different OB. She disagreed with the the research that I had found stating that it was not a real condition. She examined me and prescribed birth control to regulate the periods. Since my pap was normal she dismissed the whole idea of a chronic problem. I started the birth control regimen.
I was okay with this routine for a while but decided to continue my research and saw there were links to infertillity and diabetes. So I sought out a specialist. He is a fertility specialist who works with women who have PCOS. Finally someone who acknowledges that this is an actual issue. By this time I was 21. I had gained an unhealthy amount of weight, 50 pounds above a healthy weight. I was experiencing thick hair growth on my face neck and chin and thick hair on my arms. This specialist confirmed that these were all signs of PCOS. Another exam and an ultrasound. Cysts were found on my ovaries. No duh! He recommended that I continue with the birthcontrol regimen. So I did.
contiued from first post...
January of 2009 I spoke with a nurse about headaches and high blood pressure and more weight gain. I decided to stop the pill. No period. For months. I went to see the specialist again. He said that new research showed that Metformin was not necessarily the only treatment. He prescribed a 12 day Progesterone pill that I would repeat every 3 months. It was awful. Imagine the worst PMS you've ever had! It lasted 3 weeks. I did have a period but determined that I could not go through that again. My husband agreed. :) I also enlisted the help of a homeopath who has me taking evening primrose oil.
I was so excited when I found the Kind Diet. I always wanted to be a vegitarian but lacked the knowledge to do it well and I had discovered an alergy to dairy, so this was perfect. I started in April 2010 with the highest hopes. It has now been a year since I've had a period. The cysts are still there (they probably always will be) my pap is normal. I don't want to go on birth control again, worse yet the progesterone treatment. The doc wants to put me on meds. I will stay a vegan because I love it and I beleive in it and feel the best that I've felt for a long time. But still no period and no weight loss. Am I missing something? What do I do? Please help!
Hi, your story is so similar to mine. Off and on periods. Often 6 months without and the every other week when I do have them. I struggle to loose weight although I work super hard not to gain. I easily need to get rid of 15 pounds which Im hoping will happen with the super hero plan. My acne at 28 years old, is driving me nuts. I feel like its worse than when I was 16.
So I read on another forum that the superhero plan is ideal for women with PCOS. I my self want to look into it more, but I know if def wont hurt. I have been a vegan for several months now and I feel great with no weight loss. I have better digestion and less bloating. My periods seem to be getting better. I take vitamin D, maca and multis. I refuse birth control as I have been on it many times before and only masked the problem and gave me terrible side effects. Ive been to many alternative doctors who seem super confused by me. I eat very well with a bit of sugar. Again, I think giving the superhero plan some time maybe the best idea I have heard!
Don't give up! I've suffered from PCOS for over 8 years. I developed a dairy intolerance around 5 years ago so since then have avoided it. I've been a vegan for 5 months (well I still eat fish and eggs.. so not quite yet.. but im approaching it gradually)
But only since I stopped eating meat in the last 5 months have I noticed a dramatic difference in my periods and overall health. Despite having irregular periods for the last 8 years.. sometimes once a year, every 6 months etc..I am now pretty regular, have had my period every month. It feels amazing and I definitely put it down to stop eating meat. I've done a bit of research on it, and personally i dont think it's surprising it's had such an effect given the different hormones, chemicals and whatever else are pumped into our meat and the agricultural system.
I've been on and off the pill but finally stopped taking it around 1 year ago and definitely never wish to go back on it!
I too have started adding Macca to my breakfast smoothies..as well as a teaspoon of flaxseed oil. I also swear by Udo's choice oil blend (flax,sunflower, sesame and coconut oils..) Candice I'm sure that would help with your acne.
Overall, I eat plenty of vegetables, some fruits (but also go through phases of going without as I think it can contribute to Candida which definitely doesnt help PCOS) I avoid sugar, opting for agave syrup and natural alternatives, I also avoid wheat, but eat plenty of brown rice, quinoa and oats, lots of seeds and nuts.
Hi, I also have PCOS. When my symptoms first appeared, irregular periods, hair growth, hair loss, cystic acne, weight gain--there was very little info available and all the doctors I saw told me there was nothing wrong with me!
Doctors are better informed now, but some still are not. I finally find a gyno who put me on Spironolactone, 50 mgs a day. This has relieved all my symptoms, and the only side effect is frequent urination because it is a diuretic. No I am not happy I take prescription meds, but I must say in my case it is the only thing that has worked.
By the way, PCOS was incorrectly named. At the time it was discovered, the medical community thought it had to do with cysts on the ovary. They have since changed this way of thinking. All women get cysts on their ovaries, whether they know it or not. It is actually a hormone imbalance that causes all of our symptoms.
I wish you luck, I know how difficult the symptoms can be!
Thanks everyone for your comments and support. I will do some research on all your suggestions and see if they will help as well.
A Crowther it's interesting the similarities in our experiences. I too try to avoid sugar as much as possible because of the PCOS and my father is diabetic.
I have also spoken to a nutritionist who believes that gluten is contributes to imbalanced hormones. I want to look into this further but it makes sense on some levels. I have yet to eliminate gluten from my diet because going vegan was a dramatic change but I will probably move in that direction eventually. I am also experiences ache that I had not had when I was on the pill. It's driving me crazy!
My specialist had suggested Spironolactone as well. Maybe I should reconsider it.
Thanks again everyone. I look forward to hearing more from you.
My family thinks I have PCOS, but I haven't gone to a doctor about it yet because I want to try to regulate it naturally instead of going on a bunch of crazy pills. One thing I have to add to others' comments is that I read an article written by a doctor (can't remember the name, tho, sorry!) that said whole grains can help regulate hormones. What they do is bind to the excess hormones, carrying them out of the digestive tract, and eliminate them from the body! How cool is that! I have been eating vegan for 2.5 months and each period is getting better and better. The first one I had after starting to eat vegan (it was like a week later) was SIGNIFICANTLY lighter! I feel eating whole, plant based foods is definitely helping me! Now if only I could get rid of the hair on my face permanently....sigh.
PCOS is an epidemic. Many women have it that don't yet know it. It also takes different forms in different people. It is essentially a disease of metabolism and the imbalances it engenders can manifest in numerous ways.
Our bodies make the hormones and other chemical messengers it needs from the foods we consume. What we eat gets broken down and then rebuilt by our system into the chemicals we need. The nutrients and amounts of calories we consume effects this process.
The superhero plan is a great way to begin. If some small adjustments need to be made, they become apparent as you make the transition.
The main idea is to get all the nutrition you need while limiting your bodies exposure to excess concentrated protein, fat and carbohydrate. Animal based foods contain concentrated forms of fat and protein. Processed food often contain concentrated carbohydrate. Sugars and oils are also avoided.
This reduces the stored fat on the body as well as the protein precursors that make our hormones. Under these circumstances the body is able to find it's own balance.
So I have enlisted the help of an acupuncturist who has specialized in fertility. I had my first appointment this past Friday and I am to go once a week for a while. After my first appointment I was very emotional but felt really good. She is hopeful and was happy that I had taken other steps that would support the treatment, like being vegan and working with a homeopath.
I will keep you updated.
Hey all. I gave up dairy in Sept of 09, became vegan in Febuary of this year and i HAD pcos. My PCOS was different, no periods at all, on pills (not birth control because I had flu like symptoms everytime I took them) once every 3 months to make sure I got my period. Then this past april I got my period, on my own, no pills. Because I only have 1 ovary, had one taken out when I was 8, I only get my period once every 2 months at this time. This life style has changed my life dramatically. Stick with it and have faith. Things will get better. I'm also down 50 pounds now, have about 30 more to go, although I will be happy with 20.
Good luck to you all! Send a note if you want to talk in private or anything.