Whether you are looking to become pregnant or just want help managing your PCOS, these are the things that worked for me. I'm not sure if it was just one of these things or a combination but I was able to lower my hormone levels and become pregnant within just a few months. Now if only I knew these things sooner I could have saved some time and frustration. That's why I thought I could share these tips and tricks I have done to help those of you who are struggling as well. *Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional and I am not saying that this is the fix all problem for PCOS. This is what helped me and if you are in a similar situation these things may help you too.* I will first give you a little back story and then explain to you my routine.
For those of you who haven't read my post about becoming pregnant with PCOS you can read that here first. It took me a few Reproductive Endocrinologists to find out exactly what was wrong. If you have PCOS and aren't really sure where to start I would highly suggest having your blood tested for a few things. Your Testosterone, Dhea Sulfate, and your TSH (thyroid). These are the levels that as soon as I brought to a "normal" range, I got pregnant that next cycle. Even if you aren't trying to conceive, balancing your hormones makes a big impact on how you feel.
A big thing with PCOS is controlling your blood sugar and managing your weight. For me my blood sugar wasn't as much of an issue as my hormone imbalance but the doctors did put me on a medication called Metformin. This helped me manage my weight along with a natural supplement called Inositol. There are two types of inositol and the one that I've heard is best for PCOS is Myo-Inositol. I had less cravings which really helped me not to eat those terrible carbs I was always craving. Here is a great website that can explain in much more detail (They also have great information on many PCOS topics). I was also on a low dose Thyroid medication as well that I am still on and took my whole pregnancy.
A big game changer for me was my diet. If you have PCOS you may have heard of people going gluten free and dairy free. I did a lot of research and the main reason for heightened testosterone can be from dairy and all the added hormones. A gluten free diet can be good because the grains that are naturally gluten free are low glycemic. I decided to go gluten free and try to limit the amount of dairy I consumed but make sure when I was consuming dairy that it was organic. I would eat no more than 2 servings of dairy a day. For a cheese lover this can be so difficult lol.
Now for my routine with all of these things I control my PCOS with...
My thyroid medicine used to really make things hard because you are not allowed to eat for a few hours prior to taking it or an hour after taking it. As soon as I decided to take it in the middle of the night when I take a drink of water it made my life so much easier. After taking that, a few hours later when I wake up I take my Inositol powder and Metformin with breakfast. I recommend starting slow with the Inositol powder and taking the recommended amount. Mine says to take 1/4 tsp. After a week or two you can move up to 1/2 tsp which I take currently. In the evening I take the Metformin and Inositol again with dinner. Metformin can really upset your stomach so I highly recommend taking it with a meal and asking your doctor for the slow release. If you plan on being pregnant in the future a good prenatal is always a great idea. This one is my favorite because it has great ratings and never made me sick!
As for gluten free and dairy free I try to eat foods that are naturally gluten free. I love mexican food so I eat flax seed tortilla chips with things instead of flour tortillas. Rice cakes are pretty versatile too and you can easily replace your toast in the morning If add peanut butter and chocolate chips, sliced bananas or sunflower seeds it makes a nice easy breakfast. I should stress that naturally gluten free foods are healthiest. A lot of processed gluten free foods contain soy and other sketchy ingredients. With PCOS it is best to avoid soy because it can really mess with your hormones. Aldi has gluten free snack options that are also soy free if you need pretzels every once in a while. As for Dairy replacement, coconut milk is my milk of choice for just about any recipe. I love it in coffee and cooking with it in recipes! Spearmint tea is great for naturally lowering testosterone levels as well as giving up dairy. If you would like a post about more food ideas for gluten free let me know in the contact me section!
Thanks so much for reading! I hope you are all having a great start to the New Year. I will see you back here next Friday :)