Tag Archives: PCOS

First Step: Changing My Diet

16 Aug

Follow up post…

The first thing I needed to do to take care of my health was to change my eating habits. I knew this… but I had/have a bit of a problem… I love to cook, I love to eat. I love to try new foods. I love baked goods. How can I change my diet without the misery of cravings? Well, I wasn’t sure what was going to happen. I just needed to try something new. I’ve done Weight Watchers before with good weight loss results (but it doesn’t get rid of my PCOS symptoms).

After doing my research (there isn’t a lot of scientific research in this area, unfortunately), I decided to go ahead and try a gluten free, dairy free diet. Yikes! I love glutenous foods. I certainly love dairy products. Why exactly is this the way to go? Partly because of testimony from other women living with PCOS, partly because it’s possible that gluten exacerbates inflammation caused by insulin resistance, partly because consuming dairy can increase male hormones and I sure don’t need/want any more of those. So, I’m going with it. I actually made the change 2 weeks ago and I’ve already noticed some significative changes. My cravings for sugary foods went away. I don’t feel hungry all the time. I am alert when I wake up.

I’m still adjusting my menu planning and finding adequate substitutes for gluten/dairy. But the transition has been easier than I thought. I will share more about this soon.

The next step is including more daily exercise… which shouldn’t be too difficult since I’ve been running quite regularly for the past 6 months.

Onward!

The One Where I Talk About PCOS

24 Jul

So, yeah… I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). This is not a new development. I’ve known for about 6 years… I’ve had symptoms since puberty (I was diagnosed after trying to get pregnant for over a year with no positive result. I was immediately referred to a fertility doctor. A great story with a beautiful ending for another day).  It just so happens that its reality hit me hard today.

I’ve read about PCOS, I’ve done my research.We don’t know what causes PCOS… but we do have a long list of symptoms. I understand what happens, I understand the science (I was a Chem major in college and have a masters on Biochem… as well as a masters in counseling, which you would think should be super helpful tools to have when one is dealing with this kind of thing). But I understand it as something that happens to an individual or, more specifically, to 1 in 10 women… not to me. Except it is happening to me. It’s been happening to me whether I want to accept it or not.

I look at myself in the mirror and see the effects of PCOS. I see all the extra weight that seems impossible to lose. I see all the unwanted facial hair. I see all the skin issues. I see a woman with low self-esteem. It’s hard to look at yourself in the mirror and feel the anxiety and sadness take hold. So, for a long time, I chose to not think too much about it, not look too closely. PCOS became an invisible illness even to myself.

Today it all came to the surface in “cry” form… why? why? how come?… we all have something we have to deal with… keep calm and carry on. It went from a hard heavy thing I thought I couldn’t carry to an “I think I can handle this” to an “I gotta do something about it… I have ideas”. And that’s just a glimpse at how my brain processes things (hormones!?)… apparently all at once (“one thing at a time” I’ve heard my husband say lovingly).

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I don’t pretend to have it all figured out and I know it’ll take loads of hard work to get to a comfortable/healthy place, but the initial motivation to change is there and that counts for a lot in my book. I hope to share more of my experience as I mindfully (hopefully) go through all this.

* You can find more info about PCOS, here.

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