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Guest post by Anita Fernandes

When you are diagnosed with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), one of the first things your doctor tells you is that you need to change your diet and lifestyle. It can be a bit of a shock to hear about the changes you need to make and then your doctor advises you to cut back on your alcohol intake – and your first thought is that you can’t possibly give up your Friday nights out with your friends. The good news is that you don’t have to, but here’s what you need to know about alcohol and PCOS.

6 Ways Alcohol Affects Women with PCOS 1. Leads to High Blood Sugar Levels

Whether you choose beer, wine, or any type of cocktail, the outcome is the same – a massive spike in your blood sugar levels. Since PCOS is closely linked to insulin resistance, a rise in blood sugar levels will trigger an increase in insulin production. However, your body is unable to use this insulin effectively which means that your blood sugar levels remain elevated which alters your hormone balance, worsening your PCOS symptoms and can cause organ damage over time. Furthermore, high sugar levels also increase the risk of obesity in women with PCOS, further worsening symptoms.

2. Aggravates Hormonal Imbalance

PCOS interferes with the natural ovulation cycle. This lack of ovulation results in elevated levels of estrogen along with low levels of progesterone. Studies show that alcohol consumption increases estrogen levels and decreases progesterone levels. Therefore drinking, especially heavy drinking, can aggravate your hormonal imbalance and increase the severity of your PCOS symptoms.

3. Increases the Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

PCOS increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases due to abnormal hormonal patterns that affect vascular smooth muscle cells. These hormonal imbalances also lead to low-grade systemic inflammation which in turn increases the risk of cardiovascular disease. Studies show that alcohol has similar effects on cardiovascular function so women who have PCOS will have a much higher risk of cardiovascular disease if they consume alcohol regularly, or even binge drink occasionally.

4. Increases the Risk of Liver Diseases

Women with PCOS have double the risk of liver disease due to insulin resistance and hyperandrogenism which cause liver damage. The link between alcohol and liver disease is well established but more recent studies have found that women are at a higher risk than men. Furthermore, even intermittent binge drinking can significantly increase a woman’s risk of liver disease. This means that if you have PCOS, drinking heavily or even moderately on weekends can increase your risk of liver disease.

5. Increases the Risk of Depression

Researchers found that women who suffer from PCOS are more likely to experience anxiety and depression.  Recent studies found that hormonal imbalances are the root cause of this problem. Regular alcohol intake has a similar effect as it increases the risk of depression which means that women with PCOS are much more likely to experience depression if they consume alcohol on a regular basis.

6. Increases the Risk of Addiction

Preliminary tests show that alcohol is much more rewarding when estrogen levels are higher. Therefore, women are more likely to overindulge in the days just before ovulation (approximately 14 days from the first day of a period) which is when estrogen levels are at their highest. Since women with PCOS have elevated levels of estrogen, they might be at a higher risk of alcohol addiction as compared to other women.

How to Enjoy Your Girls’ Night Out

You’re probably wondering at this point if you need become a teetotaler because of your PCOS – the good news is that you probably don’t need to completely give up alcohol. First, have an open and honest conversation with your doctor about how much you can drink based on your PCOS symptoms. Then, ask yourself why alcohol is necessary for your social interactions.  Here are a few tips to help you enjoy your evening out without jeopardizing your health.

Snack Before You Leave the House

When you drink on an empty stomach, the alcohol passes through your empty stomach into the small intestine where it is quickly absorbed into your bloodstream. Therefore, it is dangerous to drink on an empty belly. Snack on a chicken sandwich or any other heavy snack before you meet your friends as the healthy proteins and fat will keep you satiated, and you are less likely to overindulge.

Know Your Limits and Pace Yourself

The more drinks you consume, the worse your decision processing gets. It’s easy to lose track of how many drinks you’ve had over the course of an evening and, as a result, make irresponsible food and alcohol choices. Make a conscious effort to know exactly how many drinks you consume. Start your evening with a non-alcoholic beverage. After that, you can move on to an alcoholic beverage. Whenever possible, choose low-sugar cocktails and ciders. Ideally, stick to seltzer with lime or juice all night!

Avoid Sodas (Even Diet)

A single can of soda contains approximately 10 teaspoons of sugar, so it would be wise to just avoid sodas as they will wreak havoc on your blood sugar levels. Most mixers have a high sugar content, so it would be better to simply use water or carbonated water instead.

It is imperative that you discuss all lifestyle and diet changes with your doctor before you implement them. Your doctor will be able to guide you on which drinks are safe for you and which ones you need to avoid based on your medical history.

Anita Fernandes is a journalist and a writer by profession. She has been writing extensively on health and wellness related topics for a little over a decade now. Besides her professional interests, she loves a game of basketball or a good hike in her free time to fuel her spirits. “Health is wealth”

is one motto of life which she lives by as well as advocates to every reader, who comes across her blogs.

The post Everything You Need to Know About Alcohol and PCOS appeared first on PCOS Diva.

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“We women with PCOS, we’re very special. We’re actually winners in the big picture of life if you look over the thousands of years of humans being on earth.” – Dr. Felice Gersh

PCOS expert and integrative physician, Dr. Felice Gersh has published a brilliant new book called “PCOS S.O.S., A Gynecologist’s Lifeline to Naturally Restore Your Rhythms, Hormones, and Happiness”. It is best described as a complete guide addressing the symptoms of PCOS and how women with the disorder can lead happy and healthier lives. Dr. Gersh is dedicated to educating women and health care providers about how to best discover and treat the underlying causes of PCOS. Listen in (or read the transcript) as we discuss her book and much more including:

  • The family connection of PCOS
  • Why PCOS is on the rise
  • Impact of sleep, timed eating, fitness, and stress
  • Importance of regulating light and the circadian rhythm
  • How birth control changes a woman’s circadian rhythm

115 - PCOS S.O.S. - A New Guide to PCOS - SoundCloud
(2703 secs long, 78 plays)Play in SoundCloud

All PCOS Diva podcasts are available on   

Mentioned in this podcast: Felice Gersh, MD, Medical Director, The Integrative Medical Group of Irvine

Double Board Certified – Obstetrics and Gynecology and Integrative Medicine

www.integrativemgi.com (practice)

www.felicelgershmd.com (educational site)

Author, with her daughter, Alexis Perella: PCOS SOS – A Gynecologist’s Lifeline to Naturally Restore Your Rhythms, Hormones, and Happiness (Available on Amazon)

Complete Transcript:

Amy:                                     Today, I have back on the PCOS Diva Podcast one of my favorite experts on PCOS, and that is Dr. Felice Gersh, and if you haven’t already checked out our other two podcasts together, I want you to do that. It’s podcast number 15. We talked about inflammation. In podcast number 26, we talked about gut health, but, today, we’re going to be talking about Dr. Felice’s brand new book, which I read last night, and I absolutely love it. It’s just really a complete guide addressing the symptoms of PCOS and how women with the disorder can lead happy and healthier lives.

Dr. Gersh is an award-winning OB/GYN. She specializes in all aspects of women’s health. She’s a founder and director of Integrative Medical Group of Irvine in Irvine, California, and her practice provides comprehensive healthcare for women, combining the best evidence-based therapies from conventional, naturopathic and holistic medicine, so welcome, Dr. Gersh.

Felice Gersh:                      Thank you, Amy. It’s wonderful to be back and join you here today.

Amy:                                     I just want everybody to know that the name of your book is “PCOS SOS, A Gynecologist’s Lifeline To Naturally Restore Your Rhythms, Hormones, and Happiness,” and that is available in Kindle and softcover on Amazon.

Felice Gersh:                      That’s right. Thank you.

Amy:                                     As I mentioned, I loved your book. It’s truly a complete guide, and I think what I like about it so much is you approach it from that integrative functional approach, and, also, I don’t know if people know, but you also have PCOS, and you’ve been able to overcome your PCOS with many of the lifestyle recommendations that you give us in your book.

Felice Gersh:                      Yes. Absolutely. I always try to walk the talk. I never want to be full of hot air. I, like everyone, is something of a self-hacker, so I do try everything I recommend, and I have had my own journey like all of us have had our own very complex and sometimes heartwarming and sometimes heartbreaking journeys as PCOS women, and my own started way back when I was a teenager, and my periods were very irregular and into my 20’s, and then I went a couple of years, when I was in medical school, I didn’t have a single period and I had terrible acne. I didn’t understand why I had this acne because I thought I’m just not cleaning my face well enough. I thought it was about dirt. I didn’t understand anything, and I scrubbed my face so hard, and I used alcohol because I thought that will kill whatever is bad or something. It will sterilize my face.

My skin was cracking around the pimples, and I went to one of the most respected and very renowned gynecologists at my university-based medical school and I said, “Dr. so-and-so, I think something is really wrong. I haven’t had a period in two years, and I can’t get rid of my acne,” and he said, “I don’t know what you’re complaining about, because no women like having periods, and so just go on birth control pills,” and I said, “I want to have kids sometime,” and he said, “Worry about it then.” It’s like, okay, so I had to go on my own journey. I self-diagnosed myself with PCOS at one point, and it became a passion of mine especially as I saw in my practice the increasing prevalence in the population of women of PCOS and, also, it seemed to be more severe. It’s like I was the front runner of this crowd of women behind me coming with terrible cases of PCOS, which I didn’t really see in the very beginning years of my training and practice.

It seemed, over the years, more and more women were suffering. It’s like, okay, what is going on here? More women are really having the worst cases of PCOS. Something is happening, and so it set me on my other journey of figuring it out, of finding out what is happening, what’s the story behind all of this PCOS and then what can we do to really help myself, my patients, and my relatives, because we know that there’s a familial kind of incidence of PCOS.

Amy:                                     Yeah, and we’re going to get into your thoughts about why PCOS is such a crisis right now, but, first, I want to talk a little bit about the… You had just mentioned the family connection, and you wrote this book with your daughter, and I love… I’m going to pull out this little quote which I love. She says, “Dr. Gersh may not be your mom, but now you have all of her advice here in one place.”

Thank you. I read the electronic version or the Kindle version last night, and, honestly, I can’t wait to get the book in my hand so that I do have everything at my fingertips because there’s just so much fantastic information, but tell us about how your daughter got involved.

Felice Gersh:                      In terms of her PCOS, she realized that she had PCOS when she couldn’t get pregnant and her periods were somewhat irregular, and she’s a lean PCOS, so she was very thin, but she was always battling acne. She was definitely my offspring and… because I’m also one of the lean PCOS, and so she thought she was going to have to go on a fertility drug like Clomid, but, together, we worked on her diet, and we changed some of her different lifestyle things, and she got pregnant naturally and… but had some complications, as is so common with women with PCOS, and delivered prematurely and had a big baby.

Her second baby, who’s her son, my little, adorable grandson, he weighed well over nine pounds. When she was born to me, she weighed nine pounds, and my biggest daughter weighed almost nine and a half pounds, and we were not big people. We didn’t eat tons of food, and so, clearly, there’s an insulin issue here. My dad was a diabetic at a very young age for no apparent reason because he was slim, so there clearly is a familial thing.

Fathers can also be related to the whole PCOS picture. We’re just starting to understand how that all works, but in terms of writing my book, I have been wanting her to write with me. She’s a brilliant woman, and she’s a Stanford grad. She’s won all kinds of awards, and, initially, she was a teacher, and she worked in Palo Alto in the school district, and then she moved into developing educational toys for kids, and then she went into motherhood, and so she took some time off to have her two beautiful kids, and then she was ready to get back into the workforce.

It was very challenging because she really wanted to be a full-time mother, and maybe that was a little in reaction to my not being a full-time mother, but she saw the good and the bad of having a working mom, and she wanted to be there for her kids. Also, her first, my granddaughter, had a few challenges that she’s worked through, and she’s done fabulously and… but she wanted to be there. Having childcare intermittently with the way she was working as a consultant was really challenging.

Finally, I was able to convince her, because she’s a wonderful writer, and I said, “Please write. Become a book writer.” I sent her to a wonderful course at Harvard University on becoming a medical book writer, and she loved it, and so now she is my co-writer, so… because, first of all, I need someone putting the fire under my feet to get this done, and she is very, very responsible. She worked as a product manager when she was at the toy company. She’s very organized much more so than me, and so, together, we were able to put the book together, and she’s… Now, this is her new career. She is a professional book writer, and we’re going to be hopefully putting out books on a regular basis.

Amy:                                     It really is a fabulous book, and I wanted to… for you to jump into how you frame PCOS in the book. You really talk about how it isn’t a disease. Yes, we know it’s a syndrome, but tell us how do you frame it for us in the book. I love it. It’s very powerful.

Felice Gersh:                      We women with PCOS, we’re very special. We’re actually winners in the big picture of life if you look over the thousands of years of humans being on earth. We’ve learned a lot about genetics, so we know that different people have different types of single nucleotide polymorphisms. We have variations in our genes, and so it’s not just about the genes you have. It’s also how they become expressed, and the expression of genes relates to the environment.

If we go back into prehistoric times when we had an environment where everything was organic, everything was natural, you lived with the light, we lived with the rhythm of the earth, the circadian rhythm, the rotation of the earth, so, during the day, we were active. At night, we would go to sleep. We would get up with the sun. We go down to sleep when the lights got dark, and maybe we had a fire, but that was about it. We certainly didn’t have computer screens and televisions, so it was very much living within our universe, our natural universe.

At that time, there were some women, and that’s what PCOS women are, who had a certain genetic variant that did not permit them to turn testosterone into estrogen quite as efficiently as some other women, but it wasn’t a real detriment. It was just a very mild variation, so what they ended up with was maybe slightly reduced fertility, but just mildly reduced. They were still fertile, so, maybe instead of having nine children, they would have five, and they would have time to raise them. They could nurse them longer. They had a little bit of mild built-in birth control, so that they didn’t have as many children.

Of course, women died during childbirth, and children did not survive as well if they were one of more children and their mother didn’t have as much time to spend with each child, so it was actually a survival advantage for their children and for themselves, so women with PCOS could help populate the world with more children with PCOS, their daughters, because they would carry some of these genes from the mom.

What were some of the good things in addition to having a little bit of built-in birth control? They had a little higher level of testosterone. It turns out that having a little bit of testosterone in the extra department is actually extra good. Testosterone is a hormone that all women have, and it has very, very important functions. In men, of course, we know that testosterone makes them big and muscular, with stronger bones, and it actually has brain effects as well. It has effects throughout the entire body, so women who have a little extra testosterone tend to be a little bit more muscular, stronger and then, in terms of the emotions or the brain effects, they tend to be maybe a little bit bolder, maybe braver and just more capable of exploration.

Amy:                                     I also think that, and this is just my observation working with so many women with PCOS, I think we are more highly sensitive. Our nervous systems are like tuned up a little bit more, so maybe, back in those paleo days, we were more attuned to danger and/or incoming, yeah, danger or threats. What do you think about that?

Felice Gersh:                      I think so, too. I think that there’s something that nature created to have men naturally be a little bit more protector-oriented and more attuned to potential dangers, and I think that gets built into the women who have PCOS as well. In their natural state, we’ll say without the new… we’ll say harms that have come from our society, the way things have changed, that women with PCOS had many, many advantages. They were strong. They were beautiful. They were fertile, and they were wise and they were energetic and strong, so, there were wonderful things about being a PCOS woman.

Of course, nobody called it that then. They were just strong women, maybe a little bit more dominant in their clan, in their society. Now, things, of course, have changed, and we can get into that, why PCOS has turned on its head. Now, you can take something that is wonderful and a survival advantage and then turn it into a syndrome.

Amy:                                     Dr. Azziz put together a report paper about PCOS as being an ancient disorder, and the insulin issues, too, can… were able to help us in times of famine, but now, of course, we don’t have famine, and I want you to explain how modern life has made these hormones go awry and why so many of us are dealing with really these extreme symptoms in PCOS.

Felice Gersh:                      Yeah. Absolutely. Having a little bit of insulin resistance, what does that mean? Insulin is a hormone that is very much about promoting the production and storage of fat, so think about that in ancient times when food was not always available. It was very important for women to have some extra fat storage.

In fact, we know that, in general terms, women tend to have more body fat than males because women have to be able to take care of their babies. They have to be able to withstand the rigors of being pregnant and all the demands of that, so that’s why pregnancy itself is like a stress test for women. Pregnancy is an inherently insulin resistant kind of a state of being because, women who are pregnant, they need to put on fat and store it so that they can then be able to take care of their babies and themselves.

Women who have PCOS would have a little bit in the natural state we’ll say, a little bit of extra insulin resistance, which would allow them to be a little bit more fat storage oriented, and that would be a survival advantage exactly. I mean, it’s amazing how we can take all these things and actually pick them apart and see all the pluses, and then we can turn it around and see how we can take these really wonderful attributes and turn them into harmful to our health types of situations.

Amy:                                     In your book, you talked about how we want to return to this mild variant of PCOS that maybe our great-grandmothers had if we indeed inherited our PCOS, which I think I can look at my great-grandmother and probably… She only had one child. She was… had a lot of androgenic alopecia. She carried a lot of weight around her middle. It’s funny because my daughter is doing a report on Ellis Island and immigration, and we’re using my great-grandmother as sort of the example, so I was looking at all the old pictures of her, but, anyway, how can we return to that mild variant of our great-grandmothers and be strong and powerful and not feel so afflicted by our PCOS symptoms?

Felice Gersh:                      It’s definitely a challenge in the world that we all live in, so we have to think about what were the conditions that our wonderful women ancestors lived in and that enabled them to have the PCOS genes work to their advantage. They lived in a world where they saw the sun. They had activity. They ate natural food, and they didn’t eat all the time. They did not eat around the clock, and sometimes they didn’t eat at all because there was no food available, so we have to try to think what were those conditions that our women ancestors lived in that enabled them to be healthy.

These genes were actually an advantage, so have to try to turn our world back into that ancient, wonderful, natural world, which is, like I said, not an easy thing to do, so we have to work hard to get back that natural kind of environment. We have to look at our sleep habits. We have to look at our eating habits, both not just what we eat, which is critically important, but when we eat and when we don’t eat, and then, of course, add in fitness, and we have to look at stress.

We have to look at all these different components that make up the life environment and then we have to try to return to that prehistoric natural state. We have to look at getting the light at the proper time of day, eating during the day, never eating at night, not eating snacks, trying to eat more in the morning the way people would naturally, trying to eat sometime between when you get up and a couple of hours after, trying to eat a big meal for breakfast instead of what traditional people in our day now tend to do, which is skip breakfast altogether. There’s a lot of misunderstandings about this whole concept of fasting, which I tried to clarify as well. It’s not easy, but we have to try to restore our lifestyles to that of our women ancestors.

Amy:                                     You really break this all down in your book. You talk about diet and exercise and lifestyle, but I would love in the time that we have together to talk more about the light and the circadian rhythm connection and how we can hack getting the right light at the right time of day, because I think that that can really make a profound shift, and you write about that in your book as well.

Felice Gersh:                      Right, so it turns out that we humans, actually, every life form on earth, every single life form has built into it clock genes, so we are oriented to the planet that we live on, which has a 24-hour rotation, and so we have the night and we have the day, and our bodies are metabolically different, so we have totally different bodies at night and in the day. During the day, our bodies are metabolically active, and at night everything goes into a totally different state.

Our immune system is very different between the day and night, and our bodies are timed. We have a master clock in our brain that sits atop the optic nerve so we can sense light and dark, and it also has some degree of sensing nutrition, nutrient sensors, but primarily light and dark. That’s the dominant triggers to setting our master clock is light and dark, and then we have these peripheral clocks, so the different cells of our body like cells in our liver, for example, cells in our heart, all the different cells of our body have clock genes, and they are getting messages from the master clock that sits in the brain in the hypothalamus at the top of the optic nerve, and they also can get signals from the gut, from our microbiome, the little bacteria that live in there. They also have clocks. They also have clocks that set the liver.

The light though, which goes into the master clock which senses whether it’s day or night, light or dark, that is like… That’s why they’re called the master clock, because it really sets the beat like the conductor in front of the orchestra. It’s like, in women with PCOS, because it turns out that their master clock drifts, it doesn’t stay on the beat. It’s a little bit like your conductor is there, but he’s a little bit impaired, maybe he had a little too much to drink, so he’s just a little off the beat, so all the instruments are a little bit off the beat. They’re maybe off a measure or a few notes.

We can help get our master clock back into the right beat by helping it to see light and dark, and it just drills it in. Now, recognize it’s daytime, master clock, and so we can do that by waking up in..

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“The lack of research has translated to the lack of knowledge of PCOS in the general public and in the medical community.” – Sasha Ottey

Sasha Ottey is at the forefront of PCOS advocacy. She and her non-profit organization, PCOS Challenge, lead the way in furthering the causes of research funding, patient and doctor education, and community awareness. If you are wondering what is happening in the world of PCOS and how to get involved in a large or small way, tune in as we discuss:

  • PCOS Challenge’s mission and offerings
  • The PCOS Diva/PCOS Challenge Confidence Grant and a new one coming soon
  • Advocacy Day in Washington DC & how to be involved there or at home
  • Opportunities to get involved and volunteer for PCOS Challenge
  • Upcoming events in cities around the U.S. including PCOS Awareness Weekend on September 20th in Orlando

114 - PCOS Advocacy News & Opportunities - SoundCloud
(2668 secs long, 681 plays)Play in SoundCloud

Mentioned in this podcast:

Full Transcript:

Amy:                                    Today I’m going to be talking to Sasha Ottey. She’s the founder and executive director of PCOS Challenge. And PCOS Challenge is the National Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Association. If you have not heard of PCOS Challenge yet, you need to know about them. They serve over 50,000 members. They’re the leading patient support and advocacy organization for women and girls with PCOS, so I’m so thrilled to have you here, Sasha.

Sasha Ottey:                      Thank you so much, Amy. I’m so excited to be here and thanks for having me on the PCOS Diva podcast.

Amy:                                    Oh, you’re so welcome. You know, Sasha, you’re one of the people that I really admire. I know when I first started trying to find answers for PCOS, there was one organization out there, the PCOS Association, which has now, sort of disbanded and when that happened, I feel like you picked up the gauntlet, and we’ve known each other now for quite some time, and it’s been amazing what you have accomplished. I just want to thank you for all the work that you do and you are a woman with PCOS so we both know how hard it is to take care of ourselves and also do to the work that we do to try to help advance PCOS advocacy and awareness.

Sasha Ottey:                      Oh, thank you so much, Amy. You know, I think a lot of women in our position who are women with PCOS and at some point before, during or after we got a diagnosis or even if you are woman with PCOS or a person with PCOS who hasn’t gotten that diagnosis, we felt kind of alone, you know? There’s this sense of loneliness, feeling that we’re the only ones dealing with what we’re dealing with and then at some point, want to help ourselves and help other people. So, that’s why I started PCOS Challenge and why you started PCOS Diva and other people and advocates in the states are where we are now, because we’re in this place where we know that we can’t do it alone and we know that working together with our various experiences, working together will help us to move the movement forward and advance the cause.

So, I am truly excited to speak to you today because you’re a woman with PCOS. You understand, even though we may have varying parts of the syndrome or varying experiences, you do understand how difficult it can be and how much we want to kind of give everyone that platform to find their peace with the syndrome and find ways to support themselves and others.

Amy:                                    I love how you said find their peace with the syndrome. I know a lot of women listening are probably newly-diagnosed or haven’t really heard about PCOS Challenge and the work that you do. I’ve had you on the podcast several times at this point. But, today, I want you to talk to us about all of the exciting things that are happening in 2019. There’s lots of events around the corner and I want you to let everybody know, but first, maybe you could tell listeners what you do … What are the things that are offered through PCOS Challenge?

Sasha Ottey:                      Thank you, Amy. I started PCOS Challenge after my own diagnosis and the feeling dismissed by my doctors and not having access to the care that I needed. I felt alone and that this was out of my control, and I don’t want anyone else to have to feel like that. Speaking with women and parents of girls with PCOS and people from all over the world, we have very similar experiences, where one, most of us at some point didn’t have the resources, whether it was knowledge about the syndrome or the proper treatment and, Amy, as you know and I know, there’s no one treatment or no one method that works the same for everyone. So, there’s a lot of trial and error involved and knowledge truly is the key to move forward. And so, PCOS Challenge was born from this desire to help others, but also help others educate themselves about the syndrome. And so we partner with knowledgeable researchers, and physicians, and other patients who are knowledgeable in this space to provide programs.

And one of the programs that we’re proud of that happens every year, annually, is the PCOS Awareness Weekend. And this year, in 2019, it’s coming up. We’re doing it in Orlando, and so this year’s a little different because we’ve added our inaugural gala called “Rise to The Challenge Gala.” So, that’s happening in Orlando on September 20th. Our PCOS Symposium, which is where we will have knowledgeable experts and opportunities to meet other people who are dealing with PCOS, hear other people’s stories, and leave with practical advice and steps to change your life that day and learn more about the syndrome and how it impacts you as an individual and also connect with members in the healthcare space who are knowledgeable about the syndrome. So, it’s a really, really exciting event, where there are usually hundreds of mostly patients and supporters of patients and also, healthcare providers.

And then the third event of that weekend is the PCOS Challenge 5K. Every year, this is an opportunity for hundreds of patients and supporters to get together and not only learn more about the syndrome than they ever had before, but also meet other people who are dealing with the same thing, and learn how to get involved and how to advocate for yourself and be a part of the PCOS awareness movement. So, it’s really exciting. We’re really excited about the gala, where we’ll be highlighting members of the community who are really doing some great things to help people in the PCOS community. So, this weekend will be an opportunity for people to learn more about PCOS Challenge, learn more about PCOS, and learn more about how to get involved.

Amy:                                    It really is a wonderful event. I think this will be my fourth year attending and I can tell you that it is such … Well, I always come back just on a high because it’s such a positive environment. There’s so much good energy, and it’s so great to be a part of this sort of sisterhood, of sorts?

Sasha Ottey:                      Yeah.

Amy:                                    And we really come together and share our experiences and we learn from each other and support one another. And I think, yeah, there’s a lot of friendships that are formed at this event, too. Because, again, you had mentioned at the beginning of the podcast that sense of feeling that you’re all alone in this, especially if you don’t have a lot of support with friends and family in this journey. Come to the event and come to the weekend. There’s so much camaraderie, especially at the race, and I’m very excited about the gala. I can’t wait to go dress shopping. But the race or the fun run/walk, it’s going to be at the same place it was last year?

Sasha Ottey:                      Yes, it’s beautiful Baldwin Park. Oh, my gosh, it’s so gorgeous.

Amy:                                    Yeah, right around this really pretty lake and there’s just so much conversation going on, especially if you walk like me and there’s so much support. If you’re looking for a place where you can feel connected with other women with PCOS, you have to come to the PCOS Challenge weekend.

Sasha Ottey:                      Thank you, Amy. And we’re also doing … We have a lot of events this year. We have 12 total, so your listeners can go to pcoschallenge.org to find out more about the locations and what we have going on. So, we’re doing the weekend in September, but we’re also doing other 5K events around the country. We’re going to be in Detroit and Philadelphia in July. In August we’ll be in Long Beach, California and in September we’ll be in Atlanta, Orlando and so throughout the year, all the way to December, we will have events and opportunities for patients and providers and supporters of the PCOS community to come out and really celebrate that there’s opportunities to come together and increase awareness, which is so much needed. So, it’s just an empowering positive event, because that’s what PCOS Challenge is about.

There’s so many challenges that we deal with, with this syndrome, but here is an opportunity and a unique opportunity that is not always afforded to us as PCOS patients, but a unique opportunity to come together to support each other and also to raise funds for PCOS Challenge, which is nonprofit, that’s really dedicated to the long-term positive advancement for the PCOS patient.

Amy:                                    Well, I know when I would promote the events, I know it was in Atlanta several years ago and now in Orlando, people would often say, “Well, can’t you bring something closer to me?” And you’ve done it this year with all of these other venues, so I really encourage women to take advantage of those other city-held events. And there’s something I just wanted to bring up, too, is that you’ve made it really affordable. It’s not a lot of money to actually attend the symposium weekend, and I know you have a really reasonable room block rate, as well?

Sasha Ottey:                      Yeah, you know, one of the things that’s really, truly important to me, personally, is that everything we do is accessible because that’s one less challenge for the public, for patients. It seems as though most of everything that we have to do to manage PCOS or try to live a healthier life with PCOS is really, really financially taxing and so one of the things … Even though we encourage people to come from all over the country, the PCOS Awareness Weekend is generally truly affordable for patients. We heavily depend on sponsorship to cover the majority of the cost of putting on the event and have the fee to cover the food costs for patients or attendees. So, it’s really important to me and to our organization that we have an event where people from all walks of life and, some of the people who need the information the most, is able to access the information and be a part of the event.

Amy:                                    So, again, I just really want to encourage women to look and listeners to look at this event as really an act of self-care and if you follow PCOS Diva, then you know how important self-care is to managing PCOS and this absolutely is a place where you can gain some valuable knowledge and really take care of yourself while you’re doing it and have a little getaway break. I know that’s something that I’m really looking forward to.

Sasha Ottey:                      Yes, I’m really excited about some of the locations. I know we’ll get to be in some sunny areas, areas surrounded by water, areas with really phenomenal monuments. And even in our nation’s capital, we’ll have a walk in October, so we’re really, really excited to be able to get people to run or to be at the sea of teal raising awareness for PCOS across the country in areas where we’ve never done this before. So, it’s truly, truly exciting.

Amy:                                    Well, speaking of our nation’s capital, the PCOS Challenge has been doing a lot of work in the nation’s capital, trying to make PCOS more of a nationally-recognized health condition and I was hoping that you could speak to us about some of your efforts?

Sasha Ottey:                      Yeah, I think most of us know that we may have a lot of challenges with even people around us knowing what PCOS is. There’s a huge awareness issue and in my work as executive director of PCOS Challenge and working with researchers and clinicians, we observed that one of the biggest reasons for the lack of awareness was the lack of research dollars that gets allotted to PCOS research and how does research get funded. So, the National Institutes of Health, NIH, is the largest funder of biomedical research in the entire world. But, PCOS Challenge and other PCOS world-renowned researchers, we found that PCOS research gets less than 0.1% of the NIH budget. And for a condition, that’s one of the most common human disorders. So, there’s this disparity there regarding how PCOS research gets funded, how much PCOS research gets funded, what type of PCOS research gets funded. All of that translates to how much knowledge there is, how doctors get trained, and what medical resources there are.

So, the lack of research has translated to the lack of knowledge of PCOS in the general public and in the medical community. And PCOS hasn’t even been listed on any of the national calendars. So, they’re awareness month for diabetes, for cancer, for heart disease, but PCOS was never listed on any awareness calendar for the United States. And so we know PCOS Awareness Month had been celebrated in September, yet it wasn’t officially recognized by our government and PCOS Challenge decided to change this. So, we headed to Capitol Hill and reached out to get a representative to sponsor a resolution. We worked with them on writing a resolution to recognize the seriousness of PCOS and September as PCOS Awareness month.

So, this is really important because most of the conditions that have awareness campaigns going on, we know all about breast cancer and cancer in general, just because they are prioritized by our government, that’s one of the reasons and with PCOS and how pervasive it is, we feel, we know that PCOS needs to be a bigger priority in our government and with research. So, we got a sponsor, representative David Scott, to introduce the resolution in 2017 and 2018 and now 2019 and also senators, David Purdue and Elizabeth Warren did the same, and it unanimously passed in the Senate and that was huge. Why are we still doing it? We kind of need to do this a few times and continue doing it to keep on their radar, and also we’re doing other things in terms of having our representatives reach out to the CDC and the NIH to ask them about what they’re doing with PCOS.

So, it’s going to be a long-term effort, but the more we build this space of advocates and awareness on Capitol Hill, the more you’ll see a greater transition into more access to research funding and dollars for PCOS and also, one of the things that we’re aiming to do is to get the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to do an awareness campaign for PCOS. So, that was a mouthful, but there’s a lot going on in terms of building this awareness on the Hill. We also built a PCOS Caucus, which is an identified group of advocates on the Hill who are your representatives on the Hill, so the more they’re aware of how PCOS impacts you, as their constituents, the more willing they are to educate their peers on the Hill and really fight for us and fight for greater awareness, education and, ultimately, we hope, a cure.

Amy:                                    Well, I had the privilege of being able to go to the 2018 Advocacy Day and let me tell you, that was one of the most empowering experiences I’ve had around just kind of advocating for PCOS and speaking with both of my senators and my representative and people were very open and receptive to learning more about PCOS and they were very supportive and it was just such a … I have never been in the recesses of the Capitol and got to ride the senate subway train. It was just really a thrilling experience, and I encourage listeners, if this is something that you’re interested in, to absolutely attend one of the annual Advocacy Days and, Sasha, do you have a sense of when it will be for 2020?

Sasha Ottey:                      It will likely be in March 2020. But, everything I speak about today, you can go to pcoschallenge.org. You can go to the contact form and reach out to us there and even join a waiting list for us to announce to you when we have some of these events coming up. So, Amy, I think this is something that people in the general public who, most of us don’t know how to reach out to our representatives and senators and have never had the opportunity to reach out with a cause that’s so important and near and dear to our hearts. Before PCOS Challenge started doing our work, PCOS has never been mentioned in any major piece of legislation on Capitol Hill, so if our members of Congress doesn’t know that this exists, then it will continue to be ignored. There will continue to be a lack of resources. We’ll continue to go years and even decades without getting a diagnosis or treatment. So, it’s really important.

And I think, clearly, clearly, from what I’ve witnessed at our Advocacy Days on the Hill or our briefings on the Hill is that patients are truly fed up about not being heard, not being listened to, not being believed. And this is the opportunity to proactively take a stand that this is unacceptable for a condition that’s as pervasive and impacts so many aspects of our lives to go ignored. So, it’s truly an empowering event to know that you’re there taking a stand and affecting change, which is what we’re all doing, so I’m really proud of people like you. And this year we had more researchers and other physicians and nurses and registered dietitians and health … Just a lot of people who were both patients and healthcare providers or patients and their partners.

It’s truly, truly great to see the growth of this movement and just people who are impacted by PCOS are now beginning to understand that they need to take this opportunity and will work alongside PCOS Challenge, support PCOS Challenge, because we’re trying to ultimately, what we all want, is for each of us to be listened to and for us to have the appropriate resources to live happier and healthier lives, and I think we all deserve that.

Amy:                                    Oh, we certainly do. I wanted to call attention to, for those that can’t physically travel to D.C. for Advocacy Day, you have resources, templates, on that Advocacy page, which we will link to in the show notes, where you can easily and quickly write a letter to your legislators as well so you can do it just from the comfort of your own home.

Sasha Ottey:                      Yeah, absolutely and thanks for sharing that, Amy. Of course, most of this is happening during the week when most people are at work, but this is also when our legislators are on the Hill. So, of course, many people won’t be able to be there in person, but you can still share your voice. You can still take part by writing to your legislators and we hand-deliver or email them on your behalf to your legislators. So, I think that this is truly kind of a pivotal time in the PCOS community, where we’re now having access to opportunities to use our voices, where 20 or 30 years ago, this was non-existent. And I have to reiterate how proud I am for … This movement happened relatively quickly, so it’s within the last one to two years that this has happened and people are embracing this opportunity because most of us understand how important this is.

Amy:                                    Well, I give you so many kudos. Again, you’re one of the ladies that I admire the most for all the work that you’ve done. Before we go, there’s two other things I wanted you to touch on, so I have to give a shout out to the PCOS Challenge PCOS Diva Confidence Grants. Grants are something that’s important to PCOS Challenge and I was wondering if you could talk a little bit about what they are and how they can help women with PCOS?

Sasha Ottey:                      Yeah, Amy, and this is something I talk about wherever I go because this is such a huge thing for our community. This is something that I’ve the PCOS Challenge with the plan to give people access to services that just aren’t available, what insurance doesn’t cover or just insurance coverage is either lacking or not enough. So, one of the things that Amy when we were speaking a few years ago, maybe at this point maybe four years ago, three or four years ago, when you reached out to us because you wanted to give back to the community, more than you already have with PCOS Diva, but you are this really kind and thoughtful soul, who wants to keep doing more to help the community, so thank you for that. I always speak favorably of you and share how good your heart is.

So, this was the opportunity. We identified areas where, from my personal experience and for other people’s experiences where there’s just such a lack of support and options for people and one of those was hair and skin issues related to PCOS, mainly hirsutism, acne, hair loss. These are things that are either not covered by insurance, the treatments for them aren’t, or even if you have insurance coverage, there’s usually a fight to get it covered because these things are considered by insurance companies to be purely cosmetic or elective. Well, Amy, we can tell them that for someone..

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Guest post by Dr. Marisol, ND

Constipation sucks. If you’ve spent any time sitting on the toilet, hoping and praying to be productive… or felt so “loaded” with a “foggy brain”, not quite understanding why your body is working against you and simply won’t let things go… “All that food is coming in, why on earth is it not coming out?! Where is it going, besides my thighs?!” Well, if you are feeling this, I’m here to tell you that you are NOT alone and there is help. I’ve been there too. PCOS and constipation go hand-in-hand.

Table of Contents:

  • A Worldwide Epidemic
  • How to Go From “Geez” to “Glorious”
  • The Presentation of PCOS
  • The Thyroid Connection
  • The Digestion Connection
  • Digestion Isn’t Only About How We Digest Our Food, But How We Digest Our LIVES!
  • Gut Bugs: the Good, the Bad & the Ugly
  • What’s the Deal with Inflammation?
  • Your Stool Is the Tool
  • The 5 Steps to Resetting Digestion
  • PCOS Diva Digestion
PCOS and Constipation, a Worldwide Epidemic

Did you know that constipation is one of the world’s biggest health problems? 24% of the population has chronic constipation[1]. Many of us are suffering from being unable to go to the bathroom and the majority of us are women[2], just like yourself.

What increases a woman’s risk of being constipated? There are two factors which also play a big role in PCOS, a condition that affects 15-20% of women of reproductive age[3]– very similar stats to those having to do with constipation.

#1: A heavier body weight or BMI[4] #2: Hypothyroid or subclinical hypothyroid

This becomes very interesting to PCOS Divas specifically, because having problems with your thyroid not only increases your risk of having constipation, but it also lowers your ability to get pregnant[5]. Plus, SO many symptoms of a low functioning thyroid are often seen in women with PCOS, namely constipation, hair, nails and skin dryness, and hair loss.

How to Go From “Geez” to “Glorious”

So, what is the solution? Do we work at altering our hormones? Or do we get the bowels moving? In my personal and professional experience, health begins in the digestive system and in your guts. The only way to go from “geez” to “glorious” is to go for your guts. Let’s delve deeper into this.

The Presentation of PCOS

When a woman comes to see me in my practice and presents as slightly overweight, may have signs of facial hair, hair loss, or the lateral edges of her eyebrows are thinning, and she’s having problems getting pregnant, of course the first thing that comes to mind is PCOS. But the second most important thing is that I can almost guarantee that they are not going to the bathroom properly and that they also have a thyroid problem.

The Thyroid Connection

How can I so confidently assume that? Because so many of the symptoms and problems with having PCOS are intimately related to having a low or “slow, sluggish” thyroid gland. This is because the hormonal orchestra that we have going on is complicated, but it always sings the same tune when it is not doing well.

When there is low thyroid function, metabolism is not functioning normally either. Many times, this can be due to elevated levels of estrogen in the body that increase thyroid-binding globulin, which then reduce the amount of free T4 in the body[6]. This reduces the function and workability of your metabolism.

The Digestion Connection

A low functioning thyroid also causes shifts in how we utilize food and get nourished. This occurs as a protection mechanism for the body. This makes us gain and store fat in our bellies and back, our bowels tend to be very, very sluggish, and this just contributes to our overall hormonal imbalance.

Typically, a low thyroid is seen in periods of stress, so the body’s last priority is having optimal metabolism or procreating. It is simply trying to survive on the least possible energy expenditure. This make you SLUGGISH, SLOW, and all of your body functions follow suit. For us, it’s not about working through the hormones, it’s about getting to the root cause of the problem, which is ultimately how we are digesting and absorbing our lives.

Digestion Isn’t Only About How We Digest Our Food, But How We Digest Our LIVES!

I say us, because I’m not only talking as a doctor here, but also as someone who was diagnosed with PCOS in my late 20’s. Change of lifestyle, diet, and fixing up my digestion (I was suffering with an irritable bowel that kept me switching between chronic constipation and stressful diarrhea) has given me the wings to flow into my 40’s symptom-free and relieved of my diagnosis of PCOS and constipation. In essence, through healing my gut, I fixed my hormonal problems!

I have seen this happen thousands of times. Will it happen for you? It’s hard to say. It depends on if you have the want and the will to change, to live the best life you possibly can and achieve your dreams. It’s kind of like how with men, the saying goes, “the way to their heart is through their stomach.” For women, the way to our hormones is through our gut.

Gut Bugs: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

It sounds too good to be true, but it really isn’t. You see, your body is an ecosystem, a garden with many elements that have to work together in order to function well.

How can your hormones be in good shape if you can’t absorb the nutrients necessary to have your hormones work well? Nutrients like zinc, magnesium, and the B vitamins. In fact, women suffering with constipation are typically known to be stronger consumers of vitamins and supplements, because they know it helps[7].

How can a digestive tract that isn’t populated with healthy, symbiotic bacteria help you balance factors necessary for great hormonal health? Healthy bacteria in your digestive tract contributes to your levels of B vitamins. These good, health-promoting bugs actually make B vitamins for us!

But there’s the flip side too, bad bugs in our digestive tracts can deplete us of these essential, stress-relieving vitamins. Even worse, they create a barrier that prevents the good stuff from coming in. This is known as biofilm.

In addition, the good bugs help with metabolizing and eliminating excess hormones like estrogens, whereas unhealthy bacteria promotes female cancers[8].

What’s the Deal with Inflammation?

Inflammation in your gut is a major problem. A key sign is the belly fat you seem to constantly be gaining. It’s like having a big bad fire in your intestines that you can’t put out! Inflammation doesn’t let anything work well, and it makes the environment more opportunistic for bad microbes. Inflammation is also at the heart of most of your PCOS symptoms.

Your Stool Is the Tool

Simply not being able to poo can back up your ecosystem. Your stool is the tool that your body uses to get out that which it no longer needs. If you’re backed up, toxins can be recycled and circulated back into your body, increasing your estrogen, androgens, reducing your thyroid activity, and reabsorbing the gunk that was meant to leave your body. This in turn, further adds to your toxic load and messes with your PCOS. It promotes sluggishness and constipation. It’s a totally vicious cycle that can be difficult to break.

Add in stress to this little pile of poo, and that’s all you’ll have, a pile of poo, maybe every 3-4 days if you’re lucky. Stress not only can impact your ability to let it all go, literally, but it’ll also further deplete the oh-so-necessary vitamins and nutrients needed to get your gut in gear and your hormones happy.

It might seem like you just can’t win, but that my friends that ISN’T true. There is a way out of this vicious cycle. It just takes the right guidance and the right amount of practice. I know, only because I have lived it.

The 5 Steps to Resetting Digestion

So, how do we reset this ecosystem in our bodies back into shape?

Well, it all begins with getting your digestion on track.

There is a simple five-step starting plan to overcome your PCOS constipation. This is what I researched and developed to help myself, and it’s the first thing I do with all of my patients in order to get them on track during our first two visits.

  1. Practice the Pause

Learn the most important techniques to calm the nervous system down and practice the relaxed state. The relaxed state is where you heal and are healthy. The gut works best when relaxed.

Castor oil packs are my favorite tool to use in this phase to reset your digestion and learn how to pause[9] [10]. It sounds simple, but we are a society addicted to the stressed-out state, so these packs are the very best tool to retrain our bodies. Learn more about castor oil packs here.

2. Diligent Digestion

This step includes implementing techniques that optimize your digestion. These are simple and easy to add into your everyday routine, right before you eat.

  1. Anoint & Alkalinize to Absorb

Choosing alkalinizing foods helps to keep your digestion in gear, indigestion out of the way, and bloating and inflammation down to a minimum.

This step includes tips and tricks to keep you pooping like a queen. Not only the physical means by which to do it, like the supplements that are best for it, but what also learning what the standard is for a great poop and what your present stools say about you.

4. Easy Elimination

This step includes tips and tricks to keep you pooping like a queen. Not only the physical means by which to do it, like the supplements that are best for it, but what also learning what the standard is for a great poop and what your present stools say about you.

  1. Tone your Tummy

Of course, no digestive program is complete without addressing how to get your tummy toned in time for summer! No, it isn’t an endless number of crunches. This step includes the ever-important probiotics and rules for food choices.

This five-step approach was how I started to get my life back on track. Using simple and easy techniques that have proven themselves time and time again seems to be the best way to rebalance.

I’ve used this on every single one of my patients. Many don’t even know they are doing it because in my clinical practice, it is a simple discussion and guidance to work through these five principles.

I’ve found mastering these principles, take under one hour to learn and approximately the same time that it takes to develop a solid habit that will become second nature to your life.

PCOS Diva Digestion

Unfortunately, I cannot meet every woman with troubled digestion in my office. This is why, Amy, founder of PCOS Diva and I created this program for you, PCOS Diva Digestion. Both of us have suffered with PCOS and constipation, and we don’t want you to do the same. In fact, we want you to THRIVE and not just survive.

So, if you have felt touched or in tune with what I’ve been saying in this blog, take action! Let’s start fresh! In just 1 hour you can learn these 5 most important things that you can do to change your guts and change your life.

Click here to learn more.

Dr. Marisol, ND is a world leader renowned for her passion for cleansing and gut health, not only because she has the degree on the wall but more so because she’s experienced feeling shitty and figured out the hierarchy of how to get healthy. Crowned the Queen of the Thrones™, for over 15 years she has trained and educated healthcare practitioners and has helped thousands of patients transition from “Sh*t Show” to “Owning Their Throne”. Dr. Marisol directs and practices at Sanas Health Practice in Canada. She has spearheaded PuraSanas health supplements and invented the Queen of the Thrones Organic Castor Oil Pack™ and line of products. Thelaunch of her first book, “Oh, Sh*t!”, along with her educational conferences and programs,heralds her championing you to become your legend. Join her movement and help her to achieve her goal of being in 1 billion bathrooms by 2020. We can do it!

References:

[1]Werth BL1, Williams KA2, Fisher MJ3, Pont LG3,2. Defining constipation to estimate its prevalence in the community: results from a national survey. BMC Gastroenterol. 2019 May 21;19(1):75. doi: 10.1186/s12876-019-0994-0.

[2]Bardsley A1. Assessment and treatment options for patients with constipation. Br J Nurs. 2017 Mar 23;26(6):312-318. doi: 10.12968/bjon.2017.26.6.312.

[3] March WA, Moore VM, Willson KJ, Phillips DI, Norman RJ, Davies MJ. The prevalence of polycystic ovary syndrome in a community sample assessed under contrasting diagnostic criteria. Hum Reprod. (2010) 25:544–51. 10.1093/humrep/dep399

[4]Carter D1,2, Bardan E3,4, Maradey-Romero C3. Clinical and physiological risk factors for fecal incontinence in chronically constipated women. Tech Coloproctol. 2019 Apr 23. doi: 10.1007/s10151-019-01985-0. [Epub ahead of print]

[5]Mintziori G1, Goulis DG, Kolibianakis EM. Thyroid function and IVF outcome: when to investigate and when to intervene?Curr Opin Obstet Gynecol. 2016 Jun;28(3):191-7. doi: 10.1097/GCO.0000000000000263.

[6]Mazer NA1. Interaction of estrogen therapy and thyroid hormone replacement in postmenopausal women.Thyroid. 2004;14 Suppl 1:S27-34.

[7]Sibbritt D1, Peng W1, Chang S1, Liang H2, Adams J3. The use of conventional and complementary health services and self-prescribed treatments amongst young women with constipation: An Australian national cohort study. Dig Liver Dis. 2016 Nov;48(11):1308-1313. doi: 10.1016/j.dld.2016.07.017. Epub 2016 Jul 22.

[8]Kwa M1, Plottel CS1, Blaser MJ1, Adams SThe Intestinal Microbiome and Estrogen Receptor-Positive Female Breast Cancer. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2016 Apr 22;108(8). doi: 10.1093/jnci/djw029. Print 2016 Aug.

[9] Rolls ET et all. Representations of pleasant and painful touch in the human orbitofrontal and cingulate cortices. Cereb Cortex. 2003 Mar;13(3):308-17. ( Dopamine release, Limbic System of brain- Fatty Meal Satisfaction)

[10] Walker SC1, Trotter PD2, Swaney WT2, Marshall A3, Mcglone FP4. C-tactile afferents: Cutaneous mediators of oxytocin release during affiliative tactile interactions? Neuropeptides. 2017 Aug;64:27-38. doi: 10.1016/j.npep.2017.01.001. Epub 2017 Jan 19.

The post Constipation Clarity with PCOS: 5 Steps to Fix Your Digestion appeared first on PCOS Diva.

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Intermittent fasting can be a great way to balance your blood sugar, lose weight, and more. While it is not for everyone, it can be beneficial for some women with PCOS. I am a big believer in the power of tea, and am happy to report that there are high quality teas available to make intermittent faster easier and more effective. For more about tea and intermittent fasting, check out my podcast with Pique Tea founder, Simon Cheng.

Click here to get 15% off Pique Tea’s Intermittent Fasting blends!

The post Tea for Intermittent Fasting [Infographic] appeared first on PCOS Diva.

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PCOS Diva by Nancy Foti - 1M ago

“This is what my physiology is, and when I work with it instead of just constantly trying to change it, I am much less anxious and stressed. I’m more at peace, and also I’m not doing anything for the sake of weight loss that makes my hormones less healthy.” – Dr. Brooke Kalanick

For women trying to balance hormones with PCOS, the advice is typically to eat less and exercise more. Not only is that not particularly clear or helpful, it isn’t necessarily true. Since we struggle with both insulin resistance and inflammation, we need to be especially careful about the exercise and PCOS-friendly diet we choose. Dr. Brooke Kalanick offers practical advice on how to balance your hormones in a realistic and sustainable way. Listen in (or read the transcript) as we discuss:

  • Her favorite exercise for improving insulin sensitivity
  • How cortisol effects our hormones and the signs of it being too high or low
  • The “hormone hierarchy” to follow when choosing where to begin
  • Cautions for long-term Paleo diet
  • Role of simple electrolytes in healing

113 - Reset Your Hormones - SoundCloud
(2647 secs long)Play in SoundCloud

All PCOS Diva podcasts are available on   

Mentioned in this podcast:

How to Balance PCOS, Exercise & Hormones [Podcast]

PCOS Diva Revive

Full Transcript:

Amy Medling:                    Today I’m welcoming back a favorite guest on the podcast and that’s Dr. Brooke Kalanick. She is a licensed naturopath doctor and functional medicine physician, and an author of the brand new book, Hangry: 5 Simple Steps to Balance Your Hormones and Restore Your Joy. It’s a wonderful book. Congratulations, Dr. Brooke.

Brooke Kalanick:               Thank you. Yes, it is out in June.

Amy Medling:                    I think everybody needs to get a copy because there’s just so much information in here and a four-week plan to reset your hormones. It’s so applicable for women with PCOS. Before we move forward I just want listeners to know that you were on my podcast a couple years ago. It’s episode 60, How to Balance PCOS, Exercise and Hormones. I really encourage listeners to go back and listen to that episode, because you really are a wonderful expert on how to exercise with PCOS. I know you have PCOS yourself and you’ve kind of figured this out, the formula out, and we talk a lot about exercising to avoid adrenal exhaustion in that episode. Although you have a lot of fantastic information about exercise in your book and tons of how-to, there’s lots of pictures on proper form and exercises to do, we’re not going to cover that as much because there’s a lot more info that I want to dive into in your book. So, I just want to encourage listeners to go and review that information in podcast 60.

I do want to touch on one aspect of exercise that you talk about and that is walking. I wrote about in my book that when I was running so much to try to manage my weight early on when I had PCOS that I ended up with shin splints and had to start walking because I just couldn’t run anymore. I was amazed that I actually started losing weight when I started walking instead of running. You talk a lot about walking in your book. It’s part of your reset program. Can you kind of tell us why you like walking so much?

Brooke Kalanick:               Yeah. It’s funny, when we were working … I wrote the book with my business partner, my podcast cohost, Sarah Fragoso. So, she is a gym owner and a personal trainer, ex-crossfitter. So, we were kind of this blend of the clinical side and the practical side. With our program there was … We have what we call our five habits. It’s five, four, three, two, one is the structure. The fifth one is, or the one that goes with the five is five walks per week. As we were getting the book edited by someone who doesn’t really know our field or work with women the way that we do, she had so many questions about the walking. She was like, “I don’t understand why you guys are recommending this.” We were like, “Well, so many of us are a) Trying to maximize our time. Adding in a 45 minute walk tends to be something women are like, ‘I don’t know if I have time for that.'”

Like you said, when we recorded the episode in the past, we talked a lot about women with PCOS and exercise and where do we get it wrong? I think many of us … not every woman with PCOS struggles with trying to lose weight or maintain their weight. But, to some degree we typically usually struggle with both insulin resistance and inflammation. Walking is great for both of those things. So, we’ve got good research showing women with autoimmunity or inflammatory diseases do better, they feel better, and their markers of inflammation improve with more walking. It tends to be an exercise that doesn’t totally wipe us out.

Now, there is going to be like the most inflamed, adrenally exhausted, low thyroid woman that even walking for 45 minutes might be too taxing for her. But, for most people, for most women, it’s going to be a good way to move. We are bipeds. We are meant to be walking and we sit a lot. I live in New York City, so I walk quite a bit, most of us do just kind of in the run of things. But, that’s not the way most of us live, right? I still sit too much too. So, it’s a good way to kind of counteract, the sitting for sure which we know to be so detrimental for our posture and causes lots of issues.

So, it’s really great exercise that doesn’t usually perturb our hormones, so that’s a real advantage. When you and I talked before, again when we’re struggling to lose weight or we’re struggling to maintain our weight and frustrated with some of the things that happen with PCOS the advice is typically to eat less and exercise more. That can really quickly exacerbate any cortisol issues we have or create them. I think what happens when you’re a women with PCOS is you’re seen as someone that has maybe some insulin issues, definitely some estrogen and progesterone issues. But, we sometimes fail to remember that all women have all of those glands. We all have ovaries, and a thyroid, and adrenals. Just because you’re a woman with PCOS doesn’t mean we don’t need to take into account any of those other hormone issues we have and honor them, as well, with the low thyroid and low cortisol being the most delicate of those and the ones I think we have to honor first, even before we get to any of that PCOS-specific stuff like doing more exercise, getting more muscle mass, all of those things to help with the insulin resistance.

So, walking is something we recommend doing kind of as much as you can tolerate. Five walks a week is kind of the baseline. Again because it tends to really help with some of the big problems and doesn’t exacerbate some of those more delicate hormones. I think walking, as well, can be used when you do want to do a little bit more but you don’t want to run yourself into the ground like with extra cardio like the running. So, let’s say you had … You’re doing your regular walks but let’s say like, as life goes, you have a meal that’s maybe more carbohydrate, or more calories, or something that you’re like, “I know this doesn’t really work well for me.” Instead of just feeling guilty about it you could take a little walk and that is something that can put that fuel to use and not exacerbate any insulin resistance. I like to use stuff like that. When we factor in like PCOS, it is a chronic condition that we want to not be at the mercy of it, and we really want to have some tools that help us manage those things.

Let’s face it we’re not all going to be on some sort of perfect diet every day, 365 days of the year. Life happens, right? It’s your birthday, or you’re going out with your girlfriends, or you’re on vacation. Sometimes we tend to think of using exercise as a punishment for eating and that’s definitely not what this is about. It’s not like, “Oh, I went out with my girlfriends and had whatever and now I have to work it off.” It’s not that. It’s one of those like long-term things knowing that a meal that’s higher in carbs, or higher in calories, or higher in something that causes us inflammation, could be something we could really feel not good with for several days, and a little bit of exercise, like a good walk, can actually be a tool that is, I think, like a long-term PCOS strategy.

Amy Medling:                    It’s not really about calories in, calories out. It’s about taking the walk after the meal to sort of help with the insulin sensitivity, I think.

Brooke Kalanick:               Absolutely, getting those, just putting that meal to use, letting it get into your muscles. Exercise is one of our best tools with insulin resistance because it does improve insulin sensitivity. You don’t even need insulin when you’re exercising to get glucose out of your bloodstream and into a cell. So, it is a super good tool. I think so many of us that turn to exercise as a management, whether it’s stress management or managing our diet, we can overdo it and walking is one of those things that tends to keep us out of hot water with that.

Amy Medling:                    I think a lot of women with PCOS tend to be sort of that type A like really driven and do tend to overdo it. So, the other thing is with walking do you have to commit to 45 minutes or can you still derive benefits from say a 15-minute walk after lunch and maybe 15 minute after dinner?

Brooke Kalanick:               I think that with the walking as long as it’s not causing you to feel wiped out which, again, most women it’s not. It’s one of the ones you can kind of do, more is better. So, ideally getting in an hour a day, 45 minutes a day is great. I tend to do it … I take my kids to school and tend to walk fasted in the morning after taking care of my kids. That’s because that’s where my hormones are at right now. A couple years ago a fasted walk wasn’t in the cards for me, because I had more adrenal issues. But, that’s what I do now. But, if the best you can do is 20 minutes after lunch, 20 minutes after dinner or split that hour into two, it’s better than not doing it. It really is something … I think it’s a problem worth solving when it comes to your schedule. Do it when you can, as you can.

I consider those post-meal walks to be … that’s like medicine. That is literally helping your hormones put to use the fuel that you just ate, so those could be bonuses. Again, if that’s the only time you can do it, I think it’s all helpful. The biggest complaint we hear from women, well sometimes, is that they don’t think it’s going to be effective. They’re like, “Well, it’s just not hard enough. It’s not intense enough.” But, it’s kind of accomplishing a different purpose. The other argument is the time. I think it’s, again, a problem worth solving to try to find some time that that can fit into our day.

Amy Medling:                    You mentioned being low cortisol and low thyroid. I think a lot of women really struggle with knowing what their hormonal issue is. It’s hard for them to get the … They try to advocate for the testing that they need at their doctor’s office but doctors aren’t always willing to do the tests that will give us a full picture of what’s going on. In your book you had a really nice hormone quiz that could sort of indicate what might be going on with your hormones in terms of your thyroid and insulin resistance, cortisol, excess estrogen, or low progesterone. Then, you give us some sort of hacks and tips in terms of supplements and food that we can eat to sort of help bring things back into balance.

I was wondering, because I tend to have issues with serotonin. We’re going to talk about that in a minute, but cortisol. I tend to be low cortisol. I was wondering if you could talk a little bit about how cortisol, the role it plays for women with PCOS, and give us some idea of what signs are for low cortisol and what signs are for high cortisol to look for?

Brooke Kalanick:               Yeah, sure. The quizzes in the book is available at my website and at the Sarah and doctor. So, betterbydrbrooke.com or sarahanddrbrooke.com. That exact quiz is there. It’s free. Anybody can take that. Cortisol is the other blood sugar hormone. So, if you’ve got PCOS to some degree you have some issues with insulin. Obviously, some of us have that more severe than others, which I know your listeners are aware that PCOS has many faces and many hormonal imbalance faces as well.

So, women with PCOS, we struggle with blood sugar one way or the other, typically. Cortisol is the other piece of that. Even taking aside just life stress and things like that, when your blood sugar is up and down, that’s a stress and cortisol is going to get involved. Then you layer in, of course, any other biochemical stresses. Some of the biggest ones for women with PCOS are thyroid imbalances, gut infections, estrogen dominance, inflammation, essential fatty acid balance, any host of nutrient deficiencies, electrolyte imbalances. All of those things are stresses, biochemical stresses, as well. We tend to have just pretty much everything on that list that I just rattled off. Then, of course, there’s the lifestyle stress and how we’re exercising and are we getting enough sleep?

For most women with PCOS there’s usually some degree of cortisol involvement. Sometimes it’s high and sometimes it’s low. The high cortisol/insulin resistance combo is a tough one. It’s going to make all of the PCOS stuff worse. It’s going to make the insulin resistance and the inflammation worse, and we tend to see puffiness or inflammation. Cortisol is funny because acutely it’s anti-inflammatory but most of us are not dealing with acute high cortisol. We’re dealing with that chronic calling upon it way too many times a day every day for a long period of time.

So, we’ve got this chronic cortisol release and it tends to affect our sleep. We tend to not be able to fall asleep and unwind very easily. We might feel tired. Then back to the inflammation, in time that gets worse. We feel puffy, we feel sore, we feel achy. We tend to feel tired and achy in the morning and then we tend to have a hard time balancing our blood sugar through the day. We tend to crave fatty or sugary carby foods, all the stuff you know is not going to make your stress or insulin resistance any better. So, we tend to be low energy, higher cravings, and then difficulty falling asleep.

Low cortisol can either kind of come with adrenal issues or it can develop because you’re having lots of blood sugar problems because of insulin resistance and PCOS, or it could just come from going through a period of stress. So, those symptoms tend to be … What I see with women with PCOS and adrenal issues, it tends to be the hardest blood sugar problem to control. Because, you have trouble if you eat, let’s say, for low cortisol which people would tell you to eat frequently, eat more carbohydrates. That tends to exacerbate the other side of the coin, the insulin resistance. So, that tends to not work very well for that other side of it. Because, with the low cortisol you have a harder time keeping your blood sugar up. You’re going to see symptoms between meals like feeling hangry, feeling irritable, cranky, light-headed, craving lots of carbs, not able to go very long without eating, possibly more frequent waking in the night if you’re not able to keep your blood sugar up.

The low cortisol and insulin resistance combo is the toughest, because you have to honor that low cortisol first, because that’s what’s on the top of my hormone hierarchy. If we don’t deal with low cortisol and low thyroid first and just treat ourselves like we only have PCOS and nothing else is going on. That advice is low carb, keto, exercise a ton, which is the exact opposite of what someone would tell you for your low cortisol, which is eat frequently, eat plenty of carbohydrates. Don’t exercise too much, you want to do some yoga and some walking and nothing more strenuous. It’s a real conflicting bit of information for women that have this issue. But, yet, if we don’t deal with it, just doing some of the PCOS stuff can be really frustrating.

So, in this case what I recommend is we honor them both but make sure that we are really attuned to that low cortisol first. I tend to start women … It’s like maybe four meals a day, five can really exacerbate the insulin issues. You might need a teeny smattering of carbohydrate, like a little bit, a few bites at every meal versus a big serving at every meal. Whereas maybe someone with just insulin resistance can do just starch at night, or they could even do something more extreme like a keto diet or a very low carb diet. I find that that kind of making sure we honor them both, that tends to be the combo, hopefully while you are dealing with the low cortisol issue. What’s driving all that stress? What’s causing you to be so wiped out? Is it infection, lifestyle? What is it that’s going on, and hopefully heal that a little bit so, we don’t need to be on such a tightrope with your blood sugar?

Amy Medling:                    Great advice. Your book goes into much more detail onto how to treat those issues and more. One of the sections of the book that really kind of struck my interest was your discussion about GABA and serotonin. I think that a lot of women with PCOS struggle with both levels of both of those. I was hoping that you could talk a little bit more about it for our listeners.

Brooke Kalanick:               When you think about all of your neurotransmitters, we get in real quick to like, “Well, what can I take?” So, we know that tyrosine will induce dopamine and tryptophan or 5-HTP, St. John’s Wort, those things will induce serotonin. But what we want to always remember, when it comes to neurotransmitters insulin has a role in this. It helps drive the amino acids from your foods. Let’s say you ate some chicken, or some turkey, and it’s got some tryptophan in it, but you need to get that tryptophan into your nervous system, into your brain, in order to be produced into serotonin. That’s going to be driven by healthy blood sugar and by insulin balance.

If you think you have any neurotransmitter imbalances one of the first things you want to do is make sure were managing your blood sugar, which all goes back to what I talked about with insulin and cortisol. So, that’s a really important thing, I think, for women with PCOS or all women. You know we get so into exciting things like keto, or CrossFit, or whatever is like the new or Orange Theory, whatever is like the new hot trend, or now the carnivore diet. That’s the new nutrition trend. We get focused on that and we forget just the basics of what’s actually working for your physiology right now, for you to balance your blood sugar. So, we want to make sure blood sugar balances really in line anytime we’re wondering about having neurotransmitter issues. GABA and serotonin tend to be some of our calming, kind of feel-good neurotransmitters. When we don’t have enough of them we feel anxious. With serotonin we can feel depressed.

So, with GABA, again, very reliant on balanced blood sugar so do that first. If you are having symptoms of low GABA you tend to feel more anxious. You can feel almost like a sense of dread at times. This anxiety and dread doesn’t really have a reason. Like, I just actually had a super stressful phone call with my daughter’s school about registration next year, so that’s a reason for me to feel anxious. This dread with GABA deficiency tends to be, or anxiety with it, tends to be sort of for no reason. You’re sort of finding yourself feeling anxious and upset and a knot in my stomach, and I’m not really sure why. You can also feel a little bit disconnected from other people when GABA is low and certainly have a hard time sleeping.

With serotonin we tend to have some depression. It’s not so much like a dopamine depression. You didn’t really ask me about dopamine, but I’m going to talk about that one, too, because they both can make us feel depressed. So, serotonin depression is a sort of a flat affect, where you don’t go up and down a lot. You’re down. You’re not super, super down but you are down. It can worst in overcast weather. You lose appreciation for the things you used to love. Like maybe you used to love painting or biking, or whatever, and just none of it really makes you feel as happy as it used to. It can also give you some cravings for sugars. I think a lot of those things, again, are driven by your body trying to get that blood sugar balanced and boost things up. Serotonin depression, again, is kind of the blues where your down and you almost can feel guilty about it like, “My life’s pretty good. I don’t know why I don’t feel happier.”

Whereas a dopamine depression … Dopamine is one of our uppers, so it’s one of our real, it’s about focus and motivation, having to do with drive, sex drive, organization, being able to kind of like wrangle your thoughts, short-term memory. That kind of a depression when we don’t have enough dopamine can be a bit more up and down versus that flat nature of low serotonin. But, when you have your down days they’re really down. You can feel kind of hopeless like, “Nothing’s ever going to get better.” I’ve seen women with PCOS..

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Guest post by Jenny Silverstone

Are you starving all the time and aren’t quite sure if it’s linked to your polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) diagnosis?

Are you still trying to get a handle on how having this condition is affecting you?

Then you’ve come to the right place. We’ll give you the inside scoop on this condition and help you figure out why you feel like a bottomless pit who has the urge to eat all day long.

What Is PCOS?

PCOS is an endocrine disorder that can effect your health and appearance. Elevated androgen levels, known as a male hormone, can make it difficult for you to get pregnant, give you wildly unpredictable periods, or stop them altogether.

But it can also increase your chances of developing other health issues, like insulin resistance, high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. Appearance wise, it can cause unwanted facial hair, acne, weight gain, thinning scalp hair, and more.

It’s estimated that one in twenty people in the U.S. has this condition, so it’s not rare by any stretch of the imagination. It can be hard to diagnose because there isn’t a smoking gun test available. When it is suspected, doctors need to look at blood tests, pelvic ultrasounds, physical examinations, and your list of symptoms to make a diagnosis.

The list of possible symptoms is extensive, but each woman has a unique set of them. Common symptoms include pre-diabetes/diabetes, high blood pressure, elevated triglycerides and total cholesterol, extra weight, acne, unwanted body hair growth, losing hair from your head, polycystic ovaries on ultrasound, infertility, and irregular periods.

For more about symptoms, causes, diagnosis, and treatment, download the free PCOS 101 Guide.

Why PCOS Makes You So Hungry All the Time Hormones

PCOS is a hormonal condition. Unfortunately, it effects more than your reproductive hormones. Among others, it touches your metabolism and appetite. While you may feel like you simply have no will power, it turns out PCOS may be responsible for you feeling so hungry all the time. You may be insulin resistant, and your imbalance of appetite-regulating hormones like leptin, cholecystokinin, and ghrelin may be stoking your hunger. You can take steps to get these hormones back under control. As with your other PCOS-related hormones, a good, anti-inflammatory PCOS diet and lifestyle will begin to bring all of these back under control.

PCOS and Eating Disorders

If you have PCOS, you may have a greater chance of developing an eating disorder, like binge eating, anorexia, or bulimia. Your need to overeat may be emotional from coping with the stress of PCOS, or physical because of your excess insulin and other out-of-balance hormones. If you believe that you have an eating disorder it is important to seek professional help. 

Signs you might be suffering from a binge eating disorder include:
  • Feeling upset about your eating binges
  • Hiding your food binges or secretly eating
  • Partaking in a binge even if you aren’t hungry
  • Eating really quickly
  • Eating past your comfort level, not stopping even when you are full
7 Tips for Tackling PCOS Cravings

While it can be difficult, you can seize control of your body. Here are some tips to help you handle the cravings and focus on a healthy diet.

1) Exercise

That may be the last thing you feel like doing when you’re hungry and lacking energy, but if you make yourself go for a walk or bike ride, it will help suppress your appetite. When you do eat, you may find yourself making healthier choices so you don’t undo the calorie burn of your workout. As an added bonus, exercise lowers insulin levels, so you’ll get a benefit there as well.

2) Eat mini meals

If you go too long between eating, you might be setting the stage for binge eating. By letting yourself get too hungry, you might be in a feeding frenzy that could have been prevented by eating more frequently. An well-planned afternoon snack can help.

3) Journal

Journalling can be helpful in uncovering patterns about what sets off your cravings. By writing down what happens leading up to poor eating choices, you may discover what your triggers are and how to avoid them. Write down what is happening and how you are feeling. Then write how you feel after you eat.

4) Get a handle on your emotions

PCOS can bring up all sorts of negative emotions and stress. By dealing with those emotions, rather than suppressing them, you can avoid emotional eating. Make a list of things you can do instead, like exercise, working with your hands, and listening to uplifting music.

5) Find others dealing with PCOS

Support groups, even if they are online, can be tremendously helpful. As well-meaning as your friends and family might be, they may not understand what you’re going through and not know how to help you. But people who are dealing with the same situations you are may give you insight you didn’t have before.

6) Think about your health instead of your weight

You might be skipping meals to lose weight and do well for a few days, only to feel so frustrated after not seeing the numbers on the scale budge. That can lead to binge eating. Instead of worrying about what the scale shows, think about how you feel — if you feel fit and active through regular exercise and healthy choices, you’ll feel less likely to give up.

7) Don’t Stop Trying

Although you are faced with a challenge, that doesn’t mean things are out of your control. You can choose to sink or you can choose to swim. Yes, you have a condition you wish you didn’t have to deal with, but you may be able to turn this into a positive thing.

Now with your diagnosis, you finally know why you’re so hungry all the time and you should no longer have those feelings of guilt for your appetite. You’re not doing anything wrong — your hormones are steering your ship. But with a little effort, you’ll be back in charge in no time.

Jenny Silverstone is the mother of two precious daughters and an editor for the parenting website MomLovesBest.com. Jenny is an advocate for a more natural approach to parenting and is mildly obsessed with cloth diapering, and breastfeeding. In her free time, Jenny enjoys spending time outdoors with her family and catching up on the latest health and well-being research.

The post Why Does PCOS Make You So Hungry All the Time? appeared first on PCOS Diva.

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Guest post by Jenny Silverstone

Are you starving all the time and aren’t quite sure if it’s linked to your polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) diagnosis?

Are you still trying to get a handle on how having this condition is affecting you?

Then you’ve come to the right place. We’ll give you the inside scoop on this condition and help you figure out why you feel like a bottomless pit who has the urge to eat all day long.

What Is PCOS?

PCOS is an endocrine disorder that can effect your health and appearance. Elevated androgen levels, known as a male hormone, can make it difficult for you to get pregnant, give you wildly unpredictable periods, or stop them altogether.

But it can also increase your chances of developing other health issues, like insulin resistance, high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. Appearance wise, it can cause unwanted facial hair, acne, weight gain, thinning scalp hair, and more.

It’s estimated that one in twenty people in the U.S. has this condition, so it’s not rare by any stretch of the imagination. It can be hard to diagnose because there isn’t a smoking gun test available. When it is suspected, doctors need to look at blood tests, pelvic ultrasounds, physical examinations, and your list of symptoms to make a diagnosis.

The list of possible symptoms is extensive, but each woman has a unique set of them. Common symptoms include pre-diabetes/diabetes, high blood pressure, elevated triglycerides and total cholesterol, extra weight, acne, unwanted body hair growth, losing hair from your head, polycystic ovaries on ultrasound, infertility, and irregular periods.

For more about symptoms, causes, diagnosis, and treatment, download the free PCOS 101 Guide.

Why PCOS Makes You So Hungry All the Time Hormones

PCOS is a hormonal condition. Unfortunately, it effects more than your reproductive hormones. Among others, it touches your metabolism and appetite. While you may feel like you simply have no will power, it turns out PCOS may be responsible for you feeling so hungry all the time. You may be insulin resistant, and your imbalance of appetite-regulating hormones like leptin, cholecystokinin, and ghrelin may be stoking your hunger. You can take steps to get these hormones back under control. As with your other PCOS-related hormones, a good, anti-inflammatory PCOS diet and lifestyle will begin to bring all of these back under control.

PCOS and Eating Disorders

If you have PCOS, you may have a greater chance of developing an eating disorder, like binge eating, anorexia, or bulimia. Your need to overeat may be emotional from coping with the stress of PCOS, or physical because of your excess insulin and other out-of-balance hormones. If you believe that you have an eating disorder it is important to seek professional help. 

Signs you might be suffering from a binge eating disorder include:
  • Feeling upset about your eating binges
  • Hiding your food binges or secretly eating
  • Partaking in a binge even if you aren’t hungry
  • Eating really quickly
  • Eating past your comfort level, not stopping even when you are full
7 Tips for Tackling PCOS Cravings

While it can be difficult, you can seize control of your body. Here are some tips to help you handle the cravings and focus on a healthy diet.

1) Exercise

That may be the last thing you feel like doing when you’re hungry and lacking energy, but if you make yourself go for a walk or bike ride, it will help suppress your appetite. When you do eat, you may find yourself making healthier choices so you don’t undo the calorie burn of your workout. As an added bonus, exercise lowers insulin levels, so you’ll get a benefit there as well.

2) Eat mini meals

If you go too long between eating, you might be setting the stage for binge eating. By letting yourself get too hungry, you might be in a feeding frenzy that could have been prevented by eating more frequently. An well-planned afternoon snack can help.

3) Journal

Journalling can be helpful in uncovering patterns about what sets off your cravings. By writing down what happens leading up to poor eating choices, you may discover what your triggers are and how to avoid them. Write down what is happening and how you are feeling. Then write how you feel after you eat.

4) Get a handle on your emotions

PCOS can bring up all sorts of negative emotions and stress. By dealing with those emotions, rather than suppressing them, you can avoid emotional eating. Make a list of things you can do instead, like exercise, working with your hands, and listening to uplifting music.

5) Find others dealing with PCOS

Support groups, even if they are online, can be tremendously helpful. As well-meaning as your friends and family might be, they may not understand what you’re going through and not know how to help you. But people who are dealing with the same situations you are may give you insight you didn’t have before.

6) Think about your health instead of your weight

You might be skipping meals to lose weight and do well for a few days, only to feel so frustrated after not seeing the numbers on the scale budge. That can lead to binge eating. Instead of worrying about what the scale shows, think about how you feel — if you feel fit and active through regular exercise and healthy choices, you’ll feel less likely to give up.

7) Don’t Stop Trying

Although you are faced with a challenge, that doesn’t mean things are out of your control. You can choose to sink or you can choose to swim. Yes, you have a condition you wish you didn’t have to deal with, but you may be able to turn this into a positive thing.

Now with your diagnosis, you finally know why you’re so hungry all the time and you should no longer have those feelings of guilt for your appetite. You’re not doing anything wrong — your hormones are steering your ship. But with a little effort, you’ll be back in charge in no time.

Jenny Silverstone is the mother of two precious daughters and an editor for the parenting website MomLovesBest.com. Jenny is an advocate for a more natural approach to parenting and is mildly obsessed with cloth diapering, and breastfeeding. In her free time, Jenny enjoys spending time outdoors with her family and catching up on the latest health and well-being research.

The post Why Does PCOS Make You So Hungry All the Time? appeared first on PCOS Diva.

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“Do your own research. Don’t get overwhelmed, don’t feel like you have to take 20 supplements, and you have to follow all these rigid plans. Just take it a step at a time, set some goals for yourself. It needs to be the big picture, not just nutrition, but also exercise, sleep, stress management, and emotional health.” – Martha McKittrick

There are a lot of people out there willing to tell you the best diet for PCOS. Many of them are well meaning, telling the story of what worked for them. As a result, there is a lot of confusion. Should we all eat Keto or vegan? Try intermittent fasting, low carb, no carb? The truth is this: There Is No Best PCOS Diet. It is entirely individual. Registered Dietician Martha McKittrick explains why that is true and the steps you can take to find the diet that works for you. Listen in (or read the transcript) as we discuss:

  • 4 things just as (or more) important than diet
  • The diet that will help you find a diet
  • Role of the gut microbiome & why it may dictate your diet
  • Tips and tricks to figure out what works best for you
  • Exercise that we all need to do

112 - Find YOUR “Best PCOS Diet” - SoundCloud
(2675 secs long, 3422 plays)Play in SoundCloud

All PCOS Diva podcasts are available on   

Mentioned in this podcast:

From Martha McKittrick:

Food Sensitivity Testing- Your Next Step in Healing PCOS? [Podcast] (Dr. Margrit Mikulis)

Managing PCOS, Dating, & Relationships [Podcast] (Dr. Gretchen Kubacky)

Full Transcript:

Amy:                     I am thrilled to welcome back one of my most popular PCOS Diva Podcast guests, and that’s registered dietician, Martha McKittrick. Just so that you know, she has done two other episodes, episodes 63 on Practical Tips to Tame PCOS Inflammation, and episode 84 on the Pros and Cons of the Ketogenic Diet. Welcome, Martha. I’m so excited to be talking about today’s topic, which is why there is no “best diet” for PCOS.

Martha M:          Thanks, Amy. I’m so excited to be back. I always love coming on your podcast, and I’m so happy that this is the subject that we’re going to be talking about, because it’s kind of my mantra.

Amy:                     I know. I think that there is a lot of confusion, especially among social media with all of these Facebook groups out and about, and people expressing a lot of success with whatever diet that they’re choosing, and then it kind of sends us down this path of okay we’re going to try the Keto diet, or the Vegan diet, or Intermittent Fasting, because it worked for another woman with PCOS, it must work for me.

Martha M:          Exactly. I think social media is a blessing and a curse. I think it’s great because we can do our own research, and you can advocate for yourself, or learn about PCOS, but where it can be I think kind of a curse is that if you’re on Instagram, or Facebook groups, like you said, there are maybe women who have had success with certain types of programs, and they’re attracting followers, but it’s kind of like they’re saying this is how you have to do it.

There’re all kinds of articles if you Google “diet and PCOS” you’re going to find all kinds of stuff out there, and it’s kind of like this is the diet you have to follow, and it’s just so confusing for women. When I read this stuff, it drives me nuts, but I can’t even imagine if you have PCOS how you must feel when you’re reading all this stuff.

Amy:                     We’re going to sort of demystify and talk about really the one best diet, and before we dive into the content for today’s podcast, I just want to give those who don’t know about your work a little bit more information about you. You’re a registered dietician, a certified diabetes educator, and well coach. You’re a certified health and wellness coach, and you’ve been specializing in PCOS for over 15 years.

You’ve lectured across the country to medical professionals and women with PCOS. You’ve been published in many medical journals, and you wrote two chapters in a book about PCOS, it was one of the first books that I read about PCOS, which was, A Patient’s Guide to PCOS, by Doctor Walter Futterweit. You’re also on the Health Advisory Board for PCOS Challenge. I know I see you at a lot of PCOS Challenge events. You’re just really immersed in this PCOS world, and so I think that you’re really one of my go to guides for nutrition for women with PCOS. I’m glad you’re here today sort of talking about really what’s the one best approach.

I just want to call out your Instagram page. You have a great Instagram page, and you had a really good meme about why there is no one best diet, and I was talking about sort of the one best approach, but one best diet, so I thought that was really informative, and I was hoping that you can kind of talk a little bit more about what was on that meme, and what do we have to consider when we’re looking at the best way of eating for us.

Martha M:          Yeah. I don’t have PCOS, but I’m super passionate about it, and I just find it’s very interesting, and I think kind of helping to treat women, diet and lifestyle play a huge role in it, and that’s why I say lifestyle, because it’s not just diet, and I think a lot of women kind of get caught up on just follow this kind of diet, or that kind of diet, and forget about getting enough sleep, and exercise, and stress management, and emotional health. That to me is sometimes even more important than the actual diet part.

To answer your question, I kind of believe there’s no one size fits all approach when it comes to nutrition for PCOS, or diet for PCOS. There’s so many reasons why, and when you read some of these things on social media it might say, “You have to go Keto,” or the opposite, “Go plant based,” and, “This is what you need to do if you have PCOS,” but we can’t say there’s a one size fits all approach for women with PCOS, and there’s a couple different reasons, and some of them are really sneaky, but really interesting.

I think the more basic reasons is everybody has different metabolisms. Some women can eat 1800 calories and others need to eat a lot less to lose weight, and I know not everybody counts calories, and I don’t recommend everybody counts calories, but we have very different varying caloric needs, so if you’re trying to follow this kind of one diet plan that somebody’s selling it may not work for you, because if you eat too few calories it’s not good, but on the other hand if you eat too many you’re not going to lose. We’re very individualized there. We have different activity levels.

If you’re very, very active, you may not do well on a very low carb diet, because you need carbs for energy, and that can actually backfire, and you can make your symptoms worse. There’re different degrees of insulin resistance. Some women are not as insulin resistant as others. In my experience, I found the more insulin resistant you are, you might need to be a little stricter with your carb intake. Again, it depends on the woman. Every single woman with PCOS does not have to be on a really low carb diet.

Amy:                     Yeah. I wanted to just interject my personal experience. I tend to be more on that sort of thin phenotype of PCOS. I never really had insulin resistance come up on my blood work, but I know I do have a degree of insulin resistance. For me, I cannot go without any grains, because it makes me feel very shaky, I don’t feel grounded, so I have to have some type of grain like rice, or oats in my diet to just sort of make me feel stable, where in my experience, a lot of women who are more insulin resistant tend to feel better without as much grain.

Martha M:          Exactly. They have done studies where lean PCOS women tend to have increased rates of hypoglycemia, which is exactly what you just said. If you don’t have enough grains, or if you go to long without eating, you can get these really shaky bad feelings, so you’re right. That’s why there’s no one size fits all approach for carb intake, for sure.

Another one is, and this is where, oh, medical conditions, for example, somebody might have high cholesterol, so they might need to be a little more careful with the kinds of fats that they’re eating. If you have other medical conditions and you take that into account, because you know Keto may not be the best diet for you, if you have high cholesterol, or genetically high cholesterol, especially, so you need to keep that in mind.

Amy:                     Yeah. Something else I was wondering if you’re seeing this, that women that are on the ketogenic diet that may have sort of fatty liver issues that it tends to kind of aggravate fatty liver, that’s what I’m seeing in some-

Martha M:          That makes me a little bit nervous. I mean, I’m really open minded about different kinds of plans, that’s why if somebody comes to me, and they have their heart set on Keto, I’ll work with them and say, “Well, maybe it’s not the best, but, hey, let’s do it this way, let’s make it be healthy,” but my concern is if you have fatty liver, and a huge percentage of women with PCOS and type II diabetes have fatty liver, and eating large amounts of fat is not good for fatty liver. I haven’t seen any studies that show it worsens it, but I certainly would think that it would. Yeah. That’s certainly an issue.

Other things where I think it kind of gets interesting is when it comes to food intolerances or food sensitivities. The thing about this is it’s kind of hard to diagnose it in a test, and you read a lot of things on the internet that says, don’t have dairy, and don’t have gluten, and I don’t think there are any studies that really show if you have PCOS you should not have gluten, but if you cut it out, and you feel better, you might have a gluten sensitivity.

That’s a huge, I think, part when you are picking a diet that fits best for you, would be the food sensitivities. Common food sensitivities could be to diary, it could be to gluten, there are other foods, too, but those are two common ones. How do you know if you have a food sensitivity? The best way would be to cut it out. Cut it out of your diet for at least a couple weeks, even two to four weeks, and then you could reintroduce it, one food at a time, and just see, do your symptoms come back?

If they do, then you know that you might have a food sensitivity to that particular food, but I don’t think automatically every woman with PCOS needs to cut out gluten. I know that’s on a lot of the social media accounts is that you have to go gluten free if you have PCOS. I really believe it depends on the woman. I have lots of women who say, “Hey, when I have gluten I don’t feel well, I might have some stomach issues, or I have achiness, or PCOS symptoms get worse, but when I cut it out, I feel better,” then you know what that’s great, don’t have it.

Amy:                     I know for me it’s not so much stomach bloating, it’s the mood when I have it, I get very kind of depressed and irritable to the point where my husband can sometimes tell if it’s slipped back into my diet.

Martha M:          Wow.

Amy:                     I think it’s inflaming my gut and brain, that’s my theory.

Martha M:          Yeah. I would say that gluten can cause inflammation in people who are sensitive to it, and it’s because all different symptoms, like you said, it’s irritability, it’s mood. Some people say joint pain, or fatigue, brain fog, migraine, so there’s a lot of symptoms that could come from having gluten, if you’re sensitive to it. I think women with PCOS tend to already have a low-grade inflammation, and if you’re eating a food that you’re sensitive to it can make your inflammation worse. That’s why when you cut that food out, you feel better. It certainly works doing a trial of cutting certain foods out.

Amy:                     Right. I think all of those symptoms that you mentioned are good kind of benchmarks for you to pay attention to with any food.

Martha M:          Exactly. Then, the dairy one it’s the same kind of thing. Dairy, could cause a couple different things. I’m not anti-dairy with PCOS. I mean, I certainly don’t recommend you start drinking glasses of milk, and eating ice cream, but I find if you have a plain Greek yogurt, or a little maybe shaved Parmesan on a salad, I’m okay with that, but you have to pay attention to how your body feels. A couple different things could occur with dairy. One of them is lactose intolerance.

It’s believed about 70% of the population has a lactose intolerance to a certain degree, and that means you’re missing an enzyme that helps you break down the milk, sugar lactose, so when you eat something with lactose, like yogurt or milk you would get gas, or bloating, or diarrhea. You would have a gastrointestinal symptom, so that’s lactose intolerance. If that’s your issue, sometimes if you have something like hard cheese, you wouldn’t get the issue as much, it occurs more with milk and yogurt. In that case, just don’t have it, or if you really love yogurt, you could buy a lactose free yogurt kind of thing. That’s lactose intolerant.

Another thing that could happen, and that’s due to the sugar in the milk, there’s also protein in milk, some people actually have allergies to the protein in milk, so if you eat dairy, and you have reactions like itchy throat, or hives that could be actually due to the allergy, and then you get tested from your doctor, and they can tell you if you have an allergy to milk, or any other food.

The last thing is a sensitivity. You may have a sensitivity to dairy, and the way you would test that is you cut the food out, and you see if you feel better. They have done studies with acne and dairy, and if you have acne and PCOS, you may want to do a trial of cutting out dairy, or eating it very minimally and see if your acne gets better. That’s kind of how I feel about dairy.

I don’t think women with PCOS should be having a lot of dairy just due to the hormones in the milk, but I’m not totally anti-dairy. I think it also depends on the kind of dairy that you’re having. Like, if you have a Greek yogurt, or something that’s fermented, that can actually help with good bacteria in your gut, which is a really good thing, so I would say if you are going to have dairy I’d rather see you have something fermented, like kefir, or yogurt, or real milk.

Amy:                     I often say to think about cheese, like you had mentioned just a little Parmesan on a salad, or an entrée to think of cheese as like a garnish. I know so many are I think addicted to cheese, and think of cheese as really your protein in a meal, and I just don’t think that, that’s the right approach to looking at dairy.

Martha M:          I agree. Also, think about cheese, like what does it often go along with? Pizza, lasagna, maybe on pasta, so like you said, if you have a little cheese in salad that’s different than having something where there’s a lot of cheese in your main meal, so that depends.

Amy:                     The food sensitivities, I just wanted to call attention to the podcast I did with Dr. Margrit Mikulis, and we’ll put that in the show notes, but she talks about food sensitivity testing. My husband and I did the test that she talks about on the show, and my husband found out that he’s highly allergic to cinnamon, and we never really put two and two together until we got those test results, and now he can really tell when he’s had cinnamon, it makes him feel really kind of logy for the rest of the day.

Martha M:          Yeah.

Amy:                     He can kind of feel it in his mouth, too, his mouth gets kind of raw, but you’d never think cinnamon would be something that you’d be allergic to, so I think that there’s a lot of different foods you could have sensitivity to.

Martha M:          Exactly. That’s so interesting. Wow. I’m going to have to listen to that podcast. Then, the next thing is we’re going back to the food intolerance, there is a condition called, IBS, which can affect up to 20% of the population. It’s so common. That’s one of the areas that I specialize in my practice, and some..

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Guest post by Dr. Marisol Teijeiro N.D.

It’s that time of year again. You saunter over to the mirror. Put one foot in your swimsuit, the other foot in. You then put your arms through the lassoes that help to keep everything propped up exactly where it should be (hypothetically). You look into the mirror, not bad. Doesn’t look like the winter hibernation did you wrong.

As you turn to the side and look over your shoulder, you gasp, surprised. Your belly is sticking out like you’re four months pregnant. Sadly, you’re not. Maybe you wish that this bloat would be a baby. Maybe it’s just irritating.

Why are you so bloated? Being bloated in your bathing suit isn’t fun. Worse, did you ever think that maybe this bloat could be a BIG part of the reason it’s difficult for you to get pregnant?

Well, there’s a good possibility that it has A LOT to do with what is ‘off’ in your body. Read on to learn how your digestion, or rather indigestion, impacts your hormones, PCOS, and yes, bloat. Plus, I explain what you can do to fix it. Learning how to support this vital function will have you well on your way to achieving your dreams and deepest heartfelt desires.

Bloating, a BIG Symptom in PCOS

Bloating after eating (or all the time) is one of the big symptoms for women with PCOS. Often, constipation is present too. Bloating is definitely one of the most visible and uncomfortable symptoms in this condition[4].

Table of Contents:
  • The Importance of Great Digestion
  • Digestion and your Hormones
  • How Digestion Works
  • Digestion as the Center of our Universe
  • Bloating, a BIG Symptom in PCOS
  • Causes of Bloating in Women with PCOS
  • Beach Body Ready, and Maybe Baby Ready Too?
  • My Journey to Improve my Digestion
  • The Steps I took To Make my Bloat All Better
  • Castor Oil Pack for Indigestion, Bloating and Your Lady Balls
  • Castor Oil Packs, What Do They Actually Do?
  • 5 Step Formula to Reset Digestion, Beat the Bloat, Balance Your Hormones and Love Your Lady Balls
The Importance of Great Digestion

Digestion isn’t just how we digest food; it’s also how we digest life. If our digestion is off and we are suffering from indigestion, we typically have symptoms like a little heart burn here, a little burping there, bad gas everywhere, and a big ol’ belly bloat. You definitely have problems getting a healthy balance of what you need from your food. The nutrients and vital richness of the foods are not absorbing. Your gut is also the center of your immune system and is critical to your hormone regulation.

How Digestion Works

The gut is where the magic in your body happens. When we intake food, we have to break it down via mechanical and chemical d

igestion. Then we have to absorb the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that our bodies need. We also have to effectively eliminate the waste and what doesn’t serve us.

It is an intricate process with lots of steps, and any part of it that goes wrong will mess up the entire system. It’s like dominos, if you break the step-by-step sequence, everything just falls apart.

Digestion and your Hormones

When digestion is off, you are off in every way. Women with PCOS are more prone to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) than others[1]. IBS is a condition where you experience many digestive disturbances including uncomfortable bloating.

It’s a diagnosis of exclusion, meaning doctors rule out everything else first because there are no tests to actually tell you definitively that you have an irritable bowel. That’s why it’s called a functional disorder. The function is off in your digestion. When the function is off in your digestion, you better believe that the function everywhere else is disturbed too.

When your gut is off, your hormones will be off and everything else in your body won’t be working well at all. Why? You would think that they aren’t connected. But that’s not true, the entire body is intimately interconnected. It is like a garden, everything works together – the nourishing water, moist soil, shining sun, the vital seeds, blooming plants, the wiggling caterpillars, etc. Everything has its role and roles must be observed for new plants to grow or your body to work smoothly.

Everything must be in balance for you to create life. In Spanish they call it “dar luz” – to give light! You can only give light if you’ve balanced the darkness.

Digestion as the Center of our Universe

The gut is literally the center of your universe, the hub of your body. Just like Grand Central station, the White House, Parliament Hill, or Kensington Palace. All the important stuff happens here.

The gut is the ultimate connector of the body’s nervous, immune, and hormonal regulation systems. Did you know that hormones are working in your gut and regulating your bowel movements right now? High levels of estrogen make you constipated, with major difficulty like straining when you go to the bathroom. Healthy levels of progesterone make you go to the bathroom[2]!

Women with PCOS typically have elevated levels of estrogen and don’t have the ebb and flow with a healthy balance of progesterone to regulate their cycles or their poops[3]! Isn’t it incredible that what’s happening in your lady balls (A.K.A. your ovaries) and uterus, is also happening in your gut?!

Causes of Bloating in Women with PCOS

There are multiple culprits with bloating in women that have PCOS. When you are fixing the gut, you want a multi-pronged approach.

Possible causes of bloating are:

  • Food sensitivities and intolerance
  • Inflammation
  • Low antioxidant status
  • Bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine (like in the condition known as SIBO)
  • Lack of digestive factors like digestive enzymes, stomach acid, sodium bicarbonate, bile
  • Too much stress
  • Hormonal dysregulation, excess estrogens, low progesterone, high androgens, etc.
  • and more!
Beach Body Ready, and Maybe Baby Ready Too?

I’m not claiming that fixing your gut and doing a digestive reset is the end-all-be-all to get pregnant or healing. But it sure helps with resetting your hormones and can help with achieving balance in your PCOS. In fact, the first place I start when I treat my PCOS patients is their digestion. Guess what? This approach gets them feeling better and being better in no time.

My Journey to Improve my Digestion

When I got my diagnosis of PCOS, it was shortly thereafter topped off with an irritable bowel syndrome diagnosis. I wasn’t interested at that time in having babies, so I was more concerned about fixing my irritable bowel syndrome. ‘Cause let me tell you, the bloat was BAD.

I really did look super pregnant, and I was scared to go out in social situations because I didn’t trust my body. It was failing me. I could be cripplingly constipated one moment then have explosive diarrhea the next. I got into the habit of always carrying a spare pair of underwear with me wherever I went, just in case I had an accident. No joke.

The Steps I Took to Make my Bloat All Better

The bloat was so bad and uncomfortable and I wasn’t finding any solutions. I went back to school, became a naturopathic doctor and focused on indigestion, irritable bowel, and cleansing/detox. These became my passion points, and I soon realized that the one treatment I loved beyond belief, that I felt was the turning point in my own health, soon became my NUMBER 1 prescription for all of my patients to help with their number 2’s and so much more. That number 1 treatment? The castor oil pack.

Castor Oil Pack for Indigestion, Bloating, and Your Lady Balls

Castor oil had always fascinated me and seemed to lurk everywhere I went. At health food stores, the bottles of the oil would shi

ne at me, almost beckoning me to come their way. When I would walk into a naturopathic doctor’s office, someone was always getting prescribed castor oil packs. I shied away from doing them because they seemed like a huge hassle.

But when I finally got the lady balls to try the pack, I engineered the easiest way to do it. What a revelation! The pack made me feel so good and was so quick and simple. Just pour the oil on the pack, place on the body and voila! Go to bed and rest. I would wake up the next morning, revived, alive and with a very flat belly! There was definitely something to these packs.

What was really cool, was that not only did I feel better, but after regular nightly practice of my castor oil pack, on my next ultrasound for my ovaries, would you believe that my lady balls were all better?!! I had no more cysts. I knew that castor oil packs had helped because it was the only major thing that I’d changed. I was always doing the right diet, proper supplements, and regular exercise. But I was missing what supported my foundations of health, the castor oil packs.

Castor Oil Packs, What do they Actually do?

Castor oil packs support the 5 Pillars of Feeling Great.

I call the five pillars the FAITH Factor.

F – Function of digestion, absorption and elimination[5] [6].

A – Antioxidant status improvement – Including Omega 3, 6 and 9[7], the master detoxifier                      glutathione[8], anti-aging nitric oxide[9] and oxytocin[10], the love and connection hormone.

I – Inflammation balance[11]A little bit of inflammation heals, but too much is destructive. It’s also a reason for weight gain in the belly.

T – Tension[12] [13]Stress breaks down our ability to digest, but also plays a huge role in PCOS by negatively affecting your hormonal axis.

H – Host – We are the hostess with the mostest! We host trillions of bacteria on and in our bodies. We want to make sure they are the good, symbiotic bacteria[14] and not the bad, conbiotic™ bacteria that do our bodies wrong.

This FAITH Factor, when supported, makes everything that you are presently doing work better! Plus, these packs are so easy to do. I feel that if all of my patients came to me already doing a castor oil pack, I would have a lot less work to do with them! Their healing would be much, much easier, time-saving and less expensive.

Get your pack here, start now!!

5 Step Formula to Reset Digestion, Beat the Bloat, Balance Your Hormones and Love your Lady Balls

In my first two visits with patients, there are 5 things that I always ask them to do. One is the castor oil pack, but there are four more everyone needs just as much.

This formula is only 5 quick and easy steps that take only 1 hour to learn and they reset digestion quickly. For it to work, however, you must COMMIT to practicing them regularly.

The five steps of resetting your digestion, beating the bloat and getting your body beach and baby ready are:

Step 1: Practice the Pause

Step 2: Diligent Digestion

Step 3: Anoint and Alkalinize to Absorb

Step 4: Easy Elimination

Step 5: Tone Your Tummy

Want to learn more? You should. This is the easiest way to quickly regain your balance on your journey to overcoming PCOS. If your hopes and dreams lie in having a baby, avoiding unnecessary hair growth on your face, losing weight, rebalancing your body, or just having healthy hormones, you need to work these steps!

In fact, Amy Medling of PCOS Diva and I developed a the PCOS Diva Digestion mini-course specifically for women that have PCOS and are experiencing problems with their digestion. Our goal is to help you achieve your dreams!

The PCOS Diva Digestion Program

In one hour’s time, you can learn the information, skills, tips, and tricks to repair your digestion and get your body back on track. Why wouldn’t you spend only one hour of your time learning how to do this? You’re worth it, after all!

All it takes is the commitment to learning, then actually doing it. And when the ‘doing’ is as easy as this, it’s a no brainer!

Sign up for the PCOS Diva Digestion mini-course right now! As Benjamin Franklin says, “Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today.” He’s right, take the first step right now and you’ll be well on your way to living the life of your dreams. Bloat-free and bikini ready!

Dr. Marisol, ND is a world leader renowned for her passion for cleansing and gut health, not only because she has the degree on the wall but more so because she’s experienced feeling shitty and figured out the hierarchy of how to get healthy. Crowned the Queen of the Thrones™, for over 15 years she has trained and educated healthcare practitioners and has helped thousands of patients transition from “Sh*t Show” to “Owning Their Throne”. Dr. Marisol directs and practices at Sanas Health Practice in Canada. She has spearheaded PuraSanas health supplements and invented the Queen of the Thrones Organic Castor Oil Pack™ and line of products. Thelaunch of her first book, “Oh, Sh*t!”, along with her educational conferences and programs,heralds her championing you to become your legend. Join her movement and help her to achieve her goal of being in 1 billion bathrooms by 2020. We can do it!

Resources:

[1]Mathur R1, Ko A, Hwang LJ, Low K, Azziz R, Pimentel M. Polycystic ovary syndrome is associated with an increased prevalence of irritable bowel syndrome. Dig Dis Sci. 2010 Apr;55(4):1085-9. doi: 10.1007/s10620-009-0890-5. Epub 2009 Aug 21.

[2]Oh JE1, Kim YW, Park SY, Kim JY. Estrogen rather than progesterone cause constipation in both female and male mice. Korean J Physiol Pharmacol. 2013 Oct;17(5):423-6. doi: 10.4196/kjpp.2013.17.5.423. Epub 2013 Oct 17.

[3]Ferreira SR1, Motta AB1. Uterine Function: From Normal to Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome Alterations. Curr Med Chem. 2018;25(15):1792-1804. doi: 10.2174/0929867325666171205144119.

[4]Martin ML1, Halling K2, Eek D2, Krohe M3, Paty J4. Understanding polycystic ovary syndrome from the patient perspective: a concept elicitation patient interview study. Health Qual Life Outcomes. 2017 Aug 18;15(1):162. doi: 10.1186/s12955-017-0736-3.

[5] Arslan GG, Eşer I. An examination of the effect of castor oil packs on constipation in the elderly. Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2011 Feb;17(1):58-62. doi: 10.1016/j.ctcp.2010.04.004. Epub 2010 May 18.

[6] Tunaru S, Althoff TF, Nüsing RM, Diener M, Offermanns S. Castor oil induces laxation and uterus contraction via ricinoleic acid activating prostaglandin EP3 receptors. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2012;109(23):9179-9184. doi:10.1073/pnas.1201627109.

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