Why It Is Quite Difficult to Lose Weight for Women With PCOS?

Why It Is Quite Difficult to Lose Weight for Women With PCOS?

Increased weight condition is very common to women suffering from PCOS. Some studies suggest that half of the women with PCOS are overweight, who are recommended by doctors to lose weight to reduce the impact of lifestyle diseases. If you are also suffering from overweight issues due to PCOS then you must know how difficult it is to maintain a healthy weight. Let’s understand why some women with PCOS, face extreme difficulty in weight loss while others don’t.

Your Body Is Storing a Lot of Fats…

Excess of insulin production in the body causes your body to switch into fat storage mode making weight loss process difficult. Insulin is a hormone that is produced by the pancreas in your body in response to the availability of glucose in the bloodstream. The insulin helps in the transport of glucose in the bloodstream to the cells of your body, where it can be converted into energy to perform basic cellular functions.

Under the PCOS condition, the normal secretion of insulin in response to glucose is altered leading to insulin-resistant, wherein our cells become resistant to insulin. This signals the pancreas to produce more insulin. Excess of insulin pushes the body to go into fat storage mode leading to weight gain. This is the reason most of the treatment options for PCOS management depend on balancing insulin levels through diet and exercise modifications or in some cases through supplementation.

Increased Appetite and Craving…

If you experience frequent hunger or cravings for sugary food then blame it to your imbalanced insulin levels. An increase in insulin resistance turns your body into high appetite mode. The reason is insulin is an appetite-stimulating hormone, more the levels- more you feel hungry. This is the major reason that females with PCOS find themselves craving for food more often than others. If these strong, instant cravings are not managed effectively, it can lead to high-calorie consumption and weight gain. To prevent this, nutritionist suggests opting for frequent healthy meals rich in protein and avoiding sugary foods.

Insulin Is Not The Only Culprit…

Though insulin is one of the crucial appetite-stimulating hormones, there exist many other hormones that influence satiety and appetite. Hormones like leptin, ghrelin, cholecystokinin are some of the common appetite-stimulating hormone known to influence appetite levels. Any kind of imbalance in the hormones stimulates hunger in women with PCOS in a manner similar to insulin regulation. This, in turn, leads to increased intake of food causing extensive weight gain. You can manage the hormonal balance by following a comprehensive diet and exercise routine.

Diet with Low Glycemic Index…

If you following a proper diet and still facing difficulty in managing your weight then you must check for the components you are eating. A study was conducted between two groups wherein they were given the same food with the same calories and equal distribution of macro & micronutrients but different glycemic index. It was observed that people consuming food with a low glycemic index experienced better weight loss in comparison to those consuming diet with a high glycemic index.

Check for obstructive sleep apnea…

Another major cause of weight gain among women with PCOS is obstructive sleep apnea. This condition occurs when there is any kind of blockage in the airways which limits the availability of oxygen while sleeping. This later causes day sleepiness, imbalanced blood pressure levels, and weight management issues. In addition to this, imbalance in the levels of androgens also impacts weight management in women with PCOS. Some studies show that high levels of androgens often affect the sleep receptors leading to severe sleep apnea.

If you are suffering from PCOS conditions and facing difficulty in managing weight even after putting a lot of efforts then you must consult your doctor. There is a need for improvising your diet and exercise routine to enhance the weight management process. We at Genetic Healing have a team of experts who can help you devise a highly impactful diet and exercise program for weight management. Feel free to seek a free consultation today itself to gain better insight.

 

 

 

Understanding Hair Loss and PCOS

Understanding Hair Loss and PCOS

If you or anyone close to you is suffering from PCOS then you will observe that hair thinning and subsequent hair loss is a very frequent problem. But do you know why does it happen? Why this problem becomes very severe in cases of women or girls suffering from PCOS condition? Well, the answer to this lies in your genes!

Genes and follicle sensitivity

Various scientific studies reveal that hair thinning is mainly caused by a genetic condition, which is inherited from either of the parents. In this condition, the follicles of the hair become sensitive to the androgens in the body. Though we all have these follicles, only a few of us show such reactive behavior in response to high androgen levels. Androgens are nothing but hormones present in all of our bodies. It is known to be predominantly present among men, often known as the male hormone. However, it is also present in a small ratio among women. Follicles sensitive to androgen, triggers the thinning response of hair, eventually leading to hair loss. This reduces the volume and length of your hair, eventually making your scalp more visible.

We all know that women with PCOS have an imbalance in hormonal levels. This often leads to high levels of androgen in the body triggering the follicle sensitivity to androgen. In women with little or no follicle sensitivity, hair may not be affected to an extent seen in women with sensitive follicles.

Is there a way?

It is very evident from the above understanding that women with PCOS will be prone to hair loss if they exhibit follicle sensitivity. The question arises – Is there a way? Can we overcome this issue? Is there any possible treatment that can slow down or manage the condition better? Well, the answer to this is yes. Here are some of the common treatment methods suggested by experts to overcome hair thinning and hair loss issues. However, always seek the advice of your concerning doctor and healthcare expert before undertaking any of these treatments.

Using Anti-Androgens:  One of the common treatments for reducing hair loss issues due to androgen sensitivity is to use anti-androgen. They are available both as oral and topical solutions. In severe conditions, it is suggested to use both oral and topical solutions for better results. the oral pills like Dianette, Spironolactone, and Yasmin are commonly suggested by doctors for women with PCOS. In the case of topical solutions, doctors suggest using a combination of both anti-androgens and hair follicle stimulant.

Healthy diet: If you are looking for a long-term solution then it is very important to consider lifestyle changes. One of the key points to note here is to bring significant changes to your eating habits. This includes skipping unhealthy food like oily snacks, junk, etc, and switching to healthy ones like green veggies, fresh fruits and more.

Regular exercise: Hormonal imbalance is the major cause of the PCOS condition and subsequently hair loss. Performing regular exercise such as cardio, walk, strength or as simple as meditation and yoga can bring significant improvement. These exercises help to maintain homeostasis in the body by channelizing positive changes. This includes creating a balance of biomolecules and biochemicals in the body, reducing the production of oxidative compounds like free radicals (A major cause for hair loss).

We know that PCOS brings a lot of complications into the life of the person suffering from it. But if one starts to take hold of their life and work upon healthy lifestyle changes, managing the PCOS condition becomes easy. So, start working upon your daily routine step by step and you will be able to see significant improvement.

Emotional counselling and PCOS

Emotional counselling and PCOS

If you are close to someone having PCOS, you will be very much aware of the emotional distress one suffers from. It is one of the major concerns among women suffering from PCOS because most commonly doctors look at the physical symptoms of the disease and not the emotional or mental stress. Though it may seem a little daunting to you, there is nothing much to be worried about if you understand the condition properly. Here in this article, we are sharing some insights, which can help you or your loved ones overcome the emotional distress and live life like normal.

Researchers at Cardiff University studied the history of more than 17,000 women with PCOS. The study showed that there are high chances of women with PCOS to be diagnosed with a mental condition such as depression & anxiety in comparison to those who don’t have PCOS. This is the reason one needs to focus on both physical as well as mental condition when suffering from PCOS. The good thing is – This condition can be managed easily with mindfulness.

Identifying the low…

The foremost step to managing emotional distress condition is to recognize when you are into one. It is very easy to fall into the trap of distress if we don’t recognize where to stop. Therefore, identify the point where you feel low or down and take initiatives to let the negative thought stop. Nowadays, many of the clinical processes for PCOS also involve psychological tests that help evaluate the mental and emotional distress in the patients. The most common questions in this test will be:

  • For past how many months/days you are feeling low, down or depressed?
  • During the last month, have you often been bothered by having little interest or pleasure in doing things?

If you find the answer to both of the above questions is ‘Yes’, then you probably need to consult a doctor immediately. The later you approach the doctors, the more time it will take for recovery.

Stay healthy for a healthy mind…

It is often said that “We Are What We Eat” and it stands true. Eating healthy food and doing regular exercise helps to maintain a balance of hormones in the body. This not only includes hormones involved in PCOS conditions but also those important for happy mood such as dopamine, serotonin and more. Moreover, following regular exercise keeps you engaged, increases social involvement and helps you maintain your weight.

Unlock the new learnings…

One of the best ways to help yourself is to understand what exactly you are going through. For this, you need to read more about the emotional distress situation in PCOS or consult a good doctor/counselor. Knowing and understanding whether you are in stress or depression is key to finding the right solution. This is so because there exists a very thin line between being stressful and being in depression. There might be a situation showing symptoms of depression but you are ignoring considering it as stress. If avoided for long, it can lead to severe mental health issues which might become difficult to resolve.

Practice mindfulness…

Another way to subside emotional distress in PCOS like conditions is to practice mindfulness. Help yourself by learning how to relax your mind with the help of meditation. All you need to do is to spend some quality time focusing on your breath, keeping your eyes closed. This not only calms down your brain and body but also increases the power to concentrate and think mindfully. Meditation is considered to be one of the best ways to overcome any kind of mental health issue. Nowadays, many kinds of research show that practicing regular meditation along with healthy food & timely exercise can revert emotional distress conditions.

PCOS is a condition where women across the globe lack knowledge and understanding of how to deal with it. There is a lot of gap in understanding what exactly the disease is, how it can be managed effectively and what one should do? Though there is a plethora of information available online, we will suggest you support that information with the knowledge of some experts. If you find your condition severe, consult your doctor or a counselor. PCOS is often considered a taboo among women. Well, it is not. Just like some other lifestyle disease, PCOS is also easily manageable. If you are still in any query feel free to connect with our team. Our PCOS Support Program is targeted towards helping women know the right steps and solutions to overcome the menace of PCOS. Let’s not fear about the condition because, with requisite lifestyle changes, one can live a normal, happy life.

How Meditation Can Help in PCOS?

How Meditation Can Help in PCOS?

HOW MEDITATION CAN HELP IN PCOS

We are not unknown with the fact that healthy habits are the need of time. Thanks to the changing way of life that is leading to lifestyle-associated diseases such as PCOS. This is the reason that the wellness industry is coming ahead to help people overcome the menace of lifestyle disorders such as diabetes, cardiac issues and more. This even stands true for those suffering from a hormonal disorder like PCOS. For women with PCOS, support like regular meditation is considered paramount in reversing the symptoms of PCOS.

Many people raise questions on the effectiveness of meditation in PCOS, this is due to the lack of significant awareness among people. Moreover, meditation is known to cure the symptoms indirectly by regulating the biochemical components at different levels in our body. However, some studies highlight the importance of meditation in overcoming the symptoms considerably among women. Let’s unfold this and understand in more detail how meditation helps in PCOS.

Helps maintain blood glucose levels…

Meditation helps your body to relax, which can indirectly improve the sensitivity to insulin receptors. This helps in regulating the excess of glucose in the blood-stream and controlling sudden erratic peak in the blood sugar levels. Many studies are in pipeline which suggests that meditation and yoga if performed regularly can help women keep disease like PCOS away. Specifically, when it comes to healthy blood sugar levels, regular meditation also helps to keep you at distance from other associated diseases like type-2 diabetes, weight issues, Alzheimer’s and more. One such study implicating the role of meditation in insulin sensitivity has been published in the North American Journal of Medical Sciences.

A better immune system…

It is very prominent that a better immune system helps protect us from the biochemical initiators of disease. However, it is also very evident from various studies that conditions like stress, lack of exercise, unbalanced diet, etc can turn down the immune system, making it difficult to curb the debilitating symptoms of diseases like PCOS. There have been research studies which indicate that meditation can have a profound positive impact on women suffering from PCOS. Though there are many reasons for this, one of the crucial reasons is it curbs the stress, which is considered to be the major cause behind the weakening of immune system functioning.

Improved digestive system…

Most of the women with PCOS are also known to be diagnosed with poor bowel system. This happens mainly when the digestive enzymes do not work at their optimum leading to improper digestion. Research studies have shown that regular meditation exercise helps digestive enzymes to work at their optimal rate. This happens because meditation helps to activate the Parasympathetic Nervous System (PNS) of your brain. Whereas, in the absence of meditation and presence of stress conditions, the Sympathetic Nervous System (SNS), also known as stress systems gets activated. PNS helps the body to recover from the damage caused due to stress by promoting restorative activities. This helps to reduce the harmful oxidative species in the body generated due to stress which forms the major cause for many of the symptoms of PCOS.

PCOS is a condition of hormonal disorder which occurs mainly due to an imbalanced lifestyle. To bring significant changes and overcome its symptoms, regular meditation can be of great help. This is the reason many PCOS experts and counsellors suggest women to perform regular yoga and exercise like meditation. It calms and relaxes the body, bringing the internal biological system to normalcy and homeostasis. So what are you waiting for? If you or your loved ones are suffering from PCOS, do suggest them for regular meditation. Move ahead today, to prevent the struggles of tomorrow.

Insulin Resistance and Associated Genes

Insulin Resistance and Associated Genes

Insulin resistance is a very complex condition wherein a multitude of factors play a key role. There are intricate metabolic pathways and traits involved which govern the condition. Besides this, environmental and genetic factors are also a key component in the advent of insulin resistance conditions. For long, studies have been carried out to gain better insight into the health implications and underlying genetic factors. The genome-wide association studies have provided a lot of advancement in unveiling the genes behind the insulin resistance condition. There is no doubt that such huge studies would have brought multiple gene variants in the forefront that guide conditions like insulin resistance. However, in this article, we will highlight only some of the most common genetic variants having a profound impact on the condition.

Genes like TCFL2, PPARG, FTO and more are widely known to be involved in insulin resistance conditions. For this, the genes are present with one of three common types of allele variants. These mutations (or variants) in the genes alter their normal functioning leading to an imbalance in metabolic functioning and especially in pathways like insulin, glucose, and lipid metabolism. Let’s gain a better understanding of individual genes and subsequent mutation leading to insulin resistance conditions.

TCFL2 (Transcription factor 7 like 2) gene

TCFL2 gene encodes for a transcription factor which plays a key role in regulating the blood glucose balance. Any alteration in the gene encoding this factor can hugely impact this glucose homeostasis in the body of an individual leading to increase susceptibility towards insulin resistance. This mainly occurs when there is C to T variation in the gene. Therefore, individuals with TT genotypes for the TCFL2 gene will have a high risk of insulin resistance. This is known to occur mainly in response to saturated fat and not carbohydrate ingestion. An individual with a bad variation in TCFL2 also faces difficulty in weight loss. Hence, such individuals are suggested to undertake a hypo calorie and low-fat diet along with the requisite exercise regime.

FTO (Fat Mass and Obesity) gene

FTO gene is known to play a crucial role in regulating appetite, energy intake, and expenditure. Alteration in the gene encoding for FTO is known for predisposition to health conditions like insulin resistance and obesity. This mainly occurs when an individual carries T to A variation in the FTO gene. As a result of this, people with an A allele suffer from increased BMI (Body Mass Index), body fat percentage, waist circumference. Besides this, individuals with such mutations are known to be highly susceptible to insulin resistance and diabetes due to high fat intake.

PPARG (Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor) gene

PPARG gene encodes for the protein receptor which plays a role in fat metabolism within a cell. This protein is produced abundantly within fat cells and is important for the production of new fat cells. Any mutation in the gene can lead to reduced BMI and obese conditions due to reduced efficiency of the protein. This gene has three variants due to C to G alterations. Individuals with genotype CC are considered to be highly sensitive to the type of fat intake which leads to obesity and insulin resistance. Whereas, the genotype with G variations are considered to be good as they have low sensitivity towards the fat.

Like TCFL2, FTO and PPARG there are other genes such as ADBR, VDR, FABP2, HLA DQ, and more which govern the increased sensitivity towards insulin. This over a period of time if ignored can lead to diabetes or insulin resistance. That’s why knowing your genes with genetic testing, helps you know about your condition better. This way an individual can chart out their lifestyle and associated habits to prevent the predisposition to any such health issues. This becomes very critical in conditions like insulin resistance associated with PCOS, wherein females suffer hormonal imbalance leading to impaired metabolic performance.

Understanding the Link Between PCOS and Insulin Resistance

Understanding the Link Between PCOS and Insulin Resistance

Do you know PCOS and insulin resistance are interlinked? Statistics reveal that 30-40% of females with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) also suffer from insulin resistance. The question is why both these conditions are interlinked? What are the symptoms that dictate the presence of insulin resistance among women with PCOS? In this article, we will try to address some of these questions and gain better insight into the link between PCOS and insulin resistance.

Insulin resistance is a condition wherein the body cells do not respond to secreted insulin, which leads to increased levels of glucose. If ignored for a long time, it can also lead to pre-diabetic conditions or type 2 diabetes. In some cases, insulin resistance can be the major root cause of PCOS and vice versa. The condition is also known to aggravate the symptoms of PCOS. Just like PCOS treatment, insulin resistance requires lifestyle modification and medication support. Moreover, to detect the condition early, every female with PCOS must be screened for insulin resistance.

Gaining some deeper insights

Insulin is produced in our body by the pancreas, a gland present in the abdomen region. The secretion of insulin takes in response to a hike in glucose levels in the blood. The sugar molecule enters into our blood after 15-20 minutes of intake of carbohydrates rich food. The presence of insulin helps the cells in our body to take up the glucose molecules and convert them into energy for further metabolic use.

Under insulin resistance conditions, the cells in our body do not respond to secreted insulin leading to a rise in blood glucose levels and low energy production. This condition later leads to diabetes as our body starts to deal with increased levels of glucose differently.

Understanding the link

It is a well-proven scientific fact that over a time PCOS condition increases the risk of developing diabetes. Despite the known fact that PCOS symptoms arise far earlier than that of insulin resistance, it is also believed that insulin-resistance might also play a crucial role in the onset of PCOS condition, rather than the other way around.

The increased level of insulin is one of the major factors behind inflammation and other metabolic conditions associated with PCOS. Though scientists know that there exists some connection between these two conditions, the actual cause of the link between two is yet to be unfolded.

Well, if you are thinking that insulin resistance affects all women with PCOS similarly then you are wrong. It does not have the same effect on all women, in some cases, it may lead to severe complications while in other cases it might not affect at all. As per some studies, it is suggested that obese condition is associated with insulin resistance which in turn impacts the functioning of hypothalamus and pituitary glands in the brain. These two glands are very crucial for the production of androgenic hormones, which increases in such conditions leading to PCOS. Imbalance in hormonal levels is often responsible for conditions like infertility, ovarian dysfunction, irregular menstruation and hirsutism among females with PCOS.

Likewise, changes in hormones due to insulin resistance often interfere with proper implantation of the embryo, supply of appropriate nutrient & energy to the fetus and much more, which impacts the overall growth of embryo leading to miscarriages and infertility. Moreover, having insulin resistance during pregnancy also increases the risk of gestational diabetes, which is very common among women with PCOS.

The associated symptoms

Symptoms of insulin resistance are similar in women who have PCOS and those who don’t. Women with PCOS need to be aware of these symptoms because of the strong correlation between the two conditions. The first common symptom observed changes in the appetite of the females. The insulin hormone is also a great appetite stimulant, which can be considered a major reason among women in PCOS for frequent cravings. This, in turn, leads to the secretion of other associated biomolecules which increases the craving for carbohydrate-rich food. This if continues in the long term leads to excessive weight gain and obese conditions. Moreover, it also increases the future risk of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and arthritis. A second common symptom of insulin resistance is a pre-diabetic condition. Here you will face a frequent hike in glucose levels post intake of carbohydrate-rich food. This often leads to tingling like feeling in feet, blood pressure imbalance, frequent urinations, thirsty and more.

The above-mentioned points highlight the importance of undertaking treatment for insulin resistance and PCOS. The brief understanding shows a certain relation between both these conditions. Though some scientific evidence is available, further research studies are needed to comprehensively explain the link. Researchers across the globe are working in this direction. Until then, follow the doctor’s recommendation along with a comprehensive diet and exercise plan. Since both the conditions are lifestyle-associated conditions, bringing significant improvement in lifestyle can help overcome the menace of PCOS.

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