Two miscarriages later and doctors telling me, “Seems like you PCOS. It’s more common now and you have nothing to worry about. When you get pregnant, you might have to take progesterone and that’s all.” And so it was. I didn’t worry and I had to take progesterone throughout both of my pregnancies.
Doctors explained what PCOS meant, how it anatomically affected my body, and that was that. They didn’t make a big deal about it so neither did I. After all, all I cared about was doing anything I possibly could to avoid another miscarriage.
Needless to say… PCOS was actually very important for me to look into and research.
I made an appointment with my family physician because I basically thought I was going crazy and was worried because my cholesterol was sky-high. Here’s everything I was feeling and going through:
- I would periodically have trouble sleeping (both falling asleep and staying asleep).
- I would snap at my children and/or husband really easily with yelling, smacking the wall while yelling, throwing things in the garbage (I felt like a mad man!).
- I felt tired a lot! I never felt rested or that I got enough sleep, even on days that I did.
- I’ve been gaining weight since college at a steady pace and can’t seem to bring it down at all. I’m 5’7″ and weigh 184 lbs. I was 135 lbs when I started at the University of Western Ontario in Canada. No matter what I do, I can never seem to lose the weight or keep it off.
- CRAVINGS happening all the time! So frustrating because I’m not hungry but can have a craving or can binge eat more often than not.
- Irregular periods happening regularly (every 28-34 days).
- Hirsutism (facial hair): I just thought this was because I’m Hispanic/Latina. I’m used to being hairy all over.
- Acne on my back. This cleared when I was pregnant and wasn’t that bad anymore.
- Short periods of depression and or anxiety. They were too short for me to think I was depressed. I’d be fine and then I could really be disappointed and feel like a failure.
So I explained all this to my doctor and he said:
“This is just your PCOS and PMS symptoms.”
I looked at him thinking this can’t be that simple of a diagnosis, something else has to be wrong with me. He gave me a choice of taking medications or go for the more holistic approach with foods (No gluten. No eggs. No dairy. Try it for three months and go back to see him). I also did the women’s blood test and everything came back normal.
As soon as I got home, I researched PCOS and what other women were doing, what their symptoms were, what differences they’ve seen with their dietary changes, etc. I was shocked! I’ve been living with this for how long and nobody had ever really talked about the natural things I could try to help me feel my best, without all the roller coasters of emotions and outbursts. It goes further than just healthy eating and exercise.
I’m still working with my doctor to get a better handle on this PCOS and PMS, but I’ve been feeling better by following the most popular suggestions other PCOS fighters follow:
- Follow the Daniel Fast more often than not:
- No sugar or artificial sweeteners
- No fried food
- No processed foods
- No dairy
- Lots of fruits and veggies
- Only water to drink or fresh herbs tea
- Meditate/pray more often, closer to daily now
- Taking my prenatal multi-vitamins
- Trying to sleep more with the help of naps, even more so during my period
- Eat foods that seem to help other PCOS fighters (whole grains, beans, nuts, fatty fish, fresh herbs and fresh spices)
- Take supplements and eat foods high in:
Inositol: Chickpeas, nuts, buckwheat, prunes, unprocessed whole grains, citrus fruits, dried prunes and brewer’s yeast.
Zinc: Red meat, oysters, shellfish, pumpkin seeds and cashews.
Magnesium: Lentils, beans, seeds, leafy greens, dark chocolate and whole grains, such as oats, quinoa and brown rice.
Calcium: Cheese, salmon, spinach and greens, such as swiss chard or taking calcium supplements.
B6: Chickpeas, fish, beef liver and other organ meats, potatoes and other starchy vegetables, and non-citrus fruits.
Chasteberry: Supplement only.
My doctor is helping me research this a little more because he wants to know how the supplements can help me specifically, as each case is different. If you feel like you’re going through the same, talk to your doctor first.
I also found a life coach/mentor to talk with at least one time a month, which is a huge outlet for me. He also helps me see a different perspective or challenges me on things I’m struggling with so that I can keep growing.
All these things have helped me feel better. I feel like I’m not my best yet and still have a long way to go, but I’m on the right track. AND I know that I’m not crazy – it’s just my hormones that I need to control a little more.