Women with polycystic ovary syndrome experience various symptoms, such as weight gain, thinning hair, hirsutism (excess body hair), acne and irregular periods.
Treatment of PCOS typically involves managing individual symptoms through medication. For example, doctors may recommend birth control and progestin to regulate menstruation, metformin and clomiphene for ovulation, spironolactone for hirsutism or insulin-sensitizing drugs.
Despite these prescribed medications, lifestyle modification remains the foundation of PCOS treatment. Several scientific studies provide evidence that you can decrease and even reverse the symptoms of polycystic ovary syndrome naturally by making some simple lifestyle changes.
Achieving a healthy weight is the most effective first-line treatment for PCOS. Obesity, insulin resistance and inflammatory issues coexist as symptoms in women with this syndrome.
A 2019 review of studies on obesity and PCOS found as many as 38 percent to 88 percent of women with PCOS are either overweight or obese. The same study presents past research indicating that even a modest weight loss (5 percent) can restore ovulation and improve insulin sensitivity.
There is no hard-and-fast rule for an effective weight-loss diet for women with polycystic ovary syndrome. However, consuming whole, unprocessed foods that don't contain artificial sweeteners or preservatives is recommended.
Studies have shown that exercise, combined with dietary changes, regulates hormone levels in women with PCOS.
In a 2019 systematic study and meta-analysis of 2,390 studies, aerobic exercises helped manage body mass index (BMI), waist circumference and body fat percentage. In addition, resistance training reduced cholesterol levels and reduced waist circumference.
Yoga, meditation and Pilates can also manage anxiety and mental health symptoms associated with PCOS.
While research on the impact of cannabidiol (CBD) on PCOS is still emerging, there is massive interest in its potential to facilitate ovulation and reduce anxiety among people with the condition. No current studies show a connection between CBD and PCOS relief, but some women are using CBD to help manage symptoms such as sleep issues and PMS pain.