I know I am a little late with sharing this, but it is STILL September so it still counts. September marks PCOS Awareness Month (Polycysytic Ovarian Syndrome), which is a hormonal disorder that affects women. Oftentimes it is genetic or women can be diagnosed with it due to their lifestyle. Due to our hectic lifestyles, the number of women being diagnosed with PCOS is increasing. In my case, it is largely genetic and thankfully moderate. However, it didn’t come without its set of challenges.
Unwanted Hair Growth: Let’s face it. I am a brown girl with Punjabi routes, so I naturally have more hair than the average human. However, PCOS brought with it challenges of hair growth in places like my chin, where it shouldn’t be. It is so stubborn that even laser did not 100% get rid of it, so I’ve settled for regular waxing-and it has become more manageable.
Irregular Periods: When I first started menstruating, my periods were very irregular. I would go months without having them and then they would be very heavy. The solution my doctor gave at the time was the get on birth control. So I was on birth control for a few years. But did that fix the problem?? NOPE. It simply put a bandaid on it. For awhile there, I felt quite dejected and kept thinking that I would have be dealing with this my entire life, and there was no way to heal. It impacted my self esteem and my confidence. However I went off of birth control in 2016 and decided to naturally heal my PCOS-which awakened my passion for health and wellness.
Once I went off birth control, I started realized that I can use food as medicine to manage and/or heal my PCOS and thats exactly want I did. I started pilates, which got rid of the stubborn lower belly and even helped regulate my cycles. I also stopped dairy and soy, and kept ensuring that my diet and lifestyle were extremely healthy.
As time went on, I made it a point to add meditation and mental health practices to my lifestyle and started living by the circadian rhythm of waking up early and sleeping early. All of it helped, and I got to know my body so well that I slowly began to realize that any time I have a disruption in my routine-whether it is traveling in a super long flight or attending a multi-day wedding, my cycle is immediately affected. However, by the next 1-2 months, my body corrects itself. As I took care of my body, my body took care of me.
So as a result of making lifestyle changes, I am able to manage my PCOS, and I couldn’t be more grateful. Now, I understand that I am speaking from a point of privilege, and there are others with PCOS who require medical attention, but lifestyle changes helped me. I still deal with issues like unwanted hair but I’ve learned to just live it. Nevertheless, if you or someone you know has been diagnosed with PCOS please know that YOU ARE NOT ALONE, and it is manageable.
One resource I use for my hormonal health is: In the FLO: Unlock your Hormonal Advantage and Revolutionize Your Life