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Asking for a friend, though thoroughly curious as I'll have to learn about this at some point anyway.<br><br>
What causes PCOS?<br><br>
What diet changes help it?<br><br>
What alternatives are there to drug therapies?<br><br>
Just looking for general natural causes/options if possible.
 

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There's a PCOS thread in "Finding your tribe" that has some good information.<br><br>
As to causes, lots of theories, no "known facts".
 

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there isnt an exact cause.. like cristeen said multiple theories surrounding it... following a strict diabetic diet and losing weight are big non medical interventions for obese and over wt women...
 

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I have a pretty strong theory....<br><br>
When I was 8 and my sister was 10 we moved to a new town. This was a town that was nothing but chemical plants... we actually lived right next door to one. Now my sister being 10 she had already went thur puberty and got her af. I was still in the developing stage. I got my af a year later and it was only one time. then I went about 6 months and got it again, then I went two years and got it again. This went on until recently since i've been on meds. I was diagnosed with pcos in 2001, I was 21 yrs old. My sister doesnt have pcos, infact she just had her fourth child. Many of my friends from school in this town have had some sort of female problems. My best friend went thru menopause at 22 yrs old, she had two children tho. Two of my other friends also had pcos. Another friend had a baby that died at two weeks old. A lady i worked with, her daughter had a baby born with out a top layer of skin.... she looked like a burn victom. We had a chemical spill during her pregnancy. I think it is largely due to chemical waste and toxins in the body that you are exposed to at a young age, before you go thru puberty. I feel very stong about this and wish i could prove it.... I know its not the only reason, but I know my friends and I are victoms of chemical waste. My husband and I have been together for nearly 12 yrs now. I am 27 and we been together since i was 16. Still no baby. Im short chubby and hairy... LOL all from PCOS.<br><br>
A very low carb diet will stop the hair growth and also regulate the periods. It is also the only way i have been able to lose weight. Metformin has been the only thing that has gotten my af so exact I know the hour i will start now. I have never been able to do that. I have been on it for a year. The first 5 months on it... i was very irregular, as it takes a while to regulate.
 

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I know that my PCOS is directly related to insulin resistance. However, I've heard that there are two different kinds. I have a strong family history of diabetes, and I had gestational diabetes.<br><br>
The cure for me has been exercise. It works just as well as Metformin. My only symptom has been infrequent periods. I did take Met when TTC, but I also started a rigorous exercise program and lost weight.<br><br>
Now, 7 months after my daughter has been born I am back to exercising again (but not taking Metformin). My cycles are a little long (probably due to breastfeeding), but I am getting definite, regular cycles. I can even tell I'm ovulating. I am not obese, or even overweight, but I could lose 10 lbs. Probably that is why I responded well to exercise. If I weighed more, it would be even more difficult.<br><br>
A low carb diet helps, but for me the exercise has been more crucial than the diet.
 

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There isn't one specific cause. It can run in families. It may run in some ethnic groups (I know so many other Ashkenazi women with PCOS and have been told that the PCOS rate is higher in Ashkenazim). It can be triggered in sensitive women by some medications, specifically valproates (Depakene/Depakote)--studies have linked Depakote to PCOS. I'm personally convinced that Depakote played a role for me. My periods went completely irregular after I'd been on it for a while.<br><br>
I personally found that I couldn't regulate mine by diet alone because I simply couldn't stick to it. It took Metformin for me. But this is definitely one that's variable by person. I know people, myself included, who used Met and improved a lot. I know women who had some improvement on Met but still needed IF treatment to conceive, ranging from Clomid to IVF. And I know some who managed with diet. It seems, and this is PURELY anecdotal, that the severity of your symptoms has some link to what treatment you will need. The women I know who went through complex IF treatment all had severe PCOS, with few or no periods other than those brought on artificially.
 
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