PCOS and Irritable Bowel Syndrome

overcoming polycystic ovarian syndrome

PCOS and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

PCOS is a hormone disorder that can not only have an effect on infertility but it can also affect your bowel system to a large extent.Women with both PCOS and IBS also result in weight gain, then those women who solely have PCOS.

Irritable bowel syndrome causes three days a month of pain in the abdomen. There is pain that changes in stool frequency when defecating and changes in stool consistency. If you meet these conditions, then you are likely to be told that there isn’t anything that can be done for you. Alternatively, anti-diarrhea, anti-cholinergic, or antispasmodic medications or constipation laxatives may be recommended for you.

Some of the causes of Irritable bowel syndrome are: Stress and anxiety, food intolerances, hormone changes, medications, meal size, not chewing your food enough, etc. This even causes discomfort for a long period of time and can also lead to lack of sleep with uneasiness caused in the bowels.

One in ten women is estimated to have Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), a sex-hormone imbalance that causes both reproductive and metabolic effects in women of childbearing age. Women with PCOS often report similar symptoms to those with IBS, including bloated feelings, constipation and/or diarrhea, and stomach and pelvic pains.

Like PCOS, IBS is a disorder whose causes are many. We still have a lot to know about IBS, but at the moment it is thought that the causes are either changes to the stool bacterial composition, or microbiota, or structural changes in the stool. These can be due to chronic (physical and psychological) stress, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), chronic use of antibiotics, or gastroenteritis.

Mental Health and depression is also a cause for Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Depression and Anxiety doubles when it is met with PCOS as well. It is important to ensure that you don’t let this affect your mental state and well-being

Inflammation causes the production of bacterial endotoxins in the blood, termed as endotoxemia. The continuous release into the bloodstream of bacteria and luminal contents supports systemic inflammation. Systemic inflammation is associated with insulin resistance and is a major factor in PCOS diagnosis.

Not only does too little ‘good’ bacteria or too much ‘bad’ bacteria in the stool cause signs of IBS but it also induces systemic inflammation (6) and insulin resistance. Systemic inflammation and insulin resistance both escalate levels of male’ hormone (androgen). That increase in ‘male’ hormones is really PCOS’s crux. Increased androgen interferes with the normal menstrual cycle, thereby preventing ovulation and facial body/hair growth and hair thinning.

Not switched off inflammation (chronic inflammation) will interact with your insulin receptors and cause insulin resistance. This results in high levels of insulin which acts on the ovaries and causes testosterone to overproduce. Excess testosterone allows the hormones involved in the menstrual cycle to interrupt, thereby preventing ovulation.

A few similarities exist between the two regarding IBS and PCOS treatment. They are controlled by a holistic food and lifestyle plan that involves dietary modifications and stress management, exercise, and improvements in sleep.

When bacteria move into the small intestine, when you consume sugar they release gases (methane and hydrogen). This comes out in your breath in a certain pattern which can indicate SIBO. Several specialized hospitals have already begun providing this examination, so inquire around. Alternatively, look for a doctor of practical medicine who can help you get this done privately.

If you are struggling with both PCOS and IBS, the place where you should start your treatment may be confusing. Because IBS may directly affect PCOS through intestinal permeability, working with an IBSspecialist dietitian can be helpful in recognizing trigger foods and improving lifestyle changes to minimize IBS symptoms and enhance beneficial stool bacteria.

It is important to include a quality portion in your diet making it low carbohydrates intake, proteins, increasing your vegetable intake, and including good fat soluble such as avocado, nuts, and seeds. You need to make the right choices in what you eat and what you pick up from the supermarkets. Think wisely before you enter a cafe/restaurant you have been waiting to binge on. Do not indulge in overeating or over satisfying your cravings, it will cause more harm than cure.

It is recommended that women with PCOS limit their consumption of sucrose foods and beverages. Foods containing fructose and fructose such as soft drinks, high fructose corn syrup have been shown to contribute to insulin resistance and are severely discouraged. Good-friendly sugars can be used in moderation, including granulated sugar, brown sugar and 100 per cent pure maple syrup.

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