Every month there’s this anticipation that maybe this month may be the month. I’ve heard the stories far too often from patients of mine who are looking to get pregnant. They’ve been trying for some time, have begun their first round of Clomid filled with the hope that this month just may be the month. Problem is you begin to pack on the pounds and anxiety hits when you wake up maybe followed by depression. You choke and fight back doubt with all your might but there’s always that voice in the back of your head despite hope saying, it may never happen. And just when you thought the infertility rollercoaster ride has ended, your doctor tells you that you have PCOS and it may be time for a round (or two) of birth control.
Is it completely hopeless?
In fact a combined conventional approach with traditional forms of medicine are best especially when it comes to what you put into your body. According to Chinese Medicine whether you have PCOS or cysts, there is either an excess of yin or it can considered as congealed dampness. So here are some tips from an East meets West approach that you can begin doing now:
1. Remove all dairy & gluten
This probably one of the biggest damp-promoting foods. These foods will slowly digest in the system, leave mucous behind and gluten will act as glue in the intestines. Now this isn’t to say you can never have these foods again (although I know some practitioners will tell you otherwise). Instead, it just means that you have to remove them for a period of time and then you can add them back as a treat once in a blue moon. But in the meantime, alternatives like unsweetened almond milk and nut-based breads are best.
2. Ditch the sugar
I realize this is easier said than done for many people, but I can stress this enough. In my new program launching in the fall, every recipe will be sugar and free and believe it or not, delicious. Sugar will not only contribute to dampness and excess yin in the body, but also to the free-floating insulin that PCOS sufferers are prone to having. And be careful of hidden sugars: in bread (refer to point above), dairy alternatives, alcohol and processed foods (read labels!). An alternative is stevia and while I know there are some stevia haters out there, I can guarantee with the right product and usage, you’ll become a lover in no time.
3. Castor oil
No, I’m not going to make you drink it, but I will make you put it on your abdomen every evening. In my program coming up I’ll be describing several lifestyle techniques that won’t cost you a dime. Once you’ve got this goopiness on your lower abdomen, place a towel over top, then a hot water bottle and sit there for a good half hour. I have personally used castor oil in this method, fallen asleep and have woken up soiled due to a ruptured cyst. Castor oil promotes circulation so if you haven’t started this method, it’s about time you have.
4. The coffee conundrum
Coffee promotes inflammation and stresses the adrenal glands that create a catalyst of hormonal reactions leading to PCOS or ovarian cysts. So a great coffee alternative that I have found is called, Dandy Blend which I absofreaking love. It tastes like a weaker form of coffee, but it’s pretty damn close. The blend of dandelion, chicory and other herbs make it excellent for your liver, which is needed for women suffering from either PCOS or ovarian cysts. Plus, you can drink as much as you’d like.