#pcos

It is possible to beat PCOS naturally and get pregnant

A bit of a long story..sharing my own personal journey in battling PCOS. I've been plagued by PCOS ever since I was able to menstruate. Once, during Secondary School, I was menstruating for more than a month and that had freaked me out. I told my mom about it then and she sent me to a specialist right away. That's how I was first diagnosed with PCOS - in that consultation chair at Thomson Medical. Ever since then, I was given birth control pills (Diane35) to help me kickstart my menstruations otherwise I could go on for many months without a period. It had never bothered me then, since no period = more convenient. The only thing that bothered me most was the weight I seem to gain like nobody's business and the seeming impossibility of shedding it. Some effects of PCOS include weight gain, hirsutism (excessive hair growth..another bane of mine), acne, less chances of getting pregnant, greater risk of diabetes and cancer etc. Fast forward to 2019, my husband and I finally decided to actively try and conceive. We tried for about 6 months naturally to no avail, so we went to KKH for consultations (only reason for KKH is coz it's cheaper). We were ordered to do a whole hosts of tests (test to confirm PCOS, check if I have diabetes, check the health of my uterus and fallopian tubes...). Finally, we were put on Letrozole to help me ovulate. It didn't work. And my last appointment at KKH in Feb 2021, the doctor concluded that Letrozole wasn't working and started to recommend me IUI and IVF as alternatives. However, these methods went against my own personal beliefs, and I decided to no longer seek medical help for the time being as I felt I wasn't getting the support I needed. In mid 2020, I googled about possibilities of getting pregnant with PCOS and I stumbled upon a few websites that claim it was possible to find healing via natural ways. These include significant lifestyle changes, diet changes and supplements. Personally, I chose to follow the Facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/pcos30daychallenge/?ref=share as the owner Kym Campbell seemed like she has done a lot of research about the subject and she has also broken it down to simple achievable goals for others. What's more, she also has PCOS, and was able to conceive naturally. Reading through many of the posts in the Facebook group where women shared their struggles and success stories, I was immediately sold on it and felt right at home with these other ladies who are on the same journey. The 30 day challenge is free, and it opens every few months (follow the group to find out more). I didn't really follow the timeline strictly and just did it at my own timing. The key thing is to just keep at it - even if you slip and have cheat days every now and then, it's important to pick yourself up and continue. Because PCOS is linked with insulin resistance, it is then important to eat more conscientiously so as not to exarcebate the condition. There's a ton of science behind which I'm not going to attempt to explain, so check out the group to find out more. Here are the changes I made, bit by bit over a few months (pace yourself as well, because it can be too discouraging to change at one go): 1. Cut unhealthy carbs, only the occasional bread, pastry and pasta about maybe once a fortnight or a month. 2. Cut dairy (I thought this would be tough, but I immediately felt so much better without the diarrhea). Yes no milk or cheese. Choose almond, coconut or oat milk instead. Some people ask "then what about calcium?" You can still get calcium from leafy greens, brocolli, nuts and supplements as well. 3. Cut soy products (due to some hormone thing). This was painful for me because I love tofu. But fermented soy products like miso is fine. 4. Cut gluten. This, like dairy, is mostly due to sensitivity. I am sensitive to dairy, but I wasn't sure if I was sensitive to gluten. Besides, in Singapore, it's really hard to cut gluten since almost everything has gluten.. but just try to reduce as much as you can. 5. Cut alcohol. 6. Cut sugar. Very important. 7. Eat more fruits (but not the starchy ones like bananas). Blueberries are good for the antioxidants. 8. Eat more eggs. I am comforted by this because I love eggs. Feel free to experiment on different cooking styles. I love making chawanmushi :) 9. Eat more protein! Pack on the meat! Steak for breakfast! 10. Exercise more. Seriously. You don't have to go crazy and exercise everyday, but do exercise more (they recommend 5x30min sessions a week). I go running maybe 1-2 times a week, cycling 1-2 times a week and some statics at home 1-2 times a week. I know, I could have done more haha. 11. Take regular supplements. Do check with your physician first though. For me, I take folic acid, inositol, zinc, omega fish oil, apple cider vinegar and chromium. Do your research and seek medical advice. One of the benefits is that you will lose weight. Having PCOS usually means it's difficult to lose weight, and I've struggled with it for so long I never thought it was possible for me to lose more than 1-2 kg. I rarely weigh myself nowadays but I believe I have shed at least 5kg. The weight loss around the waistline is also visible as well. Another good thing is that it should also help with natural ovulation. And just yesterday, we did a pregnancy test and we found out that we are pregnant!!! ❤️ I believe it's God's faithfulness and also the biological effects of keeping to the lifestyle changes. Go cysters! The diagnosis is not a death sentence to your hopes of starting a family. It can be beaten! #pregnancy #pcos #beatpcosnaturally

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My pregnancy journey

My first baby was born in 2009. I have pcos as such conceiving again was very hard. I tried for 13 years. So much of pain and disappointment. When I gave up, I conceived. I was 38 when I conceived again. The pregnancy journey wasn't easy due to my age etc. However, I'm still a very active person even when pregnant. When I was 31 weeks, 5 days, Christmas was nearing. I was so busy cleaning and dragging heavy items until I had an extreme pain at my lower abdomen. I immediately stopped all my work. I have a high pain threshold but I knew something was wrong. I decided to sleep the night off, thinking its a muscle strain. Next day pain was worse. Ard midnight, I went to A&E at Kkh. After monitoring me for 2 hrs etc, a swab (fetal fibronectin) taken. It was tested positive. Meaning, I'm at a risk for preterm labor! I could deliver anytime. I was so stress with the news. Mentally trying to prepare myself for child birth. Stayed for 2 days in kkh to observe any pain and I did have contractions here and there. The on duty Dr wanted to inject me with a steroid to mature the baby's lungs faster. I was skeptical about it. But my gynae was consulted and she decided to put me on progesterone pills instead to reduce the contractions. I kept telling my baby to stay inside. I read up alot n most cases were "reassuring" me that I might deliver 4 weeks or 2 weeks from there. But I managed to make it till 39 weeks. Sometimes u got to pray hard n talk to ur baby. It helps. I was supposed to be on bed rest but after a week upon being discharged, I went shopping for 4 hrs. Again, my pain started. I was extremely worried. I rested the whole day and the pain subsided. After that no more risking anything. I travelled by wheelchair if I had a need to go anywhere far. I went for my checkup on my 38th week. My gynae wasn't ard as such another gynae was taking my appointment. She was equally nice. She then told me I was already 3cm dilated and my baby was 3kg. She told me I can choose to admit myself and they will assist to break my water bag and labor starts or I can wait for my gynae who will be back in 3 days time. However things were not that simple. My baby's head was down but not engaged. If i break my water bag, chances of umbilical cord prolapse is there. Meaning, after breaking water bag, chances of umbilical cord coming out first rather than the head is there. I decided to wait for my gynae. I was very worried. Btw I've gestational diabetes as well. I emailed my gynae my concerns. She told me the decision was mine but she also expressed her concerns. So I decided to go ahead with it. But I told my gynae ill come in 2 more days later. I had contractions in between. I was so confused about the contractions and also worried what if my water bag breaks while I'm at home n the umbilical cord prolapses? Again I prayed and told the baby to stay in. N thankfully, he did. The actual day of delivery. I admitted myself at 9am and my gynae broke my water bag. I asked for epidural even before my pain started. So the doctor who puts epi came. She tried inserting the catheter 3 times but I screamed in pain. I don't remember my previous experience to even feel anything at all. I was so traumatised that I didn't want epi. I told her to leave. I was stressed. Another Dr came and said he will do it for me. But the earlier pain was still there. After hearing another roman screaming in labor, I decided to try again with the diff doc. Again I prayed real hard. This time, only very minimal pain was there. Thank god! But I had side effects of epi which I didn't have before. My whole body starting itching and I had some dizziness. I couldn't scratch cos I won't feel it but I can feel I'm itchy all over. Imagine ur feeling so itchy and u can't scratch but u need to endure that till the baby comes out. This was ard 1pm. Ard 3.30pm, I was dilated at 8cm already. Thankfully. Ard 4 plus, I was dilated 10cm and pushed for about 10mins then the baby came out. Greatest joy of my life. The most beautiful thing was lying on my chest looking at me. All went well. But the pain after epi, is not that easy. Being a woman takes alot of guts. N god chose his warriors. Whoever needs to hear this, you have got this! U can do it. Each pregnancy is diff, I wish all of u a smooth n healthy journey. #fetalfibronectin #gestationaldiabetes #epidural #vaginaldelivery #pcos

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