Is Chronic Inflammation and PCOS?

Recent research has uncovered that chronic inflammation may be another PCOS symptom.  Inflammation is the immune systems response to a detected threat.  In most cases an inflammatory response protects us.  Inflammation helps us fight infection and heal injuries.  When our immune system gets triggered inappropriately it can sometimes react against our own cells.  If this is an ongoing occurrence our bodies can be thrown into a state of chronic inflammation.polycystic ovarian syndrome

Research on inflammation and PCOS

The medical community has already confirmed that Chronic inflammation plays a role in conditions that are closely related to PCOS like diabetes, insulin resistance, and heart disease.  Now studies have found that women with PCOS tend to have elevated inflammation markers like C-reactive proteins, cytokines and blood cells called lymphocytes and monocytes.

More investigation into the relationship between PCOS and inflammation is need.  The existing studies on inflammation and PCOS have only been conducted on small groups of women.  Futures studies will also have to rule out other known causes of inflammation such as obesity, which is a common problem among PCOS women.

Even though we may have to wait for research to reveal a clearer picture on the relationship between inflammation and PCOS, you can take simple steps today to reduce any possible inflammation you might have.

How to reduce chronic inflammation

  • Focus on eating fresh foods.  Fruits and vegetables are loaded with protective phytonutirents and antioxidants  that can help reduce inflammation.
  • Avoid processed foods.  Processed food often contains inflammation triggers like refined sugar and trans fats.
  • Eat healthy fats and avoid unhealthy fats.  Eating more omega 3 fats and less saturated fat will help you fight inflammation. Omega 3 eggs , fish, flaxseed, and hemp are good sources of omega 3’s.   You can reduce your consumption of saturated fats by eating less butter, cream, fatty meats, and palm kernel oil.
  • Get a good nights sleep every night. Most adults need 7-9 hours of rest in a cool dark room each night.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.  Being overweight can cause you to have chronic inflammation especially if your tend to carry extra pounds in your midsection.
  • Beware of food sensitivities.  If you are experiencing regular digestive issues you could have a food sensitivity or allergy.  You can create systemic inflammation by continuing to eat foods your body is sensitive to.  If you suspect you have a food sensitivity consult a registered dietitian or your doctor.

This list may seem overwhelming at first but these steps could go a long way towards helping you manage your PCOS symptoms.  If you are ready to start feeling better just select one item on the list and keep working at it until you have mastered that habit than move on to the next item.

The full story behind PCOS and inflammation has not yet been fully revealed but these simple actions will improve your health even if inflammation is not a factor in your PCOS treatment.




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