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Weight management in PCOS

Weight gain is and always will be a sensitive issue for all women, irrespective of their race, class, caste or country. We all know that excess weight isn’t just a cosmetic problem. For women, weight gain also brings a host of other health hazards like diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart problems, and of course, PCOS.

Weight gain doesn’t just affect your personality but makes a dent even in your confidence. With weight gain, you feel more conscious about yourself. Glum and gilt become an inseparable part of personality.

However, the problem is that most women just consider rapid weight gain an incident in their lives that can be reversed with the same ease. After exhausting popular weight loss methods like low-calorie diets and exercise, most women realize their mistake.

Pallavi’s Weight Gain Story

Pallavi had been a petite girl throughout her teenage years. However, as she celebrated her 20th birthday, she started experiencing significant weight gain. At times she was gaining around 5 kgs per month despite strict control over her diet and back-breaking exercise routine. She tried all the fad diets, but nothing seemed to work. She felt she was gaining weight even if she drank only water.

She followed every piece of advice she received. She was about to get married soon and didn’t want to gain much weight at this stage. She knew the health problems it could pose for her.

Soon her period irregularities led to the diagnosis of PCOS. Since then, she had been caught in the vicious trap of hormonal contraceptive pills, glucose-lowering medicines, and unending weight relapses.

She consulted us after two years of her struggle. Her PCOS, metabolic problems, and insulin resistance issue was in front of us. By this time, Pallavi had become disappointed and depressed. She had started losing hope of regaining her youthfulness and personality. She felt more disappointed because even diet and lifestyle changes were not helping her.

We told her that her diet and lifestyle changes proved ineffective because other health issues like insulin resistance, indigestion, and excessive Ama prevented the fat loss.

Pallavi lost several kilograms within a few months through the correct diet, lifestyle changes and some Ayurvedic herbs. She didn’t just lose fat but also hasn’t regained it since then.

Weight Loss Isn’t the Cause, It Is A Consequence

Most women don’t realize until the end that weight loss isn’t a cause of their problems. You gain weight because you are already experiencing serious health issues. Under ideal conditions, our bodies can easily metabolize excess calories. If you have started gaining weight, it means that some vital functions in your body are not performing optimally.

Weight gain never comes alone. It brings several other problems like PCOS, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, liver disorder, heart problems and diabetes. However, it is important to understand that most of the time, your weight gain is due to these problems and not the other way around.

PCOS and Weight Gain

PCOS and weight gain are so closely interlinked that it can get difficult to determine which came first. However, rapid weight gain is definitely a clear sign of PCOS.

This weight gain is different from the usual weight gain. It is stubborn weight gain that just doesn’t go away even after following intense exercise and diet routines.

Therefore, if you have gained some weight rapidly in the past and haven’t been able to get it off, there is no reason to curse yourself or your weight loss efforts. Women generally fail in their weight loss efforts because PCOS prevents them from losing weight. It creates conditions that do not favor weight loss or resist it. With PCOS, losing even a few pounds of fat is an enormous task.

Root Cause of Weight Gain in PCOS

To deal with rapid weight gain, you must understand the root cause of the problem.

As per Ayurveda, there are two main reasons for rapid weight gain:

  • Indigestion and Excess Ama
  • Insulin Resistance

Indigestion and Excess Ama

Indigestion is the root cause of most problems in the body. When your body isn’t digesting the food properly, that food rots in your gut and the intestines and creates toxins or Ama. This slimy, sticky substance can contaminate your blood and travel to all the cells in the body. It can impair cell functioning and their nutrition absorption mechanism.

When Ama reaches the cells, it blocks their sensory channels. Your cells are unable to absorb energy and nutrients. That’s why you might feel listless, sluggish, and tired even after having meals. It only happens because your cells are not getting the energy they need.

If you eat more, your cells will still not get anything, and your body will convert all those calories into fat. Lack of energy isn’t your problem. Your problem is its absorption. That happens due to excess Ama in your body.

Therefore, preventing indigestion and the formation of Ama is the most important thing to stop weight gain and for effective weight loss.

Did You Know Birth Control Pills Lead to Weight Gain?

Traditionally, your doctor will prescribe a 21-day course of contraceptive pills for treating PCOS. It is the most common treatment process for PCOS followed globally, not just in India.

However, weight gain is the most common side effect of those contraceptive pills. Most women know that contraceptive pills lead to weight gain. But they still take contraceptive pills because they struggle with PCOS, irregular periods and other side effects.

You Will Be Asked To Lose Weight As If It Was A Choice

When you go to any doctor for the treatment of PCOS, the first thing the doctor advises is to lose some weight. Every doctor will tell you that a woman can improve her chances of pregnancy several times over merely by losing 5-10% of their body weight.

By losing 5% of your body weight, you can also improve insulin resistance, hormonal levels, ovulation, and the menstrual cycle.

However, all of us know that losing weight with PCOS is tough.

Diet and exercise are practically ineffective for losing weight if you have PCOS. They don’t work because your body is not in a position to utilize diet and exercise. It loses its ability to efficiently burn calories and fat.

Because your weight doesn’t go down, all the other problems stay in their place.

Many women become desperate and start trying all the fad diets and weight loss programs. They have more side effects than the change they promise. It ultimately leads to disappointment and depression.

To deal with the problem, you must approach it correctly.

Ayurveda Can Help You Lose Weight

Our sages and seers have been practising and refining Ayurveda for thousands of years. Ayurveda has perfected the science to bring down this stubborn weight by eliminating the root cause of the problem, the Ama

Ama Removal

When Ama reaches your cells, it lowers their ability to absorb nutrients and energy. That’s why most of your energy is converted into fat directly. Ayurveda can help you by removing Ama and improving digestion. When there is no Ama, and your digestion works smoothly, your body can process the energy efficiently.

Diet and Exercise Will Work Along With Ayurveda

While diet and exercise may not help you lose weight in general. You will notice significant weight loss through these measures when you take the help of Ayurveda. It happens because, after the removal of Ama, your body becomes capable of processing fat. Hence, even a smaller push in the form of diet and exercise will bring significant change.

Ayurvedic Herbs to Help Weight Loss

Conventional medicine has failed to counter the problem of weight gain. It only focuses on the immediate symptoms and not the root cause. On the other hand, Ayurveda works on the root cause of weight gain. It eliminates the cause of the weight gain. Hence, the relief is sustainable.

Herbal Ayurvedic Treatment for Weight Management

Ayurvedic herbs are highly effective, and they have no side-effect.

This doesn’t undermine the importance of following a healthy diet and lifestyle. You must do regular exercise if you want to burn your fat faster. However, Ayurvedic PCOS treatment through these herbs will enable your body to start the fat-burning process. Without the help of these herbs, you will keep struggling with your PCOS and the resultant weight gain.

Weight gain in PCOS isn’t due to a single factor. Multiple issues like accumulation of Ama, poor digestion, slow fat metabolism, and insulin resistance are responsible for stubborn abdominal/belly fat.

Herbal Ayurvedic Treatment Focuses on 4 aspects of burning fat

1. Ama Removal: Ama or the toxins can block the channels in the cells, preventing them from absorbing any nutrition. This leads to the direct conversion of nutrients into fat. It also makes you feel tired and weak. The following herbs play an important role in Ama removal.

  • Haritaki: This is an easily available herb commonly known as Harad in Hindi. This herb promotes digestion and aids weight loss. It can rapidly clear toxins or Ama from your body. Haritaki is also known to have a blood sugar lowering impact.
  • Pippali: This very powerful herb helps clean Ama from the body. It lowers hunger pangs and cravings. It has magnificent weight reduction and fat-burning properties.

2. Improving Digestion: Poor digestion is the root cause of Ama formation in the body. You can ensure a healthy body and efficient energy use by keeping your digestion smooth. The following herbs will be helpful.

  • Trikatu: This herb has amazing antibiotic properties and it promotes digestion. The use of this herb is very helpful in weight loss. It also improves your immunity, liver function, and cardiac health.
  • Heeng: Heeng is easily available in our kitchens. It is a blessing for the digestive system. It increases the activity of your digestive enzymes in the body. Therefore, your gut is able to digest food easily.

3. Improving Fat Metabolism: Along with quick processing of the food, the metabolism of stored fat in your body is also equally important. The fat stored in the body not only looks bad but also causes several health issues. It is the biggest cause of chronic inflammations and oxidative stress in the body. Following herbs are the most helpful.

  • Kanchnar: Kanchnar guggul is known for its Kapha balancing properties. It is especially famous for its belly fat-burning effect. It aids your digestion and improves metabolism.
  • Triphala: Triphala is known as the magic tonic for fat burning. Besides the digestive properties it has, Triphala is also packed with several antioxidants that can boost fat-burning. It lowers the toxins produced by the fat cells in the body.
  • Varuna: This herb is known for its Pitta dosha balancing properties. It is one of the most important herbs used to treat metabolic disorders. It will improve your digestion and aid fat metabolism.

4. Lowering Insulin Resistance: This is a chronic disorder with almost no symptoms. However, insulin resistance can push you towards diabetes and PCOS. If you develop insulin resistance, you will not be able to lose weight. The increased presence of insulin in the bloodstream prohibits using glucose for energy. Therefore, your body starts storing the glucose as fat. You can lower insulin resistance through the following herbs.

  • Cinnamon: Cinnamon has an amazing impact on your fasting glucose levels and improves glucose tolerance. It is anti-inflammatory and lowers oxidative stress in the body. It will improve insulin signalling in the body and lower insulin resistance. Tests have also shown that cinnamon promotes pancreas beta-cell function.
  • Karela/ Bitter Gourd: This wonderful vegetable has anti-diabetic properties and lowers blood sugar levels. Its seeds produce hormones that mimic insulin-like proteins and have a sugar-lowering impact.
  • Jamun: Jamun and its seeds are helpful for people struggling with insulin resistance and diabetes. It has a low glycemic index and lowers frequent urination and excessive thirst.

Initially, people don’t think much about their rapid weight gain. They believe they can get rid of it as easily as they have acquired it. However, it doesn’t take much longer to get over this illusion. Weight gain led by PCOS is adamant. It doesn’t go away because other factors like poor metabolism, indigestion and insulin resistance support this weight gain.

Dealing with this weight gain only through diet and lifestyle modifications isn’t possible. You will need the help of these herbs to tackle the underlying issues leading to weight gain and weight relapse.

These herbs are useful for losing fat and ensure that you don’t have weight relapse or recurrence soon, which is also a big problem with PCOS. Most women experience weight regain even after losing it once. The use of these herbs will help you avoid that problem too.

Take Away

Diet and lifestyle changes / diet afds / home remedies alone can never help weight loss in PCOS. They have to be combined with certain herbs that deal with the root cause of the problem.

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