Can I Still Get Pregnant with PCOS?
The short answer is YES! You can still get pregnant with PCOS. However, it is helpful to have some information on hand when it comes to PCOS and your fertility.
Firstly, What is PCOS?
PCOS or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome is the most common hormonal disorder in women of reproductive age. It is an endocrine and metabolic disorder that affects the body well beyond the ovaries, including fertility, the skin, hair, cardiovascular health, and metabolism. One of the main reasons that a woman with PCOS may struggle with infertility can be due to her delayed ovulation or anovulatory cycles. Not knowing when you are ovulating due to long and irregular cycles or not even ovulating at all can make it tricky when trying to time intercourse. Other difficulties include hormonal imbalances (having high androgenic hormones like testosterone) and increased risk of miscarriage1.
How Do I Improve My Chances of Getting Pregnant?
During your treatments at Acubalance, we create an individualized treatment plan that fits your specific history, needs and goals. Women are all unique and therefore their PCOS will present differently as well. Together we help you optimize your hormones to have a healthy baby. With that being said, here are three steps you can start taking now to help with your PCOS.
Eat a Balanced Diet. Women who eat a diet high in vegetables and lower in carbohydrates2 do well to manage their PCOS. This way of eating can help to lower insulin levels (which is an important factor in PCOS) and reduce any harmful impact on the ovaries. A recent randomized controlled clinical trial found that a Mediterranean diet combined with a low carbohydrate diet is a good treatment for PCOS, which helped to restore their menstrual cycles and improve their endocrine levels3. A diet high in vegetable intake with quality protein and fat is ideal for women with PCOS. Download a free copy of our Acubalance Fertility Diet and recipes
Reduce inflammation. Inflammation plays a large part in PCOS. Although inflammation has a valuable purpose in our bodies, such as helping with the healing process and fighting foreign invaders like viruses and bacteria, chronic inflammation can disrupt our hormones. To help reduce inflammation in the body, it is helpful to reduce or eliminate common food allergens from your diet such as dairy, wheat, corn, and soy. Stress reduction through meditation, mindfulness or doing activities you enjoy, are also great tools to reduce inflammation. Low level laser therapy has been shown to regulate inflammation and there are some studies using LLLT for PCOS, IVF success, egg quality, sperm motility and dysmenorrhea. More on LLLT and PCOS/Fertility.
Acupuncture: Acupuncture is a wonderful, natural, and effective resource for helping women with PCOS. Acupuncture has been shown to help calm the stress response, increase blood flow, especially to the uterus and ovaries, it helps to increase the rate of ovulation, and improve androgen levels in women with PCOS4,5. Acupuncture combined with low level laser therapy has been shown to help improve fertility.
If you're looking for support on your PCOS and fertility journey, I invite you to request a free discovery call to find out how Acubalance can support you.
- Boomsma CM, Fauser BC, Macklon NS. Pregnancy complications in women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Semin Reprod Med. 2008 Jan;26(1):72-84. doi: 10.1055/s-2007-992927. PMID: 18181085.
- Douglas CC, Gower BA, Darnell BE, Ovalle F, Oster RA, Azziz R. Role of diet in the treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome. Fertil Steril. 2006 Mar;85(3):679-88. doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2005.08.045. PMID: 16500338; PMCID: PMC3752890.
- Mei S, Ding J, Wang K, Ni Z, Yu J. Mediterranean Diet Combined With a Low-Carbohydrate Dietary Pattern in the Treatment of Overweight Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Patients. Front Nutr. 2022 Apr 4;9:876620. doi: 10.3389/fnut.2022.876620. PMID: 35445067; PMCID: PMC9014200.
- Jedel E, Labrie F, Odén A, Holm G, Nilsson L, Janson PO, Lind AK, Ohlsson C, Stener-Victorin E. Impact of electro-acupuncture and physical exercise on hyperandrogenism and oligo/amenorrhea in women with polycystic ovary syndrome: a randomized controlled trial. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2011 Jan;300(1):E37-45. doi: 10.1152/ajpendo.00495.2010. Epub 2010 Oct 13. PMID: 20943753.
- Leonhardt H, Hellström M, Gull B, Lind AK, Nilsson L, Janson PO, Stener-Victorin E. Serum anti-Müllerian hormone and ovarian morphology assessed by magnetic resonance imaging in response to acupuncture and exercise in women with polycystic ovary syndrome: secondary analyses of a randomized controlled trial. Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand. 2015 Mar;94(3):279-87. doi: 10.1111/aogs.12571. Epub 2015 Jan 28. PMID: 25545309.