Home treatment can help you
manage the symptoms of
polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and live a healthy
Healthy eating and exercise
Eat a balanced diet. A diet that
includes lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy products
supplies your body's nutritional needs, satisfies your hunger, and decreases
your cravings. And a healthy diet makes you feel better and have more
You may see a registered dietitian who has special knowledge about
For more information, see the topic Healthy Eating.
- Healthy Eating: Recognizing Your Hunger Signals.
- Healthy Eating: Getting Support When Changing Your Eating Habits.
physical activity a regular and essential part of your life. Choose
fitness activities that are right for you to help
boost your motivation. Walking is one of the best activities. Having a walking
or exercise partner that you can count on can also be a great way to stay
active. For more information, see the topic Fitness.
- Fitness: Adding More Activity to Your Life.
Weight control and weight loss
Stay at a healthy weight. This is the weight at which you feel good about yourself, have energy for work and play, and can
manage your PCOS symptoms.
If you need to lose weight, doing so will lower
your risks for
high blood pressure (hypertension), and
weight loss can improve high
androgen and high insulin levels and infertility.
Weight loss of as little as 5% to 7% over 6 months can reduce androgen levels
enough to restore ovulation and fertility in more than 75% of women who have
Losing weight can
be hard, but you can do it. The easiest way to start is by cutting calories and
becoming more active. For help, see the topic
If you smoke, consider quitting. Women
who smoke have higher levels of androgens than women who don't smoke.1Smoking also increases the risk for heart disease. For more information, see Quitting Smoking.
Caring for skin and hair
Acne treatment may include
nonprescription or prescription medicines that you put on your skin (topical)
or take by mouth (oral). Some women notice an improvement in their acne after
using estrogen-progestin hormone pills. For more information, see the topic
Excess hair growth (hirsutism) slows when high androgen levels decrease. In the
meantime, you can remove or treat unwanted hair with:
- Laser hair removal, in which the hair follicle
is destroyed by a laser beam.
- Electrolysis, in which your hair is
permanently removed by electric current applied to the hair
- Depilatories, which are chemical hair removal products
applied to the skin.
- Waxing, which pulls the hair out by the
Hair removal methods differ in cost and long-term
effectiveness. Before trying one, ask your doctor about risks of infection and