New diet offers hope for PCOS sufferers

Published On: Oct 24 2011 11:21:02 PM EDT   Updated On: Sep 01 2011 11:53:47 AM EDT

(NewsUSA) - Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a disease that affects the lives of approximately one in 10 women, causing both physical and emotional ramifications. One of the most devastating effects of the disease is infertility. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), PCOS is the most common cause of infertility among women.

What exactly is PCOS? Women afflicted with PCOS have high levels of androgens or "male hormones," often miss or have irregular periods caused by a lack of progesterone in their system and have a series of small cysts that grow on their ovaries. Symptoms range from increased acne and high blood pressure to irregular bleeding.

And, despite first being recognized as a condition in 1845, the cause, and, therefore, the cure are still elusive.

In the past, many doctors have prescribed hormone-based therapies to help manage the condition and its symptoms, however, more recently, lifestyle changes are taking center stage as a disease-management solution for PCOS sufferers. Weight loss and management is among these solutions.

With lower-than-average metabolic rates, PCOS sufferers are more prone to weight gain and less able to lose this excess weight with traditional dieting techniques. However, HHS reports that a 10 percent loss in body weight by PCOS sufferers can restore a more normal menstrual cycle.

Additionally, Vitaline, a weight control program and clinic, found that a drop in weight of just 21 pounds increased fertility rates among women who suffer from this disease.

As a result, many of these women are turning toward metabolic-rate diet programs, such as the specially designed PCOS diet by Vitaline, which, by eating healthy, organic foods, stops hunger and cravings to ensure consistent weight loss. In fact, 171 babies have been born to PCOS mothers on the Vitaline program.

"I devised the PCOS plan as I feel passionately about helping women with what is often very much a silent condition. Many women come to us desperate for a baby, and when they call to tell us they are expecting, it's like a member of the family delivering such news," said Norah Lane, Vitaline's managing director and founder of the PCOS diet. "We want to help as many women as we can to help themselves -- whether that be to relieve their symptoms or to help them improve their fertility."