Syndrome (PCOS)/ (PCOD) causes the formation of follicle cysts in the ovaries. It can result in the excessive secretion of androgen (male steroid hormones), which is said to be the cause of several unusual changes in a female’s body.
What is PCOS?
PCOS is a syndrome in which several cysts, i.e. sacs filled with liquids, start growing on both the ovaries of women. They are large and often made out of immature eggs and other secretions. Due to the syndrome, women may experience problems with their periods. They may not have them at all or can get delayed and unpredictable.
What is PCOD?
Like PCOS, PCOD can have similar implications on the ovary but they are minor. In PCOD, lesser and smaller sacs are formed on ovaries, which can go back in three months. The periods are usually normal and sometimes, may get delayed. PCOD gets detected when women are not able to conceive during childbearing age.
The common symptoms in both PCOD and PCOS include no ovulation, irregular periods, acne and hirsutism.
PCOS has several symptoms ranging from obesity, irregular or no periods, excessive facial hair, baldness, body odour, fatigue, sleep-related problems, depression, anxiety, mood swings, headache etc.
The symptoms of PCOD can be similar to that of PCOS with some major differences. PCOS is usually detected at child-bearing age when women who are trying to conceive are not able to.
Periods can be irregular, which may cause buildup on the uterine wall. Besides, it has been observed women with PCOD gets more affected by obesity than those with PCOS problem.
Diet & Lifestyle
The medical treatment of PCOD/PCOS focuses on managing individual concerns including infertility, hirsutism, acne or obesity. Besides, weight loss has been shown to help with hormonal imbalance and infertility.
Along with medical treatment, it is important to follow a healthy diet and lifestyle to fight PCOD and PCOS. It is recommended to consume a healthy diet for a hormonal balance and a healthy weight.
- To minimise the problem of irregular periods, women can increase the intake of antioxidants, prebiotics, probiotics and herbs.
- Consuming complex carbohydrates, food having a low glycemic index and micronutrients like selenium, magnesium and chromium can also help in PCOD.
- Deep-fried foods, simple carbohydrates, sugar, honey, and jaggery can be avoided by women with PCOD since they are insulin resistant.
- It is important to keep the water intake in check as PCOD can make one prone to constipation and water retention.
- Saturated fats can increase cholesterol and calorie level so it is advisable to avoid foods containing saturated fats.
- Some herbs have also been considered to keep your hormone health in check therefore consuming herbal supplements can also help fight PCOD.
- Besides nutrition, exercising for 30 to 60 minutes a day can also help in reducing insulin resistance.
- Consuming fibre-rich food can help fight PCOS problems. So, women with PCOS can add plenty of fruits and vegetables to their diet since these are loaded with fibre.
- In PCOS, the level of androgen (male hormones) gets higher than normal. A diet rich in protein can lower the level of androgen and also help lose weight.
- Diet having low GI can also help in weight loss and improving insulin sensitivity.
- An optimum level of healthy fats can improve insulin levels as well as promote weight loss. Consuming foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids can also improve insulin resistance.
While natural and herbal supplements and alternative therapies can help PCOS and PCOD treatment, they are not a substitute for a customized, ongoing dialogue with your doctor about your symptoms.
Talk to the nutrition expert at 8 Fitness Tips to know more about PCOS and PCOD.
It is normal to feel tired, exhausted and low on energy when you have been sick and down with any viral infection. This tiredness is a part of the healing process which can linger for weeks or months.
This lack of energy that you experience while recovering from any viral infection is known as post-viral fatigue. It can make you sleep more, feel unsteady on your feet, make standing for long periods difficult and also affect your ability to concentrate on work.
Post-viral fatigue mostly continues for some time after the infection has cleared. However, it is important to recover from this fatigue in the due course of time. Because, if not addressed in time, it can make you susceptible to other viruses and infections.
Symptoms of Post-viral Fatigue
While lack of energy is one of the significant indicators of post-viral fatigue, one might also experience other symptoms including:
- Poor concentration
- Headache or pain in muscles and joints
- Muscle stiffness or weakness
- Sore throat and swollen glands
- Breathlessness and heart palpitation
- Weak immunity
- Sleep disruption and depression
Addressing Post-viral Fatigue
So what should you do if you’re suffering from post-viral fatigue?
While there are no precise treatments, there are many things you can do to ease your symptoms and aid your recovery.
It is important to provide some extra nutritional support to enhance mitochondrial function. Some herbs and supplements can help restore energy. They can help in overcoming the effect of the virus on the immune system, liver function and digestive tract.
Getting a good night’s sleep is one of the most important activities you can do for your health. When you sleep, the growth hormone is produced which repairs the tissue, regulates immune function and detoxes the brain and organ. Besides, sleep produces serotonin, the hormone that is responsible for regulating mood.
Moderate levels of activity like walking and stretching will increase circulation and improve lymph flow. The body takes time to recover and regain strength and stability. To engage in some moderate exercise, but don’t overdo it.
Soaking in the sun helps get the body Vitamin D. Since low levels of Vitamin D have been associated with a low performing immune system, it is important to take your dose of Vitamin D to recover faster.
The recovery time from post-viral fatigue varies from person to person. Some people are back to normal within a few days to a week, while others experience the symptoms for long. However, getting an early diagnosis may improve recovery.
As your body gradually recovers from the illness, remember to keep a balance of diet, rest and exercise.
Nutrition and exercise are two of the most important factors that define your overall health and lifestyle struggles. Besides, there is a strong connection between these two factors. Right food consisting of proper nutrients can fuel your exercise and help the body to recover and adapt to the muscle changes.
However, before you plan your diet and exercise regime, it would be good if you learn about what to eat when – before and after your workout sessions.
What to eat before Workout?
The right balance of all the required macronutrients is important while planning your pre-workout meal. Optimal nutrient intake before you begin your workout session will maximize your performance and minimize the damage caused to the muscles.
Protein, carbohydrates and fat are the three major macronutrients that should be consumed before a workout session. All three of these are the key sources of energy but contribute differently to a pre-workout meal.
The building block is essential for maintaining and repairing muscle fibres during the workout.
Consuming the optimum amount of carbohydrates before a workout gives the body the energy to perform well.
For long-duration and moderate-to-low-intensity exercises, fat acts as a source of fuel. Besides, the nutrient also helps in maintaining blood glucose and insulin levels during a workout session.
If you have had a full meal, wait for 2–3 hours before your workout. Else, choose simpler carbohydrates or proteins as a quick meal before your workout.
What to eat after a workout?
It is important to refill your body with the right nutrients within 15 to 30 minutes of your workout sessions for the muscles to recover faster. Eat a small healthy snack shortly after exercising to restore energy levels.
Given below are the nutrients which you should consume after your workout session.
Carbohydrates recharge the body, restore its fuel supply and help to promote glycogen storage.
Protein helps the muscles to heal and prevents the loss of lean mass which contributes to a muscular and toned appearance.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids boost the synthesis of muscle proteins and increase the size of muscle cells.
Drinking a good amount of water during and after a workout promotes performance and recovery.
Talk to the fitness and health experts at 8 Fitness Tips to plan a nutritional strategy that fits your health goal.