Recently I was asked if the “environment” played a role in polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). The etiology or cause of PCOS has a “multifactorial pattern” meaning, there are many different factors that influence whether or not a young woman will be the “1 in 10” to be diagnosed with this syndrome. Basically, PCOS happens when there is an imbalance of certain hormones (chemical messengers) in the brain and the ovaries, but the exact cause is unknown. We do know however, that the environment has an important role.
When most people think of environmental factors as a cause of a health problem, I imagine exposure to toxins such as radiation and chemicals are the first things that come to mind. But the sun is also in the same category and so is what we ingest. Diet; what we eat and drink plays a huge environmental role in PCOS.
Doctors have long recognized that genetic factors contribute to PCOS (you are more likely to have it if a close female- mother, sister, or aunt has it), but diet is also key. Knowing the right foods to eat as well as the kinds of food to limit can improve the way you feel. It can also help you to lose weight. Losing even 5% of your body weight can get your period back on track.
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- Nurse Phaedra
Going back to school after two months of relaxing can be a difficult task for most people. However this year I am anticipating the start of school due to the fact that I will be entering my fourth and last year of high school. Along with the excitement of finishing high school, comes anticipation for what’s to come throughout the year. In order to make the most out of my senior year, I came up with a few pointers to help guide me, and hopefully others, to a smooth finish to a high school career. Keep reading…
We were all shocked this week by the suicide of actor Robin Williams who brought so much laughter into the lives of so many. It is public knowledge that Robin Williams suffered for many years from bipolar disorder and substance use problems. It can be scary to everyone; especially teens who have emotional problems, to see a celebrity who seemed to have everything take his own life. On the other hand, Robin Williams was so well-loved that his suicide may be mistakenly glorified by some.
Suicide is the third leading cause of death among teens. The most important thing to remember is that suicide is preventable. When people become very depressed, they can lose perspective that many people love and care about them. They may also not realize that there are many excellent treatments for depression. Treatments include meeting with a therapist, outpatient programs and hospital programs that can teach techniques to deal with and relieve suffering. There are also many medications that can help people feel much better.
If you are feeling depressed or have thoughts of suicide, it is essential to get help right away. Talk to a trusted adult such as a parent, doctor, teacher, or clergy person to help get you to a counselor or therapist who can help. If you feel you need help right away, go to the closet hospital emergency room and tell them how you’re feeling. If you have a friend who confides in you that they have suicidal thoughts, it’s necessary to tell an adult, even if your friend might be angry with you for telling.
For more information on suicide prevention, check out the resources below.
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Many people say that the one thing they want in life is to “be happy.” Sometimes when you ask a child what they want to be when they grow up, they’ll answer that they want to “be happy” too. So what is happiness exactly? What is this elusive idea? And why do people commit their lives to finding “happiness?” Why is it so important to maintain? Keep reading…
I recently visited the Institute of Contemporary Art here in Boston. Hidden along the waterfront area, I was able to discover all of the great things the ICA has to offer inside and outside the building. Right now they’re showcasing a collection by Jim Hodges: Give More Than You Take. The collection illustrates his career dating back to his work from 1987. I found his work compelling, which got me thinking about what was going on in his mind while creating his art. Hodges work reflects many themes such as time, loss, identity, and love. The other galleries feature 20+ artists and selections from private galleries. What I also discovered during my time exploring the ICA was how teen-involved it is. Keep reading…
Summer is well underway and you may have noticed that smoothies and other blended drinks are a popular trend. Smoothies can be a healthy choice when made with ingredients such as vegetables, fruit, milk, or yogurt. However, sometimes smoothies can be loaded with not-so-healthy ingredients such as syrup or ice cream. These ingredients can add a lot of sugar to the smoothie and may cause your blood sugar to spike and then drop quickly. This can leave you feeling hungry, lethargic, and unsatisfied. Girls with PCOS should try to maintain a consistent blood sugar level by having snacks balanced with protein, fat, fiber, and carbohydrates consistently throughout the day. Keep reading…
Posted in PCOS
Tagged PCOS, Smoothie
Now that the hot summer weather is here (at least for those of us in New England), it’s important to think about drinking plenty of water and other healthy beverages to protect yourself from the heat. It might be hard to believe, but water makes up more than half of our body weight. That means we require a lot of water to keep all of our cells, tissues, and organs healthy! Our bodies naturally lose water every day, especially during the hot summer months. Losing more water during the summer makes it very easy to become dehydrated. Keep reading…
Oral contraceptive pills have been prescribed for many years, but they still get a bad rap. I don’t necessarily feel obligated to defend the “Pill”, but I do feel compelled to clear up popular misconceptions that still seem to plague the most common treatment for PCOS. Keep reading…
Posted in PCOS