Let’s get something clear right now. The presence of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) in a teenager is very serious business. It is NOT a situation to be managed with medications or the birth control pill (which will, ultimately, make the condition worse).
The long term ramifications are immense. Given that this IS prediabetes, all those risks are present. Heart disease, diabetes, liver problems (NASH). Worse, if this young adult thinks she may have a desire for children 10 or 20 years in the future, it needs to be managed NOW. PCOS is the most common cause of infertility in women.
While a pharmaceutically oriented physician would give lifestyle changes for PCOS nary a second glance, the research is heavily in support of the use of lifestyle changes to manage the problems associated with PCOS. As a matter of fact, not making lifestyle changes and taking the drug route has been shown to worsen PCOS.
This current study found changes in all aspects of PCOS with 1 year of lifestyle changes, exercise and counseling. Changes included:
- Lowered body mass
- Blood vessel health improved (intima media thickness)
- Testosterone levels were lowered and SHBG levels went up
- Menstrual cycles improved (amenorrhea and oligomenorrhea by 42% and 19%, respectively)
- Lowered insulin levels
These are all very powerful improvements and show that lifestyle changes are superior to medications for managing this condition. So begin an anti-diabetic lifestyle now. Otherwise you may never get a chance to bounce that grandchild on your knee.