30-year-old Laura and her partner had been trying to have a baby for ten months. But with a history of PCOS, combined with weight gain, digestive issues, tiredness and mood swings, it was very challenging.
“The medicine I’d been prescribed for PCOS didn’t suit me at all,” she said. “The side effects were difficult to cope with, my weight was a constant struggle and I was worried that it was preventing me from getting pregnant.”
Laura’s gut instinct was correct. The medication prescribed for PCOS can increase your risk of becoming insulin resistant, which can reduce fertility.
Laura contacted Plena Health for an initial 30-minute consultation to discuss her health concerns and goals. We suggested a 12 week programme for Laura. As well as the nutrition review, we conducted an in-clinic assessment of her metabolic flexibility and body composition, via the MetFlexBio® protocol. This was repeated at 4 weekly intervals, to track her progress following the changes in her diet.
Making the change
After analysing the report data and identifying specific nutrient deficiencies, we recommended some changes to Laura’s diet to improve metabolic flexibility, balance hormone levels, and reduce fatigue and bloating. Laura’s metabolism was dependent on carbohydrates and she was unable to burn fat efficiently.
“Danielle focused on introducing real, unprocessed, nutrient-dense foods into my diet and asked me to reduce my intake of sugary drinks and refined processed carbohydrates. I was amazed at how much better I started to feel within a couple of weeks,” said Laura.
“I also had weekly health coaching to guide me as I adapted to my diet. I felt supported all the way.”
During the 12-week programme Laura was re-tested at four-week intervals to track the improvements in her metabolism and the positive changes to her body composition.
“The test results matched the improvement in my energy levels, and the reduction in bloating and pain. The following month, I had a normal period for the first time in ages.
“This really encouraged me and motivated me to continue with the changes to my diet. My periods remained regular. Repeated blood testing showed that my hormone levels had improved, too.”
Laura vowed to keep up the changes as she now understood which foods were supportive of her health. Feeling much better, she contacted us a few months later and we were able to advise her on optimal nutrition for pre-conception and pregnancy.
“I learned that it’s not advisable to diet while trying to conceive, and that it’s important to adapt my nutrient intake to support the future demands of pregnancy,” said Laura.
Three months later, Laura was elated to find that she was pregnant. From despairing at the news that her PCOS diagnosis had significantly reduced her chances of being a mum, a few changes to her diet was all it took to make her dream come true.
The names and images have been changed to protect our clients identities.
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