Women in the present day have taken a long lead-in being the multi-taskers, be it at work or home. It is rightly said, “There is no force more powerful than a woman determined to rise.” They have turned into professional jugglers between their profession and personal lives, and they can also make their struggle graceful and effortless. However, the truth is that to maintain a perfect balance between all of this, they often fall prey to suppressed stress and constant worry. Add to that, untimely eating habits and lack of proper self-care and the result is often insufficient health levels and an imbalance in hormones. The hormones in the body play a vital role to bring a balance in the body’s entire well-being. An imbalance in these hormones can open doors to a swarm full of diseases. The commonly caused ailments due to this are PCOD/PCOS.

What is PCOD and PCOS? 

PCOS (PolyCystic Ovarian Syndrome) and PCOD (PolyCystic Ovarian Disease) are confused and interchanged while addressing or understanding it. Even though both of them are associated with the hormonal imbalance in the female endocrine system, there is a line of difference between the two. The two ovaries in the female body release an egg each month. These ovaries also make male hormones or androgens (male hormones) in required quantities.

PCOD is a situation where the ovaries let out a swarm of immature or half- mature eggs. These eggs then turn into cysts. Whereas in PCOS, the ovaries produce a lot more than the required amount of androgen. These high levels then interfere with the maturity and letting out of the eggs. The immature eggs turn into cysts which are sacs full of liquid. These cysts enlarge and interfere with ovulation as well as conception at times too. An article produced by NCBI states that “ PolyCystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a relatively common endocrine disorder in women of reproductive age group. It is found in around 70% of women who have ovulation difficulties leading to subfertility.”

Studies conducted about the prevalence of PCOS by NHP, over a period of time have revealed surprising numbers. The prevalence of PCOS is highly variable ranging from 2.2% to 26% globally. In few Asian countries, prevalence figures are ranging from 2% to 7.5% in China and 6.3% in Srilanka. There are few studies conducted in India. In studies done in South India and Maharashtra, the prevalence of PCOS (by Rotterdam's criteria) was reported as 9.13% and 22.5% (10.7% by Androgen Excess Society criteria) respectively.

Ayurveda for PCOD and PCOS

Symptoms of PCOD and PCOS

The symptoms of PCOD/ PCOS can be easily traced and understood. Some of them are: 

  • Less than 9 menstrual cycles annually 
  • Bleeding on extreme ends (either too much or too little)
  • Thick, quick, and excessive facial hair growth
  • Scanty hair, thin scalp, and excessive hair loss
  • Hyperpigmentation causing blackness around the neck 
  • Feeling low, depressed, and jumpy
  • Unexplained weight gain and trouble losing weight

Once traced it is important to track down what causes PCOD/ PCOS. However, the exact cause of it is still unknown some of the causes associated with them are: 

  • Imbalance in the hormones
  • Excessive production of androgens 
  • High levels of inflammation 
  • Inability to use the glucose from the blood for energy
  • Genetic contributions

Ayurveda for PCOD and PCOS

Ayurveda offers a systematic and practical approach to manage PCOD/PCOS with customized treatments as per the patient’s cause and symptoms. According to Ayurveda, the imbalance in the Kapha and Vata dosha are the root causes of PCOD/PCOS. Vata plays a vital role in the entire process of the menstruation cycle from the follicular movement, puncture of the ovarian wall, to the release of the egg. At the same time, Kapha nourishes the uterus, supports follicular growth, and ensures the healthy growth of a fertilized egg. 

The sticky properties of the Kapha dosha harm the digestive fire or agni, the impact causes the metabolism of the tissues or dhatus to go on a toss. The dhatus that take the impact of this imbalance are Rasa dhatu (lymph and plasma), Medha dhatu (Adipose tissue), and lastly, Artava dhatu (the female reproductive system).

Ayurvedic Treatment for PCOD and PCOS

An early diagnosis and regular management program are essential to avoid complications. Ayurveda vouches for Panchakarma procedures like Virechana (Detoxification), Nasya(body cleanse), Shirodhara, and Uttarbasti for PCOD management. The treatment plans are customized and executed as per individual needs and particularly catering to their symptoms.

 There are programs that can rectify PCOS-caused subfertility. A study conducted on 40 people in 2010 states that a 6-month program with the following therapies proved beneficial to them:

  1. Shodhana (detoxification and purification procedures)
  2. Shamana (palliative treatments to reduce discomfort and relieve symptoms)
  3. Tarpana (offering made to divine entities)

Dietary & Lifestyle recommendation for managing PCOD and PCOS

Along with all of these mentioned treatments and therapies, it is mandatory to bring about a change in the individual diet and lifestyle. Some of the recommended changes include the following: 

Dietary changes:

  • Curb the intake of stimulants like tea and coffee
  • Consume light and airy food instead of food that is heavy to digest
  • Consume Kapha friendly food like fruits and cooked vegetables
  • Avoid heavy food items like bread, cheese, pasta, fried and sweet food
  • Fuse in warm food items like chilies, cloves, ginger, cardamom, garlic, or turmeric
  • Control the salt intake especially during menstruation 
  • Consume whole grains over parts of it
  • Non-vegetarians can consume food items like fish, chicken, organic eggs, etc for protein and vegetarians can consume legumes, and whole grains to balance the glucose levels
  • Control intake of saturated fats that are found in food items like meat, chicken, food packed with preservatives

Lifestyle changes

  • Try to relax and slow down to control mood swings, depression, and comfortable seating
  • Adapting to a positive, happy, and optimistic outlook towards life
  • Include meditation, and pranayama in day to day life
  • Go for stress management to balance hormones 
  • Hydrate well and drink minimum 2 liters of water every day 
  • Stay fit and active with at least 45 mins of exercise daily

Studies conducted in 2012  found that the 12-week yoga program helped to reduce anxiety symptoms in girls in the age group of 10-19 years of age with PCOS. While there are quite a few yoga asanas that are effective to aid the women to have a regular and healthy menstrual cycle. Some of the asanas are:

  • Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclining Butterfly Pose)
  • Bharadvajasana (Bharadvaja’s twist)
  • Chakki chalasana (Mill churning pose)
  • Shavasana (Corpse Pose)
  • Dhanurasana ( Bow pose)
  • Uttanpadasana (Raised leg pose)
  • Badhakonasana (Butterfly pose)
  • Ushtrasana (Camel pose)
  • Vrikshasana (Tree pose)
  • Vajrasana (Thunderbolt Pose)

The correction of PCOD and PCOS through Ayurvedic treatments can be slow and time-consuming. However, the effects of these treatments are enduring and lasting. They detoxify, realign and strengthen the body’s entire function by healing it from the very roots. The path of curing an ailment with Ayurveda is a therapy that not only upgrades the physical well-being but boots the mental health too.

Frequently asked questions about PCOD and PCOS

What is the reason for PCOD?

There are no certain reasons stated yet as the cause for PCOD. However, few body conditions were commonly found in those detected with it. Some of them are:

  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Overproduction of androgens 
  • Insulin resistance
  • Genetic
  • High levels of inflammations 

Do PCOS patients get pregnant?

PCOS is a common but treatable cause of infertility. By bringing a balance in the hormones the ovulation cycle can be regulated and the patient can get pregnant. 

Are PCOD and PCOS the same?

PCOS and PCOD are both associated with the endocrine system in women. However, there is a thin line of difference between them. PCOD is a situation where the ovaries let out a swarm of immature or half- mature eggs. These eggs then turn into cysts. Whereas in PCOS, the ovaries produce a lot more than the required amount of androgen.

PCOD is a result of a menstrual disorder with typical symptoms such as weight gain, excessive facial hair growth, Hyperpigmentation, etc. PCOS on the other hand is not a disorder but there thick male-like facial hair present due to the overproduction of androgen in the body. 

Which Dosha causes PCOS?

PCOS is caused due to imbalance in the Kapha and Vata dosha in the body. 

Can Ayurveda cure PCOD?

Ayurveda is a medical system that is both preventive as well as curative. Ayurveda does provide a permanent cure for PCOD. However, the length of the treatment is based on the size of the ovary as well as the level at which PCOD has affected the body.

Can Yoga Cure Pcod?

Yoga cannot cure PCOD but the asanas do aid to build a strong mental and physical well-being. Yoga is also said to have great effects on the female reproductive system. Some of the recommend Asanas for managing PCOD are as follows

  • Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclining Butterfly Pose)
  • Bharadvajasana (Bharadvaja’s twist)
  • Chakki chalasana (Mill churning pose)
  • Shavasana (Corpse Pose)
  • Dhanurasana ( Bow pose)
  • Uttanpadasana (Raised leg pose)
  • Badhakonasana (Butterfly pose)
  • Ushtrasana (Camel pose)
  • Vrikshasana (Tree pose)
  • Vajrasana (Thunderbolt Pose)

Can triphala cure PCOS?

Triphala cannot cure PCOS but it plays a vital role in cleansing and detoxifying the body which is an essential step towards the treatment. Triphala is an Ayurvedic herbal Rasayana formula consisting of equal parts of three myrobalans, taken without seed: Amalaki, Bibhitaki, and Haritaki. The powdered version of triphala can be taken with water or honey and must be consumed before meals for best results.

 Is shatavari good for PCOS?

Shatavari, also known as Asparagus Racemosus, is an adaptogenic herb that helps the body to cope up with physical and emotional stress. Shatavari is said to have improved follicular growth, development, and ovulation in patients.

Can Ashokarishta cure PCOS?

Ayurveda uses the formulation of  Ashokarishta as an element for correcting the symptoms of PCOS. Its anti-inflammatory properties help to reduce inflammation in the pelvis, prevent the uterus, ovaries, and other reproductive organs from damage. The main constituent of Ashokarista is the Ashoka Bark. Besides this, there are many other natural ingredients that come together to form this concoction such as Jaggery, Dhataki Flowers, Mustak Roots, Ginger Rhizome, Kalonji, Daruharidra, Utpala Flowers, Indian Gooseberry, Vibhitaki, Haritaki, Mango Seed, Cumin Seed, Adulsa and Sandalwood.

 

**The benefits of Ayurveda vary from person to person and the results may vary immensely based on the quality of the herbs, oil concoctions and medicines. BalanceBoat.com is not responsible or liable for the effectiveness and outcome of the Ayurvedic treatments. The information above is shareable purely for educational purpose it is not to be considered as a replacement for medical advice. Please always consult a certified specialist/Doctor before you embark upon a treatment.