PCOS & Fertility Awareness: The Options

(Previous blog posts talk about the background of PCOS and the theories of PCOS.)

Many health care providers give women with PCOS 1 of 2 options...

  1. if they don’t want to get pregnant - hormonal birth control...
  2. if they do want to get pregnant - fertility drugs (like Clomid, Femara, and Letrozole) and/or anti-diabetic medications (like Metformin)...

However, there are natural, alternative, and holistic ideas out there that many women with PCOS have found successful.

Fertility Awareness Charting!

When a woman understands her reproductive health and can interpret the fertility charts of her menstrual cycle, she'll have a lot of very useful information. (If you need help interpreting your charts, that's what I'm here for!) Even if she has irregular cycles, a woman can use the observational Sympto-Thermal Method of Fertility Awareness. (It's best if a woman with irregular cycles not use a statistical or calendar method of Fertility Awareness... more about all the different methods is here.) 

The changes in her cervical fluid (or lack of changes) and the changes in her morning temperature (or lack of changes) will provide information about what's going on hormonally inside of her body. If her provider wants to run tests on a specific day of her cycle (like about a week after ovulation), then the interpretation of her charts will help to find the best day to do that. She can use the Sympto-Thermal Method to... 

  • avoid pregnancy naturally,
  • know when to best time sex or insemination to achieve pregnancy,
  • have a really good idea when her period will arrive, and
  • gauge how medical interventions or holistic, lifestyle changes are improving her cycle and overall reproductive health.

Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine! 

Acupuncture and Chinese herbs are very effective at regulating cycles and encouraging normal ovulation.

In May 2013, The American Journal of Physiology - Endocrinology and Metabolism published a study about 32 women with PCOS who received 10-13 weeks of treatment with acupuncture or meeting with a physical therapist. They said:

  • "Repeated acupuncture treatments resulted in higher ovulation frequncy in lean/overweight women with PCOS."
  • "Ovarian and adrenal sex steroid serum levels were reduced with no effect on LH secretion."

And then earlier in April 2012, the Journal of Acupuncture & Tuina Science published a study about 65 women with ovulatory dysfunctional infertility. They said:

  • "Group 1 received electroacupuncture and group 2 received 50mg per day of clomifene citrate tablets [Clomid]. After 6 months of treatment, the acupucture group had a cure rate of 76.3% and the clomifene group had a 48.1% cure rate."

The website/social media of FloLiving.com and the book Woman Code: Perfect Your Cycle, Amplify Your Fertility, Supercharge Your Sex Drive, and Become a Power Source by Alisa Vitti!

These are excellent resources for naturally restoring hormonal balance... and Alisa describes how she naturally healed her PCOS!

The website/social media of PCOSdiva.com!

Amy Medling's personal story is very powerful... and she even talks about how charting her cycle showed that she probably wasn't ovulating. A low-glycemic diet and regular exercise is so important!

Vitamin D!

"Low vitamin D has been clearly linked to insulin resistance and obesity." For an easy-to-understand and thorough review of Vitamin D studies done with women who have PCOS, go here: http://www.mypcos.info/1/treatments/natural/vitamin-d/

NaPro Technology!

The work and book by Dr. Thomas Hilgers, The NaPro Technology Revolution: Unleashing the Power in a Woman's Cycle, gives insightful and non-mainstream information and treatment protocols for PCOS. Here in Denver, the team at Bella Natural Women's Care can offer these treatments. Search here for a FertilityCare™ Center near you. (PS - They come from a Catholic perspective and only work with heterosexual women.)

In your own journey with PCOS, what natural, alternative, and holistic ideas did you find most helpful?

Did you use them in conjunction with anything else?

Colleen Flowers PCOS Fertility Awareness Online

Colleen Flowers is a Holistic Reproductive Health Practitioner who loves teaching individuals and couples about their bodies from a natural and holistic perspective using the Fertility Awareness Method... to avoid pregnancy naturally, to increase their chances of conceiving, and to better understand their bodies! See what others have to say or contact her and subscribe to her newsletter. Like what you see? Then book an online consult with her and/or purchase a package for more in-depth coaching.