Depression appears to be more common in women with PCOS and it's very common in the women who come along to my practice for counselling. Although it's not the primary reason for them being there (that's usually to lose weight or improve health or fertility), we notice that when they adhere to a PCOS friendly diet, their symptoms of depression also improve.
A recent study in Fertility and Sterility supports this. One hundred and four overweight women with PCOS were randomised to one of 3 20 week lifestyle programs:
- diet alone
- diet and aerobic exercise
- diet and aerobic-resistance exercise
Depression levels and overall quality of life were measured at the beginning and conclusion of the 20 weeks. By week 20 all groups had achieved weight loss and improvements in both Depression and overall quality of life scores. The authors concluded that both diet and diet/exercise combinations were effective in improving depression symptoms.
So it doesn't matter which approach you take - start something today! Get some advice and support on a PCOS friendly diet and chat to your GP or an Exercise Physiologist about an exercise program. You will be on the way to feeling better both mentally and physically. Who doesn't deserve that?
(Reference: Fertility and Sterility, 2010 Oct; 94(5): 1812-6. Lifestyle management improves quality of life and depression in overweight and obese women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Thomson et al.)
For individual consultations on PCOS and Diet, contact Claire at EatWell Nutrition and Dietetics in Melbourne.
You can also get more information about depression at Beyond Blue
Until next time,
Claire Daly is an Accredited Practising Dietitian / Accredited Nutritionist who works with women and families. She has particular interest in working with women who have PCOS (Claire has PCOS herself), fertility problems or who are wanting to achieve a healthy weight and good health prior to and during pregnancy. Claire has her own private practice in Melbourne. For more information visit www.eatwell.com.au
Like to use this blog post in your own newsletter or publication? Just email Claire to let her know which article you would like to use and how I would like you to acknowledge the source of the article, then you are on your way.