PCOS Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome affects a lot of women worldwide. Unfortunately for many it goes undiagnosed. It also can be known as Stein-Levanthal syndrome. It affects one’s confidence as it slows metabolism, leads to weight gain, acne and male pattern hair growth. In my other article on PCOS we covered the condition, the conventional treatments and the functional approach.
Unfortunately for many it is either not effectively treated traditionally, or symptoms are alleviated but relapses tend to occur and one does not ever feel they have fully taken control of themselves. We briefly touched on emotional and spiritual factors but I wanted to make a specific article just on this topic, as I have worked with many women with whom we have noted the below concepts which some of which has led to lasting results in those and with the parts related to them.
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
Could PCOS seriously be related to an emotional or non-physical aspect?
Conventionally and naturopathically speaking the consensus is that the PCOS is due to hormonal imbalance and flow, but what do the ancient holistic practitioners say? It may be described as being to do with blockages, cold and dampness. Yes it can be physical (biological), or energetic (spiritual). The holistic view is that whilst the world is big on genetics, there are conflicting views that it is more of a cellular memory or a localised collective conscious situation that you and you family are going or living through, and you can break away from that. Certain environmental factors must take place for you to change your physiologically in such a way breaking away from homeostasis, yet some women deal with certain stressors differently which is why not all women end up with PCOS & that there are a myriad of factors involved. Whilst there may be a pre-disposition you can reprogram yourself and change your belief system. There are various emotional, mental and spiritual factors that can affect this condition. This does not mean all who have PCOS fall in any of the below patterns but rather some may.
*Disclaimer* My work is to help empower women to take back control of their health and wellbeing. I am not speaking on what it means to be a woman, especially not from female from a societal or strictly scientific standpoint, yet to share ideas from a more holistic outlook. As we continue to dive deeper and cover the area of body images and or femininity, please be aware that I am not suggesting there is a correct or incorrect way to view oneself, nor am I suggesting there is a correct or incorrect sense of femininity. Rather I am simply opening up a possible are of introspection, that we all have a feminine and masculine side as per the Yin & Yan. The points raised below are about blockages and disconnection from the source of ones female essence and its deep rooted connection to nature. It has nothing to do with societal norms or conventional views on femininity, which tends to be dictated by popular culture. The only area society does crop up is the current state and affairs of work life that tends to be more Yan or masculine. Moreover, the below is not a matter of fact commentary, but rather some may resonate with this and others wont, but rest assured if you keep looking you will find the process needed to help any form of imbalance you are experiencing.
Sometimes woman’s body image is part of the rooting given societies standard’s these days. How do you feel about being a woman? is there a lack of comfort with her femaleness? what is your view of yourself?
In todays society woman seem to be valued more from superficial standards of beauty as opposed to more traditional values. Whilst this too is a generalisation, women are inundated with societal standards of how to be, not only for younger girls to look like celebrities, but post pregnancy to recover in a few weeks and be on a beach wearing a skimpy bikini etc. What about women who dont fit these moulds, let alone generic standards imposed on them in terms of how to look, dress and act?
It is no wonder many women dont feel so uncomfortable in their skin. This does not mean working on your body or aesthetics is a problem and does not mean its the only way to reconnect to ones yin source of femininity, you can be feminine regardless of your physical form or your lifestyle decisions, we are really talking about mentality and how one sits with emotions. Are you following your own unique disposition, desires and needs? or are you reactionary to certain traumatic experiences? Please read on , as from the Pain teacher paragraph we will express in more detail this yin or feminine connection in terms of connection to the womb, the cycle, the moon, not wearing ‘feminine’ clothing or doing what society says.
Feeling comfortable in the masculine
Some may feel difficulties connecting to their Yin or femininity as they are more comfortable in the masculine role. This can be seen in your relationship in terms of your actions and behaviours. There are many reasons for this and this is not a problem, rather if in conflict with one’s feminine to the degree that it leads to pent up emotions and the aforementioned symptoms, then maybe looking into embracing ones femininity could help. Just as some men learn over time that it is ok, in fact beneficial to express their emotions or feelings, so too should you.
To some degree women have been demeaned, which has been witnessed by many young girls which compounds the idea towards the feminine as weak, making one feel more comfortable behind the energy of the masculine. A tougher exterior as protection from the harsh realities of womanhood. If one believes that life is hard, with few feminine role models, it makes sense to feel safer in the masculine role and for your body to produce more masculine hormones. This is naturally not the only reason. This does not mean you are totally cut off from your femininity or not showing it, rather you are denying it somewhere inside and this seems to have a lot to do with a misunderstanding that the inner feminine is not dictated by society, when in reality its a connection to oneself and natures which men have too.
We can view our pain from the old paradigm of capricious disease occupation, essentially a medieval concept whereby you are a helpless victim from a disease. Alternatively, you can view the pain as a teacher, to direct your life into a better direction, strengthen and regain personal responsibility which can be empowering.
Connecting to your Inner yin/feminine energy via your cycle
Consider if the pain the womb crying out for some attention? Or are the cries in the form of irregular cycles, PCOS, endometriosis, fibroids, uterine cancer, fertility issues, society certainly does not take into account womens cycles or energy patterns. Traditionally women may have been more in touch with their wombs in the sense of the cyclical nature of it given that society was very different and we were all connected with our bodies, as well as the cycle of the moon, and nature, much more than in metropolitan cities with certain work cultures (think male terms of work) based on hustle and overwork. There is a knowledge of ebb and flow of energy, the rise and fall of emotions, as well as the cycle dictating changing needs as well. Therefore female expression is key not be misinterpreted with conventional standards but rather a connection to the feminine within, not the superficial factor of colors or clothing or roles. This can be achieved by re-connecting to ones cycle.
In some cases there may be or had been an excessive sense of being responsible for the welfare of parents or siblings. Akin to being demanded to be an adult when too young, or be responsible when you wanted to play. It may be related to being forced to play too much of a masculine role. This may be happening now in your relationship. Possibly even taking charge of the household economics in an excessive sense. Whilst many women these days earn more than their partner, regardless of gender, sometimes the idealised image of this differs from its reality and may cause strain on oneself depending on ones disposition. For example if you are commuting to work Monday to Friday in a high pressured job in the city, this can take its toll on anyone. One may feel totally fine but emotionally speaking there could be a surge of YAN energy that could be a factor in PCOS. The good news is juts the realisation or small tweaks to ones lifestyle or how one perceives it can seriously help balance the YIN and YAN energies.
Escapism & numbing the pain with food
As described in the first article on PCOS, insulin resistance, blood sugar disregulation and metabolic syndrome are some of the tale tell signs of PCOS. What this really means is stress increasing cortisol and inbalancing your insulin and blood sugar, as well as excessive eating of high glycemic index foods, or simply those foods without the balance of protein or fat to support its metabolism. The link here with the mental and emotional is that taking on other roles may make you feel trapped. This escapism is manifested in comforting the pains with either running away, drugs, alcohol, overeating or even toxic relationships. The vicious cycle is that the emotional links whilst are very common, end up leading one to comfort those feelings in various forms that tend to effect ones hormonal balance.
Other emotional factors
Questions to ask oneself
- Do you feel beautiful and enjoy your natural beauty ?
- Do you find difficulties living life from your deepest emotions?
- Have you ever sensed you may have deeply hidden feelings? Unable to connect with them?
- Are there things you want to express to your family, partner, or yourself?
- Femininity is shown but not connected to or denied to feel it, or there is a blockage in the feminine side of you.
- Are past emotions held onto?
- Did you grow up raising your siblings or being depended on by parents?
- Do you find yourself living in reaction to the judgment of the outer world?
Through various therapeutic modalities one can clear the emotional patterns holding one back from free expression to enable one’s body to balance and heal itself. Learning to feel what you need to, and discovering how to meet these demands can be a liberating experience and help the healing process along with the diet and lifestyle adjustments.
Functional nutrition & therapy
Treating menstrual dis-ease with allopathic medicine seeks to deal with the symptoms and not the cause. The effect is an improvement in the short-term with an eventual re-emergence of symptoms over time. Accepting the cycle, living within its energies, honouring the flow is to work towards true female wellness and strength. In practice this looks like conversations on this topic if comfortable, and tools, activities, exercises and meditations to help reinforce and strengthen that connection.
The functional approach would cover all the factors above, based on the intake forms, history and consultation, we would work on what area seems to be most in need and take it from there. This is an attempt to not just deal with symptoms, which leads to possible short term gains and emergence of symptoms long term. Encompassing the nutritional factors above and coupling it with the emotional factors of learning to live with the cycle of energies, accepting the cycle, and honouring the flow to empower ones innate female strength, power and wellbeing.
1 to 1 professional support?
Whilst knowledge is power, sometimes we cant do it alone, either there is too much information, we need someone to coach us, we dont even know exactly what our issue is, or we are dissatisfied with the service of the consultants we have seen thus far. If this sounds like you, worry no more.
My Four-Pillar Protocol is designed to heal you on four planes, the physical is the bulk of our work together (Nutrition + Exercise + Grounding + Therapeutics), yet we will also touch on the emotional (Self-enquiry, Experiential-therapy, Connection to others + Objectivity to emotions), the Mental (Perspective + Meditation + Goals + Objectivity to thought), & the Spiritual ( Connection to higher self & all + Gratitude + Breath-work to reconnect.)
It is assumed a nutritionist will force someone on a diet, this could not be further from the truth. Rather we work to change how you perceive and eat food, learning about its many healing properties to lead to long term sustainable positive change in your health and well-being.
I will assess your overall health including your medical history
Looking into lifestyle & emotional factors that most practitioners wont
Individualize the protocol to implement suitable changes for you
You will be sent a bespoke eating plan
You will be sent a bespoke therapeutics plan if needed
Lab testing will be recommended if necessary
Finally follow up or pay-as-you-go appointments enable you to get the hands on one to one coaching with me throughout the healing journey
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