Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is one of the most common hormonal problems women face today. It is said that at least five to 10 percent of women of childbearing age are diagnosed with it. For years patients have been treating the illness by taking hormonal pills, but researchers recently discovered a new remedy.
Women suffering from PCOS may have a chance to fight the syndrome by soaking in a hot tub a couple of times a week for two months. According to research, this method improves the cardiovascular health of the women as well as influencing beneficial changes in fat tissue. It has also reduces the risk of diabetes and other metabolic disorders.
This is especially beneficial for obese women who are having a hard time losing weight due to the imbalance in hormones, and the difficulty in breaking down insulin inside the body. Inflammation and dysfunction in fat tissues are also reduced with the help of the water’s temperature.
Six obese women diagnosed with PCOS were involved in the study. They were asked to undergo hot tub sessions for one hour, three to four times a week for about two months. After this, their fat tissues before and after the therapy were examined. Insulin sensitivity was also checked on four of the participants.
By the end of all sessions, researchers found reduced insulin resistance in the fat tissues which meant the risk of diabetes had decreased. The participants’ blood pressure and heart rate also improved indicating reduced risk of heart diseases.
One other important result from the heat therapy was how some of the women reported to getting their normal menstrual cycles back. This finding suggests that heat could help “mitigate some of the underlying physiological processes involved in PCOS.”
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The study is the first to be done with the sole purpose of examining how heat therapy can help women with PCOS. It is also the first time researchers checked if the therapy has an impact on fat tissues. They’ve also likened the therapy to aerobic exercise which positively affects the blood flow of a person.
Some improvements were found even on those who did the therapy for one month, however, those who did it for two months reported to have experienced the most improvements.
More about PCOS
Other than irregular menstrual cycles and weight gain, PCOS also triggers hair growth and depression, and can cause infertility. Although many have been diagnosed with it, this syndrome remains to be one of the “most critical, underserved, under-diagnosed and under-funded conditions,” as per Sasha Ottey of PCOS Challenge, Inc. In fact, more than 50 percent of women with PCOS are not aware their suffering from it. (Related: Illness on the rise in women – What causes PCOS?)
Furthermore, more than 50 percent of PCOS sufferers are likely to develop diabetes or pre-diabetes before the age 40. The risk of heart attack among them is said to be four to seven times higher than those who do not have PCOS.
This condition largely affects many of the women in the world’s population, and this only means that it’s about time everyone become more aware of PCOS to help the patients.