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Digital Subscriptions > Healthy Food Guide > July 2019 > POLYCYSTIC OVARY SYNDROME (PCOS)


AROUND ONE IN FIVE women in the UK are affected by PCOS. The main features are: an abnormally high number of fluid-filled sacs (follicles) forming on the ovaries, a failure to ovulate, an irregular cycle and high levels of ‘male’ hormones, including testosterone.

You won’t necessarily have all of these, and symptoms vary greatly (see below). ‘For instance, around 20% of women with PCOS won’t have cysts (empty or immature follicles) on their ovaries. And others have an abnormal number of cysts and irregular periods, but don’t have high levels of male hormones,’ explains Dr Georgios Dimitriadis, senior clinical fellow in endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism at Coventry and Warwick University Hospital, who runs a specialist PCOS clinic for the NHS.

Spot the symptoms

These include:

● irregular or no periods

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About Healthy Food Guide

Find your sense of inner calm with our guide to understanding hormonal changes and simple mindful breathing exercises to de-stress your day. We investigate how IBS might be improved in just 9 weeks and a new diet for carb lovers. Summer fruits and toast toppers fall under the nutritional spotlight, and we put alcohol-free spirits and ice to the test. Plus fish and chips and ice-cream treats get a makeover.