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  • Shared Experiences

    I was diagnosed with Poly-Cystic Ovarian Syndrome when I was 16 years old, I am now 24 and I have NEVER been able to lose weight and keep it off.

    Hello All,

    I was diagnosed with Poly-Cystic Ovarian Syndrome when I was 16 years old, I am now 24 and I have NEVER been able to lose weight and keep it off. Much to my mothers' annoyance.

    I have regular oestrogen levels but high testosterone levels if that helps. I have been told to try a Low-GI diet. That's all well and good but the books I have on Low-GI dieting say nothing on portion sizes. PLUS since I live at home and am unemployed my parents buy all the groceries. Being Italian heritage, my mother is big on pasta and pizza and all the yummy unhealthy stuff.

    I had a treadmill but my mother turned around and said I didn't need it. That I was perfectly healthy and that there was nothing wrong with me. How can 108kg be healthy? I am 165cm tall. That gives me a BMI of 40. That puts me a severely obese. That is not healthy but my mother refuses to listen.

    I hope someone here can guide me to the healthy lifestyle change I need. I know I need to move out, but because of unemployment and starting university in a couple of weeks, I need to do something here and now. I am lethargic, an insomniac, get chronic migraines and severe back pain. I need help.

    I wanted to go to the Nu Yu Weight Loss Retreat down in the Hawkesbury Valley, but I cannot afford $3000 for a 6 week stay. Maybe if I won the lottery? I suppose $500 per week isn't bad and the Retreat teaches you all about healthy eating, good exercise habits etc etc. Here's the link:

    I hope someone can help. Cheers.
  • Find a professional to answer your question

  • Arlene is a registered practising dietitian, with a private practice in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney, and has built a strong business over the last … View Profile

    It is extremely difficult to lose weight with PCO's.  You must ensure that you keep your portions small and start doing regular exercise.  It would help for you to see a professional dietitian to give you a structured meal plan.

  • Narelle Smithers

    HealthShare Member

    Hi Amy,

    Sorry to hear about your struggle. My suggestion like Arlene's is that you should look into seeing a dietitian so they can tailor a diet and exercise for your needs (everyones needs are different). You should also check with medicare or your health fund (if you have one) as you can get money back for consultations so it can be quite affordable. It would be a far better and more efficient was of spending money vs. the $3000 retreat as you need to be able to manage your weight ongoing in your own environment with day to day normal activities- that way you will keep it off. The risk with going to a retreat is the challenge of bringing back all the learnings back into your day to day life.

    You also need to ensure your family support you on your journey, especially your mother who seems to be resisting your weight loss goals. I'm sure she wouldnt resist if she knew how much happier, healthier and more confident you will be once you've lost the weight.

    Good luck and let us know what you decide to do and how you are going- support is key to managing your weight.

  • Simone Sparkes

    HealthShare Member

    Hi Amy

    I have PCOS I am now 39 almost 40. I was diagnosed at 18 and I was only 90kilos then, I only found out due to an ovarian cyst lucky for me no surgery was needed thanks to natural therapies. I am now 128 kilos and I am finding it hard to loose the weight and found that I get results by exercise and eating a good diet that is low GI, gluten free (when I can) and protein in every meal when I can.

    Due to also having four boys 18, 10, 9 and 6 I had developed gestational diabetes with three of them and never thought that type 2 diabetes would creep up so quickly but then I didn't want to do anything to prevent it either. I wasn't ready at that stage of my life to loose the weight, my huge wake up call was the type 2 diabetes diagnosis in April this year (2011). I have lost 10 kilo's and have little support but my main support that I get is from very close friends and family.

    I agree with Arlene and Narelle to see on seeing a nutritionist or dietition and look at incorporating an exercise program by buying a book on exercise or a exercise dvd there are good ones out there. I go to the gym when I am able to do and find that when I do go I am more energised and happier afterwards.

    Loosing weight will take time. Maybe even taking your mother with you to a dietition/nutritionist will help so she can understand on with what you have to do. I took my husband with me to one of my appointments so he can understand on what I have to do to help with my weight. He supports me in what I have to do, to loose the weight and to control my pcos and my type 2 diabetes. I use natural therapies not the pill to control my pcos which has helped my monthy cycle to go from 30 days to a normal 27 days.

    I pray that you make the right decision and that there are people who do and will support you in these goals.


  • Team HealthShare

    HealthShare Member

    HI Amy

    Have you been to see a personal trainer about getting a good exercise program made up for you?


  • Pam Robinson

    Personal Trainer

    Personal Trainer Figure Competitor View Profile

    Hi Amy

    Have you tried to improve the way your body metabolises Oestrogen?  Have you ever used DIM?  It's cheap and effective. 

    At your weight you don't need to diet… you need to eat for health!  That includes: protein at every meal, alkalising food, good fats, not eating carbs at night and of course low g.i. carbs only earlier in the day.

    Have you tried replacing pastas with Miracle Noodles?

    Worth a try


  • Melanie McGrice is an Advanced Accredited Practising Dietitian, one of the few dietitians in Australia to achieve that status. Her success has made her an … View Profile

    Hi Amy,

    PCOS is a medical condition which affects your hormones.  As Narelles suggested people with PCOS are entitled to get rebates back from Medicare when you see a dietitian because you have a diagnosed medical condition - as long as you get a referral to see a dietitian from your GP.

    Be careful of fad diets as this may do more harm than good.  When you have a medical condition, it is essential to get professional advice from a dietitian.

    Best wishes,


  • Dr Kevin Lee

    Endocrinologist, Nuclear Medicine Physician

    Consultant Physician in Endocrinology, Diabetes & Nuclear Medicine. I am on Twitter @dr_kevinlee. I am on Facebook I help patients with obesity, diabetes, thyroid, … View Profile

    Great posts by all the contributors, emphasising the importance of lifestyle and dietary modification. 

    It turns out that at BMI of 40, there appears to be insufficient data to suggest diet/exercise alone can achieve long-term prognostically significant weightloss.

    Therefore it would be advisable for you to attend your GP to further discuss the risks of BMI 40 + PCOS on your health.

  • 1


    Dr Jason Wong

    Bariatric (Obesity) Surgeon, General Surgeon, Laparoscopic Surgeon, Upper GI Surgeon (Abdominal)

    Jason Wong is a skilled Laparoscopic and Bariatric Surgeon with expertise in sleeve and gastric bypass surgery, gallbladder, hernia, endoscopic pilonidal, antireflux and emergency general … View Profile

    Your situation is something that I commonly see and know that bariatric surgery, such as a sleeve gastrectomy or gastric bypass, will help you achieve weight-loss that is sustained, more effectively than any diet, exercise, medication or combination of the above.

    Certainly, the first step is, as the other contributors have described already, with healthy food choices and exercise. There is no need to "diet" - but just choose what you eat wisely to achieve a calorie reduction, in particular the carbohydrate amount you are consuming.

    I have a saying "Plan what you eat, Eat what you plan". Planning your meals is everything and removing yourself from situations that are going to sabotage your efforts.

    You seem like you know what you need to do and are motivated to do so but just need some guidance - seeing your GP is definitely the first step.

    If you are interested in learning more about how a bariatric surgical procedure could potentially help you, there are many resources, information seminars, practices and surgeons around who will be more than willing to provide you information.

    Kind regards,

    Dr Jason Wong


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