Lifestyle Changes for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome in Adolescents

Obesity is the biggest risk factor for polycstic ovary syndrome (PCOS), in which the body produces excess levels of hormones called androgens. About half of women with PCOS are overweight or obese. Losing weight may be the best way to reduce the risk of complications during adulthood, such as type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol.

At Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at NYU Langone, PCOS specialists partner with you and your daughter to help her lose weight. Our registered dietitians create low-calorie meal plans that emphasize fresh fruits and vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains. Our experts also recommend about an hour a day of physical activity—an attainable goal for most adolescents—to help burn calories, improve muscle tone, and prevent insulin resistance.

Weight loss is especially effective when combined with medications that reduce the body’s production of androgens and regulate menstrual periods. This can help alleviate symptoms, such as acne and excess facial and body hair.

Follow-up visits, which occur every three months, can help ensure that your daughter is on track to achieve her weight loss and fitness goals. During these appointments, our doctors may repeat blood tests to measure insulin and androgen levels.

Resources for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome in Adolescents
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