R Surve was diagnosed with poly cystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) three years ago. She was only 16. Before her diagnosis, the teenager was heedless of her nutritional needs, got barely any exercise, and ignored fluctuations in her weight.
Since the diagnosis, the 19-year-old has had to overhaul her entire lifestyle. “The symptoms started showing up when I was 12,” says Surve. “I was sleepy all the time. I would come back from school and sleep for hours, and still feel tired at night.”
Surve, currently pursuing a Bachelors degree in fine art, used to experience menstrual pain and sleep apnea. “I went to a clinic for my hair fall, went to a nutritionist for the weight gain. But it became obvious that it was a hormonal issue,” she says.
Two sonographies detected PCOS, a condition that affects hormone levels, menstruation and ovulation. “It was a big surprise. I didn’t think I was that unhealthy,” says Surve. “In retrospect, I see what the problem was. I ate starch and fats, no vegetables and very little fruit.” Now her diet comprises greens, fruit, and chicken and fish. “My symptoms are now under control,” she says. “It’s amazing how much can be controlled through healthful living.”
There has been a dramatic rise in the number of young women being diagnosed with PCOS over the past five years, says Mumbai-based gynaecologist Suman Bijlani.
“Ten years ago, there would be one case a week and those patients were above 25. Today, I see three cases a week, some patients are as young as 12,” says Bijlani. “As a result of lifestyle changes and stressful work and school life, the average age of PCOS patients has fallen.” More than half of her cases are now aged 15 to 25.
source: hindustan times