Are You Eating Enough to Get a Period?

Keto period or amenorrheaLost your period? You might just need to eat more. A lot more. Losing your period to under-eating is called hypothalamic amenorrhea and is common, especially in women under thirty.

Hypothalamic amenorrhea is sometimes misdiagnosed as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) because both hypothalamic amenorrhea and PCOS can present with “polycystic ovaries” on a pelvic ultrasound exam.

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Is It PCOS or Hypothalamic Amenorrhea (Undereating)?

PCOS versus hypothalamic amenorrhea.

What is the difference between polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and hypothalamic amenorrhea?

PCOS is the condition of androgen excess when all other causes of androgen excess have been ruled out. It can be associated with irregular periods or no periods.

Hypothalamic amenorrhea (HA) is the loss of periods due to undereating. It can also present with mild acne or facial hair.

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Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Cannot Be Diagnosed by Ultrasound

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) cannot be diagnosed by ultrasound because polycystic ovaries are not cysts. They’re follicles or eggs which are normal for the ovary.

It’s normal for all women to sometimes have a higher number of follicles. It’s normal for young women to always have a higher number of follicles because young women have more eggs. That’s why the new international PCOS guidelines state that “ultrasound is now not recommended in diagnosis in those within 8 years of the start of periods.”

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High-Dose Fructose Is a Major Driver of Insulin Resistance (But Fruit Is Okay)

fructose and insulin resistance

High-dose fructose is a major driver of insulin resistance, abdominal weight gain, fatty liver, heavy periods, and PCOS.

That does not mean that fruit is a driver of those conditions because whole fruit contains a relatively small amount of fructose compared to high-dose fructose sweeteners like sucrose, syrup, honey, agave, coconut sugar, dates, dried fruit, and fruit juice. Fruit also provides beneficial nutrients and polyphenols that counterbalance the negative effects of fructose.

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