PCOS and Fertility: Can I Conceive?

By Shahzeen Baig, PCOS nutritionist, BmedSci|MHumNutr

There is a common misconception that all women with PCOS have trouble conceiving. However, this is most certainly not the case! Many women can conceive naturally with PCOS. Unfortunately, health professionals do not provide enough support and guidance for women struggling with infertility.

Conceiving with PCOS

The most important factor to consider when trying to conceive with PCOS is whether you are ovulating regularly.

Track Ovulation with PCOS

Ovulation is where an egg is released from a woman’s ovarian follicle (sac containing the egg). Women may find that even though they are menstruating regularly they still may not actually be ovulating! Therefore, it is important to track ovulation. For women with PCOS this may be difficult with traditional over-the-counter ovulation trackers due to certain underlying hormonal imbalances.

Hence to accurately track ovulation, women with PCOS must use a PCOS friendly ovulation tracker. These trackers measure body temperature to accurately identify a woman’s fertile window i.e. days of ovulation. Ovulation coincides with a small rise in a woman’s basal body temperature.

Once a woman determines whether she is ovulating regularly or not the next step in her fertility journey is identifying the reason behind lack of ovulation. In PCOS this means identifying the root cause driving their individual PCOS symptoms (this is different for every woman with PCOS!).

Root causes behind lack of ovulation include:

  • Insulin resistance– this is where the cells become resistant to insulin. High levels of insulin drive a range of PCOS symptoms and contribute to halting ovulation.
  • Inflammation- chronic low-grade inflammation in women with PCOS also interferes with ovulation
  • Stress- chronic stress increases inflammation in the body

A combination of lifestyle and dietary changes as well as taking the right supplements can greatly improve ovulation rates and increase chances of naturally conceiving for women with PCOS.

Women should work with a health professional specialising in PCOS to help tackle their root cause. PCOS specialists can help women make appropriate changes in their lifestyle to help them achieve their dream of becoming a mother.

About the Author: Shahzeen is a university qualified nutritionist who specialises in women with PCOS hlping them correct hormonal imbalances and manage their symptoms. To learn more visit her at @the.pcos.nutritionist


The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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