PCOS and Fatigue: Research-Backed Facts

Why PCOS Cause Extreme Tiredness

by Saima
PCOS and Fatigue

Are you suffering from PCOS and constant fatigue? Do you want to get rid of its stressful signs? This article is for you. Here, we’ve mentioned some research-based facts about the causes of PCOS and its associated fatigue symptoms. Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is the most common disorder caused by hormonal imbalance in women. In this disease, numerous fluid-filled sacs or cysts develop inside the ovaries, leading to various health problems including infertility. Let’s dive deeper to learn more!

What is PCOS?

Polycystic ovaries syndrome or PCOS is a hormonal disorder in which the ovaries produce abnormal amounts of androgen- The male sex hormone. Women of reproductive age, usually 14 to 44 years, are more likely to develop PCOS, which severely affects their ovulation cycle.

Common Causes of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

Apart from the elevated level of androgen hormone that is directly related to the onset of PCOS, some other factors are involved in triggering the signs.

  • Heredity

Studies reveal that PCOS is controlled by a set of genes that pass on from parents to their offspring. Thus, inheritance of PCOS genes can be the major reason for developing PCOS signs.

  • Insulin Resistance

Women with PCOS fail to utilize their insulin properly, leading to its increased production. Extra insulin might trigger the release of androgen from the ovaries.

  • Obesity

In general, obese women are more likely to have an abnormal insulin level in their blood and are more susceptible to PCOS.

  • Low-grade Inflammation

Inflammation refers to the hindrance in the activity of white blood cells to act against foreign invaders. PCOS patients exhibit this low-grade inflammation making their ovaries release more androgen, ultimately leading them to have heart and blood vessel issues.

Why PCOS Causes Fatigue?

Some major causes of constant fatigue in PCOS are:


Patients with PCOS sometimes might experience heavier or prolonged period bleeding, commonly known as menorrhagia. So, heavy bleeding ultimately results in anemia and iron deficiency, leading to extreme tiredness. A proper diet plan rich in iron and folates and intake of iron supplements suggested by a doctor can help overcome this condition.

Insulin Resistance

Almost 70% of women with PCOS suffer from insulin resistance- a condition in which the body can’t respond to insulin efficiently, thus causing high glucose levels in the blood. It may increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Moreover, an imbalanced or high blood glucose level inhibits the cell’s normal metabolism and functioning, leading to extreme tiredness. Eating healthy food and doing regular exercise can prevent or reduce the risk of insulin resistance in PCOS patients.

Deficiency of Vitamin B12

Women with PCOS usually face a deficiency of vitamin B12, which is responsible for the functioning of cells and their metabolism. The more common symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency include mood swings, numbness in the hands or arms, and severe fatigue. Consult the doctor to adjust your regimen accordingly.

Clinical Depression and Anxiety

Women with PCOS are potentially more susceptible to depression and anxiety than others. The restlessness results in fatigue as it affects the sleep schedules and work routines. Treatment of PCOS can help women get rid of depression signs.

Sleep Deprivation

Women with PCOS experience prolonged insomnia or obstructive sleep, resulting in stress and depression. Moreover, poor quality sleep may also induce obesity and insulin resistance, which trigger PCOS.

Avoiding caffeine and alcoholic beverages may help you prevent insomnia. Furthermore, consulting your doctor to overcome such chronic sleep disorders can help you minimize the signs.

Thyroid Malfunctioning

PCOS can cause hindrance in the thyroid gland’s optimal function, which causes exhaustion. The inability of the thyroid gland to make its secretions causes you to feel drained out. This hormone imbalance can also cause adrenal fatigue- low energy, mood swings, dizziness, and poor appetite.

How to Manage PCOS Fatigue?

Fighting PCOS demands a lot of lifestyle modifications along with better medical care. For this purpose, you should follow a healthy diet plan, regular exercise, and a proper routine. Some key rules for fighting PCOS and period fatigue are:

  • Take foods having low starch, high protein, green veggies, iron, and vitamin C content.
  • Regular exercise can do wonders in preventing PCOS symptoms. Daily 30-40 minutes of exercise is a great way to live a healthier, active life.
  • To stay energized and hydrated, take at least 8 glasses of water every day.
  • Minimize your screen time and stop it almost at least 2 hours before sleeping. Relax your mind by reading a book or taking a shower.

Concluding Remarks

PCOS is one of the most common disorders in women and is associated with numerous other health problems. However, due to a lack of awareness, most women suffering from this disorder never get diagnosed for a long time, increasing the associated complications. Consulting your doctor may help you get rid of PCOS and fatigue.


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