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Minerva Ginecologica 2007 February;59(1):63-73


language: Italian

Polycystic ovary syndrome and obesity: non pharmacological approaches

Orio F. 1, 2, Falbo A. 3, Grieco A. 1, Russo T. 3, Oppedisano R. M. 3, Sacchinelli A. 3, Giallauria F. 4, Santoro T. 5, Tafuri D. 6, Colao A. M. 2, Palomba S. 3

1 Dipartimento di Endocrinologia, Facoltà di Scienze Motorie, Università degli Studi di Napoli Parthenope, Napoli, Italia 2 Dipartimento di Endocrinologia ed Oncologia Molecolare e Clinica, Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II, Napoli, Italia 3 Dipartimento di Ginecologia e Ostetricia, Università degli Studi di Catanzaro, Magna Graecia, Catanzaro, Italia 4 Dipartimento di Medicina Clinica, Scienze Cardiovascolari ed Immunologiche, Area Funzionale di Riabilitazione Cardiologia, Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II, Napoli, Italia 5 Facoltà di Medicina e Chirurgia, Università degli Studi di Milano, Milano, Italia 6 Corso di Metodi e Didattiche delle Attività Sportive, Facoltà di Scienze Motorie, Università degli Studi di Napoli Parthenope, Napoli, Italia


In patients affected of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), obesity has an high percent of incidence and represents an important factor increasing its clinic evolution, both in metabolic than in reproductive terms. For these patients non pharmacologic treatments aimed at the reduction of body weight, such as diets and physical exercise, represent the first line therapeutic approach. The aim of this review is to analyze the changes in life style and to highlight their efficacy in reducing the negative effects of PCOS on metabolism and reproductivity. Specifically different types of diet have been compared, in health or PCOS women, such as low glycemic index diets, moderate carbohydrate, high protein and low fat diets, very low carbohydrate and high fat diets and, finally, moderate carbohydrate and high monounsaturated fat diets. In the global view of the approach to the disease, different regimens of physical activity and the usefulness of a behavior therapy were also evaluated. Results obtained in health women suggest that diets higher in proteins and lower in carbohydrates are to be preferred to the conventional diet lower in fats and higher in carbohydrates. Anyway other studies are necessary to justify a similar assertion in women with PCOS. At the same way, the optimum regimen of physical exercise for PCOS women is still to be demonstrated.

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