Bloating and PCOS : Why it happens?
If you have PCOS, the root cause of your bloating may be due to:
Dysbiosis, or an imbalance of gut bacteria;
Dysbiosis occurs when you have an imbalance of bacteria in your gut. You may have too much bad bacteria, not enough good bacteria, and/or not enough diversity of bacteria. Unfortunately, women with PCOS are more likely to suffer from dysbiosis than women without PCOS.
Dysbiosis is one major root cause of abdominal bloating in PCOS. Dysbiosis may also worsen other PCOS symptoms like acne, unwanted hair growth or hair loss, and hormonal imbalances.
- Irregular periods without ovulation;
Many women with PCOS have irregular cycles and do not ovulate or bleed each month. Without ovulation, your estrogen levels may be constantly elevated because you do not experience an opposing rise in progesterone. This is known as estrogen dominance, or an excess amount of estrogen in relation to progesterone. Estrogen dominance may also contribute to bloating in PCOS.
- Medications used to manage PCOS symptoms, like metformin or the pill.
Metformin commonly causes symptoms of GI upset like nausea, diarrhea, bloating, and gas. These side effects may be due to metformin’s influence on the gut microbiome, and some studies suggest this drug may also cause dysbiosis.
The birth control pill is also commonly prescribed to women with PCOS to manage symptoms of acne, irregular periods, and unwanted hair growth. Unfortunately, many women find that the pill commonly contributes to abdominal bloating among other side effects.