8 Powerful Women Who Have Opened Up About Their Struggles With PCOS

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Happy PCOS Awareness Month, everyone! While it's always important to stay informed when it comes to your reproductive health, this month provides a special opportunity to learn a thing or two more about polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), the most common hormonal disorder there is, affecting about 10 million women in the world. If you're personally coping with PCOS, always remember that you are not alone. In fact, even some major celebrities with PCOS have used their platform to speak out about their struggles (and triumphs!) with the disorder, and cultivate awareness in our society.

To gain a little more background on what exactly PCOS is, Elite Daily spoke with Dr. Mark Perloe, director of Georgia Reproductive Specialists, who says while women with PCOS don't always have actual cysts, the condition is most basically characterized by a series or string of cysts on the ovaries. He also mentions that PCOS is not a “one-size-fits-all” condition, and that it affects everyone differently.

He tells Elite Daily,

PCOS is a complicated metabolic disorder. There is an underlying genetic predisposition. Environment and lifestyle play a role in how it manifests.

PCOS can also, unfortunately, be somewhat difficult to diagnose, because its wide variety of symptoms can be attributed to many different things. While what causes PCOS is not totally known, the variety of symptoms can include infertility, irregular periods, cystic acne, hair loss, unwanted hair growth, chronic fatigue, and insomnia.

Dr. Perloe clarifies that women are typically diagnosed by having at least two of the following three symptoms: irregular or absent menstrual cycles, elevated levels of male hormones, and/or ovaries with cysts.

But again, friends, if this is a condition you contend with, allow these well-known, strong ladies be a reminder that you can not only cope, but lead a fantastic, influential life, regardless of diagnosis.

1. Jillian Michaels

Celebrity trainer Jillian Michaels has been outspoken and frank about coping with both PCOS and endometriosis, and how struggles with infertility led her to adoption.

She keeps the condition under control with exercise (duh), nutrition, and focusing on her well-being above all else.

2. Harnaam Kaur

Harnaam Kaur is a former teaching assistant turned model, activist, and and Guinness Book Record holder.

Kaur sports a full beard as a result of living with PCOS. At age 16, Kaur was baptized Sikh, which meant a commitment to letting her hair grow out in accordance with religious beliefs. Proud and beautiful!

3. Daisy Ridley

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The Star Wars actress took to Instagram about her rollercoaster with treating the acne that has been a symptom of her PCOS. She spoke openly about the necessity and importance of keeping track of your health and taking care of your body no matter what:

From your head to the tips of your toes, we only have one body, let us all make sure ours are working in tip-top condition, and take help if it's needed.

4. Victoria Beckham

Beckham has talked openly about the effects PCOS and irregular periods have had on her fertility, as well as her ability to focus on maintaining a lifestyle that keeps her health and well-being in check and properly cared for.

5. Diamond

Diamond was featured on an episode of The Doctors, a talk show about health and wellness, in which she bravely sharing her experience with constant facial hair growth and the relentless bullying she received as a result.

She found out on the show that she had PCOS. Her story is truly an inspiration to women everywhere.

6. Simone Ormesher

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Ormesher, a contestant on The Bachelor, recently opened up about her PCOS diagnosis and the importance of speaking out about health conditions.

When it comes to looking out for her well-being, she explained in an Instagram post,

In order to cope with my symptoms, I make sure I maintain a well-balanced life, I exercise regularly, and I eat lots of good wholesome foods and surround myself with supportive people.

7. Jools Oliver

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Children's book author, wife of Naked Chef Jamie Oliver, and mother of five, Jools Oliver has been quite transparent about her struggles with miscarriage in relation to her PCOS diagnosis.

After enduring multiple hormonal treatments for the condition and battling fertility issues as a result, Oliver is now content, raising a big, happy family.

8. Emma Thompson

The Oscar-winning British actress and humanitarian has been honest with the public not just about living with PCOS, but also about coping with clinical depression.

Cheers to these beautiful women who continue to inspire us each and every day.