5 Things that May Affect Ovarian Health

· January 3, 2019
There are many things that can affect the health of your ovaries. Read this article to discover five things that may affect ovarian health!

The ovaries are part of the female reproductive system. These sex glands are not only necessary for reproduction but also regulate many functions in the female body like menstruation as well as the production of hormones like progesterone and estrogen.

Unfortunately, as you may already know, the ovaries are associated with several diseases that can’t always be avoided. Ovarian cysts, tumors, and even premature failure are some of the risks that women all over the world face. Therefore, maintaining a healthy lifestyle is extremely important.

Read more here: 7 Reasons You Might Feel Pain in Your Ovaries

In this article, we’ll go over some of the things that may affect ovarian health. Don’t miss out on this important information!

Things that may affect ovarian health

1. Obesity

An obese person and a skinny person.

As you know, being overweight always carries health risks, but how is obesity related to ovarian disease?

  • Obesity not only changes our metabolism, it may also affect our hormones. When the body starts storing more fat, it also may alter the endocrine system, leading to changes in the menstrual cycle.
  • Many experts warn that these hormone changes can often cause problems ranging from polycystic ovarian syndrome to tumors. What’s more, many doctors warn that female infertility is often related to obesity.

2. Genetic risk factors

Ovarian health and ovarian cancer.

The diseases that our mothers, grandmothers, and aunts have suffered from can influence the diseases that can develop within our own reproductive systems. For example, those who have a history of ovarian cancer in their family are at a higher risk of developing it themselves.

Small mutations exist in the BRCA1 and BRACA2 genes that are often hereditary. Many women often request a complete genetic analysis to find out their likelihood of developing certain diseases.

3. Having children at a later age

Mother and daughter dancing.

Not all women can have children at the same age as their mothers or grandmothers. The difficulties of a career outside the home or a job that doesn’t allow time for raising children have, little by little, raised the average age of motherhood to over age 30.

Does this pose a risk to our health? Experts state that the more ovulations a woman has over her lifetime, the higher the risk of developing an ovarian disease. Having children before age 26 lowers your risk of developing ovarian cancer. This protection ceases to be effective when we have our first child past age 35.

4. The dangers of talcum powder

Mother applying talcum powder on her baby.

Talcum powder has been associated with a risk of developing ovarian cancer for many reasons that you should be aware of:

  • Talcum powder is composed of magnesium silicate, which contains a toxic substance called asbestos that is known to cause several different types of cancer, including ovarian. In fact, it’s also known to increase the chances of developing breast cancer due to its use in deodorants.
  • In the United States, federal law has mandated that talcum powders must be asbestos-free since 1970. However, not all countries have passed similar regulations.
  • The fact that women suffer a greater incidence of cancer from talcum powder is mainly due to the use of this product on our babies. It’s often inhaled without our realizing it.

Remember to always check the ingredients for any talcum powders you use to see if they contain asbestos.

5. A high-fat diet may affect ovarian health

Fatty foods.

We always recommend following a healthy lifestyle, including exercise and a well-balanced, varied diet that doesn’t include dangerous fats.

We all like muffins and cake, those delicious products made with refined flours and salt… However, you should know that these types of foods may promote the growth of tumors, often in the ovaries.

Discover: Ovary Pain: A Symptom of a Bigger Problem

Increase your consumption of water, natural juices, fruit, and vegetables. All foods that are rich in fat may change estrogen activity. Take better care of yourself!

  • Szczesna, A., & Meczekalski, B. (2012). Obesity and polycystic ovary syndrome. Archives of Perinatal Medicine. https://doi.org/10.1159/000194971
  • Casagrande, J. T., Pike, M. C., Ross, R. K., Louie, E. W., Roy, S., & Henderson, B. E. (1979). “INCESSANT OVULATION” AND OVARIAN CANCER. The Lancet. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(79)91435-1
  • Yang, H. P., Murphy, K. R., Pfeiffer, R. M., George, N., Garcia-Closas, M., Lissowska, J., … Wentzensen, N. (2016). Lifetime Number of Ovulatory Cycles and Risks of Ovarian and Endometrial Cancer among Postmenopausal Women. American Journal of Epidemiology. https://doi.org/10.1093/aje/kwv308
  • Gertig, D. M., Hunter, D. J., Cramer, D. W., Colditz, G. A., Speizer, F. E., Willett, W. C., & Hankinson, S. E. (2000). Prospective study of talc use and ovarian cancer. Journal of the National Cancer Institute. https://doi.org/10.1093/jnci/92.3.249
  • Zhang, M., Yang, Z. Y., Binns, C. W., & Lee, A. H. (2002). Diet and ovarian cancer risk: A case-control study in China. British Journal of Cancer. https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.bjc.6600085