In a normal cycle, every month an egg is produced and released by the ovaries. When the follicle, the sac in which the egg is contained, matures, in response to the surge of lutenizing hormone (LH) the follicle releases an egg. The empty follicle then changes to the yellow body called corpus luteum, which produces estrogen and progesterone in copious amounts in preparation for pregnancy. When pregnancy does not occur, the corpus luteum is supposed to disintegrate and disappear. However, at times the follicle does not release an egg and at times the corpus luteum does not disintegrate on its own. In either case, the opening of the follicle or the corpus luteum seals off, enlarges and gets filled with fluid and in some cases blood. This fluid filled sac is what is known as an ovarian cyst.
The causes of ovarian cysts have largely been pinned on hormonal imbalance. For instance, in the type of functional cyst called follicular cyst, it occurs when the LH surge does not take place. Another type of functional cyst, named a corpus luteum cyst, occurs when for some reason pregnancy does not take place and the corpus luteum does not disintegrate. There are times however when pregnancy does take place and a corpus luteum cyst still forms. Fertility drugs, especially clomiphene citrate is said to be a factor that could precipitate the causes of ovarian cysts especially in the case of the corpus luteum cyst.
Other types of ovarian cysts are dermoid ovarian cyst, polycystic ovarian cysts, cystadenoma and chocolate cyst. Hormonal imbalance has also been attributed to be the cause of these cysts, in particular estrogen and progesterone imbalance. What causes these hormonal imbalances, which in turn are the causes of ovarian cysts? Poor diets, poor habits and stressful lifestyle among other things are contributing causes. A diet that contains too much sugar and too much processed food is not good for the body because they contain complex sugars that are not easy for the body to break down. It wreaks havoc with the hormonal balance. Insulin stimulates androgen receptors on the outer part of the ovaries and androgen hinders release of eggs from the ovaries. In fact androgens are responsible for some symptoms of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) like acne and increased hair growth. Poor diet also includes not eating the right kinds of food that will supply the body with necessary vitamins.
Poor habits like wearing high heels too often can also play a factor as they inhibit the circulation in the lower abdomen. Lack of exercise is another one of the causes of ovarian cysts. High stress levels create high production of cortisol by the adrenal glands. This is the beginning of a domino effect. When cortisol levels rise this leads to an increase in blood sugar which then causes insulin production to also increase. Increased insulin in your system can lead to insulin resistance and androgen production which worsens the symptoms of PCOS. These are some of the causes of ovarian cysts.