What is the Ideal PCOS Diet Plan?
The frequency of young girls and women getting affected with PCOS is downright scary. One in every ten women in the United States and one in every five women in India suffers from PCOS. What is PCOS actually? PCOS or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome is a very common reproductive disorder in women and the leading cause of problems such as obesity, infertility, diabetes and many other diseases.
Your PCOS diet plan
We usually notice the symptoms of PCOS in the age group from 15 to 30 years. PCOS, if left undiagnosed can lead to a number of health issues, as we already know.
But what you might know is that treatment at the right time can prevent such health-related problems. Awareness is what can prevent a host of other problems.
Diagnosis and medical help is the first step but what most women tend to ignore are the diet and exercise part.
A proper PCOS Diet plan can help tackle the health problem from the onset. The internet is flooded with hundreds of diet plan every day which are supposedly the best diet plan for PCOS to lose weight.
But how many of it is really effective? It is difficult to glean information from such a large pool of inconsistent and mostly confusing information. So should you have milk? Should you leave out carbs totally to lose weight? And it goes on, questions galore but hardly the right answers for it.
Before we chart out an eat-this-not-that list (obviously, consult your doctor before any dietary and exercise changes), let’s get to the crux of the matter and find out how you can lose weight if you have PCOS. But first, know about the symptoms of PCOS, you may experience symptoms such as irregular periods, weight gain, acne, unwanted facial hair, hair loss and so on.
Before we get into the diet part of things, some do’s and don’ts to figure it all out.
- Avoid stress at any cost. Practice yoga and breathing techniques to manage stress.
- Carbs are not your enemy, overeating is. Learn to differentiate between real hunger and cravings.
- Leave out processed foodstuff from your diet.
- Include strength training and cardio into your diet regime.
- Eat good fats such as olive oil, ghee, coconut oil, nuts and seeds and so on.
Foods to Include in PCOS Diet Plan
The kind of foods you include in your diet plan plays a big role in helping you lose weight. We have come up with a comprehensive list to make it easier for you to know exactly what to have and what to avoid.
Here is the food-list to add to your diet.
Green leafy vegetables
When in doubt, have veggies. They are the most weight loss friendly foods on planet earth. Also, vegetables are chock-a-block with a wide number of nutrients, such as calcium, iron, magnesium, magnesium and vitamins K, C, E and B. Vitamin B is a nutrient in particular that you simply cannot ignore.
This is a nutrient that has myriad of functions such as the fat metabolism, thyroid, ensure proper hormonal balance which will spike up your fertility levels. The calcium optimizes the ovary function, potassium helps in Follicle Stimulation Hormone.
Antioxidant-rich and anti-inflammatory, colored vegetables are a must-add food group. It reduces the oxidative stress in people with a PCOS problem.
Many women suffering from PCOS tend to avoid fruits, thinking it to be detrimental to their health as it contains high amounts of fructose. But the truth is, fruits are full of essential nutrients such as several minerals, poly-nutrients, vitamins, and so, include fruits that boast of the low-glycemic index.
Limes, lemons, strawberries, guava, oranges, apples and so on. Combining nuts and seeds with your fruits is a great idea, it balances out the sudden sugar spikes.
While you must avoid bad fats, good fats are absolutely essential as they help in the assimilation of nutrients, oily fish, avocado, nuts, seeds, ghee, coconut oil they should be an integral part of your diet.
Notch up your protein intake PCOS and for that lean meats are absolutely vital. Protein boosts metabolism and helps you lose weight.
Low GI carbs
Make low-GI foods your go-to food as the foods digest slowly and provide you the required energy. Lentils, beans, and nonstarchy vegetables should be part of your dietary regime.
Foods that are a Strict No-No in your PCOS Diet
Avoid the following foods in your diet, if you are suffering from PCOS:
- High GI foods should be ruled out completely such as white rice, pasta, and starchy vegetables as they cause quick insulin release.
- There is a lot of information on dairy, while some nutritionists claim dairy does more harm to you than good, there are others who say it is actually good for you. We say, if you are a fan of dairy, only go for the hormone-free organic variety and reduce the intake.
- Soy products may cause a hormonal imbalance in women with PCOS. If you are trying to get pregnant, try to avoid soy.
- No trans fats and hydrogenated fats for you as the may end up disrupting your estrogen production leading to weight gain.
- Avoid too much caffeine, especially if you are stressed. Who isn’t?
- Alcohol and smoking should also be banned. Alcohol especially disrupts the functioning of the liver. Liver flushes out excess estrogen, so ensure that your liver functions optimally.
Besides, maintaining the above dietary guidelines, ensure that you sleep for at least 7-8 hours and stop staring at your gadget before bed-time, in fact at least two hours before you hit the snooze button. As already mentioned, managing stress is a large part of managing your PCOS level.
Losing even a little amount of weight can help you manage the condition.
Along with this PCOS diet plan, start doing things that keep you happy and do fun stuff to de-stress, such as reading, dancing, listening to music. It helps you relax and hence you will be psychologically able to deal with it better.
Also, go for regular check-ups, so that your condition remains well in control. If you face any issues, consult your doctor who would zero in on the right solution for you.