Nutrition And Dietary Guide For Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
Have you grown obese, developed acne, and troubled with irregular menses? If you nodded affirmatively with a concern, you might be suffering from Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). PCOS is a hormonal disorder that is marked by irregular menstrual periods or no menstruation in the females of the reproductive age group. The disorder causes the overproduction of male hormones that leads to the development of multiple cysts in the ovaries. You may also experience acne on your facial skin and excess undesirable hair growth on the body and face. Besides these, you may develop health issues, such as diabetes and heart ailments, over time. Fortunately, by following the appropriate dietary guide for PCOS, you can treat the condition effectively, naturally, and safely without any concerns. So, let’s have a look at the role of diet in treating the condition and a healthy diet for PCOS.
Role of Diet in Treating PCOS:
Although the exact cause of PCOS is not yet clear, some factors might lead to its development. Females who often consume foods high in sugar, starch, and saturated fats, refined and processed foods, and have hardly any physical activity in their routine happen to have high chances of developing PCOS. Insulin resistance in addition to hyperinsulinemia is believed to be responsible for making you vulnerable to the condition. Intake of sugary foods and other foods mentioned above can result in a spike in your blood sugar levels and hamper the ability of your cells to absorb the sugar. Also, excess sugar that causes a rise in blood glucose levels can lead to an increased release of androgens and oil. And, you may develop undesirable conditions, such as acne, excessive hair growth, etc. However, including certain foods in your PCOS diet meal plan and improving your eating habits can work wonders in relieving the symptoms of PCOS and minimising the risk of associated health issues.
While you might find it challenging to choose the right foods for your PCOS and PCOD diet plans, certified dieticians can help you have the necessary PCOS nutrition diet by developing a customised dietary guide for PCOS tailored to your particular health needs. Here’s a list of nutritious food to include in your healthy diet for PCOS.
6 Essential Ingredients of PCOS Diet Plan:
- Fresh Vegetables and Fruits:
Loaded with crucial nutrients, fresh vegetables and fruits are healthy elements of your PCOS diet meal plan. Broccoli, apples, leafy green vegetables, and plums have abundant fibre so they are healthy foods for PCOS. Grapes and red berries offer anti-inflammatory benefits so they help combat symptoms of PCOS naturally and effectively.
- Whole Grain Foods:
Prefer to eat whole grain foods, such as whole grain bread, cereals, and pasta, as they have a low glycaemic index. Also, you can go for multigrain foods when following a dietary guide for PCOS. You can go for brown rice instead of white one. Also, in place of instant oatmeal, choose to have overnight oats seasoned with fresh fruits. Instant oatmeal has significant added sugar which is not healthy. You may add protein abundant quinoa to your regular salads in place of salty carbohydrates.
Enrich your PCOS nutrition plan with proteins. You can add plant-based sources, such as nuts, seeds, beans, lentils, and nut butter. If you are non-vegetarian, you can have eggs in your PCOS and PCOD diet plan and poultry’s lean cuts that are cooked eliminating the skin. Be sure to avoid red meat and any fish or meat that is fried or cooked by adding plenty of salt. Also, it is wise to avoid processed meats, as they have a high content of additives, sodium, and trans-fat.
- Low-Fat Dairy:
While following a healthy dietary guide for PCOS, make sure that your diet does not contain full-fat dairy. When suffering from PCOS, you may try a dairy-free diet and low-sugar options that include unsweetened almond milk or coconut milk. If you crave dairy products, prefer to have low-fat and low-lactose dairy options, such as Greek yoghurt.
- Anti-Inflammatory Foods:
Females with PCOS often experience discomforting inflammatory symptoms. To alleviate the effects of inflammation, include anti-inflammatory foods in your PCOS nutrition diet. Extra virgin olive oil, fresh fruits such as various berries, fresh leafy green vegetables such as spinach and kale, walnuts, almonds, and fatty fish can be great additions to your healthy diet for PCOS. With this, you can experience immense relief from inflammatory discomforts, such as fatigue, when dealing with PCOS.
- Water and Healthy Fluids:
You need to keep your body hydrated when you have PCOS. Water is the natural and healthiest fluid that you should have daily to stay hydrated. Ensure that your water intake is sufficient. Also, you can add the green tea and coconut water to your PCOS and PCOD diet plan. However, make sure that you avoid caffeinated beverages, such as black tea and coffee, if they aggravate your discomfort. Also, you need to avoid alcohol and beverages that have abundant sugar, such as sweetened fruit juices, soda, and energy drinks.
Don’ts of PCOS:
While you follow a healthy diet for PCOS, you also need to restrict certain eating habits. Here is a list of don’ts to follow along with the PCOS and PCOD diet plan.
- Smoking and Drinking:
If you are suffering from PCOS, you are vulnerable to developing some concerning health issues if you don’t follow healthy dietary and lifestyle habits. And, in case you have harmful habits, such as smoking and drinking alcohol, it increases your risk of developing heart-related ailments and diabetes. So, it is wise to quit drinking alcohol and smoking while following a PCOS diet meal plan to lead a healthy life and alleviate the symptoms of PCOS.
- Skipping Meals:
Skipping your meals when dealing with the symptoms of PCOS can be harmful to your health. You need to have a nutritious intake of food daily and timely meals to treat the condition effectively. So, be sure you do not skip your meals anytime. Make it a habit to have your meals on time. Also, follow a well-balanced diet as per the dietary guide for PCOS, as it will not only help you treat the condition but also manage your weight healthily.
- Eating Foods High in Sugar:
Resistance to the hormone insulin is one of the symptoms of PCOS. And, if you happen to relish foods abundant in sugar, it increases your risk of getting diabetes and other concerning health conditions. Also, sugar may aggravate the inflammation in your body. So, restrict your intake of sugar when following a PCOS nutrition diet. Avoid eating processed foods, desserts, baked goods, and packaged snacks. Shift to whole and natural foods. Also, you need to avoid other inflammatory foods, such as red meats.
3 Key Benefits of Nutrition and Dietary Guide for PCOS:
- Alleviates Hormone-Related Conditions:
PCOS has a strong link with hormonal imbalance, particularly high levels of androgens. Women with PCOS experience acne, abnormal hair growth, undesirable weight gain, and difficulty in conceiving due to hormonal imbalances. PCOS also affects the production of insulin in your body adversely. It also disrupts metabolic functions that affect your weight. Fortunately, PCOS and PCOD diet plan helps you limit your intake of sugar, encourage the intake of low GI foods, and keep your consumption of carbohydrates in check. This helps in managing your insulin levels and prevents you from gaining excess weight.
- Manages Your Weight:
A healthy diet for PCOS encourages an increased intake of proteins from natural food sources. So, you end up eating more proteins and feel full, and this prevents you from overeating. PCOS diet meal plan helps you achieve and maintain a healthy weight, as it limits your calorie intake, promotes weight loss healthily, and helps burn body fat. Also, a PCOS nutrition diet reduces your risk of developing other health issues.
- Reduces Inflammation:
PCOS and being overweight or obese have a link to inflammation. Females with PCOS are more likely to be overweight or obese. PCOS diet meal plan comprises anti-inflammatory foods that help alleviate the inflammation in your body and help you have a healthy weight. Also, it helps manage your other health conditions triggered by inflammation, such as blood pressure and cholesterol. PCOS nutrition diet may also improve your reproductive health and promote normal menstrual cycles.
If PCOS is hampering your quality of life and health and you are searching for natural ways to treat the condition, resort to a healthy diet for PCOS. Certified nutritionists, such as health experts at Health Total, can help you have a customised PCOS diet meal plan comprising healthy, nutritious foods and eliminating unhealthy foods. PCOS and PCOD diet plan not just helps treat the condition and alleviate the symptoms, but also boost your immunity, nourish your body, manage your weight, and improve your quality of life.