Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is common among young women. Around 10% of women of reproductive-age exhibit the symptoms of PCOD. You can have problems like acne, growth of facial hair, rapid weight gain, menstrual irregularity, and infertility. Your doctor may find insulin resistance (IR), and clinical hyperandrogenism and/or high levels of androgens in blood. Also, your ovaries will show many cysts in ultrasound imaging leading to polycystic appearance.
Lifestyle changes like exercise and diet modification will bring in visible changes in acne, irregular periods, hair thinning, hair loss. Excess production of testosterone, excess hair growth and mood swings can be controlled and improved by just making a few lifestyle changes.
Diet plays a vital role in controlling and improving PCOS. A healthy and balanced diet that consists of proper nutrients can modify the problems of PCOD. Weight reduction and improving insulin production helps in this situation.
Why insulin is important for us?
Insulin is a hormone made by your pancreas; an organ located in abdomen. It helps glucose to enter into your cells from blood. When you eat food, it enters blood as glucose. This glucose is required by your cells to produce energy. Insulin is essential for entry of glucose to cells. When blood glucose, also called blood sugar, levels rise after you eat, your pancreas releases insulin into the blood. Insulin then lowers blood glucose to keep it in the normal range. Insulin also inhibits the hepatic production of sex hormone-binding globulin and insulin-like growth factor binding protein.
What is insulin resistance in PCOD?
Insulin resistance refers to the state, wherein insulin action is insufficient. The deficiency of insulin despite the increased amounts of insulin secreted in the blood is called insulin resistance.
In PCOD insulin resistance plays an important role. Women with PCOS are at significantly increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM). You may be having profound insulin resistance as well as with defects in insulin secretion. If you are obese these changes are exaggerated. PCOS-related insulin resistance is an important cause diabetes woman.
Insulin resistance is when cells in your muscles, fat, and liver don’t respond well to insulin and can’t easily take up glucose from your blood. As a result, your pancreas makes more insulin to help glucose enter your cells. At times more production of insulin by the pancreas can overcome the mild insulin resistance and will prevent you from getting diabetes.
Are PCOS women always obese?
PCOS patients are not always markedly overweight. However, PCOS is strongly associated with abdominal obesity and insulin resistance. So as to say, you may be thin but with lot of fat around the belly and thighs. Insulin resistance has been identified in the majority of lean and obese PCOS. If you follow a well-balanced nutrition programme and exercise it can improve your hormone disorders. You can achieve normal fertility function even without marked weight loss. Diet and exercise need to be tailored to the individual’s needs and preferences.
What are the nutrients essential in PCOD diet?
A well planned PCOD diet contains many macro and micronutrients. Macronutrients like fat, carbohydrates and proteins play a major role in controlling symptoms of PCOS.
Fat should be around 30% of total calories of your meal. It is preferable to take a low proportion of saturated fat. Choose carefully the carbohydrate content of your diet. You can take carbohydrate of low glycaemic index. High intake of carbohydrate can cause weight gain and also stimulates hunger and carbohydrate craving. High GI food items include boiled potatoes, white bread, biscuits, cake, baked fava beans. Micronutrients like vitamins, minerals should also be well balanced.
How PCOD diet helps?
A moderate reduction in dietary carbohydrate reduces the insulin concentrations among women with PCOD. As a result, the reproductive outcomes in women become much better. Treatment for PCOS subjects typically includes insulin-lowering drugs and the implementation of lifestyle changes, including weight loss.
Weight loss, accompanied by an increase in insulin sensitivity is a successful treatment for the PCOS population. Weight loss has also proven to be an effective treatment for PCOD women with diabetes.
Planning a PCOD diet
The following recommendations can help you plan your meal.
- Do not eat carbohydrates alone. You can combine them with protein and fat content as well.
- Limit carbohydrate quantity. Recommended carbohydrates should be around 20 grams in breakfast, 40 grams for lunch and around 30 grams for dinner.
- Choose carbohydrates with lower glycaemic index foods as they will cause a slower rise in blood sugar. The lower glycaemic carbohydrates have more fiber and low-calorie content.
- Processed foods – Processed foods have a more glycaemic index and hence make you put on weight. In other words, whole grains and cereals are better to take. Avoid refined sugars like cookies, ice crème, sweets.
- Take a moderate amount of protein and fat. Choose lean meat and less saturated fat.
- Always include green leafy vegetables and salads in the PCOD diet menu.
- Take two servings of fruits every day.
- Avoid food with extra salt, take a diet with reduced sodium content.
- Calculate calorie intake on your activity needs. This helps you to shed extra weight.
What is food Spacing and why it is important?
Space the carbohydrates out during the day. This will cause less of rise in blood sugar and insulin peak as compared to eating all carbohydrates at one meal. The Carbohydrate Addicts Diet recommends eating all the carbohydrates at one meal. You can split your carbs trough small frequent meals.This diet helps control food cravings and promotes weight loss.
Avoid those carbohydrates that trigger more hunger or cravings. Calorie intake should be distributed between several meals per day with low intake from snacks and drinks.
Is Egg good for PCOS?
A high protein diet reduces carb craving and reduce insulin levels. PCOD diet should include lots of lean meat, fish and eggs. Eggs are low-calorie food rich in protein and other nutrients. Eating eggs may support weight loss in PCOS.
Is milk good for PCOD?
Include low-fat dairy, low-fat milk and yoghurt which contain <2% of total fat. Similarly, low-fat cheese with <20% of total fat content is preferable in PCOD diet. In other words, avoid high fat dairy, high-fat milk, high-fat yoghurt, high-fat cheese, and chocolate milk.
Which vegetables to take in PCOD?
Vegetable, Green leafy vegetables (Spinach, lettuce, mixed vegetables), Cruciferous vegetables, tomatoes, carrots, cucumbers, eggplants, corn, garlic, turnips, squash, mushrooms, onions, pumpkin, celery, green peas, green beans, green paper
Which oil is preferable in PCOD women?
Oils like Vegetable oils and olive oil are preferable. Chose oils with omega 3 fatty acids. Peanut oil, sunflower oil and rice bran along with mustard oil are best to consume.
What happens to pregnancy in PCOD?
Women with PCOS have increased risk of adverse pregnancy and neonatal complications. It is necessary to establish guidelines for supervision during pregnancy and parturition to prevent these complications. Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), pregnancy-induced hypertension (PIH), preeclampsia, re life threatening complications. Premature delivery, neonatal birth weight, caesarean section and admission to a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). oligohydramnios, and polyhydramnios may affect your baby’s health.
What I should not eat in PCOD?
- Starchy vegetable, potato, pumpkin, green peas, fava beans.
- Red-meat, Beef, lamb
- Large fish, Canned tuna fish
- Fast food, Pizza, processed meats, hamburger, French fries
- High-fat dairy
- Carbonated drinks
Which is the best drink for PCOD?
Carbonated beverage consumption has been linked with diabetes, hypertension, and kidney stones. Noncola beverages are preferred for better health and nutrition. However, caffeine and alcohol may impair ovulation and better avoided in PCOD women. Fruit juices with less sugar are the drinks of choice for PCOD diet. Avoid canned fruits or packaged juices as they contain refined sugars.
Does the PCOD diet contain legumes?
All kinds of legumes including beans, peas, lima beans, lentils, soy can be added. Try to take in moderate amount as they are high calorie foods.