Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal imbalance disorder affecting more than 20% of women in India. In patients suffering from PCOS, male hormone androgen gets secreted in larger amounts causing obesity, unwanted growth of hair, irregular periods, inflammation etc.
More than 50 per cent of women with PCOS suffer from overweight and its associated complications. Lifestyle changes, dietary modifications play a major role in dealing with this hormonal disorder and in losing weight.
Diet To Manage PCOS
High levels of androgen in patients suffering from PCOS leads to insulin resistance, causing overweight. It is imperative to manage insulin levels with the help of diet for losing those extra kilograms and also to regulate periods.
Choose your diet plan from the following foods to manage PCOS.
A Low Glycemic Index Diet
Foods that are low on glycemic index get digested very slowly preventing sudden spike of blood sugars. It also maintains levels of insulin, boosting metabolism and in turn losing weight. Low glycemic index foods include millets, whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, fruits, starchy vegetables, and other unprocessed foods.
Women with PCOS are prone to chronic inflammation, that can lead to severe insulin resistance, fatigue and weight gain. Go for rich array of anti-inflammatory foods like berries, fatty fish, leafy greens, and extra virgin olive oil, that can not only lower inflammation and but also boost energy.
Whole foods comprise natural, unprocessed foods that are rich in fibre and delay digestion. These foods get absorbed slowly, avoid hunger pangs and prevent you from overeating. Good source of whole foods includes whole grain cereals, vegetables, nuts, seeds, healthy oils and lean meat.
Foods To Stay Away
All dairy foods are rich in insulin growth factor (IFG) which mimics the action of insulin in the body. High levels of insulin increase the levels of testosterone hormone worsening the symptoms of PCOS. Healthy alternative for dairy foods are rice milk, almond milk, oat milk and coconut milk.
Gluten foods in certain people may increase inflammation rate and can aggravate the symptoms of PCOS. Inflammation increases insulin resistance spiking the levels of testosterone hormone. In such a case, go gluten free and choose from a wide range of millets.
Studies reveal that soy and soy products interfere with the ovulation cycle in a few women. Limit soy foods to regulate ovulation and periods.
Other Foods To Avoid
Refined carbohydrates such as pastries and white bread
Fried foods, fast foods and junk foods
Sugary beverages, sodas, and energy drinks
Saturated fats such as margarine, red meat, and sausages