Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is the most common endocrine (hormonal) disorder. It concerns about 10% of women. The underlying cause is unknown but is thought to be related to insulin resistance. In simple words, PCOS is a condition that creates a hormonal imbalance in women of reproductive age. And every woman’s PCOS signs are different.
PCOS affects the body’s hormonal balance which can cause symptoms such as:
- Irregular or missed periods
- Unwanted hair growth on face and body
- Hair loss
- Fertility struggles
- Oily, Acne-prone skin
- Pelvic pain
- Changes in skin pigment
- Frequent mood changes
- Weight gain, specifically around the midsection
Although it is important to follow the treatment guidelines provided by your doctor, there are some vital lifestyle modifications you can consider in your routine so that reduce your dependency on medications or enable you to get rid of them altogether.
Tips for PCOS
What is the connection between PCOS and diet?
Women who experience this condition are mostly overweight that is why they tend to question what the conventional diet should be for them. Though some women with PCOS are thin, the majority have a weight issue. The best way of treating this condition is changing the lifestyle that includes three major changes; eating a healthy and well-balanced diet, exercising regularly, trying to lose weight and decreasing chances for stress and anxiety.
1. Choose whole-grain food
It is good to eat more whole, plant-based foods including fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and most of the whole grain. The following are some major benefits you will receive by following this tip;
- Decrease the amount of saturated fat, trans fat, and salt in your diet.
- Increase the variety of vegetables you eat daily.
- Eat small, frequent meals.
- Snacks are encouraged! Choose lots of fruits, vegetables, and nuts for your snacks!
2. Get up and moving
Exercise is good for your health. For women with the polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), simply following what you eat is not enough to lose weight. Although it is required to do so, exercising daily combined with a healthy diet is what is needed to lose the excess PCOS weight. It is more about finding ideas to get moving more throughout the day.
Exercise improves insulin efficiency, helps with weight loss, and helps prevent complications such as heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis, and cancer. Also, it can help increase your basic metabolic rate (think of this as the increasing the number of calories your body burns when aren’t even working out).
And if those benefits are not enough to convince you the importance of working out when you have PCOS, maybe improving your skin, lowering stress, improving your mood, and improving your quality of sleep are motivation enough to get out there and get moving! Take a look at some important exercises which can help you:
- Get 30 minutes of aerobic exercise on most days of the week (running, walking, swimming, tennis, etc.)
- Can’t leave out strength training! Work with some kind of weights 2-3 days per week.
- Work all major muscles in your arms, core, legs, butt, etc.
- Don’t be worried about building bulk; working with some weights will help get you that toned look!
3. Cut out your toxins
Your body comes into contact with thousands of toxins every day from foods, cosmetics, cleaners, plastics, smoking, and many more. It is quite difficult to avoid them all, but it is necessary to avoid them as much as possible.
Many toxins are endocrine disruptors which means they interfere with your hormonal balance. This increases those annoying PCOS symptoms, and your risk for developing heart disease, cancer, or diabetes. You can follow the below-mentioned tips;
- Eat organic as much as possible. If you can’t afford everything organic (who can anymore?), stick with going organic for produce such as apples, berries, and lettuce that does not have a skin that you can peel off.
- Take inventory of your household cleaners. You will find most household cleaners contain harsh chemicals that are endocrine disrupters. Switch to using hydrogen peroxide and white vinegar for general disinfecting.
- Limit alcohol intake.
- Stop drinking coffee. Coffee is rich in caffeine which develops estrogenic levels. You must start quitting coffee since this can worsen your condition.
- Take inventory of your cosmetics which contain ingredients that have not been properly tested and can be endocrine disrupters.
Considering the above factors, we have helped many women manage their PCOS to meet their life goals. Whether it is concerning weight loss or just feeling better, we understand how difficult it can be to take the initial move. Therefore, we offer a customized program which can fit with your ability and help you to improve your condition.
Watch Dietitian Lavleen Kaur provide tips for PCOD and hormonal imbalance
The uniqueness of our PCOD program is
We listen to you: Each woman has unique symptoms. We track your diet with you and makes specific suggestions to help you feel healthy.
A program built only for you: According to your daily schedule, we will design a custom diet program to help ease your PCOS symptoms.
Regular Improvement: Progress does not occur overnight, so if something is not going quite right, we make changes accordingly.