Losing weight isn’t easy in general but if one is struggling from PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome) then losing weight can become a constant struggle. PCOS stands for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome is a problem in which a woman’s hormones are out of balance. It can cause problems with your periods and make it difficult to get pregnant. PCOS leads to the growth of many small cysts, which look like black dots in an ultrasound, in ovaries. More than six out of every 10 women who have PCOS are overweight.
Due to high insulin levels the production of male hormones called androgens is increased in a woman’s body which in turn triggers the weight gain in the abdomen. Abdominal fat is the most dangerous kind of fat. That’s because it is associated with an increased risk of heart disease and other health conditions.
But with slight lifestyle modifications including stress reduction, exercise, and group support, along with a decrease in total energy intake, can have a positive result on the patient. Remember that shedding just 10% of the body weight can bring periods back to normal. Also, weight loss can improve insulin sensitivity which will reduce your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and other polycystic ovary syndrome complications.
Tips to reduce weight:
Sticking to a special diet is a very important aspect of PCOS care. Treating insulin resistance is the key to reducing food cravings and weight.
• Reducing the total intake of carbohydrates (cereals, breads, pastas) and choosing to eat different types of carbohydrates that are less processed (whole wheat, brown rice, beans). Replacing manufactured carbohydrate products with whole grains, fruits and vegetables can help to reduce your insulin response. The diet also should include enough protein to control the amount of sugar in the blood.
• Include nuts like almond and walnuts that are great sources of protein, omega 3 fatty acids, B vitamins, Vitamin E and minerals like copper, manganese, magnesium and potassium.
• Avoid the intake of refined flour, white rice, sugar, processed foods, and fruit juices containing simple carbohydrates to keep your blood sugar levels in check.
• Choose whole wheat atta and besan flour to make your rotis. Go for multi grain noodles and breads.
• Since your oil intake is restricted, use healthier oils like sesame, mustard, sunflower, olive, for cooking so that you may get essential fats as required.
• Eat four to six small meals throughout the day, rather than three large meals. This will help control your blood sugar levels.
• Exercise for at least 30 minutes a day on most, if not all, days of the week. Because many women with PCOS have higher testosterone levels than average, use light weights so that you don’t get bulky muscles.
• Quit smoking.
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