Nutrition tips to help manage your PCOS

Nutrition tips to help manage your PCOS

So you have PCOS and everyone is telling you to lose weight, but you are actually at healthy body weight? Diet and lifestyle can actually make a huge difference to managing PCOS but what about ‘lean’ PCOS. Nearly 80% of women with PCOS will present with weight concerns, however 1 in 5 women with PCOS don’t struggle with their weight. 

Women with ‘lean’ PCOS will still suffer from common symptoms such as irregular menstrual cycles, lack of ovulation, ovarian cysts, excessive hair growth, acne, anxiety and depression, insulin resistance and fertility difficulties. 

In particular insulin resistance is a common symptom of ‘lean’ PCOS affecting 75% of women. This means your body does not respond to insulin normally and leads to elevated blood glucose levels. Being aware of this and staying on top of your IR is important as it can increase your risk of gestational and  type 2 diabetes. 

Here are some easy tips to help you stay on top of your IR:

1. Don’t cut carbs!

Carbohydrates are necessary to maintain blood sugar levels, but it is important to choose carbs that serve your body and blood sugars. These are carbs that contain more fibre, vitamin B and wholegrains. 

2. Low GI is best.

This means carbs that release sugar into your blood slowly and gradually to allow for your body’s insulin stores to keep up. Foods like brown rice, multigrain bread , fresh fruit and dairy that’s low in fat. 

3. Say YES to veg.

Always opt for fresh fruit and veggies, they are the best way to boost your antioxidants, fibre, vitamins and minerals. So important when managing PCOS. 

4. Add protein. 

Choosing lean protein sources will fill you up while controlling your blood sugar levels at every meal. Reach for proteins that are lower in fat! You know the ones I’m talking about.. This will keep your heart healthy and add iron and zinc to your intake. Don't be afraid to try some meat free options also like tofu, kidney beans, lentils etc. 

5. Resistance training is key.

Research shows that women with ‘lean’ PCOS who add resistance training to their training regime had lower abdominal fat, higher lean muscle mass and lower circulating testosterone levels.. That’s all the reason I need!


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