It's likely for a person with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) to have been advised certain foods that are good for them and certain foods that they should avoid to keep the weight down and hormones levels in check. But the fact is that, there are no foods groups that are to be avoided or had in large quantities. It is just about making the right choice at the right time and in right quantity.
Here Are 7 Facts About Healthy Eating Habits With PCOS:
1.You don't have to go gluten-free
Many women try to go on a gluten-free diet thinking that it will help them in losing some extra kilos. However, there is no scientific study to prove this. One generally loses weight by eating fewer calories overall.
Some women with PCOS have celiac disease or gluten-sensitivity. For those women, avoiding gluten can reduce their symptoms and hence help them feel better. But not all women need to go gluten-free with their diets.
2.Dairy products can be taken
Many people advise women with PCOS to avoid dairy products. However, milk and milk based products are rich in calcium and protein. It may increase androgen and insulin level but a limited quantity never hurts. So, a woman need not completely avoid milk products. Small servings per week would be fine if one doesn't have any allergy.
3.Eat bigger breakfast to possibly improve hormonal levels
Women with PCOS should have their breakfast as king size, lunch as queen size and dinner as beggar size. Eating a bigger breakfast is likely to improve insulin sensitivity and decrease androgen levels. It also keeps you full for a long part of the day.
4.Fruit is allowed to have
Fruits are rich in important vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants that offer a number of benefits to women with PCOS. Choose fruits like apples, blueberries, strawberries, etc. which have the skin on them. Such fruits tend to have a lower glycemic index than the fruits which don't have the skin on them, like pineapple, watermelon, etc.
5.You can indulge your sweet cravings
It is advised that desserts and sweets should be avoided by women with PCOS but they can be enjoyed with a PCOS diet if eaten in moderation. A cube of 70% dark chocolate can satisfy sweet cravings and is also rich in antioxidants which will cause no harm. So go ahead and indulge your sweet cravings from time to time but in moderation.
6.Focus on foods with omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are present in oily fish like salmon and sardines as well as in chia seeds. These fatty acids are heart-healthy and anti-inflammatory. Omega-3 help to regulate levels of hormones that affect testosterone secretion. Hence, foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids can prove to be great for women with PCOS.
7.Only avoid foods that tend to bother you
Everyone has some food items that they cannot tolerate or that bother them. It is important to learn about those food intolerance or sensitivity that give you gastrointestinal distress after consuming them, like bloating, gas or indigestion. You should avoid those foods as they will not help with PCOS recovery and would act as a barrier in your PCOS friendly diet.
Author's Bio: Dr. Aruna Kalra is a senior gynaecologist and obstetrician at CK Birla Hospital, Gurugram.
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.