Suffering from PCOS? Foods to lose weight and reverse the condition | Health - Hindustan Times

Suffering from PCOS? Foods to lose weight and reverse the condition

ByParmita Uniyal
Aug 29, 2021 07:09 PM IST

Nutritionist Avantii Deshpaande says that making healthy lifestyle changes, improving diet and regular physical exercises can help in managing PCOS symptoms. She also suggests diet for those suffering from the condition.

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), a hormonal disorder, affects one out of ten women in India. Women suffering from the condition may have infrequent or prolonged periods, increased levels of male hormones and insulin while the reproductive hormone progesterone is on the lower side. Obesity is said to worsen complications of the disorder, therefore it is advised to lose weight when you are suffering from PCOS.

Intake of proteins and probiotics is recommended for those suffering from PCOS(Unsplash)
Intake of proteins and probiotics is recommended for those suffering from PCOS(Unsplash)

A sedentary lifestyle and obesity are associated with increased risk of getting PCOS.

"Ideally an active workout of at least 150 minutes per day is recommended for maintaining a healthy weight, improving the heart health and over all mental well-being. This active workout includes cardio activity, own body weight workouts coupled with yogasanas. But due to the urban lifestyle, it is observed that there is less priority given to exercise. Along with this the food choices are skewed and there is more of empty calories coming from carbs and fats and less of protein and fruits and vegetables in the diet. This along with lack of exercise is a major contributor to being overweight or obese," says Avantii Deshpaande, PCOS and Gut health nutritionist.

ALSO READ: Trying for a baby? Here are foods to boost your fertility

Women suffering from PCOS report high insulin which makes them crave for more carbs and sweets. This leads to an extra calorie intake which could contribute towards obesity. So it is important to treat the insulin resistance and not just reduce the blood sugars, adds Deshpande.

To manage PCOS, Deshpande says, apart from losing weight it is important to detox the vital organs, improve gut health and make some healthy lifestyle changes.

She suggests the following foods to lose weight and reverse PCOS:

1. Take high-fibre diet

A high-fibre diet packed with anti-oxidants is recommended to detoxify the body and improve gut health. Fruits and vegetables being low in calories also ensure you do not end up consuming extra calories. Deshpande recommends at least 5 serving of fruits and vegetables in a day to manage the condition.

2. Include proteins

Proteins play an important role in the synthesis of hormones and provide body with a filling food. "Include protein in every meal from breakfast, lunch to dinner. You can take dals, beans, eggs, curds, nuts and oil seeds," suggests Deshpande.

3. Probiotics

Probiotics are not only excellent for your gut health but also reduce inflammation and regulate hormones like estrogen and androgen. "Make it a point to have atleast 1 glass of buttermilk in the day or ½ cup of fresh home-made curds. This will improve the gut health as they contain probiotics," the PCOS nutritionist says.

4. Omega 3 fatty acids

A daily dose of omega 3 fatty acids is known to improve the hormonal imbalance. "Consume 1 tbsp of flax seeds, sunflower and melon seeds together in the day. You could also try seed cycling. Fish and fish oil tablets will also ensure you get omega 3 fatty acids," says Deshpande.

Herbal tea is helpful in managing PCOS symptoms(Unsplash)
Herbal tea is helpful in managing PCOS symptoms(Unsplash)

5. Herbal teas

Herbal teas like green tea or green coffee are also useful in boosting metabolism and could be consumed as a replacement for our regular tea and coffee.

6. Avoid milk and wheat

If inflammation is the cause of PCOS removing foods like milk and wheat from the diet for a few weeks will lead to weight loss, but this should be done under the supervision of an expert, says the nutritionist.

Other tips by Deshpande

Include at least 150 mins of workouts in the week which is equivalent to 20 minutes of exercise per day in the form of cardio, weight training and yoga.

Practicing Pranayama will reduce the stress and will also help to balance the hormones better.

You can reduce or stop the consumption of junk food for cutting out empty calories. Replace this with home cooked meals which are filled with nutrition.

Enjoy the journey towards eating healthy and make it a daily habit by following mindful eating, making healthy swaps and following a workout routine.

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