Polycystic Ovarian Disease (PCOD), also known as Polycystic Ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a very common condition affecting 5% to 10% of women in the age group 12–45 years.
Though an endocrine disorder (hormone-related disorder), lifestyle plays a major role in terms of inappropriate eating habits and lack of physical activity.
Early diagnosis and treatment can help control the symptoms and prevent long-term problems.
What happens in PCOS?
As PCOS causes hormonal imbalance. One hormone change triggers another, which changes another. For Example,
Insulin resistance – inability to use insulin by the cells. Leading to high blood sugar levels (hyperinsulinaemia). Over time, may increase the chances of diabetes.
Raised levels of male sex hormones – androgens, though women produce small amounts of androgens higher than normal levels disrupt menstrual cycle.
Weight gain and trouble losing weight.
Hirsutism – (Extra hair on the face and body).
Fertility problems – Many women who have PCOS have trouble getting pregnant.
The condition was named because of the finding of enlarged ovaries containing multiple small cysts (polycystic ovaries). Although most women with PCOS have polycystic ovaries, some affected women do not.
What can I do to lose weight if I have polycystic ovary syndrome?
Losing weight not only help’s you look better — it can also make you feel lighter.
When you have PCOS, shedding just 5-10% of your body weight can bring your periods back to normal. It can also help relieve some of the symptoms of polycystic ovary syndrome.
Weight loss can improve insulin sensitivity. That will reduce your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and other PCOS complications.
Engage yourself in some physical activity like yoga, aerobics or just walk.
What is the ideal diet for PCOS?
There is no one size fits all plan to lose weight with PCOS.
Include more colored vegetables as great source of antioxidants to protect your body from oxidative damage.
Eat low GI (Glycemic Index) fruits for vitamins, minerals and fibre which help in elevating your metabolism and reducing hunger, and increasing energy expenditure.
Eat whole grains for complex carbohydrates, the more fibre in your diet the more it will keep your sugar level under control which ultimately helps in weight loss.
Proteins, important source for building your muscles, keep you satiated for longer period, boosts metabolism.
Fats, though got bad rap, are important source of energy. Healthy fats in your diet are great way to keep you satiated, help your body absorb vitamins A, D, E, K and help with healthy female hormone levels.
Balance of every nutrient in your meal planning is very important along with portion size. Do not avoid any nutrient in order to lose weight faster, it will not work in longer run.