PCOD – Highly pronounced word in recent days, right? It is quite debilitating too, as it would welcome diabetes, acne, pigmentation, infertility, irregular/prolonged periods, constipation, hair fall, low self-esteem, etc. When left untreated for a longer time, it can even result in uterus cancer.
There is one phrase that sounds hopeful and offers a sigh of relief for individuals coping with PCOD that it is reversible! Of course, the exact cause is still unknown, but with just these three steps – an active lifestyle, appropriate sleep, and a healthy diet, along with proper medication, you can reverse the condition.
One should follow all three. And, most importantly the diet. Because, when it comes to your body weight, the influence of exercise is only 20%, and the rest 80% is influenced by what you eat. Hence while grappling with PCOD, one must always have the diet in control. However, this is where most people get stuck, as they don’t know what to or what not to be included.
So up here are some tips given by the ThreeBestRated® gynecologists just to strike out the “un” from your unhealthy dietary habit.
What to Eat?
Since PCOD takes a serious toll on your hormones and endocrine organs, the diet you include must contain the essential nutrients that make them happy.
The fluctuation in the hormones due to PCOD will impact your gut health and digestive health. This imbalance leads to constipation, poor digestion, gastric problems, and poor nutrition absorption. Probiotics can do wonders in this case.
Probiotic foods are excellent options to avoid these problems, alleviating inflammation and hormones like estrogen and androgen. Some of the probiotic foods you can include buttermilk, Kombucha, pickles, idly, yogurt, etc.
Nuts & Seeds
Nuts and seeds are an excellent source of healthy (unsaturated) fat, which is essential to cure PCOD. The omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin E, vitamins, and proteins present in them help you to maintain the blood sugar level while providing constant energy.
The high dietary fiber content makes you full and aids digestion. Due to their low glycemic index, seeds and nuts help you avoid sugar cravings. Seeds like sunflower, pumpkin, and sesame seeds and nuts such as almonds, peanuts, and walnuts are good to include.
Caffeine is known to worsen the condition. Herbal teas make the best alternative to coffee. As these teas improve insulin sensitivity, they reduce the risks of diabetes, keeping the blood sugar level stable. One of the prime advantages of herbal teas is that they boost metabolism and immunity which aid the weight loss by keeping the cholesterol level checked.
And, for herbal teas, you can go with peppermint, hibiscus, chamomile, fennel, and green tea.
Green Leafy Vegetables
Dietary recommendations, in general, will not be fulfilled without including GLV (Green leafy vegetables). You should intake plenty of dark greenish vegetables that are high in fiber, essential vitamins and minerals, and antioxidants and low in calories. Vegetables such as pepper, greens, cabbage, beans, microgreens, spinach and to name a few are some to consider.
Berries and Cherries
Berries and cherries can be good treats to satisfy your sugar craving without disturbing your blood sugar level. They are rich in antioxidants which is good to alleviate the inflammation associated with PCOD. Also, they have very few calories and contain a low glycemic index, which makes them an ideal food for individuals with insulin sensitivity and obesity.
Sprouted Legumes and Beans
Sprouts are loaded with vitamins & minerals, and antioxidants. These nutrients improve the hormone imbalance, production of estrogen, and endocrine health. Moreover, the sprouts contain rich folate, a nutrient that is essential during pregnancy. It increases the chances of conceiving. Additionally, the sprouted legumes and beans are easier to digest than the non-sprouted ones.
Most of the cysters are insulin resistant. Fenugreek is known to improve glucose tolerance in the body. Consuming soaked fenugreek on an empty stomach in the morning helps control the insulin spikes and facilitates the cells to react to the insulin. This means it boosts the insulin sensitivity in the body which prevents the pancreas from producing more insulin that enters into the bloodstream as blood sugar.
One common mistake that individuals with PCOD commit is neglecting the fats completely. Be informed that fat is the source of energy, but that fat should be non-saturated and healthy. To obtain healthy fats, turn to ghee, coconut or olive oil, virgin oils, seeds, avocados, cheese, dark chocolates, eggs, fish, low-fat/vegan-based cheese, etc. They make you full, reducing the blood sugar level and sugar cravings.
Citrus Fruits like lemon, orange, grapefruit, and sweet lime are excellent sources of antioxidants and fiber that alleviate inflammation and accelerate weight loss. As the glycemic index in these foods is relatively low, they are good to be included in the diet.
There is a common myth that milk is bad for PCOD. It is not the milk that worsens the condition but the large intake. High consumption of milk can increase the carbohydrate level in the body which makes you insulin resistant. Go for organic milk which contains calcium, protein, vitamin B12, etc that is essential for health.
Also, make sure not to have full cream milk which is high in saturated fat which leads to hormonal imbalance and hyperthyroidism.
Okay, now what to avoid?
It is so simple! The foods that come in those fluffy and airy packets have to be trashed.
- Say a big NO to junk and processed foods that are high in sugar, empty calories, saturated fats, and much more.
- Avoid fried foods that pile up cholesterol. Use non-refined and virgin oils, but remember, too much of anything is good for nothing.
- Avoid starchy foods like potatoes and tubers to cut down the carb intake.
- Cut down on sugar-loaded pastries, creams, and gas-filled soft drinks to keep your gut system healthy.