Polycystic Ovary Syndrome is an unfortunate, but common condition that many women suffer with. Whilst there is no cure, symptoms can be helped with nutrition advice from a dietitian.
Although I have PCOS myself, it is difficult to know what still confuses people about the diet they should be following for this condition as I am a dietitian and therefore obviously have a much better understanding. That is why last week I asked women in an online forum what they would like to know (all anonymously of course).
Question 1: What foods should I avoid?
The foods to avoid are all those high in sugar (natural or not!) – cakes, biscuits, smoothies, juices, dried fruit, certain cereals (check the labels you will be surprised!), honey, sauces and yoghurts which comes with fruit already in them. Other foods you need to be aware of are those high in saturated fat as with PCOS we are more at risk of heart disease in the future e.g. butter, full fat milk, ice-cream and red meat.
Question 2: What is a good fat burner?
In terms of food, there is nothing that ‘burns’ fat. Fat is simply laid down when you have more calories than you burn off in the day (regardless of where those calories come from). The best thing for this is filling your diet full of lots of vegetables as these are very low calorie which means that every meal will actually be satisfying whilst allowing for weight loss.
Question 3: I have lost 3 stone in weight in the past year and have been working with a PT 3 times a week. But my weight loss has now stopped, what do you suggest?
Firstly, well done! This is a great start! Weight loss will get harder as you go along because there is less of you – you need less calories and so constantly have to make changes in order to get that calorie difference between what you eat and what you burn. I would suggest you keep a food diary for a week, writing everything down as you go along in order to see if little things are creeping in. Also, have a look at your exercise levels on days that you are not with the PT- If you work a desk job, then it may be that you need to start going for a 30 minute walk each day to get your body moving a little (something I would recommend for anyone).
Question 4: I have type 1 diabetes and PCOS, what should I eat?
This is really difficult to answer without having you in a consultation to look at your weight, blood sugar levels and medications. However, as a very general answer: the PCOS and type 1 diabetic diet are both very similar – eating regularly, complex carbohydrates at each meal (a normal portion size), avoiding high sugar/saturated fat foods most of the time and including plenty of vegetables. Not forgetting the importance of regular exercise!
If you would like further dietitian advice around PCOS and diet please contact me.
© The Food Treatment Clinic LTD 2016. All Rights Reserved.