6 PCOS Diet Rules You Must Follow
Trying to figure out what you should and shouldn’t eat when you have PCOS can be confusing, stressful, and time-consuming.
There are so many conflicting views about what type of diet is best for PCOS.
Is it keto, paleo, low-carb, low-fat, gluten free, vegetarian, or vegan that you should be following?
Should you be following the glycemic index?
Don’t let overwhelm set in. It is easy to go down the rabbit hole and not take any action because you are inundated by all of the information and choices.
The most important thing you need to ask yourself when you are putting anything into your mouth is: Am I feeding disease or fighting it?
What I mean by this statement is are you making choices that are going to make your PCOS symptoms worse or are you making smart choices that will heal and nourish your body.
Eating healthy does not have to be complicated. Because honestly, who has time for that?!
If you follow these 6 PCOS diet rules when you eat, you will be fighting disease and helping your body to heal.
Let’s get the healing started!!
1. Eat whole, real, foods.
Foods in their natural state are always going to be a smart choice. They aren’t processed and pumped fill of preservatives. They contain vitamins and nutrients that help your body run at is peak.
It is always best to get the nutrients you need from real foods. Your body has an easier time absorbing vitamins and minerals from real sources. While supplements can be helpful, they are just that and should be used to enhance your diet and to fill in any deficiencies or gaps.
RELATED: 7 Best Supplements for PCOS
Some wonderful examples to incorporate into your diet are greens, carrots, peppers, sweet potatoes, strawberries, blueberries, etc. I think you catch the drift here. Your plate should be filled with these choices.
Aim to fill at least half of your plate with vegetables. Don’t worry fruits and vegetables will not make you fat. Most veggies are low in calories and fat. So enjoy them!
If you are someone that struggles with getting enough vegetables and whole foods in your diet, try making smoothies. You can easily throw in fresh or frozen berries and spinach or kale. And the good news is that you won’t even really taste the vegetables. The greens take on the flavor of the other ingredients in the smoothie. There is always a solution around obstacles!
Here’s an important tip to remember, when you are grocery shopping, shop the perimeter of the store. That is where all of those delicious, whole foods will be located.
You can also find delicious crops at your local farmer’s markets depending upon the time of year. And if you have a large family try signing up for a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) where you are purchasing a share of the crops from a regional farmer. I have been a CSA member for years and you can’t beat the quality, quantity, and savings.
2. Combine a protein or a fat with a carb.
If you are going to remember anything, this is probably the most important PCOS diet rule to remember!
Always pair a carbohydrate with either a protein or a fat. This will help prevent insulin spikes by slowing down digestion. Proteins and fats will not spike your blood sugars and they will leave you feeling satiated.
When you eat a lot of carbohydrates, your blood sugar levels will spike shortly after you eat and this will leave you craving more food. It is a vicious cycle that you don’t want to be in.
Remember the name of the game is to stabilize blood sugar levels.
About 80% of women with PCOS are insulin resistant so it is critical to understand what triggers blood sugar spikes and how to combat them.
RELATED: 5 Signs you are insulin resistant
Here are some great combinations that will fill you and keep your hormones happy.
Apple slices with almond butter
Nuts with berries
Eggs and toast
Chicken with a little pasta
Salmon and a sweet potato with green beans
The combinations are endless. Play around with different foods and pairings and figure out what you like and works for you.
Always remember this rule, it one of the most important ones.
3. Eat the rainbow.
Your diet should consist of a variety of colors (yellow, green, red, orange, purple, etc.).
Purple foods contain the antioxidant anthocyanin. Anthocyanin helps protect cells against mutations and cancer.
Red foods are a good source of vitamin A which is great for vision.
Try changing up your choices. Instead of buying green peppers all the time, try the yellow and orange ones.
Try different types of colorful fruits and veggies that you might have not gravitated to before. The various colors contain different vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants and these are wonderful for your overall health and wellness.
4. Eat foods high in Omega-3s.
Omega- 3s help protect your heart and help to lower testosterone. These are two important benefits considering women with PCOS have higher levels of androgens in the body and are more susceptible to heart disease.
That pesky testosterone is to blame for your acne, excess hair growth, and hair loss.
That means you definitely want to eat foods to help combat high androgen levels. Some power foods that are excellent sources of Omega-3’s include:
fish like salmon
Related: 4 Foods That Lower Testosterone
Not a fan of these types of food?
Then you can try adding an Omega-3 supplement into your routine. Omega-3 supplements are great for improving insulin sensitivity, egg quality, and lowering free testosterone levels in the body. I think there are definite benefits to adding an Omega-3 supplement in your PCOS regime.
An important tip, when taking an Omega-3 supplement, it should be with food. Want more great tips about how and when to take your supplements? Check out the related post below.
5. Focus on complex carbs.
Women with PCOS have been told that they carbohydrates are the enemy and should stay away from them. Well let’s set the record straight on this one.
All carbohydrates are not equal! Not all carbs are bad.
There are two types of carbohydrates: simple and complex.
Simple carbohydrates break down easily and quickly. This results in a spike in blood sugars. Some examples of simple carbs are cereals, baked goods, breads, and pastas. You should try to avoid and limit simple carbs from your diet as much as you can.
Complex carbohydrates break down more slowly and are full of fiber and nutrients. They won’t cause those blood sugar spikes because they take longer to breakdown and be digested.
You want to eat complex carbohydrates they help fuel the body and give you energy.
Here are some example of complex carbs that you should incorporate into your diet:
Sprouted grain bread
It is okay to eat carbs, you just want to choose ones that will help you and not hurt you. So eat complex carbs, just don’t go overboard! Watch your portions sizes and remember rule #2 always pair carbs with a protein or fat.
You don’t need to fear carbohydrates, you just need to become educated on the proper way to eat them and how they impact your body (both positively and negatively).
6. Eat 5-6 smaller meals throughout the day.
Women with PCOS should focus on eating smaller meals throughout the day instead of the traditional three bigger meals.
You are less likely to overeat if you eat smaller, more frequent meals. This helps with portion control. It also helps keep your blood sugar levels stable. It is when your blood sugar levels drop that you get hungry.
People that eat three meals a day tend to eat more in a sitting than those who graze frequently.
This can be a big change to get used to at first but it will have significant results for your blood sugars and waistline.
The meals do not have to be elaborate. The can be very simple like a piece of fruit and a handful of nuts or veggies and dip. Once you get the hang of it, it will take you no time at all to prepare for your day or pack in your bag for work.
I promise it won’t take up a lot of your time, in fact it will probably save you time in the kitchen because you won’t be preparing big gourmet feasts every night.
If you can follow these 6 PCOS diet rules, you will be on the way to healing your body. You can treat food as medicine or as a way to fuel disease. The choice is always yours.
Want more guidance? Here is the detailed plan the changed EVERYTHING for me! Get your copy today!!
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