Research has shown that lifestyle changes and diets are more effective in helping patients with PCOS than using medication. For this reason, if you have been diagnosed with PCOS, one of the best things that you can do for yourself is to make the proper lifestyle and diet changes in order to help keep the condition under control.
PCOS causes a person to have difficulty processing carbs and insulin. A woman with PCOS tends to produce an abundance of insulin, which causes the ovaries to release more testosterone and this leads to many of the PCOS symptoms. Getting started on a PCOS diet can be kind of tricky. Especially if you are unsure of what you should and should not be eating. However, if you follow some simple rules, the PCOS diet is easier to partake in. Here are ten rules to follow to make starting a PCOS diet easier for you.
1. Start with your Why
When it comes to any type of diet, including the PCOS diet one of the most important things that you can do is to understand why you are doing what you are doing. If you have been told that you need to go on this PCOS diet, but do not understand why, it can become even more difficult to follow for you.
There are many reasons why you should follow the PCOS diet if you have been diagnosed with this condition. As mentioned, research has found that diet and lifestyle changes are the most effective forms of treatment for this condition. Even knowing that may not be enough. In order to be successful on this diet, you need to understand and accept the reasons that you should be following this diet for your health. Once you understand your why, following the PCOS diet is going to become much easier.
2. Get Rid of the Junk Food
When you are starting a new diet such as the PCOS diet, one of the things that are going to make it a lot easier to get started is to go through your cabinets, freezer, and refrigerator and figure out what should not be there. Getting rid of all of the stuff that you are no longer supposed to be eating is one of the easiest ways to ensure your success on the PCOS diet.
Think out of sight out of mind. If you do not see something in your cabinet you are less likely to crave it. Having foods that you are not supposed to eat around can make it that much more difficult to stick to your diet and avoid the foods you are not supposed to have. Before you start your PCOS diet, look through everything and get rid of all of the food that you need to now avoid.
3. Stock up On Good PCOS Foods
Once you have gotten rid of all of the food that you are not supposed to be eating, the next step is to stock your cupboards, freezer, and fridge with foods that are PCOS diet friendly. The PCOS diet should consist of fresh and healthy foods. While this tends to be more expensive than purchasing premade processed food, your body is going to thank you for it.
When you are purchasing food for your PCOS diet stick to the meat that is lean and organic. Stock up on plant-based proteins as well. Lowering trans fats and carbs are important aspects of this diet. The reason for this is because PCOS causes an overproduction of insulin. This can result in the development of type two diabetes if left untreated. In addition, many women who suffer from PCOS also have high cholesterol. This means that foods high in triglycerides should be avoided.
4. Plan Ahead
One of the most important rules to make the PCOS diet easier to follow is to make sure that you are planning ahead. You should know exactly what you are going to eat and when you are going to eat it. The last thing that you want to do is to come out of a long meeting and hit the sandwich shop for something to eat because you are starving.
Eating something that is not on the PCOS diet plan just once can derail the entire day. If you take the time to plan ahead you can easily pack some snacks to take with you as well as meals if necessary. This will provide you with a healthy food choice so that you are not stuck looking for a healthy food option from a restaurant as this often leads to you giving in to a craving and going off course.
5. Meal Planning is Your Friend
Just like you need to plan out your snacks and times that you are eating, it is also a good idea to plan out all of your meals ahead of time. This will help you become more organized when mealtimes hit. In addition, if you plan out your meals you will be able to ensure that you have all of the ingredients on hand that you need in order to make your PCOS diet friendly foods.
Taking the time to plan out your weekly meals is important when you are trying to stick to a diet that is going to help improve your overall health. When planning meals make sure that you are choosing recipes that have a low GI, are dairy-free, low in saturated fat, do not contain refined sugars or food, and balanced when it comes to protein and carbs. All meals and snacks should be well balanced.
6. Choose the Right Tools
When you are starting your PCOS diet it is not only important to make sure that you have the right foods on hand, but you also need to make sure that you have the right tools available to help you succeed. You should purchase a set of good scales that you can use to weigh out your food. This will help to ensure that you are getting the right amount of calories for each meal throughout the day.
In addition, you will want to make sure that you have plenty of soup flasks and other containers that can be used to take your food with you on the go. Invest in a quality lunchbox as well. When you have the right tools available to use, it is going to make sticking to this diet much easier. You will be able to easily weigh and pack your meals during the planning stage, which makes it easier to stick with.
7. Choosing the Best Foods for Your Budget
When you start out on this diet there is a learning curve involved. One of the best things that you can do is to learn what ingredients you are going to be able to use that will give you the most for your money. You will be increasing your intake of fresh veggies and reducing the amount of refined carbs that you eat.
Refined carbs cause a blood sugar spike that ultimately will lead to you feeling hungry again in a short time. Choose whole grains, lean proteins, and slow-release carbs for the most benefit. It is a good idea to treat yourself to some luxurious feeling food as well. Prawns are a great choice for a protein as they offer nutritional benefits and fit well with your dietary needs.
Overall, seriously consider the food that you are purchasing and what it can do for you. This will help make the diet process easier.
8. Know your Calories
Along with planning out meals and choosing the best types of foods to meet your budget, it is also important to consider your caloric intake. This rule is somewhat boring, but it is important to have a rough idea of how many calories you should be consuming and how many calories are in the foods that you want to eat.
Once you learn the calories of many foods you are going to be able to easily plan your meals around the amount of calories in each of the foods that you are going to eat. This can make planning meals that much easier. Learning the calories of foods is one of the best things that you can do in order to make the PCOS diet much easier to follow. Use the backs of packets and online resources to help you add up your calories. There are even apps for your phone that can help you keep track.
9. Know What Works For You
Just like you need to figure out why you are doing this, you also need to determine what is going to work for you. This not only includes the types of meals that you are going to make, but also how you are going to spread your calories throughout the day. What times of the day do you feel the most hungry? Perhaps you would like a bigger meal for lunch and then a small dinner. Maybe you prefer to skip breakfast or to just eat something light.
Only you know what type of eating schedule that is going to work best for you. It may take some time to figure out exactly when you want to eat your meals as well as what types of meals you enjoy the most. However, when you begin the PCOS diet it is important to spread your meals and snacks throughout the day and to try to keep to a somewhat regular eating schedule.
10. Assemble a Support Team
Let’s face it, we are all human and facing the task of eating a new and somewhat unfamiliar diet along with making other lifestyle changes can become quite overwhelming. When you begin to feel like it is too much it is very easy to go back to your old ways of eating. The best thing that you can do in order to make sure that you stick to your PCOS diet is to ask for support. This may be from a friend or from a family member. You may also find a support group online that you can join.
No matter what, if you are going to succeed, chances are high that you are going to need some support at one point or another. Having one or two other people there to provide you with support when you are ready to go back to your old ways is one of the best things that you can do in order to make sticking to the PCOS diet much easier.