PCOS: Diet & Lifestyle Rules

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PCOS: Diet & Lifestyle Rules

Understanding PCOS

1 in 10 females are affected once they go through puberty. They don’t ovulate every month, if they don’t ovulate then they may not have a period.

Diet Rules

There is currently no standard diet for PCOS. However there is widespread agreement about which foods are beneficial. 

3 types of diet may help people with PCOS to manage their symptoms-

  • Low glycemic index diet

Food which doesn’t cause insulin level to rise as much or as quickly as other food like carbohydrate. This includes fruits, nut seeds, pulses, whole grain, vegetables.

  • Anti-inflammatory diet

Such as berries, extra virgin olive oil, green leafy vegetable and fish may reduce inflammation related symptoms like- fatigue.

  • The DASH diet

The DASH diet (dietary approach to stop hypertension) such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables, fish, poultry and low fat dairy products, reduces risk of heart disease.



  1. Drink more water (atleast 2 lts/day), flavoring with cut up fresh fruits, mint, berries, cucumber.
  2. No refined sugar: avoid artificial colors, artificial sweetners, trans fat, high saturated fat.
  3. Eat more smaller meals: eat every 4 hrs to avoid blood sugar spikes
  4. Balance complex carbohydrate with lean meat.
  5. Natural, unprocessed food like whole grain, oat meal, brown rice, millet and quinoa.
  6.  Food high in fibres helps combating insulin resistance.
  7. Limit alcohol
  8. Nuts, spices like turmeric/ cinnamon, dark leafy vegetables, dark chocolates in moderation.


  1. Refined carbohydrate such as white bread
  2. Fried food/ fast food
  3. Sugary beverages like energy drinks and sodas
  4. Processed meat like sausages and hot dogs
  5. Excess red meat like steak/pork


Other lifestyle changes

Lifestyle changes can also help people with PCOS manage condition-

  • First get your hormones and insulin level checked
  • Weight loss, be regular on exercise
  • Reduce your stress and toxins. Yoga has calming effect on mind so recommended for dealing with PCOS effectively.
  • Quit smoking and alcohol
  • Lower cholesterol level
  • Get plenty of sleep

When to see a doctor

  • Acne, oily skin
  • Extra hair growth
  • Weight gain specially around belly
  • Irregular periods
  • Difficulty getting pregnant

Anyone experiencing these symptoms should discuss their concern with their gynecologist. Sooner they can begin treatment, sooner they can feel better.


Although there is currently no cure for PCOS, it is possible to reduce the symptoms & improve quality of life by adopting healthful diet and lifestyle.

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